ERIC Number: EJ885717
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Empowered or Overpowered? Strategies for Working Effectively with Paraprofessionals
McGrath, Mary Z.; Johns, Beverley H.; Mathur, Sarup R.
Beyond Behavior, v19 n2 p2-6 Win 2010
Across the nation, special educators are the most thinly stretched professional educators, and they do need carefully designed support from paraprofessionals. Giangreco and Broer (2009) reported that assigning paraprofessionals either to classrooms or to individual children with disabilities has become a growing model of providing services to students with disabilities. Although the paraprofessional is defined as an individual who assists with the delivery of services and acts under the direction of licensed staff, interestingly, research indicates that paraprofessionals report that they have more responsibility than is appropriate and that they do not receive adequate guidance. When faced with challenges from paraprofessionals in communication, student and parent relationships, and program operation, special educators may be at a loss as to what to say or do. In this article, the authors present 10 questions that teachers working with paraprofessionals may ask. Since capable teachers experience challenges of various kinds when working with various paraprofessionals, the authors offer supportive suggestions for dealing with any of the 10 "how" and "what" questions. They also present a chart that summarizes the 10 challenges special education teachers face in working with paraprofessionals and possible solutions to those challenges.
Descriptors: Disabilities, Special Education Teachers, Paraprofessional School Personnel, Collegiality, Special Education, Special Needs Students, Parent School Relationship, Confidentiality, Teaching Conditions, Teacher Role
Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders. Council for Exceptional Children, 1110 North Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22201-5704. Tel: 612-276-0140; Fax: 612-276-0142; Web site: http://www.ccbd.net/beyondbehavior/index.cfm?categoryID=D646D293-C09F-1D6F-F9C4E203B21F5EB8
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A