Special needs students are students who have various challenges such as learning impairments, behavioral difficulties or emotional issues that make it hard for them to engage in learning activities like ordinary students. These students require special education to learn and understand concepts like other normal students. Whereas an ordinary teacher focuses on learning alone, a special education teacher focuses on the unique requirements of the students alongside their learning. Not every tutor can become a special education teacher because teaching students with special needs demands a lot of understanding, acceptance, and patience. Special needs tutors can engage in online tutoring, home tutoring, or one on one training in classes. The following points explain in details the steps one should follow to become a special needs tutor.
1. Registering for a Teaching Program
The first step towards becoming a special needs tutor is to enroll for training in special education. Most special needs schools require that one pursues a Bachelor’s degree in special education. Special education is a vast teaching discipline that incorporates many different areas. All these areas enable one to handle students with behavioral challenges, mental challenges, and emotional challenges. It is also a requirement of the Bureau of Labor Statistics that all special needs tutors should hold a Bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution to engage in the teaching activities.
2. Teaching Practice and Experience
Once someone enrolls for the training to become a special needs tutor, it is crucial that one also engages in teaching practice to enhance what is taught in class. Although this is not mandatory in some states, the practice is critical because it enriches someone with the experience needed to handle students effectively. Many degree programs require that one engages in teaching practice to become well versed with the loops and jumps of dealing with students with special needs.
3. Becoming Certified by the Government
After completing the Bachelor’s degree and gaining the necessary teaching experience, it is a mandatory requirement that one becomes accredited by the government before commencing the actual teaching activities. Public schools usually stress on the certification documents before one is allowed to start teaching. The certification is necessary because it shows that someone can make a difference in the life of a student with special needs. However, some private schools allow tutors to work without licenses.
4. Job Application
After getting the necessary job certificates and documents, the next step is to apply for job opportunities either in the private or public institutions. The advantage of having a certification in special education is that jobs are always readily available because many people do not follow this career path. People should be motivated to pursue degrees in special education so that there will be enough workforce to impart disabled students with knowledge.
5. Pursuing Further Studies and Keeping Abreast with Technology
The journey to becoming a special needs tutor does not end with getting a job. Scientists and researchers are continually finding out new information on how the human brain works. The new knowledge can provide valuable insights that can transform the way a special education teacher is administering lessons to the students.
In summary, it is essential that many more graduates and masters students purpose to pursue degree courses in special education so that together we can join hands to transform the lives of the students who have special needs. Home tutoring is also encouraged to reach out to those students who don’t have the privilege of going to schools that offer special education.