Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
First Committee Member
Susan P. Miller
Number of Pages
Over the past two decades an increased number of paraeducators have been hired to work with special education teachers (French & Pickett, 1997, Stanovich, 1996). There has been a concurrent shift in paraeducator responsibilities. Instead of primarily providing clerical support, paraeducators are now expected to provide instructional support to the most challenging students in the system (i.e., those with disabilities) (Giangreco, Broer, Edelman, 1999). Numerous researchers, educators, and members of professional organizations have noted concerns about the training and/or lack thereof for paraeducators (French & Pickett, 1997). Debate exists regarding whether or not paraeducators possess adequate training and skills to successfully complete the jobs they are assigned to perform; The purpose of this study was to investigate special education teachers, and special education paraeducators' perceptions related to paraeducator training needs within the Clark County School District. Researcher constructed surveys (i.e., Paraeducator Training Questionnaire for Paraeducators and Paraeducator Training Questionnaire for Teachers) were pilot tested, revised, and then disseminated to 1802 teacher-paraeducator pairs. After two mailings, a total of 589 teachers returned the surveys and a total of 383 paraeducators returned their surveys. This represents a 53.9% return rate. Respondents were asked to indicate need for paraeducator training related to the Council for Exceptional Children Standards for Paraeducators. The three standards that received the highest number of paraeducators indicating a need for training were: (1) use strategies, equipment, materials, and technologies, as directed, to accomplish instructional objectives (160/241, 41.6%), (2) use strategies for managing behavior as directed (154/242,40%), and (3) use strategies as directed to facilitate effective integration into various settings (151/243, 39.2%). The three standards that received the highest number of teachers indicating a need for their paraeducator to receive training were: (1) use strategies for managing behavior as directed, (2) use strategies, equipment, materials, and technologies, as directed, to accomplish instructional objectives, and (3) assist in adapting instructional strategies and materials as directed; Results obtained using the Non-Parametric Crosstabs statistical procedure and a 0.05 confidence level revealed that paraeducators and teachers differ in their perceptions related to paraeducator training needs based on program area (i.e., self contained, resource). Finally, results obtained using Non-Parametric Crosstabs statistical procedure with 0.05 confidence level revealed that paraeducators and teachers differ in their perceptions related to paraeducator responsibilities based on program area.
Current; Instructional Support; Investigation; Needs; Paraeducator; Practices; Training
Special education; Teachers--Training of
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Saffle, Brian D, "Paraeducator training: An investigation of current practice and related needs" (2005). UNLV Retrospective Theses & Dissertations. 2644.