Monday, April 11, 2005

Paraprofessional Manifesto

1. We are not guests of the teachers or administrators of our school. We have a right to be here without tiptoeing around the classroom and campus.

2. We are not aides or TA's. We are paraprofessionals. It is incumbent of us to remember that and remind our co-workers of this fact.

3. Teachers are not our bosses. They are our co-workers.

4. We expect to be paid fairly and equitably for our services.

5. We will not be intimidated by teachers or administrators when attempting to fulfill our job duties. We will be given full access to information and procedures that may directly or indirectly affect us.

6. We will be present at all IEP meetings and notified of their occurrence. We will be given access to all pertinent IEP information which may directly or indirectly affect our assignment.

7. We will attempt to include the students parents in our work with the students. As Special Education is a choice by the parents, we should communicate with them and encourage their involvement. We will meet with the parents at their convenience.

8. Teachers will include us in their teaching plans. We will "co-teach" the students not "aide" them.

9. We are educated, worldly and competent professionals from all areas of society. Our decision to pursue a paraprofessional position is not the result of a lack of a teaching credential but the results of a specific skill in dealing one-to-one with Special Needs Students. We should be able to eat lunch with the faculty without discomfort by them.

10. We are an essential part of Los Angeles Unified School District and the educational experience. Without us teachers and students will suffer.

11. Organizing is our fundamental right and we will not be intimidated or retaliated against by anyone.

I can ask for what I want.
I am not a guest here.
I have the right in life to be here.


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