Description of Research Report: Graduates and Current Students in Leadership Programs in Visual Impairments
The supply of faculty members for universities that prepare special educators has not met the demand. Although there are approximately 250 vacancies for faculty in all areas of special education each year, approximately one third of the positions remain unfilled (Smith, 2001). The status of doctoral programs and the employment of graduates in the field of visual impairments has also been a concern for several years. From the 1995–96 through the 1998–99 academic years, an average of four new doctorates were awarded in all areas of visual impairments, including education of students with visual impairments, deaf-blindness, and orientation and mobility (O&M). Mason, Davidson, and McNerney (2000) reported that 5,000 teachers of students with visual impairments were needed in 2000 to serve students throughout the United States but that only 250 teachers had been prepared in each of the previous five years.