Educational Assistants

Educational Assistants

Virginia Willems-Rossman

 

The environment of a private school is very different as compared to a public school.  The difference really comes to light when the topics of unions and Educational Assistants are raised.

If there are Educational Assistants in the private school environment, they are most likely supervised by the classroom teacher.  Therefore, the classroom teacher also completes the evaluations.  This is evident in the chain of command as well; the chain of command begins with the owner of the school, who may or may not be the principal.  The vice principal is second in command, followed by the teachers.  The Educational Assistants are the last to be consulted in matters affecting the school. “…paraprofessionals always complete their job assignments under the supervision of a qualified teacher.  They only act on teaching decisions or adapt materials and modify programs with your direction.” (1.)

If I had an Educational Assistant in my classroom, one role that I would like them to assume would be one of support for exceptional students in an inclusive classroom.  I would hope that the Educational Assistant would have the ability to work as a teaching partner, and as such, they would be able to “provide continuity for staff, parents and exceptional learners,” as well as “supporting (my) work with the entire while monitoring the progress of the exceptional students and offering them assistance at key times.” (2.)

This would also assist me with regards to behavior problems, because the assistant could work one-to-one with a student while I continue to teach the class as a whole.  However, the true role of the Educational Assistant would have to be determined by the IEP’s of the exceptional students in my class.  Regardless of what their role is and if I was working in a publicly funded or a privately funded school, I would hope that the Educational Assistant would become a teaching partner.

 

  1. Hutchinson,      Nancy, Inclusion of Exceptional Learners, In Canadian Schools,      Pearson Education Canada, Kingston, ON, 2013)
  2. Hutchinson,      Nancy, Inclusion of Exceptional Learners, In Canadian Schools,      Pearson Education Canada, Kingston, ON, 2013)

 

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