The Paraeducator Development and Leadership Symposium will be a valuable professional learning opportunity for Paraeducators, as well as a time to recognize and celebrate the significant contributions Paraeducators make to the successful education experiences of so many Connecticut students. For more details and registration information please see Paraeducator Development and Leadership Symposium and Recognition of the 2020 District Paraeducators of the Year Flyer.
The Connecticut State Department of Education and the RESC Alliance are offering professional development opportunities related to the role of the paraeducator for children with IEPs in early childhood settings. These sessions are approaching quickly and are based in each of the RESCs.
Please review the link below for important details and registration information.
The Connecticut State Department of Education, together with the RESC Alliance, has developed regional presentations on The Role of the Paraeducator in High Quality Early Childhood Settings That Serve Children with IEPs.
These sessions are coming up quickly! To obtain dates, times and registration information, please see the informational flyer at https://files.constantcontact.com/d47803f1601/e03bd60b-d3f5-441d-a1b8-ceef9d9c2255.pdf.
The Connecticut State Department of Education and the State Education Resource Center together with the RESC Alliance is announcing a SAVE THE DATE (October 28, 2019) for the Paraeducator Development and Leadership Symposium and Recognition of the 2020 District Paraeducator of the Year. Please see flyer (2020 Paraeducator Symposium and Recognition flyer) here. Registration information will be coming soon!
On November 27, 2015, Isabelina Rodriguez, Chief of the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE), Bureau of Special Education issued a memorandum to Directors of Special Education and Pupil Services. This memorandum served as further guidance for school districts regarding the June 2015 agreement between the CSDE and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) which clarifies the role of Paraprofessionals in the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.
To review the complete memorandum, please follow the link below.
Earlier this school year, the University of Connecticut (UCONN) University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) conducted an online statewide survey of paraeducators’ training needs. This survey was based on the Council for Exceptional Children’s (CEC’s) Special Education Paraeducator Common Core Specialty Set (SEPCCSS). SEPCCSS contains 10 professional development guidelines and specific knowledge and skills that paraeducators working with children with disabilities should possess.
Participants were asked to rate their perceptions of their knowledge and skills within each of the SEPCCSS domains: Foundations; Development and Characteristics of Learners; Individual Learning Differences; Instructional Strategies; Learning Environments and Social Interactions; Language; Instructional Planning; Assessment; Professional and Ethical Practice; and Collaboration. In addition, participants were asked one open-ended question concerning the specific topics on which they desired additional training.
Responses were received from 2,438 paraeducators working in public schools in Connecticut. Information about the sample of paraeducators responding to the survey and the students they support is shown below:
- The sample provided services to students across the PK-12 system, though more paraeducators appear to work in elementary school (1- 4; 31 percent) versus middle (7-8; 13 percent) or high school (9-12; 14 percent).
- The majority of paraeducators working for greater than 10 years (54 percent) did not have a bachelor’s degree (59 percent) and were not certified as teachers (91 percent).
- Paraeducators primarily provided services to students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) receiving special education services (85 percent). However, fewer paraeducators had read the relevant pieces of their students’ IEPs (71 percent) or had their roles and responsibilities as mandated by the IEP explained to them (67 percent).
- Twenty percent of the paraeducators reported not receiving any training in the previous 12 months; of those who reported receiving training, there was considerable variation in the number of training hours reported. Paraeducators also indicated a preference for small group/one-day workshops (51 percent) that were held during school hours (79 percent). Responses also indicated their desire for training on the following topics: specific disabilities, behavior management, technology, general education, language and communication, medical needs of students and the special education process.For additional results from the needs assessment, please visit the UCEDD Web site at: www.uconnucedd.org.