Six high-paying jobs in special education you should look into

Words like ‘To teach is to touch lives forever’ emphasize the importance of knowledge and how it can transform our lives for the best. However, these words hold more true meaning when discussing special education. 

Special students have diverse learning needs that require focused attention and determination to help accomplish them. 

While the job is to ensure that no child gets left behind, the field of special education focuses on the person-centered approach making it as unique and varied as the individual student. Undoubtedly working with special children is a rewarding and challenging responsibility.

A special educator is recognized for adapting to the general curriculum to meet individual needs and, most significantly, exhibiting flexibility to ensure that every special child thrives. 

One of the aspects of pursuing a career in special education is witnessing firsthand the life-changing outcomes of helping special needs students every day. 

Although working with special children is a challenge yet, it allows teachers to learn something valuable like the art of patience and adaptability. 

Working with special needs students instills a sense of purpose to boost their growth, confidence, and a positive outlook toward life. 

The highly specialized skill set gained through specialized certification makes special education teachers different from regular teachers. 

To pursue a career in special education, degrees like online special education certification will help you gain the expertise required to support exceptional learners. 

Additionally, here is a guide to the highest paying jobs in special education, should you want to explore the field further. 

  • Speech Pathologist

You will work with children or adults to assess, diagnose and prevent speech disorders. Besides affecting speaking ability, speech disorders can also render the ability to express and understand thoughts and ideas. 

An individual with a speech disorder will have difficulty interacting socially and processing information. The responsibilities of a speech pathologist include improving speech sounds and, most significantly, helping individuals regain their confidence. 

This will help them in communicating with others and move along with society. 

Speech pathologists treat some common disorders, including orofacial myofunctional disorder and dysarthria

Additionally, speech pathologists work with patients facing troubles during problem-solving and attention span. 

The average salary of a speech pathologist varies from area to area and work experience. However, the estimated salary is about $84,606 per year.

  • Audiologist

A hearing doctor or an audiologist specializes in dealing with children and adults suffering from balance disorders or hearing loss. 

An audiologist inserts cochlear implants and performs other related tests to assess the extent of hearing disorders and establish an appropriate treatment plan,

A hearing doctor works in several facilities, from hospitals to veterans’ administration clinics. Before initiating treatment, audiologists also have to assess the psychological effect of hearing damage. 

To become an audiologist, you would have to acquire a doctoral degree which is a four-year post-graduate program. 

An average salary of an audiologist is around $78,878 per year, which can be increased depending on years of experience. 

Additional benefits of becoming an audiologist include paid time off, health insurance, and relocation assistance. 

  • Special Education Teacher

A special needs educator works with children having disorders ranging from autism to behavioral disorders or learning disabilities. 

The prime responsibility of such a teacher is to accommodate and make significant changes to the curriculum that will facilitate students. 

Children can learn better in a relaxed and friendly environment, which special education teachers do, ensuring a safe learning environment. 

Responsibilities of a special education teacher include providing group instructions, delivering lessons, and meeting students’ needs. 

Apart from getting a degree, an individual wanting to become a special education teacher needs to have a distinct personality required to maintain professionalism and handle students accordingly. 

Additionally, one of the key skills of being a special education teacher is to have the ability to develop a good relationship with students and other teachers.  

The average salary is $50,116 per year, depending on experience and the type of facility taught. 

  • Early Intervention Specialist

An early intervention specialist is a part of the team concerned with child development. An individual will provide a multi-disciplinary child and family assessment and mostly offer interventions to children with developmental delays or having cognitive, behavioral, and fine motor disorders. 

Besides, an early intervention specialist also involves families in the treatment plan to ensure they are applied correctly and timely. 

To keep the parents in the loop, the specialist provides all the relevant information regarding the latest practices that will help meet the child’s needs. 

Besides getting a degree, a specialist should have strong communication skills to convey necessary detail. 

An average salary of an early intervention specialist ranges from $33,400 to $104,270. The salary mostly depends on experience. As a specialist, you will be working in either a classroom or a home-based environment.

  • American Sign Language Educator

As the name suggests, an ASL teacher helps establish communication between a deaf and a hearing individual. Contrary to popular belief, sign language is not only for deaf people; people capable of hearing can also learn sign language. 

An ASL teacher is just like any other language teacher whose primary goal is to ensure that every deaf individual is capable of growing socially and living independently. 

If you want to become an ASL teacher, you will be responsible for carrying out crucial functions in the educational and social advancements of deaf individuals. 

You will play a significant role in the lives of numerous deaf people in countless ways. 

A good ASL teacher is sociable, devoted to learning, and willing to help every individual regardless of race or color. The salary figure of an ASL teacher is about $61,730.

  • Reading Expert 

This individual works mainly with youngsters with reading difficulties to prevent problems during learning. 

As a reading specialist, you will work with students in a one-on-one session or a small group. Reading experts assess the student’s reading abilities and develop interventions accordingly to help overcome issues. 

While a bachelor’s degree is a must, most positions in the field require a graduate degree. Reading specialists also work closely with the teacher to ensure the reading interventions are aligned with the curriculum taught. Those working with adults or out-of-school secondary students earn up to $53,630 per year. 


Pursuing a career in special education is more than just helping children meet their needs. It’s about your role in changing the lives of disabled individuals for the better. 

The field of special education is emotionally meaningful and personally fulfilling. Along with helping children overcome complex challenges, a career in special education ensures job stability and numerous benefits. 

You get the opportunity to work beside professionals dedicated to coming up with the best possible interventions.  

Since every individual has different needs, every field in special education offers unique goals and challenges that also teach a valuable lesson in the end.