Ohio Partnership for Excellence in Paraprofessional Preparation: A Model for District Improvement
It has been well established that effective use of paraprofessionals remains a challenge for most school districts (Giangreco, 2013; 2015; 2017; Howley, Howley, & Telfer, 2015; Telfer, Howley, & Howley, 2017), often resulting in the most vulnerable students not receiving the services they need. To that end, districts should examine their practices of selecting, hiring, assigning, and supporting the paraprofessionals they employ to help determine if they are effectively utilizing their paraprofessionals. This session describes a project partnership between a university and local school districts designed to effectively employ and deploy paraprofessionals as a component of overall district improvement to support the delivery of instruction to all learners, particularly those with disabilities and learning difficulties. Presenters will share the university-district partnership model, successes and challenges, and tools and resources developed as part of the project.