Special educators are teachers who have received specialized training and licensure to teach students with cognitive, behavior, and/or physical/health disabilities in Pre-K-12 settings. Special education, arguably one of the most challenging fields of education, requires teachers to use a variety of creative and critical thinking skills to develop and implement alternative instructional strategies and/or accommodations for individuals with disabilities.
The Special Education program is nationally accredited and is highly regarded throughout the Mid-Atlantic region as a producer of high-quality and skillful teachers. Personnel from school districts throughout the United States regularly visit the Clarion campus to recruit graduates from the Special Education Program. Students who are accepted in Clarion's special education program will work with faculty who are experts in the field and earn the opportunity to participate in a variety of on- and off-campus field experiences involving increasing levels of responsibility and culminating in a semester-long student teaching experience. Student teaching generally occurs in districts in the Clarion region, but also includes sites in urban areas and in Europe. Acceptance into the Special Education Program is contingent upon passing scores on the Praxis I, minimum 2.8 QPA in the first four semesters at Clarion, and Act 33, Act 34, and FBI clearances. Course Catalog.
Dual Certification Requirement
The special education certificate is no longer a "stand alone" certificate. Chapter 49 now requires that all special education certifications be combined with certification in either PK-4, 4-8, a secondary subject area, or reading.