How to Be an Organized Special Education Teacher

Keeping special ed program modifications, testing accommodations, and goals organized
Being an organized teacher can be challenging, being an organized special education teacher is next to impossible. In addition to the traditional paperwork that starts a school year, there are program modifications, testing accommodations, goals, and data, data, data. As a first, or tenth year teacher the amount of stuff to track can seem overwhelming, especially at the beginning of the year.

Special Education Teacher Organization Tips

As a special educator, attending meetings is the norm. To keep track of these meetings, create a binder dedicated for students. Inside the binder, use alphabetical tabs to easily track students by their last name. Each student on my caseload has their own sheet. The sheet lists the
·      Student’s name
·      Classification
·      Special alerts
·      Class schedule
·      Grade level
·      Related services
·      Program modifications
·      Assistive tech accommodations
·      Testing accommodations
·      Additional notes
Data management records for the special educator. Ideas for special education teacher organization

This sheet can be easily referred to important information gleaned from the student’s IEP. The binder also holds loose-leaf. Take notes in meetings for the student and include these notes in the appropriate section behind the student sheet.

Tracking Data for an Organized Special Education Teacher

Create a quick reference program modification and testing accommodation sheet. This sheet can be photocopied and handed out to your teaching assistants and aides. This allows all the adults in the room to understand the student needs. It also gives clarity for other when  classroom that a substitute is in the classroom that each student is cared for in accordance to their IEP. This sheet is helpful in the beginning of the year before the first test to simply glance in one spot and determine the testing accommodations of each student in the classroom.

Tracking Goals 

To become an organized special education teacher, use this system for assessing student goals. Copy and pasted the student goal from the IEP into a document. Along with the goal, have space to assess and write notes.


On the back, have an area to jot down what is assessed on the quarterly progress notes. This is taped to a 5 x 7 index card and added to a book ring to quickly jot down notes in class on the student progress toward the goal. This will save time in assessing their progress. 

Data tracking and goal assessments for the IEP for special education teacher organization


Testing Folder Organization for Special Education Teachers

Creating testing folders in the beginning of the year can help to save time during the year so that all those involved know testing modifications for students. Some students need a separate location to minimize distractions. These students are sent to a testing room where an aide will give them their accommodations. Each student that has this accommodation has their own folder.

The outside of the folder has their name on a label, along with my name and classroom number at the bottom so the aide knows where to return it to.

Inside of the folder is a print out of their accommodations. This allows the aide to easily see what needs to be done for the student to be successful. On the other side of the folder, I will place the test.

Testing accommodation folders for special education teacher organization

Simple, easy ways to organize yourself to save time later in the year. I hope you enjoyed reading what I do and will implement the actions into your classroom. If you want the same sheets that I use, sign up for my newsletter below to find them in your inbox. Leave a comment below to let me know something that you do in your classroom to stay organized.

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