This dissertation presents the findings of a descriptive, survey-based study of special education paraeducators and their self-reported perceptions about the adequacy of their ongoing professional development training in Arizona school districts. The results show that school districts in Arizona are not spending adequate time in preparing special education paraeducators to serve special education and culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional students. Legislation such as the No Child Left Behind and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Acts mandate that all paraeducators must be "appropriately and adequately trained."
A review of the literature revealed that paraeducators were historically employed to help regular teachers with clerical tasks such as filing, making copies, calling and arranging parent teacher meetings, bus duty, lunch duty, and accompanying students to mainstream classes. However the role of special education paraeducators has changed dramatically and they are now regularly expected to tutor and/or teach special needs and culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional students in language arts, reading comprehension, and instructional strategies that employ culturally responsive targeted language cues.
To meet the requirements of federal legislation, these paraeducators require an increase in professional development training at the school level, the district level, and the Special Services level, as well as professional development conferences that take place off campus.
|Commitee:||Markel, Sherry, McClure, John, McGroarty, Mary, Peterson, Patricia, Showalter, Stephen|
|School:||Northern Arizona University|
|Department:||Teaching and Learning/Educational Specialities|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Special education, Teacher education|
|Keywords:||Arizona, Culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional students, Culturally responsive instructional strategies, English language learners, Paraeducators, Reading comprehension strategies, Special education students|
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