You have found a unique website intended to help Georgia teachers gain the knowledge they need to help students with special needs in their classrooms. This website serves as an introduction to special education, intelligence and the identification of learners with special needs. A review of current laws guaranteeing a free, appropriate public education for all disabled children and instructional strategies for these students are also included. Anyone may use this site, at no cost, as a resource for information about disabilities.
Since 2011, I also offered a course online which met the State of Georgia HB671 certification requirement to have a course in the Identification and Education of Exceptional Children as described by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (PSC). Over the past five years, 515 aspiring Georgia teachers successfully completed the rigorous, 50-hour course and met that requirement. However, because of recent changes in PSC rules, I will no longer be able to offer the course. This website will also expire and disappear into the ether in the Fall 0f 2016.
I was previously approved by the Georgia DOE to teach this course for PLUs. However, now the PSC will no longer accept PLUs unless the individual is currently employed by a school system and the system submits the credit to the PSC on their transcript. The Catch 22 is that most individuals who need this course to meet the Georgia special requirement for certification are NOT currently employed. I cannot afford to renew my contract with Remote Learner at the end of May for web hosting with so few participants, so the course will no longer be available. Therefore, the Georgia PSC has made it more expensive and less convenient for aspiring teachers to meet their requirements.
I must admit I am frustrated by this. I was named Special Education Teacher of the Year in the Southeast during my career, was a Special Education Director in two states and have taught this course for Agnes Scott College, Teach for America and MRESA. I also have an earned-doctorate from UNC Chapel Hill. If I am not qualified to deliver this course, I don’t know who is.
If you have questions, comments or suggestions you can contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org