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The CO-TOP Paraeducator Training Model Evaluation Outcomes

Nancy French, Executive Director Ritu Chopra, Director

The PAR2A Center 1380 Lawrence St. Suite 650 Denver, CO 80204-2076 Voice: (303) 556-6464 FAX: (303) 556-6142 email: [email protected] [email protected]

Website: http://www.paracenter.org

Comprehensive Training Opportunities for Paraeducators

CO-TOP Goals:

1: Initial preparation for paraeducators who work with students who have special education needs and who are learning to speak English 2: Facilitate Collaboration among LEAs, IHEs and the SEA to seek solutions for paraeducator employment, career development, and training 3: Build local capacity to supervise and train inservice paraeducators 4: Facilitate paraeducator career pathways into professions in education through articulated training programs.

CO-TOP: A Training of Trainers Model

Districts nominate trainers The PAR2A Center trains trainers ­ 2 courses,

Paraeducator Supervision Academy (PSA) Trainers of Paraeducator Academy (TOPA)

The PAR2A Center provides the districts and

trainers CO-TOP paraeducator curriculum ­ 21 Academies (courses)

CO-TOP Academies

· 21 Courses based on need / relevance to paraeducator positions

· Considerate of legitimate roles of paraeducators ­ teacher · Comprehensive ­ appropriate depth of content · Core content - consistent with various approaches · High quality · Accountability ­ it does what it says it will do!

CO-TOP Academies

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. Orientation to Special Education Language Development and Acquisition 14. Instructional Delivery Methods Instructional Teamwork for 2nd Language Learners Instructional Strategies 15. Assisting with Vocabulary and Behavior Management Comprehension in the Classroom Student Supervision 16. Assisting with Phonemic Interpersonal Skills Awareness & Phonics in the Personal Growth & Development Classroom Instructional Technology 17. Assisting with Reading Fluency in the Classroom Significant Health Support 18. Assisting with Grades K-4 Needs Mathematics in the Classroom Significant Supports for 19. Assisting with Number Theory Challenging Behavior & Real Numbers in the Significant Communication Classroom Support Needs 20. Assisting with Algebraic Orientation to Bilingual/ESL Concepts and Spatial Reasoning Education 21. CO-TOP practicum 13.

How were the CO-TOP courses developed?

· 1994 ­1997 reviewed literature, developed, pilotedtested 7 courses · Examined data · 1997-98 - Rewrote and revised every course - pilot tested · 1997-1999 Developed, pilot tested 3 more courses · 1999 ­ 2000 Developed, piloted 3 courses on ESL · 2002 ­ 2005 Developed literacy / math courses - expert focus groups · Pilot tested, revised

CO-TOP Outcomes: How We Collect Data

More than 10,000 individual paraeducators have taken courses.

For each class, paraeducators complete: ­ A pre and post skills self-assessment ­ A course & instructor evaluation form

And the results are...........

Journals that Paraeducators write as a part of the CO-TOP practicum Focus group interviews with trainers and administrators to assess impact

Results:

Course & Instructor Evaluations

· 634 classes taught by `home-grown' trainers · 10,141 paraeducators submitted course evaluations ­ Overall course rating - 90.58% · Course format · Course length · Content accuracy · Relevance ­ Overall instructor rating ­ 94.98% · Knowledge & Coverage of subject · Organizational skills · Ability to stimulate interest · Responsiveness to questions

Comments on the Evaluation Forms

Words used to describe the instructor, class/course,

information, ideas, experience, strategies

"Great" ­ 361 times "Good" ­ 347 times "Informative" ­ 299 times "Enjoyed" ­ 190 times "Interesting" ­ 163 times "Helpful" ­ 150 times "Excellent" ­ 137 times "Useful" ­ 119 times "Wonderful" ­ 51 times

o o o o o o o o o

147 entries ­ "Learned a lot "

Paraeducators report that CO-TOP training:

Gives them confidence in their own effectiveness with students Encourages them to seek more knowledge Gives them an opportunity to share experiences and network with other paraeducators

"I really appreciate all the extra work and effort put out for these classes, I always walk away empowered to assist my student (who I love) in a better way." "I always go home after class feeling confident knowing more than I started the day" "It is just so wonderful to learn all of these things, I just want to keep learning and learning..."

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.70 SD = .80 M= 3.32S D = .78 M = 2.90 SD = .73 M = 2.97 SD = .73

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.33 SD = .53 M = 4.52 SD = .45 M = 4.44 SD = .50 M = 4.38 SD = .54

Mean Difference

t-test

Orientation to Special ed. Instructional Teamwork Interpersonal Skills

Fall 02 Fall 04 Spring 00 Fall 04 Sum. 00 ­ Fall 02 Fall 02 - Fall 04

703

1.63

-57.49*

1193

1.20

-56.82*

119

1.54

-24.50*

391

1.41

-34.18*

*t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pretraining and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.84 SD = .87 M = 2.99 SD = .75 M = 3.26 SD = .80

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.41 SD = .52 M = 4.30 SD = .56 M = 4.46 SD = 1.21

Mean Difference

t-test

Personal Growth & Development

Sum. 01 ­ Spring 02 Sum. 02 - Fall 04

125

1.57

- 31.21*

1.31

-22.98 *

346 173

Instructional Sum. 00 Strategies - Fall 01 Spring 02 - Fall 04

1.20

-2.42*

897

M = 2.91 SD = .76

M = 4.33 SD = .53

1.42

-59.00*

*t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pre-training and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 3.22 SD = .74 M = 3.08 SD = .73

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.42 SD = .56 M = 4.42 SD = .49

Mean Difference

t-test

Behavior Management

Sum. 00 - Fall 01 Spring 02 - Fall 04

332

1.20

-29.83*

950

1.34

-58.46*

Student Supervision

Sum. 00 ­ Spring 02

147

M = 3.13 SD = .78

M = 4.41 SD = .49 M = 4.41 SD = .56

1.28

-20.57*

M = 3.06 Fall 02 SD = .86 Fall 04 *t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

344

1.35

-33.98*

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pretraining and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

Pre-Training Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.91 SD = .90 M = 3.00 SD = .89 M = 2.51 SD = .88 M = 2.69 SD = .84

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.44 SD = .57 M = 4.42 SD = .52 M = 4.47 SD = .45 M = 4.36 SD = .54

Mean Difference

t-test

Instructional Sum. 00 -Fall 01 Technology Fall 02 Fall 04 Significant Health Support Needs Fall 02 Fall 02 Fall 04

83

1.53

-15.20*

294

1.42

-28.89*

39

1.96

-16.90*

311

1.67

-33.26*

t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pretraining and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.79 SD = .81

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.42 SD = .53

Mean Difference

t-test

Significant Supports for Challenging Behavior Significant Communication Support Needs Life Skills

Fall 02 - Fall 04

368

1.63

-41.48*

Fall 02 - Fall 04 Fall 01 - Fall 04

296

M = 2.78 SD = .85

M = 4.29 SD = .52

1.51

-32.07*

430

M = 2.51 SD = .94

M = 4.31 SD = .59

1.80

-41.53

*

*t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pretraining and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.16 SD = 1.05

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.19 SD = .62

Mean Difference

t-test

Assisting With Phonemic Awareness and Phonics

Sum. 04 Fall 04

118

2.03

-22.61*

Assisting Fall 04 31 M = 2.86 With SD = .85 Reading t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test Fluency

M = 4.44 SD = .54

1.58

-10.07*

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pre-training and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.78 SD = .80

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.28 SD = .60

Mean Difference

t-test

Assisting Spring With 04 Vocabulary Fall 04 and Comprehension Assisting K-4 Grades with Math Fall 04 Spring 05

134

1.50

-20.39*

74

M=2.97 SD= .76

M=4.06 SD=.76

1.09

-11.99*

t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pre-training and post-training scores

Results:

Academy Dates

Pre and Post Self Assessments

PreTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 2.30 SD = .82 M = 2.35 SD = .91

# of participants

PostTraining Mean and Standard Deviation

M = 4.29 SD = .64 M = 4.32 SD = .60

Mean Difference

t-test

Orientation to Spring 03 - Fall Bilingual Ed.

04

253

1.99

-35.73*

Instructional Delivery Methods for Second Language Learner Language Development and Acquisition

Fall 01 Fall 04

303

1.97

-38.42*

Sum. 01 - Fall 04

375

M = 2.43 SD = .96

M = 4.23 SD = .63

1.80

-36.39*

t-test significant at p < .01 on a two-tailed test

Analysis of all courses showed a SIGNIFICANT difference between pretraining and post-training scores

Results: Practicum Journals

· Paraeducators:

­ Complete a field experience to complete the certificate

­ Write reflections on each class ­ Each reflection focuses on one technique or bit of information they learned ­ Tell how they use the knowledge or skill in the classroom

Do they apply skills on the job?

We have hundreds of descriptions of how paraeducators are applying skills on the job in practicum portfolios

They also reflect on their personal growth as a result of training: · a sense of self efficacy, confidence and empowerment after training · Success with application of the learned skills in the classroom reinforces commitment to life long learning

Results: Focus Groups with Administrators

Administrators report:

Confidence that students are being served by qualified personnel Pay raises associated with CO-TOP training Paraeducators stay in their positions longer

"I would say that Paraeducators who get training in any area tend to stay longer than those who have a rough year and fly by the seat of their pants. Some of them get frustrated and leave" "It's not unusual for the paras to be hesitant to be engaged in (taking college classes), .. once they are engaged in that learning and see the benefit that it has just for them as a person involved with kids, then they start to develop their own momentum and their own energy to continue the training..."

Results: Focus groups with Trainers

Trainers report: · Paraeducators are highly motivated and hungry for knowledge · Training gives confidence to paraeducators to do their jobs better

"The paraeducators want to devour everything... They're not there because they have to be, they're there because they want to learn.

"It's just exciting to see the paraeducators confidence build because then the students respect them more and they feel safer and they do better."

"...How great their thirst was to learn more about the profession and about kids. They are the most highly motivated adults I know."

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