Well, tomorrow I am traveling to apply for the dream job. Ok, back down to earth now. *GRIN* My major areas of interest are visual impairment and developmental delays, psych disorders in children, etc. I had been hoping to find some job where I could put these together. My educational background is in psychology and special education with emphasis on education of the visually impaired, but I have no teaching certificate. I was kind of undecided about where to go next: either to grad school in rehabilitation of the blind or to set about getting a teaching certificate so that I could teach students with visual impairments.
A few weeks ago, I got word that several states will allow school districts to hire people who are not yet certified to teach while they work on their certification. This is because of the severe shortage of teachers for visually impaired students in the US. So I sent out a message to my email list for parents of visually impaired children and asked if anyone knew of job postings for teachers or aides in some specific states.
One of the parents wrote back that the district was looking for a one-on-one aide for her child. I've been talking to both the parent and the school psychologist who is the case manager since then, and the more I learn the more I am convinced this is the job for me. This mother is sold and hoping they'll take me. There are a lot of skills they wouldn't have to train me in since I grew up using the very techniques the child is learning. Also, I far exceed the minimum qualification of a high school diploma and am well aware of what behavior management is and how it works. Yesterday I was talking with the mom and told her that if I didn't go on to teach I planned to go on to be a therapist. She exclaimed, "You really are the person to work with my child!"
So tomorrow I'll be heading out at 6:00 AM with Mom playing driver. I'll spend the day observing the child in his different settings and getting an idea of what I would do, and then in the afternoon I suppose I'll be sitting down with various school personnel to talk about it. The pay isn't great, but I'm hoping they will offer me enough that I can live on it. I don't need or want much. Heavens, I only get $500 a month right now. If I can make enough to have my own little apartment, I'll be the happiest girl in town! I'm not after riches here! I want THIS job. I have other applications in, but they all just pale in comparison, even though the pay is better. Tomorrow is also my birthday. We had the family thing going tonight, and it went well. If I got this job, it would just be the icing on the cake. Um, no pun intended.