GSE Publications

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Journal Article

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This paper addresses the national quantity demand, supply, and shortage of special education teachers (SETs) in comparison to general education teachers (GETs). The main data source was the 1999-00 Schools and Staffing Survey. Results indicated that the total demand for SETs increased 38% from 240,000 in 1987-88 to 330,000 in 1999-00, a rate of growth greater than the 26% increase observed for GETs. For entering teachers, the reserve pool was the predominant source of supply of both SETs and GETs. However, only 46% of first-time SETs completed extensive teacher preparation with degree majors in their primary areas of teaching, whereas the comparable figure for GETs was 82%. As an indication of the inadequate supply of extensively prepared teachers in special education, about 28% of first-time teachers hired in special education positions had completed teacher preparationi in generale education. Finally, a modest decline in the supply of degree graduates in special education has occurred since 1997-98 in spite of the increasing quantity demand for entering SETs.


Reprinted from Teacher Education and Special Education, Volume 30, Issue 4, September 2007, pages 217-232.

We have contacted the publisher regarding the deposit of this paper in ScholarlyCommons@Penn. No response has been received.



Date Posted: 10 November 2008

This document has been peer reviewed.