Job: Sped Paraprofessional

Title Sped Paraprofessional
Categories Full Time
Job Information


Position: SPED Paraprofessional

Department: Faculty

Reports to: Principal

Location: Irving Elementary

Hours: M-TH 7:15am – 4:00pm

Fri: 7:15am – 4:30pm

FLSA Status: Exempt

Days Worked:    187


Provide students with appropriate educational activities and experiences using Expeditionary Learning (Project-Based Learning). Manara Academy place emphasis on developing the whole student (intellectual, emotional, physical and social growth) and providing the necessary skillsets to be a productive member of society.

Design Overview

Manara Academy use the Expeditionary Learning model that emphasizes high achievement through active learning, character growth, and teamwork. The five Expeditionary Learning core practices—learning expeditions, active pedagogy, school culture and character, leadership and school improvement, and structures—work in concert and support one another to promote high achievement. Rigorous investigation of deep content, the creation of authentic products for an authentic audience, and effective instructional practices character growth and teamwork. What follows are brief descriptions of the core practices, and then the job responsibilities associated with each. Job requirements specific to each position are listed at the end of the document.

Learning Expeditions

In Expeditionary Learning schools learning expeditions are the primary way of organizing curriculum. Learning expeditions feature linked projects that require students to construct deep understandings and skills and to create products for real audiences.

Active Pedagogy

Teaching and learning are active and engaging in Expeditionary Learning classrooms. Effective instructional practices promote equity and high expectations: they make the content of expeditions come alive, ensure that all students think and participate, and allow the teacher to know all students and their thinking well. Knowledge of each student’s level of understanding and participation leads teachers to differentiate instruction.

Culture and Character

An Expeditionary Learning school culture is developed and sustained through practices that bring the community together, promote shared understandings, and encourage all community members to become crew, not passengers. Physical and emotional safety, respect and courtesy, and a disciplined environment characterize the climate in an Expeditionary Learning school. Classrooms are managed through the practices of the Discovery Program and measured using the Habits of Work. Teachers foster student character through challenging academic work, service, and the expectation that students are courteous, respectful, and compassionate. School leaders, teachers, and staff in Expeditionary Learning schools are members of a community of learners. Professionals work together to share expertise, improve the school’s program, build background knowledge in their disciplines, and model collaborative learning for students. Staff culture is characterized by a respectful collegiality where teachers resist judgment and blame, and support each other in improving practice.

Leadership and School Improvement

Leaders in Expeditionary Learning schools create a professional community that focuses on curriculum and instruction as the primary vehicles for improving student achievement and school culture. Teachers and school leaders in Expeditionary Learning schools collect data to understand student achievement, assess teaching practices, and make informed decisions about instruction.


In Expeditionary Learning schools the schedule and calendar serves instructional and curricular priorities. While each schedule is unique to a school and its constraints, there are key features that all Expeditionary Learning school schedules have in common: lengthened periods of class time, opportunities for integration of the disciplines, and common professional development time for teachers. The schedule accommodates project work, fieldwork, service learning, and flexible groupings of students. Time is scheduled during the school year and summer for whole-school professional development and collaboration across grade levels and subject areas. The calendar allows adequate time for orientation, intensives and related travel opportunities.


  • Assists with teacher-planned activities, exercises and drills.
  • Assists in carrying out the instructional program.
  • Under the supervision of the teacher, assists in the implementation of the Individual Educational Program
  • Assists with teacher-planned activities, exercises and drills.
  • Assists in carrying out the instructional program.
  • Under the supervision of the teacher, assists in the implementation of the Individual Educational Program (IEPs) goals and objectives.
  • Assists in the documentation of progression/regression in IEP goals and objectives as well as other documentation requested by the teacher, therapist or nursing staff.
  • Maintains confidentiality of all student records.
  • Assists in other educational settings with students with disabilities (e.g., Community, Based Instruction, Physical Education, Music, Cafeteria, Bus Arrival and Dismissal, Field Trips)
  • Uses adaptive equipment as well as communication and educational devices.
  • Assists in preparation, use and maintenance of instructional materials and equipment.
  • Assists in implementing the therapy programs which may require lifting and positioning.
  • Assists when needed in helping students in self-care and personal-hygiene needs such as feeding, toileting, diapering, etc.
  • Participates in planned professional development and professional growth activities.
  • Maintains professional ethics and exercises self-control over actions and words with students, parents and staff members.
  • Restrains disruptive students following the guidelines prescribed in the Texas Behavioral Support Initiative (TBSI).
  • Demonstrates dependability and punctuality by exercising regular attendance and promptness.
  • Demonstrates the ability to frequently stand, stoop, kneel, climb, bend, crouch, push and
  • pull, and physically lift students.
  • Adheres to federal, state and local policies and procedures related to special education
  • Follows district and building policies.
  • Performs all duties as assigned by the supervising teacher and/or administrator


Candidates must:

  • Meet “Highly Qualified” criteria per NCLB
  • 48 semester hours of college credit with some emphasis on child growth and development or related subject areas; Associate’s degree preferred
  • Maintain an unyielding commitment to students’ learning: No limits, no excuses
  • Boast an unfailing sense of humor
  • Love deep content
  • Be determine to reflect and improve instructional practice
  • Appreciate child developmental needs and different learning styles
  • Thrive in a diverse, intellectually challenging, startup environment

Ideal candidates will:

  • Have successful experience working in nontraditional school environments
  • Demonstrates facility developing project-based curriculum
  • Bachelor’s degree



  • Competitive Salary
  • Medical Benefits
  • TRS Benefits
  • Performance Bonuses
  • Weekly Professional Development
  • On-going Professional Development with Expeditionary Learning School including one-on-one technical assistance with ELS staff
  • Annual evaluations of teaching performance are performed by Manara Academy’s Director of Education and Principal of the school.







This job description has been reviewed with me and I fully understand the requirements. I am able to perform the essential functions of this job.

Employee’s Signature:                                                                         Date: _________________

Supervisor/Witness:                                                                                        Date: _________________

Manara Academy provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Manara Academy complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.

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