Special needs students have to overcome a range of mental and physical disabilities in order to develop in an educational environment. Special education teachers receive specific training to ensure special needs students make progress with their studies and social development. In Delaware, this training comprises various education and testing steps which teacher candidates need to satisfy in order to qualify for special education teacher certification. Here, these qualification steps are described.
Special Education Teacher Certification Requirements in Delaware
|Average Salary for Special Education Teachers in Delaware (2017)*||$60,960 (Kindergarten and Elementary), $70,670 (Middle), $63,320 (Secondary)|
|Degree Field||Special Education|
|Testing Requirements||Praxis Special Education: Core Knowledge and Applications test (5354)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Step 1: Earn a Degree
Prospective special education teacher candidates in Delaware must first obtain a minimum of a bachelor's degree which incorporates a teacher preparation program in special education from a regionally accredited higher education institute. Candidates should choose a concentration in special education in the grade level they hope to teach and complete a minimum of 15 special education credits. Courses in this area typically include classes on the following topics:
- Behavior analysis
- Instruction for literacy problems
- Special education curriculum
- Special needs technology
Candidates who already hold a bachelor's degree and wish to pursue certification in special education must enroll in an alternate route to teaching program.
Step 2: Pass All Required Testing
Special education teacher candidates in Delaware will need to pass the Praxis Special Education: Core Knowledge and Applications test (code: 5354, pass score: 151). The test is computer-based and consists of 120 selected-response questions which candidates have 2 hours to complete. The questions are divided into five content categories:
- Development and characteristics of learners (20 questions)
- Planning and the learning environment (27 questions)
- Instruction (27 questions)
- Assessment (22 questions)
- Foundations and professional responsibilities (24 questions)
Teacher candidates can register for the test through the ETS website. Since June 20, 2017, candidates for initial licensure are no longer required to take a general knowledge assessment (core skills), such as the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators tests.
Step 3: Apply for an Initial Delaware Teacher License
When the education and testing requirements have been fulfilled, teacher candidates are then eligible to apply for their initial Delaware teacher license. The Delaware Department of Education (DDOE) will accept applications online by way of their Delaware Educator Data System (DEEDS) online portal. Candidates must submit the following documentation as part of their application:
- Official bachelor's degree (minimum) and teacher preparation program transcripts, including verification of their student teaching on the transcript
- Test scores - candidates should request that they are forwarded to the DDOE electronically
The supporting documents cannot be uploaded to DEEDS, so they must be mailed to the DDOE. Candidates must pay a one-time non-refundable application fee of $100 when applying for their first teacher license in Delaware.
Delaware Teacher Certification Resources
Special education teacher candidates in Delaware can gain access to our study materials, which will greatly assist their preparation for the Praxis Special Education test, by clicking on the links below: