Paraprofessionals

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by vaticxs, Sep 11, 2017.

  1. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 11, 2017

    I am in a self-contained class with 2 paraprofessionals. If one of them is absent, is it okay for them to tell the teacher to do the diaper changing especially if she's sick and tired of changing the student's poop? I know that's their duty to clean the student's butt, but asking the teacher to do it because the other paraprofessional is absent and she doesn't want to do it. Is that okay?
     
  2.  
  3. bella84

    bella84 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,666
    Likes Received:
    786

    Sep 11, 2017

    Everyone - teacher and paras - should be doing the duty. It's part of being a team.
     
  4. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 11, 2017

    Thank you bella84. Maybe it's the way the para addressed it to the teacher that made it a little bit unacceptable. She told the teacher "it's your turn, I don't want to change her".
     
  5. bella84

    bella84 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,666
    Likes Received:
    786

    Sep 11, 2017

    Yes, that sounds like an inappropriate way to say it, but it really is everyone's job.
     
  6. ca_sped

    ca_sped Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2013
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    5

    Sep 11, 2017

    I would agree, as part of team you need to do some of the dirty work (literally) yourself. Next time, I would offer, especially if she's been in the bathroom a lot that day.
     
  7. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3,608
    Likes Received:
    491

    Sep 12, 2017

    If the teacher is not in the middle of a lesson then she could take a turn. She shouldn't have to stop what she's doing though and leave the other students. If it's in between lessons during something like free time then that makes sense. Some of my special ed kids need changing and no assistant has ever demanded that I help. I offer to help when appropriate.
     
  8. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 12, 2017

    Thank you for all your feedbacks. I really appreciate it.
     
  9. DAH

    DAH Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Messages:
    222
    Likes Received:
    82

    Sep 12, 2017

    Hi Vaticxs: This is a "job description" issue that is different in different school districts. When all understanding fails, "check the official job description page." Both positions (teacher and para-educator) carry clearly defined job description duties.

    The teacher may not be required to change diapers and clean tables, and doesn't have to, if that's what you were hired to do.

    If I were you, I would (secretly) obtain an official job description of the para-educator and the teacher (obtain a copy from your Human Resources/Personnel dept.), read it over, and highlight duties that overlap. Then you will be in a position to insist that teacher help, when you're overloaded.

    (Your co-worker should have requested a substitute!)
     
  10. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 12, 2017

    Thank you DAH. This makes sense. This is a good tip and suggestion. I will do it. Thank you so much.
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,209
    Likes Received:
    1,329

    Sep 12, 2017

    Wow. Teachers and paras should work collegially. INSISTINGanyone do anything is not the best for a cohesive working environment.
     
  12. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2017
    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    84

    Sep 12, 2017

    I would say it does depend on your contract. In my District, responsibilities are laid out in the contract and this is not a teacher duty. There is clearly an appropriate and inappropriate way to communicate this information, but via our union if a teacher was asked to do something outside of their responsibilities, it would be communicated that this was outside of their duties and needed to be completed by the staff assigned to the duties. Similarly, if a teacher leaves a class with a para, the para would communicate via their union that this is beyond their duties.
     
  13. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 14, 2017

    One para usually ask the teacher to do the changing when the other para is absent. The student usually eliminates twice a day, so when it's the second time to change, she would tell the teacher to do the changing.
     
  14. vaticxs

    vaticxs Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 14, 2017

    Thanks Always_Learning. I already ask a copy of a Paraprofessional's job description form the HR.Thanks for your feedback.
     
  15. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

    Joined:
    May 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    25

    Sep 24, 2017

    I have 4 students in diapers. I change them once a day, and my TA changes them twice a day. We have a schedule we stick to unless some major change happens. I never ever mind changing students, but it is a bit of a double standard. I wouldn't even think about telling my TA that I refuse to change diapers. But, you better bet your bottom dollar that if I gave her stuff to work on after school or when she went home, she'd refuse.

    I believe the roles should be more clearly defined, like they are in a hospital. After all, she is the TA, and I am the teacher. But, it's not a fight that I believe is worth having. Because then I will look like some stuck up teacher who thinks she's too good for touching butts.

    The saga continues.....:)
     
    DAH likes this.
  16. bella84

    bella84 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,666
    Likes Received:
    786

    Sep 24, 2017

    I believe that's more of a legal thing. Hourly staff, which paras usually are, cannot be required to do work outside of their work hours. Salaried, certified staff can. If paras were asked to take work home, they'd have to be compensated for their time.
     
    AlwaysAttend likes this.
  17. DAH

    DAH Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Messages:
    222
    Likes Received:
    82

    Sep 24, 2017

    Ecteach, that was one of the big surprises that I ran into after returning to work in the mid 1990s-- the "often" antagonistic relationship I witnessed in special ed. classrooms between teacher and para-educator(s) (TA).

    Sometimes it was unbearable for the teacher, especially if all 3 paras ganged-up against her (and it was ALWAYS a female; I never witnessed this kind of relationship with a male teacher, may be once). In my experiences, it's USUALLY the paras who want to usurp authority, wanting teacher to do things "their way," and disapproval of teacher's methods.

    After starting Special ed. credential school (didn't finish), that was one of the first questions I asked, "Does the Sped teacher get to choose her para-educator's?" The answer was a resounding no, not in any district. In some districts, I've learned, the classroom teacher is not even the para-educator's boss; it's someone in Human Resources.

    I have never regretted changing my mind about Special ed.
     
  18. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

    Joined:
    May 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    25

    Sep 24, 2017

    Precisely my point. We have 2 different jobs. I spent this whole weekend working on items for one child who was added to my class this week. She didn't. Her job is to be a TA. Mine is to be a teacher. I must reiterate......I do not mind changing diapers in the least. I've actually thought about getting my CNA license to make extra money in the summer.
     
  19. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

    Joined:
    May 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    25

    Sep 24, 2017

    I've been very lucky with TAs until this year. The worst part is.....we usually get the TAs who couldn't cut it in regular ed. This is just what I've witnessed in my county. I know there are good TAs in special ed.
     
  20. DAH

    DAH Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Messages:
    222
    Likes Received:
    82

    Sep 24, 2017

    Getting a CNA license is an EXCELLENT thing to do!
    It's a good idea to be able to do more than one thing professionally. I met a young guy a few years ago who was a teacher, and a nurse! I think he was an LVN. You don't have to wait until you're 50 and forced off your job to learn a new trade.

    The way the economy is, up and down, every young person should have at least two skills that they could work if necessary.
     
    ecteach likes this.
  21. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3,608
    Likes Received:
    491

    Sep 25, 2017

    Our roles are pretty defined in my school. If I'm teaching a lesson and a student needs to be changed, one of the TAs usually just gets up and does it without interrupting the lesson. I can't stop what I'm doing to do it. That's just common sense. After lunch when the kids have choice time, sometimes I'll take a student into the bathroom quickly and that's not a big deal. Half the time, my TAs stop me and say they'll do it. There's will probably never be in instance where I tell my TAs to do the math lesson so I can change a student. That's just the way things work here.
     
    DAH likes this.

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Obadiah,
  2. Cape Town teacher
Total: 449 (members: 2, guests: 334, robots: 113)
test