Paraeducator Practices in One State: Implications for Policy
This session will provide participants with an inside glimpse of paraeducator utilization, training, supervision, and evaluation in Michigan. Results of a statewide survey to administrators, teachers, and paraeducators serving students with disabilities at the elementary level will be presented. Current practices related to paraeducators will be shared from the perspectives of administrators, teachers, and paraeducators with key findings and differences from each group. Findings from the study will be presented in the areas of paraeducator training, paraeducator supervision, and paraeducator evaluation. Additionally, the benefits and challenges of paraeducator utilization, training, supervision, and evaluation that were noted by participants will be discussed. The differences in perspectives from the different stakeholders will be also be highlighted and discussed. Policies recommendations will be presented related to the data provided in the study with an aim to improve paraeducator work conditions, training, supervision, and evaluation. Participants will leave with a clear picture of the current state of paraeducator issues in Michigan, and policy implications designed to improve practices in that state.