A paraprofessional is an educational worker who isn’t licensed to be a teacher but works alongside a fully certified or qualified teacher to provide support and assurance in the classroom.
Though they work under the direction and supervision of the lead teachers, they can sometimes work independently. Paraprofessionals can also be called “parapro”, instructional assistants, teacher’s aides, or classroom aides.
Responsibilities of Paraprofessionals:
The primary responsibility is to assist a teacher by helping to manage the students and the classroom. They also conduct classroom activities and provide one-on-one guidance.
These parapros help teachers grade papers, tests, and homework as well as prepare lesson plans. On the other hand, paraprofessionals not only assist teachers, they also work with students in special education classrooms or with special needs.
These include students with disabilities related to hyperactivity, autism, behavioural issues, or physical disabilities such as vision impairment, hearing impairment, etc.
When working with these students, they work closely with parents and case managers in order to ensure they are receiving the necessary support they need.
For students with behavioural issues, who might have a behavioural intervention plan, a paraprofessional observe the students and take note of their behaviour.
A paraprofessional also encourages positive conduct and redirects students when they engage in off-task behaviour. One of the significant things they do is working with students with physical disabilities assist with the movement for wheelchair-bound students, feeding, AMD use of the bathroom.
What is a Paraprofessional?
Aside these duties, paraprofessionals also perform the following:
- Perform clerical duties by assist teachers with paperwork.
- Ensure classroom safety standards adhere.
- Aid teachers prepare for lessons by getting instructional materials and equipment ready.
- Help teachers keep track of attendance as well as grade tests, homework, and reports.
- Encourage students to be independent and also communicate with them to improve participation.
- Assist teachers to conduct lessons.
- Supervise the classroom to minimize noise and distractions.
- Teach lessons under lead teachers’ guidance as well as head small group discussions or interactions.
- Supervise students in and out of class.
- Act as a translator (especially for students who are learning English as a second language)
Qualifications for Paraprofessionals:
Even though paraprofessionals work in the academic system, the qualifications and training required for a paraprofessional differ from that of teachers. These may vary from state to state or district to district, but general requirements include:
- A high school diploma or GED
- At least a paraprofessional associate’s degree
- Pass a state skill assessment test
- Working experience with children and students especially those with special needs.
- Excellent social, communication, and interpersonal skills.
What is a Paraprofessional? Final tips:
Paraprofessional are more than just hepers to teachers in class. Although they might not have the full qualfication but do amazing jobs in the classroom. The amazing thing about parapros is they ability to employ strategies that have been recognized to help the students learn faster and understand diffuit tasks and topics.
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