Factors Influencing Special Education Teacher Quality and Effectiveness

Authored by: Bonnie S. Billingsley

Handbook of Special Education

Print publication date:  April  2011
Online publication date:  May  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415800716
eBook ISBN: 9780203837306
Adobe ISBN: 9781136869624


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In general education, researchers emphasize the important role of teachers in promoting student achievement (e.g., Darling-Hammond, Holtzman, Gatlin, & Helig, 2005; Rice, 2003; Sanders & Horn, 1998; Wayne & Youngs, 2003). Research suggests that over time teacher quality matters more to student achievement than any other school-based factor (Rivkin, Hanushek, & Kain, 2005). Although the relationship between teacher quality and student achievement has been well documented in general education, there is minimal data on this relationship in special education. However, it is logical to assume that special education teacher (SET) quality is important to ensuring high levels of achievement for students with disabilities (McLeskey & Billingsley, 2008).

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