SPED 400/500

Legal Aspects/Characteristics

About Dr. Maydosz

About 15 years ago, I returned to college to finish my bachelors degree, having been a stay-at-home mom and a Montessori teacher prior. I was what they call a "returning" student, meaning that I was a middle aged woman without any other career at the time! I earned my bachelors and masters degrees over the next 4 years and began working with the Commonwealth Special Education Endorsement Programs (CSEEP). (Take a look the CSEEP and PPET websites in the external links section--we have a great deal for provisionally licensed special educators and those non-licensed personnel who would like to be special educators!) In December 2009, I was awarded my PhD in special education. My dissertation topic was Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. I've finally caught up to my brothers, who have been college professors for years!

My passion, and the reason I love my jobs, is helping good people understand the field of special education. I believe that the only the best educators should work with students with disabilities; that special education requires the most refined skills of the teaching profession; and that the prescriptive and technical nature of the field continually challenges those who take it on. My second passion is helping parents, teachers, and others understand students with disabilities and their rights in education.

Finally, there are two things you should know about me as a teacher and teacher educator. First, I don't approach distance learning as a deficit model. In other words, televised, videostreamed and web based classes are not a last resort or inadequate alternative to face-to-face education. Effective distance education is not missing anything--it provides an alternate mode for presentation of the material, for response to the material, and for interaction between students and professor—all the components of a great classroom! I feel very strongly that although distance education requires different skills from both the professor and student, it is equally effective as an instructional method while offering many benefits not available in traditional classrooms.

Secondly, I support accountability and standards in education, including assessment of student progress daily, weekly, monthly and at the end of a grade. Too often, students with disabilities have been “left behind” by teachers and administrators with low expectations. If it has done nothing else, No Child Left Behind ensures that students with disabilities are included in general education curricula and classrooms, but more importantly, it has raised teacher expectations for students with disabilities and the academic achievement of those students—powerful goals by any measure.

Thanks for taking the time to hear about me—feel free to email me about you and your goals. I look forward to being your professor!

Course Description

Lecture 3 hours; 3 credits. Prerequisite: junior standing. The course provides an introduction and overview of the field of special education from the perspective that it is a subsection of general education and that the field is in transition by virtue of philosophical, legislative and programmatic changes. Legal aspects, regulatory requirements, and critical analyses of research and are addressed. This course includes a broad overview of the expectations associated with the identification, characteristics, and education of students with disabilities.