Paraeducator Board Newsletter

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Next meeting

Date: November 13-14, 2019

The Heathman Lodge in Vancouver, WA

Upcoming meetings

  • January 16-17, 2020
  • March 19-20, 2020
  • May 21-22, 2020
  • July 16-17, 2020

For additional information, visit our website.

Board members

  • Yukari Amos
  • Jessica Giffin
  • Ricardo Iñiguez
  • Mandy Manning
  • Cindy Rockholt
  • Laura Rogers
  • Loren Sickles
  • Cathy Smith (Chair)
  • Ann Willamson

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Did you know that PESB and the Paraeducator Board are on social media? Follow along for daily updates, milestones reached, reminders and resources.

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Use #PESBimpact or #WAparaPower to join the conversation

October 9, 2019

The Paraeducator Certificate Program has officially kicked off

With the beginning of the 2019-20 school year, school districts across the state have started to plan and implement the required 14 hours of training for paraeducators on the Fundamental Course of Study.

If your district needs guidance, please review our implementation toolkit to learn about program standards, curriculum and outlines, reports, crosswalks, materials from the pilot sites, and more.

What happened at the September board meeting?

On September 25 at NE ESD 101, the Paraeducator Board heard presentations and took action on several policies, including:

  • Approving draft language of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) standards to add to the paraeducator standards of practice. This means that the Fundamental Course of Study will include SEL training beginning in January 2020. The online course, “Paraeducators: what we do matters”, will be updated to address the new standards.
  • Approving rules that allow for the completion of a professional growth plan (PGP) to renew the ELL Subject Matter Certificate, but not for attainment. 
  • Listened to representatives from Nine Mile Falls School District and Spokane Public Schools on their approaches to implementing the Fundamental Course of Study.
  • A presentation from Monica Beane, Client Relations Director for the Educational Testing Service (ETS) , who updated the Board on plans to allow for remote proctoring of the ETS ParaPro exam. 

For a complete review of the September board meeting, including summaries for each agenda item, please visit the meeting materials folder.

Fundamental Course of Study clock hour form is available

OSPI has published a clock hour form for the Fundamental Course of Study (FCS). The form will provide paraeducators and districts written documentation of FCS unit and course completion. The form is available in our Implementation Folder on Google Drive and on the OSPI Certification website.

District reimbursement update

The 2019-21 Washington operating appropriations bill contains an appropriation of $12,001,000 to offset districts' cost of providing two days of training on the FCS for the 2019-20 school year. Districts can now begin the process of reimbursement through iGrants package 918. Reimbursements are distributed to the districts after September 1, 2020. Districts are required to provide quarterly updates, with November 1, 2019 being the first update, of their progress in the training. Learn more.

September webinar recording available

Our most recent webinar recording on the Paraeducator Certificate Program is now available. Program details including the new minimum employment requirements and the required 14 hours of FCS training are discussed. Watch the recording.

Issaquah paraeducators receive certificates


Congratulations to Issaquah paraeducators who just completed their Special Education certificates. They participated in our pilot program and are some of the first in the state to receive their certificates.

Paraeducator apprenticeship

Interested in a paraeducator apprenticeship? The new Washington State Apprenticeships in Public Education website shares information on how to get started, and stories from those who have completed an apprenticeship in the state.

Funds available to explore bilingual high school teacher academy

$10,000 grants are now available for schools interested in starting a bilingual focused high school teaching academy. The purpose of the Recruiting Washington Teachers – Bilingual Educators Initiative (RWT–BEI) teacher academy is to recruit, prepare, and mentor bilingual high school students to become future bilingual teachers and counselors in the state of Washington. Applications are due October 15, 2019. Learn more.

Implementation data coming soon

We have been collecting data on how school districts across the state are implementing the FCS training, which we will compile into an interactive report in the coming months. If you are the FCS implementation lead for your district and have not yet been contacted by us, please reach out to Zoe Hammes-Hefti