How do I get a paraprofessional position with no experience?

Discussion in 'Paraprofessionals' started by Jadoo, Jun 29, 2015.

  1. Jadoo

    Jadoo Rookie

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    Jun 29, 2015

    I am a student studying for a B.A in Elementary and Special Education. I'd like to get a parapro job, as I'm doing my degree online. The only problem is, I have no experience being a parapro. I taught ESL in Mexico for 4 months and I was an English Language assistant in two French middle schools for nine months, but no experience in a US classroom.

    In my state, you can exempt the para pro exam with 60 college credits, which I have, thus making me eligible for the certificate.

    I've just started my major-specific classes of my degree, so I'm not sure how much being an education major would help at this point.
     
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  3. eternalsaudade

    eternalsaudade Companion

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    Jun 29, 2015

    TBH, unless the job market is incredibly saturated, you likely won't have much trouble getting hired without experience. Talk about your ESL experiences (both sound quite valuable, especially if the school serves ELLs), show enthusiasm, be articulate and I doubt you will have much trouble finding something. If you speak any other languages, make sure to put that on your resumé as well. :)
     
  4. renard

    renard Companion

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    Jun 29, 2015

    You are already more than qualified.
     
  5. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Groupie

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    Jun 29, 2015

    I had zero experience in public schools and I got hired on the spot for a paraprofessional position so you'll be fine :)
     
  6. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Jun 29, 2015

    I agree with everyone else above. My past school hired anyone who had the bare minimum credentials (and by that I mean meeting the state requirement). No experience or interest in education necessary. You are definitely more than qualified and should have NO trouble at all.
     
  7. Jadoo

    Jadoo Rookie

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    Jun 30, 2015

    Thanks for the encouragement! My mom actually works as an elementary school lunchroom lady, so I'm feeling more confident than I originally did in applying for these positions!
     
  8. Gunngirl

    Gunngirl New Member

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    Aug 29, 2015

    Hello! I know this thread is a few months old but I will take my chances and reply. I am pretty much in the same boat. I don't have any experience being a paraprofessional. I have one semester of working in a school office where I did interact with children daily, but not in a classroom. That is my only school experience. That was in the late 90's early 2000's.

    I have worked in law firms for the last 9 years and am currently working in one and want to transition out of that ASAP. Hate it! I have been looking into becoming a paraprofessional but don't know how to tailor my resume with zero experience. I do meet the minimum requirements though. Has anyone else ever tried to transition like this? Thank you in advance!
     
  9. RedStripey

    RedStripey Comrade

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    Sep 11, 2015

    You definitely have experience! Just find a way to translate that on your resume. My first job out of school was as a special ed para and I just had camp/tutoring experience. I had no classroom experience outside of student teaching.

    ETA: Wow, totally did not see how old the thread was! Hopefully OP found the job s/he wanted by now and my advice will help someone else. :lol:
     
  10. ECE ABC

    ECE ABC Comrade

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    Sep 11, 2015

    We have the same requirement as another poster mentioned, bare minimum is an Associate Degree or 60 credits towards a Bachelor's Degree.

    There are those Paras that have taken the Para Pro Exam and were able to take that route instead and have done fine.

    We do have to interview with Principals as well to be ''officially'' hired by the school system and of course they always ask the ''education'' question..if you are interested in Education or have you ever subbed or taught school at all..of course that always helps..even summer camp jobs, daycare, nanny, etc. it all looks good on a resume!

    It is amazing though how many certified teachers (including myself) do work as Paras, for a bunch of different reasons...but I do know some that were in other professions and had no experience at all in education and they were hired, so yes it is absolutely possible.
     
  11. Rashu12

    Rashu12 Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2016

    Hi all,
    I have also applied for the paraprofessional position. I live in Indiana state. Five years back I used to volunteer in elementary school for first and third grade students. Other than this, I have two years of teaching experience in India.I used to teach introductory microeconomics to 11th graders. I also have one year of volunteering experience in in school library, I used to shelf books. Does these count for my job for parapro. I already got a phone call from the Principal but I missed the call, the Principal had left the voice message to contact him if I am interested, when I called the phone number he had left, it went to receptionist and she told me that she would inform the Principal. I am worried, what shall I do? Shall I go and contact the Principal in person, I am in a dilemma please guide me with this.i also got an email from the middle school Principal to attend the interview, she has asked me to bring my transcript with me.can anyone tell me what type of questions will be asked in an interview for parapro in middle school and also at elementary level? How I should prepare for the interview?
     
  12. Spedmistress

    Spedmistress Rookie

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    Sep 11, 2016

    I am sure you will have no trouble. emphasize your other languages and play up your ESL experience. also tell them about your education major classes. That will definitely help. Take your test and i am sure you will have no trouble. Offer to get on the paraprofessional sub list to gain experience.
     

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