Special Education Paraprofessionals

Welcome to the Special Educaion Paraprofessionals banner

Paraprofessionals play essential roles in improving student achievement in schools. They are responsible for reinforcing a teacher's effort in the classroom and providing critical supports to students with disabilities. The role and assignments are not defined by setting or program but rather by students' needs as determined by the IEP.


Special Education Paraprofessional Requirements

Tier 1 (Federal Programs - Title 1 Paraprofessionals) 

Meet one of the following: 

• Two years of study at an institution of higher education (48 semester hours of college coursework), OR 
• An associates degree (or higher), OR 
• Passed the WorkKeys Test (Bronze +) OR ParaPro Assessment (455 +)


Tier 2 (Special Education) 

In addition to Tier 1, a special education paraprofessional must complete the following requirements: 

• OSDE Special Education Paraprofessional training through Pepper, career technology centers, or other state-approved training providers
• Cardiovascular Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)/First Aid training, maintaining current certification 
• Universal Precautions/Bloodborne Pathogens yearly training, AND 
• Six hours of professional development each year 


Districts may hire a special education paraprofessional provisionally if the paraprofessional meets the criteria for Tier I and Tier II  within 120 calendar days of employment. 


Paraprofessional Training in Pepper

Paraprofessionals can register for the Pepper Course through here! 

The eight courses include: 

• Legal Foundations of Special Edcuation 
• Responsibilities and Ethics 
• IEP Participation 
• Disability Awareness and Instructional Strategies 
• Commnication and Interaction Strategies 
• Behavior Strategies, Progress Monitoring and Data Collection 
• Classroom and Behavior Management for Paraprofessionals 
• Supporting Instruction in the Classroom 


Paraprofessional Credentials

Paraprofessional credentials have been added to the Oklahoma Educator Credentialing System (OECS) located in Single Sign-On. 

District Superintendent and District Human Resources roles in OECS will now be able to recommend paraprofessional candidates for Tier 1 and Tier 2 Paraprofessional credentials. Districts can start the recommendation process by clicking on "Manage Your Paraprofessional Recommendations." Once the educator is recommended, the educator will be able to apply online using their recommendation tile. 

• Paraprofessional Recommendation Process

• Contact Teacher Certification for additional questions regarding the paraprofessional recommendation process. 


Special Education Paraprofessional Instructor Training

LEAs may apply to provide the required paraprofessional training as an alternative. Instructors providing the required special education paraprofessional training must meet the following qualifications: 

• Make application to the OSDE-SES; 
• Hold a current Oklahoma Special Education Teacher Certificate; 
• Have a minimum of two (2) years of experience teaching in a special education classroom; 
• Receive a recommendation from a school district administrator; and 
• Complete the eight (8) paraprofessional Pepper training modules and include the transcript of courses with the application. 
• Submit the application form and all required documents. 

Special Education Paraprofessional Instructor Application


Additional Information


Fast Track





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Last updated on October 27, 2022