BILL REQ. #:  S-1228.1 


State of Washington61st Legislature2009 Regular Session

By Senators Kauffman, King, McDermott, Holmquist, Hobbs, and McAuliffe

Read first time 02/06/09.   Referred to Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education.

     AN ACT Relating to paraeducator tutors; adding a new section to chapter 28A.400 RCW; and creating a new section.


NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1   (1) The legislature finds:
     (a) The office of the superintendent of public instruction recognizes the accomplishments of classroom paraeducators to attain professional growth development standards in order to increase students' learning achievement; and
     (b) There is a growing need to provide support for struggling students who have been identified as not meeting state academic standards. Highly trained paraeducators can have a significant impact on those students who fall short of grade level standards but do not meet the criteria to qualify for special education or Title I resources. Increasing the knowledge and skills of paraeducators will result in students reaching their highest potential.
     (2) The purpose of this act is to develop standards for paraeducators to increase their knowledge of learning disabilities, addressing different learning styles, teaching strategies, and decoding skills that will result in a positive impact on student achievement. The office of the superintendent of public instruction should develop the standards and the certification process for the paraeducators. The office of the superintendent of public instruction should develop professional development that can be delivered in many different ways, such as online and at the summer and winter institute, for the paraeducators to learn the standards and receive the certification. Those earning the certification would become paraeducator tutors.
     (3) Incentives provided for in this act should be developed and recommended by the office of the superintendent of public instruction in the 2010 session for paraeducator tutors. Incentives used to pursue high quality professional development opportunities should result in providing assistance to students' learning needs and effectively help students meet challenging academic standards.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2   A new section is added to chapter 28A.400 RCW to read as follows:
     (1) The superintendent of public instruction shall adopt rules establishing paraeducator tutor certification requirements. Certification shall be for five-year periods.
     (2) In order to maintain paraeducator tutor certification, a certificated paraeducator must enroll in additional professional development courses approved by the office of the superintendent of public instruction. The professional development courses will maximize the effectiveness of providing the resources for students to achieve state standards and reach their highest possible academic potential.

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