The Special/Exceptional Education Track

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SE Track

Teaching for change starts first with education -- both the theory behind effective urban teaching and the practice of executing effective teaching strategies. In only three semesters, you will earn your Master of Education degree from VCU.

SE Track (Special/Exceptional Education)

The goal of our Special/Exceptional Education (SE) Track is to increase student achievement in Richmond Public Schools (RPS) by recruiting, preparing, and sustaining outstanding special education teachers who are committed to social justice and the elimination of educational inequities.

An Overview

This is a three semester program which is a change from Cohort 4.

Residents begin the SE Track with an intensive immersion in special education coursework during Summer. This work is further supported in the fall and the spring semesters by the intensive residency experience of serving as a co-teacher working alongside a master/mentor RPS teacher in the classroom while also taking special education courses at VCU.

SE residents will be certified in First Aid, CPR and AED by Spring Semester and will satisfy the RVE and Praxis II (highly qualified) teaching exams in the spring semester.  Successful residents will be eligible to be licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia in K-12 Special Education–General Curriculum.

SE Track residents will earn a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree from VCU after completing the program.  They will be well positioned to be hired as exceptional education teachers in an RPS elementary, middle or high School.  The highest need is in middle and high schools.

SE resident graduates are prepared to work with students with high incidence disabilities in RPS.


The RTR Service Agreement

In exchange for the stipend and the special program tuition rate SE residents agree to serve an additional 3 years in Richmond Public Schools as a teacher of record after their residency year– or to pay back the portion of the service that they did not complete.  A Service Agreement is signed by all residents.

All RTR Residents are expected to serve where they are most needed.  Richmond Public Schools will place successful residents in RPS schools as they deem appropriate.  RTR Residents to RPS Teachers are expected to have a servant leader mentality.

1 year residency plus 3 years of service in RPS = 4 year commitment


The Benefits – Cohort 5

In exchange for a 4-year commitment to Richmond Public Schools (including the residency year), SE residents receive:

  • A  stipend during for the residency year.
  • A Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree from VCU at a special program rate.
  • A Virginia teaching license after the residency year.
  • Priority hiring for a full-time teaching position with benefits starting the second year.