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Implementing Specialized Academic Instruction: A Manual for Paraeducators

For decades, paraeducators have been utilized in the special education setting, taking on a supportive role in enhancing outcomes for students with disabilities. In recent years, the role of the paraeducator has transformed into a dynamic and influential support for students receiving special education services (White, 2004). Although the role of the paraeducator has been ever changing, professional development and/or training opportunities have not been consistent with the current roles, responsibilities, and job functions required for appropriate support in special settings (Capizzi, 2012). As the employment of paraeducators grows steadily, so does the need for professional development and/or training opportunities in order for a well-equipped team to be established. As a response to this vital need, a manual for paraeducators working in the elementary K-5 special education setting was created. Implementing Specialized Academic Instruction: A Manual for Paraeducators seeks to provide paraeducators with an opportunity to seek additional training and/or professional development in order to carry out job functions effectively and maximize productivity, leading to a more equipped and collaborative special education team.

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