Recruitment and Retention

The Special Education Division works with other Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) divisions, schools, institutions of higher learning and teachers to provide guidance, mentoring programs and information on recruiting and retaining special education teachers.

The Minnesota Mentor Program

The Minnesota Mentor Program (MMP) will continue in the 2018-19 school year to provide research-based support to special educators.

Of the 60 educators who benefited from mentorship through the MMP in the first three cohorts (2015-16, 2016-17, and 2017-18), 95 percent were still teaching in Minnesota’s schools during the 2018-19 school year.

During the 2018–19 school year, 25 mentors and 38 protégés in licensure areas of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Blind/Visually Impaired (BVI), Developmentally/Cognitively Delayed (DCD), Deaf/Hard of Hearing (DHH) and Physical/Health Disabilities (PHD) participated in the MMP.

We are excited to announce that the MMP will continue in the 2019-20 school year.Educators who are licensed, or who are seeking licensure in one of the five licensure areas listed above, are welcome to apply to the 2019-20 MMP.

We need your help in identifying mentors and protégés to participate in the MMP next school year. Please pass on this information to the ASD, BVI, DCD, DHH, and PHD teachers in your district. Forward participant recommendations to Kanya Plaisted.

Mentor applicants must:
Protégé applicants can be:
  • Current students or recent graduates of teacher preparation programs and working in Minnesota; or,
  • Licensed in one of the included licensure areas for less than three years; or,
  • A geographically isolated or experienced ASD, BVI, DCD, DHH, PHD teacher who has specific skill set needs.
Protégé applicants must: