A paraprofessional is often referred to as a teacher's aide. A paraprofessional in Ohio is an education worker who is not a licensed teacher but assists the teacher in the classroom. Some paraprofessionals are assigned to an individual student if that child has special needs. Requirements to be a paraprofessional in Ohio vary depending upon the certificate sought and where the paraprofessional works.
One Year Certification
Paraprofessionals in Ohio seeking one-year certification must have a high school diploma or a GED. The school that the paraprofessional works for must apply for the certificate. The certificate will be valid for up to one year at which point the paraprofessional can apply for an additional year.
Four Year Certificate
The four-year certificate requires the same as the one year, a high school diploma or GED. It also requires that the paraprofessional has been certified as a one-year aide at least twice, for a total of two years experience.
No Child Left Behind
For paraprofessionals who want to work in a district that is funded by the federal No Child Left Behind Act, additional requirements must be met. The paraprofessional must earn an associate degree or higher from a university or have completed two years of credits or pass an assessment with at least a score of 456. This is in addition to the requirement of having a GED or high school diploma.
Educational Aide Application
An educational aide application can be found on the Ohio Department of Education website (see Resources) and must be completed by the district for which the paraprofessional is seeking employment. With the application, a background investigation is done, including an FBI check. The results are filed with the Department of Education.
Melanie Fleury has been writing professionally since 1995. She has written for various educational websites such as Edhelper.com and is the educational consultant at the Knowledge Tree Center for Education. She enjoys creating curriculum for children with various learning styles. Fleury holds a master's degree in education specializing in early childhood from Ashwood University.