Teaching a special child needs a cut above abilities for a teacher. Be it taking special care or ensuring all the accommodations to the aspirants, a special education teacher’s role has multiple provisions. While the school or the management compensates well for their services, there are some government assistance available for these educators too.
Just like special students are supported with provisions like FAPE, LRE, and IEP; special education teachers are provided with grants and financial aid. Reading through this post, you can clearly discern all these provisions in detail. With this idea, you may better understand why Special education teaching is an eminent profession.
Special education teachers- Their role in academics
While there are special online schools and boarding schools for children with learning disabilities and special needs, the role of a teacher cannot be misconstrued. In order for individuals with disabilities to have a positive impact, the learning environment and instructional models must be carefully developed to ensure that all children have access to high-quality learning opportunities.
Hence, teachers in special education and general education must have mutual respect and an open attitude toward the ideology of inclusion, as well as strong administrative support and understanding of how to address the requirements of disabled pupils.
For students with specific needs, a special education teacher provides academic assistance and support. A special education teacher, who also serves as an advocate and a teacher, collaborates with classroom teachers, counselors, and family members to develop individualized education plans (IEPs) for students who are suffering academically, socially, or psychologically.
This position’s key responsibilities are assessment, instructional planning, and teaching. Children with behavioral challenges, learning impairments, visual impairment, autism, or exceptional and talented students are served by special education instructors.
Aids and grants for special education teachers
Once an individual qualifies, these grants, aids, and scholarships can be great to ease their financial burden. With the growing need for more teachers in this sector, there are several various sorts of special education teacher scholarships available for qualified persons that individuals can look into, including federal programs, state programs, and institutional scholarships.
1. Teach Grant
The TEACH Grant program provides payments of up to $4,000 per year to qualified students who are pursuing a teaching degree or plan to pursue one. Students must sign a TEACH Award Agreement to Serve as a condition of getting this grant, which states that you promise to teach:
- In a field where there is a great deal of demand
- At a low-income family’s elementary school, high school, or educational assistance agency.
- Within eight years after completing your education, you must have completed a minimum of four complete academic years.
To be considered for a TEACH Grant, you must first:
- To be eligible for federal student aid programs, you must meet the eligibility requirements.
- Fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) form (FAFSA)
- At a participating institution, be enrolled in a TEACH-Grant-eligible undergrad, post-baccalaureate, or graduate program.
- Academic criteria play an important role here. Say if the candidate is scoring around 75 percent in most of the exams or has an average of 3.25 GPA can have a better chance of getting a grant.
- Receive TEACH Grant counseling to learn about the program’s terms and requirements.
- To serve, you must sign a TEACH Grant Agreement.
2. Student Loan Debt Forgiveness Programs For Special Education Teachers
Not only additional subsidies and monetary benefits, assisting in the child’s education can help Special education teachers as parents. Student Loan Debt Forgiveness addresses the same by waiving off the loan made by eligible special education teachers up to an amount of $17500. This amount can be applicable for both direct subsidized and unsubsidized loans along with Federal Stafford loans. Here are some eligibility criteria that are worth comprehending:
- The basic requirement is to have a bachelor’s degree and also other certifications like a teacher’s license.
- The Special education teacher should have at least five years of teaching experience (full time) in elementary, secondary schools, or even in any educational service agencies that serve low-income families.
- The teacher must have an outstanding balance in any of the above-said loans. Also, the date of their initiation should be on or after the 1st of October 1998.
- At Least one year of the above said five years of experience should be after or on the 1997-98 academic year
- Teachers must have taken these loans before completing their five years of experience.
- If the teacher is in the middle of their fifth year of teaching it can also count as five years of experience.
- To avail, loan forgiveness applications should be printed, attended, and submitted to the school’s chief administrative officer(s) to start the process.
3. Philanthropic ventures Foundation (PVF) grants
PVF is a 501(c)(3) public charity that has been operational since 1991. Their chief moto is to test new approaches in providing grants to eligible people to enhance the impact of the grants provided. This academy came up with Grants to support Dedicated special education teachers and therapists to support them in their service. This grant is up to $500 for a teacher. Here are a few provisions and eligibility criteria of this grant:
- The special education teacher should have lower income levels
- They should have experience in serving special children up to grade K12
- Grants can not only be monetary but also be for supplemental aids, therapies, and kits
- One school can have up to two teachers with this grant.
- To apply, with all relevant details the candidate can contact email@example.com for further steps.
4. William A. Crawford Minority Teacher Scholarship
This scholarship focuses on assisting minority teachers (here Blacks and Hispanic individuals) to upgrade them financially and socially. Awarded by the Indiana Commission for higher education, it mandates the candidate to have at least 3 years of experience. The amount of the grant is subjective and depends upon the evaluation report of the candidate. Here are other eligibility criteria and provisions:
Applicants must meet the following criteria if they wish to be considered for this scholarship:
- Being a student in the minority
- Be accepted into or enrolled in a full-time Indiana institution.
- Plan to major in something that will allow you to teach in Indiana when you graduate.
- Comply with the Commission on Higher Education’s other basic requirements.
5. Special Education research grant
In this grant, the applicants who wish to get into teaching the students with learning disabilities, or some kind of disorder can apply. This grant helps in broadening the participation of applicants going into the teaching of special education. At the same time, it also provides technical assistance for applicants. There is specific documentation that leads to a successful grant. Other than that, applicants need to fall into specific categories, with which they would be eligible to apply for the grant.
Here is the eligibility criteria for this financial aid:
- The research which is supported by the Special Education Research grant program should mainly focus on children and youth with or at risk for disabilities.
- All applicants must describe their history of disseminating results from past research and present a plan to disseminate project findings in Appendix A: Dissemination History and Plan of the application.
- Proposed research must be relevant to education in the United States and must address factors under the control of U.S. education systems.
- All research supported under the Special Education Research Grants program must focus on and include measures of one or more of the following student outcomes that support success in school and afterward.
6. Kansas Teacher Service Scholarship
This grant provides financial help to students as well as licensed teachers who wish to get into teaching special kids. This scholarship honors extra support to teachers who are getting into e hard-to-fill disciplines and underserved geographic areas in the State of Kansas. The grant gives special focus on individuals who are applying for Elementary Education, English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Special Education or are from underserved geographical areas like Kansas, Wichita, and Topeka.
An applicant must:
- File the FAFSA online at fafsa.gov
- Submit official transcripts from college.
- Submit a Letter of recommendation(s).
- Submit a personal essay regarding your personal academic and teaching goals that gives an insight as to why you are applying for this grant.
- Obtain and maintain necessary licensure and endorsement as specified in the teaching agreement.
Why choose a special education degree?
Teachers who teach children who need special education often feel a sense of accomplishment when they are able to impact the lives of kids on a daily basis. This can be done by acquiring a special degree.
- The children require more help than ever before, and the level of support required is critical for students to succeed in the classroom.
- There are a limited number of candidates as school districts continue to look for competent instructors who want to make a difference.
- Nearly 800,000 kids are being taught by teachers who do not have sufficient special education credentials, according to the state. While this figure is startling, it is regrettably becoming the norm across the country, with major ramifications for children, their families, and teachers who are unable to educate this unique group.
- Teachers get new experiences, meet new people, and learn new methods to interact with their students and their families every day.
All in all, in this sector as a teacher, every day in the classroom is a learning opportunity. Educators can also use student-friendly tactics to aid in the development of classroom success.
Teachers play a vital role in any country; they are the ones who construct the nations’ futures. Making the decision to become a special education teacher is not something that should be taken lightly. When choosing this career, a desire to make an effect and the desire to affect a child’s life are musts. Government educational grants for special education teachers are designed to assist them in a variety of ways. We have included many of the grants available to teachers, as well as how to apply for one.