1. The state should require that teacher preparation programs provide a broad liberal arts program of study to elementary special education candidates. All elementary special education candidates should have preparation in the content areas of math, science, English, social studies and fine arts and should be required to pass a subject-matter test for licensure.Kentucky and 24 other states are not doing any of those things. Only six meet the elementary standard, and only 15 meet the secondary standard. Only 14 use the HOUSSE option, short for "high, objective, uniform state standard of evaluation" and defined here as allowing teachers to demonstrate subject knowledge through " a combination of proven teaching experience, professional development, and knowledge in the subject acquired over time through working in the field."
2. The state should require that teacher preparation programs graduate secondary special education teacher candidates who are “highly qualified” in at least two subjects. The most efficient route for these candidates to become adequately prepared to teach multiple subjects may be to earn the equivalent of two subject area minors and pass tests in those areas.
3. The state should customize a “HOUSSE” route for new secondary special education teachers to help them achieve highly qualified status in all the subjects they teach.
While I'm not comfortable with the full Yearbook list of expectations, these special education standards do seem worth considering. Of course, they effectively say that special education teachers need pretty much the full background of other teachers plus the added knowledge and skills to work with students with additional needs. If we want that added preparation from teachers who are already taking on added challenge, it seems to me that we're going to have to commit to give them added compensation as well.