Paraprofessional Career Salary [All FAQs Answered] Complete List

Know All about Paraprofessional what is it? and How you can start your career as a paraprofessional.

Are you considering a career as a paraprofessional? If so, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we’re going to answer all of your frequently asked questions about this important and rewarding profession.

We’ll discuss the job responsibilities, the job outlook, and the salaries of paraprofessionals, as well as where and how to get started on your journey as one.

We’ll also provide you with information about additional certifications and qualifications, benefits and more.

By the time you’re done reading this post, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of the paraprofessional career and all the information you need to make an informed decision.

So let’s get started!

What is a Paraprofessional?

Paraprofessionals, also known as teacher assistants, teacher aides or paraeducators, are educational workers who are not licensed to teach but who perform teaching-related tasks in support of certified educational professionals.
They usually work alongside fully licensed lead teachers, but they also sometimes work more independently. They work in a variety of educational environments, though many of them can be found in elementary schools.

What exactly does a paraprofessional do?

Paraprofessionals provide instructional, behavioral, and other support to students in and outside of the classroom. Some paraprofessionals work one-on-one with students, while others support small groups or whole classes.

What is a SPED paraprofessional?

SPED or Special Education Paraprofessionals work with students who have challenging behaviors or have physical disabilities.

A paraprofessional may observe the student and take notes about their behavior during the day. These notes are written in the anecdotal record and may be used to provide more insight into the student’s behavior.

A paraprofessional may help move, feed or take a child to the bathroom. They may also assist the school nurse in providing students with medical support. For example, they may help students who have severe allergies or who are at risk for seizures.

What is the difference between a teacher and a paraprofessional?

A teacher and a paraprofessional are both important roles in the education field, but there are some key differences between them. Here are some points that highlight those differences:

Teacher Paraprofessional
Qualifications Typically has a bachelor’s or master’s degree in education or a related field May have a high school diploma or some college education
Responsibilities Plans and delivers lessons, assesses student progress, provides feedback to students and parents Provides support to teachers, may assist with classroom management, grading, and other administrative tasks
Classroom Instruction Has primary responsibility for providing classroom instruction May provide supplemental instruction or work with students in small groups or one-on-one
Curriculum Development Responsible for developing and implementing curriculum based on state and national standards Typically does not have this responsibility
Autonomy Has more autonomy in their role Works under the direction of a teacher
Salary Typically earns a higher salary due to higher education and greater responsibilities Earns a lower salary compared to teachers
Professional Development Required to engage in ongoing professional development to maintain teaching credentials May not have the same requirement or opportunities for professional growth

In summary, while both teachers and paraprofessionals play important roles in the education field, teachers have more extensive education, training, and responsibilities, while paraprofessionals provide support to teachers and assist with various administrative tasks.

What is the duties of a Paraprofessional?

  • Assists teacher with conducting lessons, managing the classroom and developing materials
  • Track student progress during the school year and create reports to let parents understand what their children are learning
  • Empower students through programs designed to enhance their academic and social achievements
  • Work with computers and specialized AV equipment to make these resources available to the teacher during lessons
  • Act as a nurturing and encouraging influence for students during lessons
  • Monitor the classroom and minimize distractions and disruptions
  • Work one-on-one with students to reinforce the lessons and answer their questions (i.e., instructional assistance)
  • Provide administrative support (e.g., attendance, grading, making copies)
  • Enforce classroom rules and positive behavior disciplines (i.e., classroom management)
  • Supervise kids during recess or on school trips
  • Assist students with special education needs and exceptionalities
  • Support students with personal care tasks (e.g., diapering, toileting, shoe-tying and handwashing)

Is paraprofessional a good career?

Yes it is! if you do not have higher education. You might have a long and fulfilling career as a teacher’s aide, or you might decide you’d like to be the one leading the class instead. While you might need further education and a teaching license (those requirements do vary by state and type of school), you do already boast plenty of experience in the classroom, and schools and employers will notice that.

If you have to pay your way through school, working as a paraprofessional while you pursue your professional degree can significantly ease the cost of your education. And you’ll be getting loads of on-the-job training.
Cons: Lack of Career Growth, High Stress, Routine Work.

Is paraprofessional job hard?

May be! it depends on your job requirements, Paraprofessionals are often tasked with work that needs to be completed quickly and perfectly. Paralegals often have very limited hours to prepare for a new case, and they need to complete copious amounts of research.

How much does a Paraprofessional make? | How Much Do Special Education Paraprofessionals Make?

According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the lowest earners for Special Education Paraprofessionals and related professions earned about $35,740 per year in 2021. Meanwhile, at the other end of the spectrum, the highest earners made about $104,790 annually.

Where do paraprofessionals make the most money?

Para educators make $31,394 per year on average, or $15.09 per hour, in the United States. Para educators on the lower end of that spectrum, the bottom 10% to be exact, make roughly $24,000 a year, while the top 10% makes $39,000.

Location impacts how much a para educator can expect to make. Para educators make the most in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Hawaii, Michigan, and California

Highest paying cities for Paraprofessionals near United States

Average Base Salary $17.51 per hour.
Brooklyn, NY. $21.41 per hour. 29 salaries reported.
Denver, CO. $20.67 per hour. 541 salaries reported.
Bronx, NY. $19.52 per hour. 45 salaries reported.
Aurora, IL. $19.45 per hour. 34 salaries reported.
Atlanta, GA. $18.92 per hour.

What is the highest salary for a paraprofessional?

it can be range from Upto $25,000 to $42,700 per year as per the chart.

Why do paraprofessionals get paid so little?

Mostly due to lack of higher degree or education. Research shows that about three-quarters of paraprofessionals don’t have a bachelor’s degree, which is one reason why school districts pay them so much less than teachers.

What makes you a good candidate for paraprofessional?

If you have decent understanding for the emotions and needs of young students, and enjoy being around children. Flexibility and patience will help you to handle the demands of the job.

Interviewing paraprofessionals, look for candidates who demonstrate strong communication and interpersonal skills, as well as the ability to work with special needs students. Take note of candidates who lack organizational and classroom management skills.

How to Become a Paraprofessional ?

Paraprofessionals, under the ESSA, must have a high school diploma, or its equivalent, and meet at least one of the following:

  • Finish 2 years of study at a college or technical school.
  • Have at least an associate’s degree.
  • Be able to prove that you know and can assist in instruction related to reading, writing, and math.

What skills are needed to be a paraprofessional?

  • Excellent written and verbal communication.
  • Ability to assist in classroom instruction and learning.
  • Great attention to detail.
  • Ability to work closely with children.
  • Excellent teamwork skills.
  • Ability to remain calm and patient at all times.
  • Knowledge of classroom subjects.

What is in the paraprofessional test?

The ParaPro Assessment (1755) is a general aptitude test required in many states for paraprofessional certification. It measures skills and knowledge in reading, mathematics, and writing. Often school districts use ParaPro scores to assess your foundation of knowledge and skills.

Reading covers: Reading Skills and Knowledge; and Application of Reading Skills and Knowledge to Classroom Instruction.

Mathematics covers: Number Sense and Basic Algebra; Geometry and Measurement; Data Analysis; and Application of Mathematics Skills and Knowledge to Classroom Instruction.

Writing covers: Writing Skills and Knowledge; and Application of Writing Skills and Knowledge to Classroom Instruction.

All content categories consist entirely of multiple-choice questions. Use of a calculator is not permitted.

How do you pass a paraprofessional test?

In order to pass the ParaPro Test, you will need to earn the passing score set by your state. The scoring range is 420-480, and each state sets its own passing score.  Find your state or district in the chart below, or view state and district requirements here.

Prepare and practice in the following skills
Reading, Writing, Mathematics– Number Sense and Basic Algebra; Geometry and Measurement; Data Analysis; and Application of Mathematics Skills and Knowledge to Classroom Instruction. and attempt the test exam. Give a ParaPro Assessment here.

Tips for taking the ParaPro Assessment

FAMILIARIZE yourself with the test before taking it with the Study Companion. Read the information and look at the types of questions and the test format.

READ the directions carefully.

CONSIDER all answer choices before marking one.

PACE your activities. Know the total number of test questions and time allowed for the entire test. Work rapidly without being careless. Don’t spend too much time on difficult questions.

GUESS rather than not respond at all. There’s no penalty or subtraction of points for answering a question incorrectly. You risk nothing by guessing, but if you don’t respond, you lose the chance to raise your score by making an educated guess.

MARK your answers clearly and give only one answer per question.

REVIEW your answers if you finish early.

How do I prepare for a ParaPro test?

To prepare for the Praxis® ParaPro Test, you will want to check out the website from ETS, the company that provides the exam. The site can help you understand the testing environment and what you will see on the computer screen when you take the test.

What score do you need to pass the ParaPro test?

In order to pass the ParaPro Test, you will need to earn the passing score set by your state. The scoring range is 420-480, and each state sets its own passing score.  Find your state or district in the chart below, or view state and district requirements here.

What is a ParaPro practice test?

The ParaPro Assessment measures the ability of paraeducators to use reading, writing, and math skills when assisting in the classroom. It was developed by ETS as part of their Praxis® testing program. check out the website for more details.

How is the para test scored?

Your score report shows your “raw points” (number of questions answered correctly) in each content category. It also shows the number of raw points available in each category and the range of points earned by the middle 50% of test takers.

What is a passing score for ParaPro?

The scoring range is 420-480, and each state sets its own passing score.  Find your state or district in the chart below, or view state and district requirements here.

Does ParaPro expire?

Currently, ParaPro Assessment results never expire. However, results may no longer be available digitally after 9.5 years.

Is the para test timed? or What is the Duration of para test?

The ParaPro Assessment is computer delivered and takes approximately 2 1/2 hours to complete.

What math is on ParaPro?

Number Sense and Basic Algebra; Geometry and Measurement; Data Analysis

Can you use a calculator on the ParaPro test?

Use of a calculator is not permitted. No, calculators or any device with a calculator can not be used during the assessment.

Can you use paper in ParaPro test?

Note-taking materials, such as paper or a whiteboard, are strictly prohibited. An online scratchpad tool is provided in the test for scratch work and note-taking. As an alternative, you may use one hand-held whiteboard, one whiteboard eraser and up to three dry erase markers of any color.

What happens if you fail the ParaPro test?

There is no penalty If you fail (do not pass) the paraprofessional test, than you must wait at least 28 days to retake the exam.

What happens if you fail ParaPro exam?

Than you must wait at least 28 days to retake the exam.

How much does the parapro test cost?

For Prometric Test Center Appointments: The test fee is $85 and the reschedule fee is $42.50. See the Prometric website for additional details.
For additional payment policies, see the Bulletin.

For Test Center Appointments: The test fee is $55. Some test centers may charge a premium to test at their location. Contact the test center directly for more information about fees and preferred payment methods.

How do I get my ParaPro scores?

If you test at a Prometric test center or at home, your unofficial scores will be emailed to you within one hour after taking the test. (Refer..)

Is the ParaPro test timed?

The ParaPro consists of 90 multiple choice questions over reading, writing, and math. It is a timed test and you are allotted 2-1/2 hours to take the test.

How many questions is the ParaPro?

The test consists of 90 selected-response questions, approximately two-thirds of which focus on basic skills and knowledge. The remaining one-third focus on applying skills in the classroom. All test questions are in English. (Refer..)

How do I prepare for a paraprofessional interview?

Preparing for a paraprofessional interview requires you to have a solid understanding of the job responsibilities and requirements. Here are some tips to help you prepare:

  1. Research the role: Before your interview, make sure you understand the job description and responsibilities of a paraprofessional. Look up the specific requirements of the position, such as any necessary certifications or educational qualifications.
  2. Practice answering common interview questions: You can find a list of common interview questions online, and it’s a good idea to practice your answers to these questions ahead of time. Be sure to tailor your answers to the paraprofessional role specifically.
  3. Think of specific examples: When answering interview questions, try to think of specific examples from your past experiences that demonstrate your skills and abilities. This will help you stand out as a candidate.
  4. Dress professionally: Even if the paraprofessional role does not require you to dress formally on a day-to-day basis, it’s important to dress professionally for the interview. This shows that you are serious about the role and respect the interview process.
  5. Be prepared to ask questions: It’s important to come prepared with questions to ask the interviewer about the role or the organization. This shows your interest and engagement in the job.
  6. Be on time: Make sure you arrive at the interview location on time, or even a few minutes early. This shows that you are reliable and punctual.

Overall, preparing for a paraprofessional interview involves researching the role, practicing your answers, and presenting yourself professionally.


I tried to add as much as possible FAQs related to the paraprofessional, feel free if you have any new question in mind. I will find out and add the correct details after research.

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