November Paraeducator Board Newsletter

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Next Meeting

Jan 10-11, 2018

ESD 113
6005 Tyee Dr SW
Tumwater, WA

Future Meetings

Mar 14

May 16

Jul 25

Sep 26

Nov 28

For additional information, visit our Paraeducator Board Meetings Page

Board Members

Jan Byers-Kirsch

Jessica Giffin

Ricardo Iñiguez

Mandy Manning

Cindy Rockholt

Laura Rogers

Loren Sickles

Cathy Smith (Chair)

Ann Willamson


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The Board held its second meeting in Vancouver, WA, on November 15-16, and approved or adopted many important policies. Highlights include the adoption of paraeducator state standards of practice, and ELL and Special Education standards of practice.

Available online are the November Board meeting materials and a summary of Board Actions/Annotations.

Materials for meetings are shared with the Board and the public in advance of the meeting. To find information about the next board meeting, visit our meetings page. Materials are typically available a week prior to the meeting.


Final reminder, forms are due today (Nov. 29).

We are accepting members to participate in a new volunteer subcommittee created by the Paraeducator Board. 

The charge of the subcommittee is to review the general paraeducator certificate requirements as stated in HB 1115, and submit recommendations to the Board that define how paraeducators may meet these requirements. Specifically, discussion will focus on Sections 7 and 8 of the law, which requires paraeducators to complete a fundamental course of study and an additional ten days of general courses on the state paraeducator standards of practice.

Details regarding the subcommittee meeting follow:

Date:        December 13, 2017, 8 am – 5 pm
Location:   Association of Washington School Principals (Olympia, WA)

After the meeting, the subcommittee recommendations will be presented to the Board by staff, during the Paraeducator Board’s January 10-11 meeting in Tumwater, WA.

Individuals interested in joining the subcommittee do so on a voluntary basis and must commit to a full day of review and discussion. Expenses are not covered for volunteer members of the subcommittee by the Paraeducator Board.

If you are interested in being a participant of this subcommittee, please complete this form by clicking on the link.


During the month of October, Washington State paraeducators were asked to complete a survey that collected information on demographics and professional and career development interests. 

Nearly 5,000 responses were successfully submitted!

A lot of great information was collected, and an initial overview of the data is available online for your review

Thank you to all who participated! 


The Paraeducator Board is pleased to announce the Pipeline for Paraeducators Conditional Scholarship! This program can provide funding for paraeducators, who have a minimum of three years classroom experience and no college degree, of up to $4,000 towards earning their Associate of Arts (AA) degree from a Washington community or technical college with the intention of becoming a fully certified teacher. Those awarded will be required to complete their AA within two years of being awarded, making them eligible to enroll in an Alternative Route 1 program to earn their certification, and then teach for a minimum of two years. 

More information on the requirements and responsibilities of candidates  are now available:


Diversifying the Educator Workforce: Recruiting Washington Teachers
February 7, 2018
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

The Diversifying the Educator Workforce (DEW) meetings are focused on strategies to increase underrepresented candidates in the educator workforce and grow the next generation of future educators. 

The event, co-hosted by PESB and The Gates Foundation, will focus on growing our own educators through Recruiting Washington Teachers (RWT) teacher academies. The RWT program has the overarching goal of growing diverse future teachers, who more closely reflect the population of Washington's students, by introducing high school students to what a career in education looks like and the importance of their role in the future of education. This event will include discussions of the impact of culturally responsive teaching academies, the launching of the new RWT professional development, the design of innovative RWT programs, and breakout sessions lead by current RWT teachers and higher education partners.

Registration information will be forthcoming, and registration will be required in order to attend. Questions? Email:

National Resource Center for Paraeducators Conference
April 26-29, 2018
DoubleTree Hilton Seattle Airport

The 34th National Conference on the Training and Employment of Paraeducators, this is an opportunity to: 

  • Meet and network with paraeducators, teachers and administrators from other school districts, states and countries; and
  • Discover the latest training programs and discuss models for paraeducator-to-teacher career pathways with community college and university personnel; and
  • Attend diverse workshops covering literacy and math common core, small group instruction, ELL, early childhood, supervision, writing, proactive behavior management, autism, strategies for students with significant cognitive disabilities, MTSS (Multi- Tiered Systems of Student Support), and more.

For further information, please visit NRCP.