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Paraeducators Deserve a Living Wage

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CT Paraeducator Coalition

The Connecticut Paraeducator Coalition is fighting to improve student learning by providing adequate resources to paraeducators across the state.

Contact your legislators today and urge them to invest in paraeducators by including funding for paraeducators in the budget!

Paraeducators play an essential role in educating our kids. They often have the closest relationships with students and work with those who need the most support, however, they are rarely prioritized. Pay rates, health care coverage, retirement benefits and professional development opportunities are substandard. They can also encounter safety issues when working with students who have behavioral issues.

Often, they are unable to attend Planning and Placement Team (PPT) meetings to develop or review Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), even though they are the ones who must implement the IEPs. Most districts fail to provide meaningful professional development to enhance their skills and effectiveness.

Our proposal invests in and empowers paraeducators by requiring:

  1. paraeducators be paid a living wage;
  2. school districts provide affordable health care through the CT State Partnership Plan 2.0;
  3. school districts to provide defined benefit pensions;
  4. that paraeducators be full participants in PPT and 504 meetings from the beginning in the planning and preparation for these meetings;
  5. the $1.8 million appropriation made last year to school districts to assist them in delivering paraeducator professional development be made permanent;
  6. And more! Including guidance on training, para members to serve on professional development committees, and creation of best practices.

Listen to the stories of paraeducators from across the state

Paraeducator with 12 years of experience explains how he improves student learning

Bristol paraeducator explains why paras are leaving the profession

New Haven paraprofessional explains how wages are so low, she has had to work 3 jobs

East Hartford special education paraeducator explains how wages are so low, she worked 3 other jobs

AFSCME paraeducator explains how vacancies impact student learning

MEUI paraeducator explains how pay is so low, they make less than substitute teachers

Hartford paraeducator: "I'm working and I'm still living in poverty"