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Director of Special Services


Job Description

TITLE: Director of Special Services


Education /Certification

  • Maine Department of Education certification as Administrator of Special Education/State of Maine Administrator Certificate 030 
  • Minimum of Masters Degree Special Knowledge/Skills 
  • Successful experience working in a leadership role in education 
  • Successful experience in supervising special education staff and establishing and supervising special education programming 
  • Working knowledge of Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) 
  • Excellent skills in communicating with parents and staff 
  • Informed of all current legal requirements governing special education, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (504), at both the State and Federal level 
  • Ability to evaluate existing programs and to develop new programs as students’ needs dictate 

REPORTS TO: Superintendent of Schools

CO-SUPERVISES: In collaboration with building administrators, co-supervises and evaluates Special Education teachers, educational technicians assigned to special education, and professional support staff.

JOB GOAL: To use leadership, supervisory, and administrative skills to develop, achieve and maintain an appropriate educational program for students with disabilities that support the mission, vision and values of the Cape Elizabeth School Department.


  • Administration/Organizational Management – The ability to practice participatory management; possession of good organizational skills and the knowledge of effective administration of school operations. 
  • Budgeting – The ability to effectively and efficiently utilize and manage special education services through responsible stewardship of school district resources. 
  • Communications – The ability to articulate effectively, both orally and in writing, the successes and needs of the special education program with the school board, central administration, staff, students, parents, and the general public - in large and small groups and with individuals. Director of Special Services 
  • Community Relations – The ability to relate positively to staff and the public; a view of the community/school relationship as a partnership; recognition of the need to be accessible to parents and understanding the importance of advocating for children with disabilities. 
  • Curriculum/Instruction – The ability to work with staff to identify assessments, concepts and skills related to Maine's Learning Results, and to contribute guidance and assistance to staff in planning and implementing curriculum utilizing appropriate instructional strategies for students with disabilities. 
  • Educational Leadership – The ability to inspire, motivate, guide and direct staff in setting and achieving the highest standards of educational excellence for the school and district. 
  • Educational Renewal – The ability to contribute to constructive educational change and demonstrate knowledge of current practices and research in school improvement. 
  • Personnel Management – The ability to recognize department staffing needs, to perceive in candidates the potential for suitability, and to contribute to an effective recruitment/selection/retention process. 
  • Professional Development – The ability to contribute to the development and implementation of professional growth and staff development programs that raise both aspirations and expertise. 
  • Supervision/Evaluation – The ability to supervise and evaluate staff and all activities through knowledge and the commitment to contribute to the improvement of instruction and the effectiveness of programs in general. 


  • Administration/Organizational Management
    • Plan, organize, and direct (or oversee/approve) implementation of all special education activities.
    • Oversee the department’s administration and instruction; make recommendations when central office or school board authorization as needed.
    • Work with other members of the leadership team (central office and other administrative staff) on matters and issues of more than individual department import, such as curriculum, technology, transportation, and the like.
    • Establishes procedures for evaluation/reevaluation of students as part of the referral process.
    • Coordinates all Child Find activities in the District.
    • Oversees the completion and maintenance of all appropriate special education records and reports; local, state, and federal.
    • Supervise the maintenance of accurate records on student progress and attendance.
    • Conduct staff meetings as necessary for the proper functioning of the school.
    • Participate in principals’ meetings, negotiations meetings, and in such other meetings as may be required or appropriate. 
    • Develops procedures to ensure compliance with the referral process.
    • Assists in the adaptation of school policies to include the needs of students with disabilities.
  • Budgeting/School Finance/Plant Management/Business Services
    • Prepare and submit the special service department’s budgetary requests, and monitor expenditures of allotted funds. 
    • Supervise the maintenance of all required department records and reports.
    • Provide for adequate inventorying of department/school system property, and for the securing of and accountability for that property.
    • Supervise the maintenance of state and federal grant allocations and submissions.
  • Communications
    • Keep the Superintendent informed of the department’s activities and problems.
    • Advises the Superintendent and School Board on all critical special education issues.
    • Acts as a resource to building administrators and special educators in all aspects of the special education process.
    • Respond to written, oral, and electronic requests for information from appropriate sources.
  • Community Relations 
    • Act as liaison between the school and the community, interpreting activities and policies of the special services department and encouraging community input.
    • Assume responsibility for all official department correspondence and information.
    • Consult as appropriate with parents of student enrolled in the program.
  • Curriculum/Instruction
    • The ability to work with staff to identify assessments, concepts and skills related to Maine's Learning Results, and to contribute guidance and assistance to staff in planning and implementing curriculum utilizing appropriate instructional strategies for students with disabilities.
  • Educational Leadership 
    • Evaluate existing services as an ongoing responsibility and recommend changes and additions as dictated by student needs and/or changes in legal mandates. 
    • Lead in the development and monitoring of specialized instruction. 
    • Assume responsibility for the interpretation and implementation by the department’s staff of all school board policies and administrative procedures/regulations. 
    • Act as the District’s 504 Coordinator. 
    • Serve as a member of such committees and attend such meetings as the superintendent may direct. 
    • Assume an active role as a member of the District Leadership Team providing input to district-wide decision making. 
    • Recommend policies and programs essential to the needs of students with disabilities. 
    • Assist in the collection of data using scientifically based assessments and methodologies to close achievement gap. 
  • Educational Renewal 
    • Assist in the organizing of District renewal efforts and strategic planning. 
    • Work with building principals and team leaders to design meaningful ways to monitor the implementation of improvement of instructional practices. Director of Special Services 
    • Keep abreast of educational changes and developments by attending appropriate meeting, reading professional journals and other publications, and discussing problems of mutual interest with others in the field. 
  • Personnel Management 
    • Coordinate personnel needs with appropriate other members of the leadership team. 
    • Participate in the recruiting, screening, nomination, training, assigning, and evaluating of special education personnel. 
    • Cooperate with college and university officials regarding teacher training and preparation. 
  • Professional Development 
    • Orient newly assigned school staff members and assist in their development, as appropriate. 
    • Participate in the in-service orientation and training of department staff. 
    • Assume responsibility for monitoring own professional growth and development through participation in professional organizations, through attendance at regional, state and national meetings, through enrollment in advanced coursework and the like. 
  • Supervision/Evaluation 
    • Assume responsibility for co-supervision of all administrative, certified, and support staff attached to the special services department. 
    • Supervise the department’s instructional practices. 
    • Assume shared responsibility for evaluating and providing feedback to all staff members regarding individual and group performance. 
    • Recommend, according to established procedures, the dismissal or non-renewal of a staff member whose performance is unsatisfactory. 
  • Other 
    • Prepare or supervise the preparation and submission of reports, records, lists, and all other paperwork required or appropriate to the department’s administration 
    • Perform such other tasks as may be assigned. 

TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: Per negotiated Cape Elizabeth Administrators Association agreement

EVALUATION: The basis of the evaluation will be the extent to which the performance responsibilities of the job are successfully handled and the extent to which yearly action plans and job goals are met. The Superintendent will perform the evaluation.

NOTE: The above job description reflects the general requirements necessary to describe the principle functions or responsibilities of the job identified and shall not be interpreted as a detailed description of all work requirements that may be inherent in the job, either at present or in the future.

APPROVED By the Cape Elizabeth School Board: June 13, 2006

REVISED: February 13, 2007

April 14, 2015

September 13, 2016