Paperwork is a challenge for all teachers. For some — such as special education teachers, who are responsible for a particularly large amount of documentation — paperwork can become overwhelming.
One reason for this is that teachers’ work is heavily legislated — and legislation leads to a need for bureaucratic record-keeping. Federal education initiatives such as the Common Core Standards have increased the accountability requirements for nearly all public school educators. The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), meanwhile, has determined that every student with special needs requires an Individualized Education Program (IEP), a document that sketches out a plan for his or her schooling.
In short, the documentation responsibilities for educators keep adding up. Special education teachers spend more than 10 percent of their time on paperwork, according to a report from the National Association of Elementary School Principals.