The District Celebrates 5 Years of the Special Education Teacher Academy

Special Education Teachers engage in hands-on learning with peers across the district
Special Education Teachers engage in hands-on learning with peers across the district

The Newark Board of Education “Special Education Teacher Academy” (S.E.T.A.) is celebrating its 5th year!  The S.E.T.A. monthly workshops are hosted by the Office of Special Education with themes meant to coach and support new Special Education Teachers with less than 4 years of experience in the District. These S.E.T.A. workshops were originally created by Assistant Superintendent Ms. Carolyn Granato and Special Education Director Ms. Marilyn Mitchell to assist in increasing the retention rate of special education teachers and to influence a change of practice from compliance to student outcomes. Agenda topics are influenced by teacher feedback surveys and patterns of needs identified by principals and staff from the Office of Special Education. The S.E.T.A. meetings are a safe place for new Special Education Teachers to network and get classroom knowledge and experience through modeling of small group instruction and hands-on activities. Teachers representing various programs learn how to adapt and/or differentiate curriculum and create visuals and hands-on materials for their students.  Teachers experience classroom management and behavior management strategies to discuss, create, and implement for student success.

Monthly attendance continues to grow with an average of 5 new participants a month and this workshop currently supports over 50 members with in-person meetings or via online support.  Teachers who may not make a session continue to stay connected via a S.E.T.A. Google Classroom. In addition, the monthly workshop topics are aligned to a book study from “The Survival Guide for New Special Education Teachers” produced by The Council for Exceptional Children. Various workshop topics include, but are not limited to “Getting to Know Special Education Programs, Accessing EdPlan, Writing Data Driven PLAAFPs, Writing SMART IEP Goals & Objectives, Providing Accommodations or Modifications, and Specially Designed Instruction.”

Upcoming Meeting Dates:

  • January 23, 2024
  • February 20, 2024
  • April 9, 2024
  • May 21, 2024