Seattle Public Schools Partnership

We have a partnership with the UW and Seattle Public Schools which is designed to move currently-employed certified staff (Instructional Assistants or Paraprofessionals) in SPS to become certified special education teachers with a focus on serving students with Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities.

This program is a two year program, upon graduation, students will receive a M.Ed. from UW and initial teaching certification in special education and a reading endorsement from Washington State. All of our classes are offered in the evenings, withe majority of the start times at 4:30 pm.  We offer two hybird courses throughout the program, but he majority of our courses are face to face on the Seattle Campus.  Additional information about our program can be found on our main page.


Can I keep my current IA job?

This program is designed for full time IAs to continue working and go to school to get their masters and teaching certification.  The positions/schools IAs work in are detemined by your district with consultation with UW.  Considerations include quality of the placement, need of the district, work with students with disabilities, and ease of travel to UW for classes.

What do I need to apply?

The application requirements are set by the COE and the UW Graduate School.  For the program, you need (a) a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA, (b) an attempt at taking the WEST-B, or equivalent (ACT/SAT) (c) statement of purpose that explains your goals, relevant experience, why you want this particular program; (d) 3 letters of recommendation, one of which is from your current principal; (e) a permanent position as a special education IA; and (f) for the Seatte Partnership you must meet residency requirements for in-state tuition.

What type of tuition help will I recieve?

For the Seattle Public Schools Partnership, each applicant must pay their own application fee, fees associated with any required tests, as well as quarterly fees from the University.  SPS is providing the funding for tuition ONLY for students to attend UW.  This funding is in the form of a conditional loan.  If you meet the condition of teaching in SPS for two years for every year of funding, the loan is forgiven.  If you do not, then you need to repay it.  Talk with your SPS special education supervisor for more specifics. In addition to tuition, students also pay fees every quarter.  These fees usually are roughly $350 per quarter.

Who should I contact for more information?

Selma Powell, Director of the Special Education Teacher Preparation Program
Phone: (206) 221-3301

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