Excerpted from Resourcing: Handbook for Special Education Resource Teachers.

Being a Resource to Others

In the past, the role of the special education teacher did not offer much interaction, if any, with the rest of the school. The job was to work with the students and keep them "out of the way." Special education teachers belonged to their students in their room.

Over the years, special education teachers have gradually moved up and out into the school world. They and their students flow in and out of the hallways, lunchrooms, and classrooms, and interact with the rest of the school. Special education classes are no longer isolated and cannot be ignored. Special education teachers no longer belong just to their students; they are in the mainstream of schools.

Many of you are now in what is called a resource room setting. Your students flow into and out of your room, as well as mainstream into regular education classes. You have to interact with regular education personnel.

Each of the following roles will help define your job as a school's resource teacher. Take what you can and adapt it to your own needs and priorities. Remember that your effectiveness as a resource depends, at least in part, on your being confident and comfortable with the role. Make it fit you and your school.

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