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Program Preference and Special Ed

Special education teacher programs changed in some schools as a result of the DOE's special education reform. Please note that under a May 2020 agreement, SETSS special education, ICT special education and ICT general education positions are available as preferences for teachers to select and are not subject to posting. Here is a review of the contractual language as it pertains to preference sheets.

High Schools (Article 7A1):

No later than 60 days before the end of the term, program preference sheets should be distributed to all teachers. No later than 10 school days prior to the end of the term teachers should be notified of the following as it relates to special education assignments:

  • The particular special education program designation (e.g. staffing ratio, collaborative team teaching, Special Education Teacher Support Services etc.).
  • The age range of special education classes.

Intermediate and Junior High Schools (Article 7B1):

By May 1, teachers should be given an opportunity to fill out program preference sheets. No later than 10 school days prior to the end of the term teachers should be notified of the following as it relates to special education assignments:

  • The particular special education program designation (e.g. staffing ratio, collaborative team teaching, Special Education Teacher Support Services etc.).
  • The age group of special education classes.

Elementary Schools (Article 7C1):

Early in the spring time should be devoted at a faculty conference to a discussion of the procedures to be used in making assignments for the coming year. Plans, goals and personnel needs for special programs should also be discussed.

At that time, teachers should be given an opportunity to fill out “preference sheets” indicating three preferences in order of priority… in the case of special education teachers, the age range of special education classes and education program designation (e.g. staffing ratio, collaborative team teaching, special education teacher support services, etc.) with the understanding that, where advisable and possible, such preferences will be honored. Teachers should be given an opportunity to discuss their assignment with their principal.

With regard to requests as to age range of special education classes, teachers with the highest seniority in the school should be given preference if qualifications for the positions are the same.

SETSS and ICT (General and Special Education) Program Preference:

As part of the reorganization process in schools each spring where teachers can express a preference in accordance with Article 7 of the collective bargaining agreement, the positions of SETSS special education teacher, ICT special education program and ICT general eduction teacher are available as preferences for teachers to select. These positions are not subject to a separate posting. Link to attached guidance.

IEP Teacher (Article 7F2f):

Special education teachers who served as education evaluators during the 2002-2003 school year (or were on leave or sabbatical during that year) will have a preference for this assignment in each year that it exists, in whatever form that it exists, as more fully set forth in the Memorandum of Agreement between the parties dated October 28, 2003, which is incorporated herein by reference. In the event such education evaluator does not exercise such right, or exercises such right but later gives up this assignment, s/he will have the same rights as any other special education teacher to apply for the assignment.