CERTIFIED TEACHERS AND HIGHLY QUALIFIED PARAPROFESSIONALS
Teachers are required to be certified all of their teaching assignments if they are the Teacher of Record providing direct instruction to students in any core academic subject area, including English, reading or language arts, mathematics, science, foreign languages (languages other than English), civics and government, economics, arts, history, and geography.
Teachers who are certified for the assignment for which they are hired and who are given additional assignments out of their certification areas are out-of-content assignments. When this occurs for more than 4 weeks, the district is required to send a letter home to the families notifying them of this situation.
HIGHLY QUALIFIED PARAPROFESSIONALS AND REQUIREMENTS
A paraprofessional is an employee of a local education agency who provides instructional support. Duties of a paraprofessional may include (1) providing one-on-one tutoring if such tutoring is scheduled at a time when a student would not otherwise receive instruction from a teacher; (2) assisting with classroom management, such as by organizing instructional materials; (3) providing instructional assistance in a computer laboratory; (4) conducting parental involvement activities; (5) providing instructional support in a library or media center; (6) acting as a translator; or (7) providing instructional support services under the direct supervision of a highly qualified teacher. [Title I, Section 1119(g)(2)]
ESSA requires paraprofessionals assigned to instructional duties on a Title I, Part A Schoolwide served campus or those that have at least part of their salary paid for by Title I, Part A on a Targeted Assistance campus to meet the Paraprofessional Highly Qualified requirements. Requirements include:
- Obtained a high school diploma or a GED
- Have completed at least two years of study at an institution of higher education [defined as completion of 48 semester hours (or equivalent trimester hours) of college coursework or an applicable number of semester hours as defined by the institution of higher education attended, whichever is less; or
- Have obtained an associate's (or higher) degree; or
- Have met a rigorous standard of quality and can demonstrate, through a formal state or local academic assessment
Knowledge of, and the ability to assist in instructing, reading, writing, and mathematics; or
Knowledge of, and the ability to assist in instructing, reading readiness, writing readiness, and mathematics.
Certification Announcements and Updates
New Educational Aide Certificate Announcement
The State of Texas requires a difference certificate for educational aides. The Educational Aide Certificate DOES NOT meet the Highly Qualified requirement for ESSA.
As of January 1, 2018, Educational Aide certificates cannot be renewed. An individual who holds a Standard 5-year Educational Aide certificate will no longer be able to renew and must reapply for the new 2-year, non-renewable Educational Aide certificate.
Individuals who submitted an application prior to January 1, 2018 but were not recommended, must submit a new application and $17 fee for a 2-year Educational Aide certificate.
To be issued, the district must recommend the individual each time a 2-year non-renewable Educational Aide certificate is needed for an assignment.
Refund requests for applications that were not processed for a 5-year Educational Aide certificate can be submitted to the help desk.