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Developing a contract of Roles and Responsibllities for Co-Teachers as a Professional Development Activity
DEVELOPING A CONTRACT OF
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES FOR CO-
AS A PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Teacher Education Division
of the Council for Exceptional Children Conference
November 5, 2015
Janet Van Heck, M.Ed.
Doctoral Student at University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Negotiating Roles and Discussing Issues
Relationships Between Co-Teachers
Making a Contract of Roles and
Pair up – One General Education and One
Special Education Teacher
Create contract (list of roles and
One-half of students with disabilities in the U.S. are
educated in the general education classroom.
Co-Teaching has become common in many schools.
Co-teaching places two teachers in one classroom
both overseeing and delivering instruction to a
combination of special education and general
Teachers who participate in pre-service and in-service
trainings have positive feelings about co-teaching.
Professional development builds the capacity of
teachers to address a wide range of issues and
Teachers who received more in-service training were
more confident in their ability to co-teaching, more
interested in co-teaching, and had a positive attitude
Negotiating Roles and Discussing
Co-teaching requires sharing of classroom space,
ideas, materials, instructional methods, and
These are challenges for both the beginner and
Co-teachers should negotiate roles, ensure IEP goals
are met, meeting their partner’s expectations, and
keeping parity in the co-teaching partnership.
Relationships Between Co-
Teachers must start over again with each co-
Clear goals should be set.
Relationship-building, communication, and
planning are important, especially for teachers
who may experience arranged partnerships.
Making a Contract of
Roles and Responsibilities
• Classroom Procedures
• Collects homework
• Passes out student material
• Takes attendance
• Gives bathroom passes
• Makes three essential class rules
• Determines the disciplinary procedures
• Delivers the consequences of discipline
• IEP Issues
• Communicates students goals and objectives to teacher of record
• Addresses and monitors goals in the classroom
• Monitors student progress
• Process and Logistics
• Explains the co-teaching arrangements to students and parents
• Decides what procedures to begin with
• Evaluation and Grading
• Grades papers
• Determines who evaluates what group of students
• Contacts parents by phone
• Communicates messages to students
• Ensures communication between each other occurs
• Instructional Considerations
• Takes the lead most often
• Assigned to adapt the curriculum
• Shared Teaching Responsibilities
• Sets the curriculum focus and pacing with Core Curriculum
• Decides the unit objectives and important concepts
• Implements lesson
• Determines learning strategies
• Collects data from lesson
• Prepare the Classroom
• Creates an environment that is inclusive of both teachers and learners
• Develops equality between students and teachers
• Accommodations and Modifications
• Implements modifications for specific students
• Adjusts grades because of modifications
• Create written lesson plan
• Takes notes at planning meeting
• Behavior Management
• Creates behavior management plan
• Implements behavior management plan
• Collects data for behavior management plan
• Classroom Setting
• Incorporates co-teaching models and other strategies
• Supports flexible groupings
• Creates space for alternative teaching
• Assigns space for each teacher
• Considers alternative spaces for specialized instruction
Making a Contract of
Roles and Responsibilities
Create a contract
(list of roles and responsibilities)
A co-teaching responsibility contract offers partners a
structure for discussing responsibilities that arise
throughout the school year.
Structured dialogue is a powerful instrument for
Decisions reached by using such a contract are not
lodged in cement, but can be reexamined as the year
(15 minutes) Pair up – One General
Education and One Special Education
We will begin the professional development
activity by selecting a partner. One person will the
general education teacher, and the other person
will be the special education teacher.
Go over the list of roles and responsibilities, and
pick the ones that you think you would prefer as
either a general education teacher or a special
Fill in the blank forms provided.
Pay attention to how you communicate and
Example of a form filled in without a list of
roles and responsibilities.
Example of a form filled in with a list of roles
How well did the two of you work together?
What type of roles were chosen by general
education teachers? Special education teachers?
How did you resolve any differences or conflicts?