Introduction

The prefix 'para' means 'alongside of' or 'akin to' (www.nea.org). Paraprofessionals are valued members of educational instructional teams who work alongside and under the guidance of certified teachers.

Since the mid-50's, paraprofessionals have been employed to support teachers in providing educational programming and individualized services for students with exceptionalities across all educational settings. They are an integral part of the educational process.

  • Implement team-based assignments

  • Build and maintain effective communication and relationships

  • Maintain student-centered, supportive environments

  • Organize learning experiences for students

  • Implement lessons initiated by the teacher or related services personnel

  • Assess student needs and progress under teacher direction

  • Maintain a safe learning environment

  • Assist in the instructional process and communicating with the teacher their perceptions of student progress and needs

  • Participate in training to develop their know-ledge and skills to become more effective paraeducators (Gerlach, 2015; https://www.cec.sped.org/Standards/Paraeducator-Preparation-Guidelines)

Since ongoing training is important to paraprofessionals’ growth, Idaho Special Education Support and Technical Assistance (SESTA) are developing resources including just-in-time online instructional modules and professional materials to either provide or supplement district level training.



Paraprofessional Resources

Contact Us

Trisha Miles

Instructional Coordinator
Idaho Special Education Support & Technical Assistance (Idaho - SESTA)
Center on Disabilities and Human Development
208-292-2528
trishamiles@uidaho.edu