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Childhood and Special Education (Grades 1-6 and SpEd 1-6 Cert)

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Free on-campus housing

To make the dream of becoming a teacher more affordable

As part of the Build the Teacher Pipeline Initiative aimed at addressing the nationwide teacher shortage, beginning in fall 2023, all new first-year and transfer students who major in our teacher- and special-education bachelor’s degree programs will receive free on-campus housing throughout their time in the residence halls (up to four academic years).

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Choose Saint Rose for Childhood & Special Education (Grades 1-6 & SPED 1-6 CERT)

Teachers can have a significant impact on a child’s life, especially those in grades first through sixth with special learning needs.

Unlike other institutions, The College of Saint Rose doesn’t just treat childhood education like a major. The Thelma P. Lally School of Education draws on an impressive pool of dedicated resources, facilities, and faculty to produce teachers who are consistently sought after by school districts.

Students enjoy superlative classroom instruction in this dual certification education program from professors who are experts. Students must complete more than 150 hours of fieldwork in local districts and in different teaching areas before earning the opportunity to lead their own classrooms.

Get Dual Certification in Elementary Education & Special Education

The Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Special Education — informally known as the SEED program, requires comprehensive coursework in a variety of disciplines to help students learn the type of teaching and collaboration expected in schools nationwide.

The coursework and expectations set by Saint Rose and its professors helps to set the students down the path towards a fulfilling career.

Students who graduate with a dual certification in elementary education special education programs offered by Saint Rose are eligible to start work as special education teachers upon completion of all the certification requirements.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), New York State has the highest employment level of special education teachers in kindergarten and elementary schools in the entire country, with 18,510 employed as of 2021. The annual mean salary for special education teachers in NY is $83,250, making it a career that is mentally and financially rewarding.

Not all graduates of this program choose to focus solely on special education classrooms. The program also prepares graduates to teach in inclusive classrooms where both general education and special education students learn together.

Those who graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Special Education may also choose to pursue graduate-level studies. A master’s in education that focuses on special education can help students further their careers while keeping their teaching credentials in good standing in New York.

Future educators who want to grow their portfolio and expand potential career options with a dual certification in elementary education and special education (grades first through sixth) will find that Saint Rose offers an ideal program.

Armed with both academic knowledge and hands-on experience, students will graduate with the necessary confidence to make a positive impact the next generation of learners.

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Take a deep dive into our education programs. We prepare the next generation of teachers — are you ready to make your mark?

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Love this Class

The Child and Adolescent Development class prepares students for the ever-evolving and diverse classrooms they will one day teach. Students research different challenges and opportunities that modern-day teachers face and discuss their research and perspectives with each other. Largely a discussion-based course, students learn from each other’s unique takes and grow from a diverse array of opinions and ideas.

Program Highlights

  • Gain practical experience in real classrooms at area school districts, including two student-teaching placements in different areas.
  • Prepare to work with a wide range of students of all learning abilities. 
  • Enjoy a collaborative relationship with local Pk-12 school partners, that often call our College looking for qualified job candidates.
  • Learn from faculty with practical teaching experience who are also actively involved in schools across the state.
  • Study robust coursework across various academic disciplines.
  • Participate in campus-based social and academic experiences with children and adolescents with disabilities.
  • Gain access to instructional technology used by both professors and students.
  • Option to add a grades 7-9 extension with just two extra classes (one offered in the summer) and become a more marketable job candidate.

Curriculum and Placements

The dual major in Special Education and Childhood Education is a four-year program of study and practice that leads to a Bachelor of Science in Special Education/Childhood Education and prepares students for teaching in special education settings, general education settings, and inclusive settings that serve children with a range of abilities and needs. Upon the successful completion of this program, the achievement of passing grades on examinations required by the New York State Education Department and fingerprint clearance, students are eligible for New York State initial teaching certification in both childhood (Grades 1-6) and childhood special education (Grades 1-6).

View Course Requirements

Candidates in professional education programs at The College of Saint Rose will:

  • Apply principles and theories of lifespan human development and learning in all of its diversity to education, service learning and clinical practice, and demonstrate a capacity and disposition to continuously update that knowledge and, therefore, practice according to the best emerging research in the field.
  • Plan and implement practice that is rigorous, comprehensive, inclusive, creative and motivating, inviting students’ analytical skills and promoting their dispositions to be lifelong learners.
  • Ensure that evaluation and decision-making are data-driven, multi-faceted, collaborative and recursive, and align instructional/clinical goals, practice, assessments, and standards.
  • Develop and demonstrate personal and professional values that foster the highest ethical standards of the profession; intellectual curiosity and open-mindedness; understanding and responsiveness to multiple social and global perspectives; and collegiality and collaboration among partners in the educational or clinical process that involve children, families, community members, and other professionals.
  • Promote optimal learning opportunities and environments for all individuals in the context of their experiential, cultural, and/or racial/ethnic backgrounds, including, but not limited to learners who are speakers of non-English languages, or who are gifted, have disabilities, are educationally challenged or who have different interests, ambitions or sexual orientations.
  • Demonstrate in their practice that oral and written language is a functional, as well as social and artistic tool, for communication and thought, and as such reflect the multiple literacies of local, national and global cultures.
  • Integrate a variety of technological methods and programs to enhance pupil learning and practitioner effectiveness, facilitate candidates’ acquisition of technological skills, and their dispositions to use them.
  • Acquire and apply the knowledge, skills and dispositions of disciplines relevant to candidates’ projected educational or clinical roles.

Meet Our Teaching and Special Education Faculty

Our faculty are great scholars, but your success is their top priority. Unlike large research institutions, Saint Rose is a place where professors invest in their students and put their energy into teaching, making for compelling classes and great learning outcomes.

Dana Abbott Associate Professor of Special Education

I have taught special education or literacy at Saint Rose since 2010. My previous experience includes teaching at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Post University, University at Albany, and Hudson Valley Community College; I also taught kindergarten and preschool students in Troy, New York. Mt teaching interests include developmental assessment, students with disabilities, and positive behavior supports; I have published or presented on emotional behavioral disorders, and teacher certification and assessment.

Patricia Baldwin Assistant Professor of Teacher Education

I taught elementary students in the Newburgh City School District for eight years before working in higher education and, today, I teach in the childhood education and inclusive early childhood education programs at Saint Rose with my research focusing on those areas and the field experiences of our teacher candidates. I believe that each Saint Rose student brings unique gifts, and that our programs should help prepare them to share those gifts with young children to create quality educational programs in their own classrooms.

Megan Cartier Assistant Professor of Special Education

My areas of specialty include inclusive education practices, disability studies, and universal design for learning.

My intentions here at Saint Rose include creating an awareness of disability and difference by engaging future educators in activities that will lead them first to presume competence in all of their students and then give them the tools to construct competence in their classroom pursuits regardless of dis/ability.

Susan V. DeLuke Associate Professor of Special Education

I am the director of social intervention programs at Saint Rose and consult with school districts across New York State on students with disabilities. I have worked as a school administrator and special education teacher. My teaching interests include behavior supports, assessment, and intervention; emotional, behavior, and mental health concerns for children and youth; and autism spectrum disorders. My research interests include autism spectrum disorder, merging special- and general-education programs, and families advocating for their children with disabilities.

Dana AbbottAssociate Professor of Special Education

I have taught special education or literacy at Saint Rose since 2010. My previous experience includes teaching at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Post University, University at Albany, and Hudson Valley Community College; I also taught kindergarten and preschool students in Troy, New York. Mt teaching interests include developmental assessment, students with disabilities, and positive behavior supports; I have published or presented on emotional behavioral disorders, and teacher certification and assessment.

Patricia BaldwinAssistant Professor of Teacher Education

I taught elementary students in the Newburgh City School District for eight years before working in higher education and, today, I teach in the childhood education and inclusive early childhood education programs at Saint Rose with my research focusing on those areas and the field experiences of our teacher candidates. I believe that each Saint Rose student brings unique gifts, and that our programs should help prepare them to share those gifts with young children to create quality educational programs in their own classrooms.

Megan CartierAssistant Professor of Special Education

My areas of specialty include inclusive education practices, disability studies, and universal design for learning.

My intentions here at Saint Rose include creating an awareness of disability and difference by engaging future educators in activities that will lead them first to presume competence in all of their students and then give them the tools to construct competence in their classroom pursuits regardless of dis/ability.

Susan V. DeLukeAssociate Professor of Special Education

I am the director of social intervention programs at Saint Rose and consult with school districts across New York State on students with disabilities. I have worked as a school administrator and special education teacher. My teaching interests include behavior supports, assessment, and intervention; emotional, behavior, and mental health concerns for children and youth; and autism spectrum disorders. My research interests include autism spectrum disorder, merging special- and general-education programs, and families advocating for their children with disabilities.

Kristi Fragnoli Professor of Teacher Education

I have over 10 years of public school teaching experience and understand that it’s important to keep up-to-date on the latest in social studies education. I am a consultant for the New York State Archives and an editorial consultant for its magazine, a member of the New York State Education Department Content Advisory Board for Social Studies, and am chair of the New York State Council for History Education. In 2020, I was awarded the New York State Council for Social Studies, Dr. Benita Jorkasky Outstanding College Educator Award. Additionally, I have taught as an assistant professor at the State University at Cortland and was an adjunct at Syracuse University while finishing my doctorate degree at Binghamton University.

Frances Ihle Associate Professor of Special Education

I have taught special education and literacy at Saint Rose since 2011; previous experience includes a doctoral fellowship at the University of Kansas, and being a high-school special-education teacher in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I presently work to prepare students with disabilities for post-secondary success through Project ASPIRE and Project THRIVE, two federally funded grants awarded to Saint Rose in 2010 and 2019.

My research projects and activities focus on academic discourse and teaching adolescents how spoken and written language patterns differ, and executive function coaching to help college students tutor their peers in self-regulation strategies such as planning, organization, and time management.

James Kahler Adjunct Faculty and Student-Teacher Supervisor

I have been affiliated with Saint Rose since 2006 as a student-teacher supervisor and adjunct professor. I have taught classes at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in both the early childhood and childhood departments. I was an elementary school teacher for 33 years, mostly in the primary grades. I have also coached various sports at all levels from modified to varsity. I am very interested in the area of reading instruction and social studies. I have also researched and done my master’s paper on ESL studies.

On a personal note, I have been married for 48 years and have two grown children, a son (41) and a daughter (45) and two terrific grandsons ages 7 and 5. In 2017, I was lucky enough to procure a cabin in the Adirondacks by Whiteface Mountain. I like to do outdoor activities, and my recent adventures have been targeted toward completing the hiking of all 46 High Peaks.

Timothy “Julio” McLaughlin Adjunct Faculty

I am a three-time (4 degrees) alumnus from The College of Saint Rose. The faculty and overall experience as a “Rose Bud” have meant more to me than words can capture; it is both an honor and a privilege to keep that tradition going, helping to develop the next generation of educators. Broadly, I’m an educational generalist. I have taught in public schools and at every level from grade 5 to graduate school.

My background in educational psychology and methodology has equipped me to teach courses in learning, development, classroom assessment, diversity, research, and educational foundations. My specific areas of research are on classroom learning, specifically creativity, motivation, theories of learning, formative assessment, and high-ordered thinking.

Kristi FragnoliProfessor of Teacher Education

I have over 10 years of public school teaching experience and understand that it’s important to keep up-to-date on the latest in social studies education. I am a consultant for the New York State Archives and an editorial consultant for its magazine, a member of the New York State Education Department Content Advisory Board for Social Studies, and am chair of the New York State Council for History Education. In 2020, I was awarded the New York State Council for Social Studies, Dr. Benita Jorkasky Outstanding College Educator Award. Additionally, I have taught as an assistant professor at the State University at Cortland and was an adjunct at Syracuse University while finishing my doctorate degree at Binghamton University.

Frances IhleAssociate Professor of Special Education

I have taught special education and literacy at Saint Rose since 2011; previous experience includes a doctoral fellowship at the University of Kansas, and being a high-school special-education teacher in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I presently work to prepare students with disabilities for post-secondary success through Project ASPIRE and Project THRIVE, two federally funded grants awarded to Saint Rose in 2010 and 2019.

My research projects and activities focus on academic discourse and teaching adolescents how spoken and written language patterns differ, and executive function coaching to help college students tutor their peers in self-regulation strategies such as planning, organization, and time management.

James KahlerAdjunct Faculty and Student-Teacher Supervisor

I have been affiliated with Saint Rose since 2006 as a student-teacher supervisor and adjunct professor. I have taught classes at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in both the early childhood and childhood departments. I was an elementary school teacher for 33 years, mostly in the primary grades. I have also coached various sports at all levels from modified to varsity. I am very interested in the area of reading instruction and social studies. I have also researched and done my master’s paper on ESL studies.

On a personal note, I have been married for 48 years and have two grown children, a son (41) and a daughter (45) and two terrific grandsons ages 7 and 5. In 2017, I was lucky enough to procure a cabin in the Adirondacks by Whiteface Mountain. I like to do outdoor activities, and my recent adventures have been targeted toward completing the hiking of all 46 High Peaks.

Timothy “Julio” McLaughlinAdjunct Faculty

I am a three-time (4 degrees) alumnus from The College of Saint Rose. The faculty and overall experience as a “Rose Bud” have meant more to me than words can capture; it is both an honor and a privilege to keep that tradition going, helping to develop the next generation of educators. Broadly, I’m an educational generalist. I have taught in public schools and at every level from grade 5 to graduate school.

My background in educational psychology and methodology has equipped me to teach courses in learning, development, classroom assessment, diversity, research, and educational foundations. My specific areas of research are on classroom learning, specifically creativity, motivation, theories of learning, formative assessment, and high-ordered thinking.

Christina Pfister Professor of Teacher Education

I’m a professor in the Department of Teacher Education at the Lally School of Education at The College of Saint Rose.  My research interests include studying the process of becoming a teacher, including mentoring and the experiences of novice teachers. I teach at the undergraduate and graduate levels and serves as an academic advisor.

Tammy Schillinger Adjunct Faculty

I have my doctorate in early childhood education, my master’s in elementary education pre-k through 6, and a bachelor’s in psychology. I am certified in elementary education (pre-k through 6) and TESOL pre-k through 12 (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages). I have been a teacher for the past 20 years in a school in upstate New York. I am currently an ENL (English as a New Language) teacher and an adjunct professor at The College of Saint Rose in the education department. As an ENL teacher, a big part of my focus is teaching foundational skills focused on phonics and phonemic awareness.

As a college professor, I design and teach early childhood education courses and elementary education courses. I also supervise teachers in the field in pre-k and kindergarten classes. I have experience in teaching grades pre-k through 12. My research areas include critical thinking in all subject areas, the collaboration of speech and ENL teachers, and online learning for ELLs.

Julienne Slichko Assistant Professor of Special Education

With many years of experience as a special education teacher in Capital District schools, I have helped develop the teaching practicum and was an instructional developer at University at Albany, where I helped faculty teach effectively using online technology. My teaching interests include exceptionality, inclusion, partnerships with families, and assessment. I have published papers on teaching students with disabilities, the use of technology in teaching individuals on the autism spectrum, and comparison of best practices in school districts.

Jennifer Suriano Assistant Professor of Teacher Education

I study teaching and learning, more specifically how instruction is designed and teachers can be prepared to most effectively benefit learners. I have worked most recently to understand the benefits of place-based education for secondary learners.

Saint Rose students will come away from courses with an understanding of best practices and tools to express their passions. I will work with Saint Rose alums and local educators to provide resources through Saint Rose. I look forward to working with faculty across the campus to ensure high-quality instruction for students and fulfilled teachers.

Christina PfisterProfessor of Teacher Education

I’m a professor in the Department of Teacher Education at the Lally School of Education at The College of Saint Rose.  My research interests include studying the process of becoming a teacher, including mentoring and the experiences of novice teachers. I teach at the undergraduate and graduate levels and serves as an academic advisor.

Tammy SchillingerAdjunct Faculty

I have my doctorate in early childhood education, my master’s in elementary education pre-k through 6, and a bachelor’s in psychology. I am certified in elementary education (pre-k through 6) and TESOL pre-k through 12 (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages). I have been a teacher for the past 20 years in a school in upstate New York. I am currently an ENL (English as a New Language) teacher and an adjunct professor at The College of Saint Rose in the education department. As an ENL teacher, a big part of my focus is teaching foundational skills focused on phonics and phonemic awareness.

As a college professor, I design and teach early childhood education courses and elementary education courses. I also supervise teachers in the field in pre-k and kindergarten classes. I have experience in teaching grades pre-k through 12. My research areas include critical thinking in all subject areas, the collaboration of speech and ENL teachers, and online learning for ELLs.

Julienne SlichkoAssistant Professor of Special Education

With many years of experience as a special education teacher in Capital District schools, I have helped develop the teaching practicum and was an instructional developer at University at Albany, where I helped faculty teach effectively using online technology. My teaching interests include exceptionality, inclusion, partnerships with families, and assessment. I have published papers on teaching students with disabilities, the use of technology in teaching individuals on the autism spectrum, and comparison of best practices in school districts.

Jennifer SurianoAssistant Professor of Teacher Education

I study teaching and learning, more specifically how instruction is designed and teachers can be prepared to most effectively benefit learners. I have worked most recently to understand the benefits of place-based education for secondary learners.

Saint Rose students will come away from courses with an understanding of best practices and tools to express their passions. I will work with Saint Rose alums and local educators to provide resources through Saint Rose. I look forward to working with faculty across the campus to ensure high-quality instruction for students and fulfilled teachers.

Theresa Ward Associate Professor of Special Education

My areas of emphasis include inclusive education, systems change, differentiated instruction, teacher education, and policy studies.

Theresa WardAssociate Professor of Special Education

My areas of emphasis include inclusive education, systems change, differentiated instruction, teacher education, and policy studies.

Career Outlook 

According to NYSUT, New York State will need more than 180,000 teachers in the next decade in both urban and rural districts.

According to Education Week, a Rockefeller Institute of Government report found that teachers in New York State are paid the highest in their field in the United States with the average teacher making $79,588.

  • Albany City 
  • Berne-Knox-Westerlo 
  • Bethlehem 
  • Cohoes 
  • Green Island
  • Guilderland 
  • Menands
  • North Colonie 
  • Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk
  • South Colonie 
  • Voorheesville 
  • Watervliet
  • Chatham 
  • Ichabod Crane 
  • New Lebanon 
  • Taconic Hills
  • Broadalbin-Perth 
  • Johnstown 
  • Cairo-Durham
  • Coxsackie-Athens
  • Windham-Ashland-Jewett 
  • Greater Amsterdam
  • Canajoharie Central
  • Fonda-Fultonville Central
  • Averill Park
  • Berlin Brunswick
  • East Greenbush Hoosic Valley
  • Hoosick Falls
  • Lansingburgh
  • Rensselaer Schodack
  • Troy City
  • Wynantskill
  • Ballston Spa
  • Burnt Hills – Ballston Lake
  • Mechanicville
  • Saratoga Springs
  • Shenendehowa
  • South Glens Falls
  • Stillwater
  • Waterford-Halfmoon
  • Duanesburg
  • Niskayuna
  • Rotterdam-Mohonasen
  • Schalmont
  • Schenectady
  • Scotia-Glenville
  • Schoharie
  • Sharon Springs
  • Gilboa-Conesville
  • Glens Falls
  • Hadley-Luzerne
  • Queensbury
  • Warrensburg
  • Fort Ann
  • Fort Edward
  • Hudson Falls
  • Salem

Where Our Students Work

Because we’ve graduated more than 28,000 teachers, you can find a Saint Rose alum in countless schools, including:

  • Lansingburgh
  • Ravena
  • Glens Falls
  • Albany 
  • Guilderland
  • North Colonie
  • East Greenbush

Contact Us

Of course, if you have any questions, please reach out. We’re here to help.

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