PA State Supervisor of Special Education

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We are not currently accepting applications at this time.

The Lehigh University state-approved program for certification as a supervisor of special education provides for quality, convenience, and competence via a streamlined and systematic 19-credit experience.

The faculty includes a core of Lehigh full-time professors, including Floyd Beachum, George White, and Perry Zirkel; and Centennial School director Michael George; and leading practitioners.

The sequence of coursework is designed for completion within a twelve-month period, including two summers.   Listed on the reverse side of this sheet, the components include basic courses in organizational leadership and supervision, specialized courses in inclusive systems and law, and a year-long hands-on internship experience.

Admissions requirements include a Master’s degree in special education and at least four years of successful teaching experience in special education.

Certification upon completion of the program requires (1) a portfolio demonstrating the requisite competencies, (2) passing scores on the PRAXIS Supervision and Administration exam, and (3) five years of certificated teaching experience as a special education teacher. The portfolio is facilitated during your internship year.

For more information and personalized answers to your questions, contact Floyd Beachum, Director of the Education Leadership Program, College of Education, Lehigh University ( - tel. 610-758-5955).

All candidates must meet the College of Education Admission criteria for the Master’s degree.  In addition, the candidate must possess a Master’s degree in Special Education and have at least four years of special education teaching experience at the time of entry into the program.  Candidates not possessing a Master’s degree in Special Education must be enrolled in the Special Education program at Lehigh University.  Students will be admitted as a cohort group to the Educational Leadership program. Each cohort will begin course work during the summer.

The program requires a minimum of 19 credits earned at Lehigh University.


  • EdL 400 Organizational Leadership and Change Management (3 Credits)

  • EdL 423 Leading Inclusive Learning Systems (3 Credits)

  • EdL 434 Leadership and Management of Special Education Programs (3 Credits)


  • EdL 432 Special Education and Pupil Services Law (3 Credits)

  • EdL 438 Practicum in Supervision of Special Education and Pupil Services Program I (2 Credits)


  • EdL 467 Supervision and Professional Development (3 Credits)

  • EdL 438 Practicum in Supervision of Special Education Program I (2 Credits)


[whichever course was not taken in 1st summer]

  • EdL 423 Leading Inclusive Learning Systems (3 Credits)

  • EdL 434 Leadership and Management of Special Education Programs (3 Credits)


At the completion of the program students are required to submit a portfolio demonstrating evidence of competency in each of the PA State Standards for Supervisors of Special Education and demonstrate evidence of proficiency in the following core Supervisory competencies.

The Supervisory Candidate: 

  1. Understands the central concepts of organizational leadership, tools of research and inquiry, and principles of teaching and learning that make supervision effective and efficient. 

  2. Understands how children learn and develop and configures resources to support the intellectual, social and personal growth of students.

  3. Know and understands effective instructional strategies and encourages and facilitates employment of them by teachers.

  4. Uses and understanding of individual and group motivation to create a professional development environment that engages teachers to develop and apply effective instructional techniques for all students. 

  5. Is an effective communicator with various school communities.

  6. Organizes resources and manages programs effectively.

  7. Understands and uses formative and summative assessment strategies to gage effectiveness of people and programs on student learning.

  8. Understands the process of curriculum development, implementation and evaluation and uses this understanding to develop high quality curricula for student learning in collaboration with teachers, administrations, parents and community members.

  9. Possesses knowledge and skills in observation of instruction and conducting conferences with professional staff which are intended to improve their performance and enhance the quality of learning experiences for students.

  10. Thinks systematically about practice, learns from experience, seeks the advice of others, draws upon educational research and scholarship and actively seeks out opportunities to grow professionally. 

  11. Contributes to school effectiveness by collaborating with other professionals and parents, by using community resources, and by working as an advocate to improve opportunities for student learning.


NOTE: Individuals who earned the Master's degree in special education more than five years prior to entering the supervisory program are encouraged to update their knowledge of current issues and research in special education through the addition of elective courses in special education.

Application Requirements & Deadlines