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Approximately 50% of school districts across the nation have reported barriers in obtaining highly qualified teachers (U.S. Department of Education, 2009). Beginning special education teachers report that they often feel they lack the prerequisite skills for working with their students, particularly students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Special educators often feel unsupported and overwhelmed by the continuous changes in districts related to No Child Left Behind (NCLB). Additionally, nationwide alternative programs are being developed as a means for special education teachers to clear their credential outside of the university setting. The need for support of these teachers in today's schools is critical. This article highlights best practices for development of high quality mentoring for beginning special education teachers based on meaningful relationships, guidance, and reflective practices.


Copyright © 2012 National Teacher Education Journal.

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