Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
Steven M. Constantino
Staffing shortages in public schools have reached a crisis level. Although pervasive, this crisis has disproportionally impacted the field of special education. Due to the dual roles of special education teachers, specifically serving as teacher and case manager, and other factors, such as addressing the needs of a highly diverse student population, these teachers are more susceptible to attrition. Alternate pathways to licensure have provided an opportunity to address special education staffing needs; however, these opportunities come with risks, specifically when strategic support is not provided, resulting in the most at-risk teacher and student populations being paired together. Limited research has been conducted about (a) how local school divisions are poised to support alternatively licensed staff and (b) the ultimate impact of alternate licensure and subsequent teacher preparation on student achievement. This study found alternatively licensed teachers’ different backgrounds and experiences, when compared to traditionally licensed teachers, required school divisions to be prepared to systematically implement professional development addressing their unique needs. Conducted in an urban school division in Virginia, this study highlighted the outcomes of a district-based professional development series for provisionally licensed special education teachers. Results suggest intentionally designed professional development opportunities following a generalized professional framework positively impact teacher participation, teacher learning, and student achievement for provisionally licensed special education teachers.
© The Author
Mullins, Hayley Flynn, "District-Based Supports For Alternatively Licensed Special Education Teachers: An Action Research Study" (2023). Dissertations, Theses, and Masters Projects. William & Mary. Paper 1686662498.