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Exploring paraprofessional and classroom factors affecting teacher supervision.

Irvin, Dwight W; Ingram, Paul; Huffman, Jonathan; Mason, Rose; Wills, Howard.
Res Dev Disabil; 73: 106-114, 2018 Feb.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | 2018 | ID: mdl-29287228
Resumo: BACKGROUND: Paraprofessionals serve a primary role in supporting students with disabilities in the classroom, which necessitates teachers' supervision as a means to improve their practice. Yet, little is known regarding what factors affect teacher supervision. AIMS: We sought to identify how paraprofessional competence and classroom type affected the levels of teacher direction. METHODS AND PROCEDURES: We administered an adapted version of the Paraprofessional Needs, Knowledge & Tasks Survey and the Survey for Teachers Supervising Paraprofessionals to teachers supervising paraprofessionals in elementary schools. Structural Equation Modeling was used to examine the link between paraprofessional competence and classroom factors affecting the level of teacher supervision. OUTCOMES AND RESULTS: Our results indicated that when teachers perceived paraprofessionals as being more skilled, they provided more supervision, and when more supervision was provided the less they thought paraprofessionals should be doing their assigned tasks. Additionally, paraprofessionals working in classrooms with more students with mild disabilities received less supervision than paraprofessionals working in classrooms with more students with moderate-to-severe disabilities. Those paraprofessionals in classrooms serving mostly children with mild disabilities were also perceived as having lower levels of skill competence than those serving in classrooms with students with more moderate-to-severe disabilities. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS: By understanding the factors that affect teacher supervision, policy and professional development opportunities can be refined/developed to better support both supervising teachers and paraprofessionals and, in turn, improve the outcomes of children with disabilities.