Bright Futures for Exceptional Learners: An Agenda To Achieve Quality Conditions for Teaching and Learning.Report as inadecuate

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This document presents the conclusions of a Council for Exceptional Children commission that identified barriers to high-quality special education and proposed an action agenda. The commission identified eight issues underlying high teacher attrition rates: (1) ambiguous and competing responsibilities; (2) overwhelming paperwork; (3) inadequate district and administrative support; (4) significant teacher isolation; (5) insufficient focus on improved student outcomes; (6) increased demand for well-qualified special educators; (7) poorly prepared new general and special educators; and (8) fragmented state and provincial licensing systems. Eight recommendations comprise the action agenda: (1) define the roles of special and general educators relative to students with exceptionalities; (2) create the context for high quality practice; (3) leverage time with technology tools and clerical supports to reduce the paperwork burden; (4) standardize decision-making processes; (5) create a career continuum in special education; (6) recruit and prepare sufficient qualified diverse special educators to fill the demand; (7) develop cohesive professional licensure systems; and (8) provide systems supports. Also included are specific recommendations for the following groups: special education teachers, businesses, federal agencies, parents, professional associations, state and provincial agencies, teacher preparation programs, school administrators, and school districts/boards. (DB)

Descriptors: Disabilities, Educational Change, Educational Improvement, Educational Needs, Educational Quality, Elementary Secondary Education, Needs Assessment, Regular and Special Education Relationship, Special Education, Special Education Teachers

Council for Exceptional Children, 1920 Association Dr., Reston, VA 20191-1589; (Stock No. P5419, bundle of 10, $2.50). Tel: 888 232-7733 (Toll Free); Tel: 703-264-9446 (TTY); e-mail: service[at]; For full text:

Author: Kozleski, Elizabeth; Mainzer, Richard; Deshler, Don


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