In regards to our Post Baccalaureate Certificate in Special Education, candidates who are interested in working in preschool settings should choose the early childhood option (Preschool to Grade 3). Otherwise, candidates interested in working with elementary-aged children should pursue the elementary (Kindergarten to Grade 6) licensure level. The coursework for both of these options will be relatively the same, however, the early childhood option requires that you complete your student teaching in a preschool setting.
If you plan on working in a school setting while completing this program, you will need to make sure your position grade level matches the licensure level you choose. Therefore, if you are in a 4th grade classroom, it makes sense for you to pursue the elementary license. However, if you are in a kindergarten classroom and pursue the early childhood licensure level, you MUST do your student teaching semester in a preschool setting. Therefore, those who are employed in Kindergarten-Grade 3 settings may want to consider pursuing the elementary licensure level so that you aren’t required to change positions for your student teaching.
However, keep in mind that once you are licensed through this program, it is possible to add other areas/levels to your license afterwards. Therefore, do not feel like your choice for the program is the only option you will have for your teaching career. Please refer to the “add-a-teaching-field” options provided through the Hawaii Teacher Standards Board to learn more about how you could add the other licensure level to your license after graduating from the program: https://hawaiiteacherstandardsboard.org/content/add-a-teaching-field/