Paraprofessional Awareness in Bethel Park, Pennsylvania

From Pennsylvania, a news story about paraprofessionals involved in a contract negotiations. Paraprofessionals from the Bethel Park School District recently attended a school board meeting to help those present better understand their work. Jan Sterrett, president of the paraprofessional union said:

We believe that there are some misperceptions and misconceptions in our school board about what we do... They think we come in and babysit children all day long.

Later in the article, another quote from Theresa Mavrich, vice president of the group:

We want to raise the awareness that we actually are part of the educational team and we do work academically with many of the students and provide valuable services to the district.

What other ways do you think people can be made aware of the important work that paraprofessionals do?

Bethel Park Paraprofessionals Seek Equity



1 Comment

Every teacher needs a para or two.

I have a degree and I am a para for now, and this is why. I love working with the children 100% and not having to deal with all the paperwork etc. I give the children my very best and I spend out of my own pocket to see that they have the best support education. A talented teacher is born, and the degree does not make for a great teacher, and neither does certification. Do not forget that years ago, the teacher may have had six years or less of education, and she was responsible for sharing her knowledge with the parents and the younger students. Face it, that many people are coming into education for the money, since they have been outsourced from their other careers. I feel if you have worked under a certified teacher for six years and take one class online, you should be a teacher. Paraprofessionals make the best teachers because they have "EXPERIENCE" in the CLASSROOM! They see the real thing daily, and not depending on the books written by people, who cannot teach "out of the box." Teachers are born and they get better working with excellent teachers. Personally, I like small group instruction, and teachers need to have a para in every classroom, and after taking six years in the classroom, and online classes, they should be given three years to prove themselves and then become certified by their actions in the classroom, and not some exam.