Let’s Pool Our Resources and Collaborate to Prepare Low-Incidence Teachers

Teacher preparation often utilizes the silo approach to prepare educators to work within specific disability categories. In addition there may be multiple categories of teacher licensure that cover students with the most significant support needs. The Virginia Collaborative for Preparation of Teachers of Students with Multiple Disabilities Accompanied by Sensory Loss was created in response to the need for cross-categorical collaboration.

1. Participants will be presented with a model of statewide inter-university, inter-agency collaboration of teacher preparation to address the needs of students with the most significant support needs. Specific concerns, considerations, and strategies for this level of collaboration will be presented, including university partnerships and multi-point distance education technologies. Participants will have knowledge of specifics of the development of this type of model for teacher preparation.

2. Participants will be presented with information concerning the shortage of qualified teachers trained to work with students with low-incidence disabilities. Participants will leave with an understanding of the need for increasing the number of qualified teachers to work with students with the most significant support needs, and strategies to increase that number.

3. Sharing resources is an essential component of the VACPT. Participants will leave the presentation with specific suggestions and strategies for sharing resources across agencies and universities.