The Special Education teacher shortage continues to get worse reaching critical levels at a time when we have an even greater need. EdWeek has an excellent analysis of the shrinking pool of special education teachers.
Bottom line: the number of special education teachers has shrunk by 17% in the past decade.
At the same time the number of students needing special education has only declined by 1%. There were 420,817 special education teachers in 2005 and that had dropped to 347,739 in 2015.
The shortage has caused class sizes to increase for special education – the exact opposite of what we need for high quality special education.
More to come on this – but know that our program in Texas – Texas Teachers has so far placed over 9,850 special education teachers. If they are not coming through college of ed programs, then we need to use more alternative certification programs to find Special education teachers.
We have to do something now.