As many states move special needs students to mainstream schools, paraprofessional teachers and paraprofessional assistants are growing in number and popularity. Paraprofessional assistants work as teaching assistants for special needs students, but are not licensed to teach. So, they with teachers to implement student IEPs (individual education programs), increase classroom efficiency, and supervise.
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Paraprofessional assistants assume several duties:
- provide instructional support in small groups
- manage behavior in the classroom
- provide personal care assistance
How to Earn a Paraprofessional Teacher Degree
An associate of applied science paraprofessional teacher degree is a two-year degree program designed to provide practical skills and knowledge. Classes include:
- Childhood educational development
- Child psychology
- Introduction to exceptional children
Employment Outlook for Paraprofessional Teachers
Demand for both special education teachers and paraprofessional assistants is growing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, special education teachers work in child care support services, individual and family services, health practitioners' offices, and specialty hospitals. Annual salaries for paraprofessional assistants vary by location from approximately $25,000 to more than $30,000.