Special education careers come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they can be found in both public and private schools. Jobs as special education teachers and teacher assistants, as well as support services for special needs children and adults, are available in the field of special education. Special education teachers are employed in schools from kindergarten to grade twelve, as well as at the college and university levels. These occupations are centered on a special education curriculum for students with special needs.
Teachers in special education work with children who have a variety of disabilities. These can be students in elementary or secondary schools, as well as college or university students. The special education curriculum is tailored to each child’s specific needs. Class sizes are generally smaller than in traditional classrooms, and there is also a higher teacher-to-student ratio.
The majority of special education teachers work with students with mild to moderate disabilities. Teachers who work with students with severe cognitive disabilities are also available. Basic communication skills, as well as other life skills, are taught to these students on an individual basis.
As a special education teacher, you could specialize in autism spectrum disorders, emotional or behavioral disorders, high-incidence disabilities as a resource teacher in a traditional classroom setting, or low-incidence disabilities as a teacher working with students who have more severe disabilities. These teaching jobs typically necessitate specialized training and certification, as well as a bachelor’s degree or higher. Other special education careers focus on one aspect of a student’s disability, such as a speech pathologist who assists students with verbal communication, an occupational therapist who assists with functional and developmental areas, a physical therapist who assists with mobility, and an adaptive physical education teacher who assists in the promotion of physical exercise adapted to the student’s needs.
Working in special education can provide rewarding experiences and opportunities providing essential resources to students. Many colleges and universities offer bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, as well as certifications and credentials. These certification and credential programs are more focused in terms of learning about a particular area of special education. Studying the autism spectrum disorders or adaptive physical education are two examples of specific areas of interest.