Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




James Stronge


Providing special education services for students with identified special education needs in the least restrictive environment continues to be a challenge for schools. The co-teaching model of special education service delivery provides an opportunity for students to receive individualized instruction, remediation, and practice in the general education classroom by the general education teacher or the special education teacher. Given the uncertainty surrounding the efficacy of co-teaching, there is a need to evaluate the practice based on its effectiveness in the specific setting of a small-town elementary school and based on important criteria of the specific setting. The purpose of this program evaluation study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the co-teaching model in this specific setting and whether this inclusive model of service delivery for special education students, impacts student achievement, student behavior, and what challenges and successes the teacher who work within this model face. Benchmark data and student behavior data were analyzed and the results showed that the co-teaching model had no effect on general education or special education students’ performance on benchmark tests or behavior. Despite co-teaching having no effect on student behavior or benchmark performance, the teachers interviewed spoke very favorably about the practice of co-teaching. Teachers believed that co-teaching was a challenge to implement with fidelity, but that contrary to the evidence, the practice of co-teaching was successful. Recommendations include continued training and professional learning on co-teaching, as well as professional development on high yield instructional strategies.


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