KEYS Academy Paraprofessional

General Statement of Responsibilities:The KEYS Academy Paraprofessionalassists in managing student behavior in the school setting and during off-site school activities and provides academic, emotional and behavioral support to students in the classroom to assist classroom teacher in maximizing instructional time and minimizing disruptions. The KEYS Academy Paraprofessional serves students using creativity, resourcefulness, preparedness, knowledge and skills and supports a classroom climate centered around the students that promotes dignity and respect. The KEYS Academy Paraprofessional performs all duties in a manner that supports a sense of well-being, availability for learning and safety, dignity and direction for all.

Position Duties

Professional Knowledge:

  • Demonstrates accurate knowledge of the learning and behavioral characteristics of the disabilities of the students with whom they work
  • Demonstrates awareness of sensory needs of students and is knowledgeable about ways to use sensory strategies proactively
  • Demonstrates understanding of functions of behavior and is knowledgeable of interventions matched to each
  • Supports classroom delivery of subject content 
  • Understands the importance of communication and its day-to-day impact for students
  • Supports student instruction in social skills development

Instructional Support:

  • At the direction of the classroom teacher, implements routines and procedures to promote a safe, organized learning environment conducive to learning for all students
  • Supports students’ knowledge of and understanding of boundaries within the classroom environment.
  • Provides reinforcement for students based upon teacher direction and students’ individual needs
  • Assists teacher as needed with planning, preparation, and distribution of classroom materials
  • Encourages and supports students in engaging in learning activities within the classroom
  • Implements lessons based on IEP and school objectives and the needs and abilities of students to whom assigned
  • At the direction of the classroom teacher assists in implementing accommodations and modifications defined in the students’ IEP(s)
  • Assists students in utilization of APEX, Odyssey, and LEXIA (KEYS Academy’s on-line learning programs) and assists teacher with other learning activities
  • Provides individualized and small-group instruction to reinforce skills that have been taught by the teacher
  • At the direction of the classroom teacher, supports students in utilization of visual supports including classroom and individual visual schedules to promote independence
  • At the direction of the classroom teacher, provides support to students during instruction which is based on the students’ needs in the areas of communication and social skills
  • Provides appropriate feedback to students related to their classwork 
  • Collaborates and communicates effectively with classroom teacher to promote inclusion and student success
  • Assists classroom teacher in developing and maintaining BIKS for all assigned students
  • Encourages students to utilize the BIK to communicate their sense of well-being and responds to students with appropriate support
  • Assists classroom teacher in providing supervision and support to students during lunch, recreational periods, and other activities as assigned 
  • Assists classroom teacher in providing supervision and support to students during community involvement activities (field trips, volunteer opportunities, etc.)
  • As assigned by classroom teacher or Director, coordinates student lunch program including distributing menus, coordinating delivery of meals as required, monitoring students during meals and clean-up of lunch areas / kitchen areas.
  • As applicable and assigned, provides supervision and support to students during Summer Program activities


  • Adheres to federal and state laws, school policies, and ethical guidelines
  • Maintains student confidentiality
  • Follows all guidelines for professional ethics including but not limited to confidentiality, appropriate communication and honesty
  • Effectively and accurately relays information; responds to phone calls, emails, texts and mail in a timely manner
  • Participates in training (inside and outside of KEYS Academy); identifies and makes progress on career goals; takes on increasing responsibility
  • Consistently takes measures to keep self, students and others safe
  • Maintains regular attendance
  • Is on time for appointments with students, collaborating agencies and KEYS staff; communicates necessary changes in a timely manner
  • Dresses and presents appropriately
  • Follows KEYS Academy policy on use of technology including use of personal cell phones
  • Knows and represents KEYS Academy guidelines, policies, procedures and philosophies
  • Acts as effective member of IEP team; utilizes circle of support


  • Accurately completes and submits all documentation including use of correct forms, submission of all required components, adherence to prescribed guidelines and inclusion of signatures.
  • Submits all required documentation in a timely manner, meeting all deadlines and accurately and appropriately describing services provided.
  • Communicates observed student progress to the classroom teacher and to the school educational team 
  • Accurately and timely completes incident and accident reports 
  • Completes Safety, Dignity, Direction Progress report as required.
  • Provides information and insight to classroom teacher regarding student progress in utilizing Power Actions within the classroom and school environment
  • As instructed by classroom teacher / Director, collects data on student performance / behavior

Support of Student Progress in Learning and Using KEYS Curriculum:

  • Actively teaches, supports, and reinforces the KEYS Curriculum during interactions with students, parents, co-workers, and members of the community.
  • Assists students in using their Life Rings to identify people who can support them across a variety of settings 
  • Supports students in forming positive connections with people on the Life Rings 
  • Encourages students to “Take a Good Look” and to recognize and utilize their personal strengths.
  • Encourages students to utilize their resources and to learn from past successful experiences.
  • Helps students to articulate and visualize their goals
  • Encourages students to engage in social interactions with others who can positively influence success in meeting their goals
  • Assists students in identifying obstacles they may encounter in reaching their goals
  • Helps students approach obstacles in a constructive manner (choosing change or choosing to trade)
  • Provides support to students in brainstorming ideas to overcome obstacles
  • Helps students distinguish between Constructive and Destructive Can Dos and make positive choices
  • Encourages students to check for Safety, Dignity, and Direction before acting 

Support of Student Progress in Learning and Using Social Thinking Curriculum:

  • Monitors Your Body is in the Group/Your Body is Out of the group behavior of students
  • Monitors Your Brain is in the Group/Your Brain is Out of the group behavior of students
  • Monitors and sets expectations for Being a “Thinking of You” kid versus a “Just Me” kid
  • Demonstrates and reminds students on a regular basis that all people have Good Thoughts/Weird Thoughts about others
  • Incorporates into classroom management system and daily language expected and unexpected behavior vocabulary
  • Engages the group to elicit age appropriate communication skills through direct instruction of Social Thinking Program from every student.
  • Gathers data to develop specific lessons designed to strengthen student weaknesses in the communication process through repeated relevant activities 
  • Identifies behaviors in students that illustrate their ability to create or modify the feelings of others about them in a specific area or environment 
  • Demonstrates understanding of approximated social group participation recognizing progress in incremental steps


 The KEYS Academy Paraprofessional must possess the following Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

Required Education & Experience Credential:

Holds, at a minimum, a High School Diploma or General Equivalency Diploma (GED). Successful completion of Paraprofessional examination within one year of hire. Completion of competency based universal precautions training. Completion of competency based de-escalation and physical restraint crisis intervention techniques training. Completion of competency based training in safe transportation of students. Completion of competency based medication administration training. Completion of competency based Confidentiality training. Completion of competency based Ethics training. Proof of maintaining CPR/First Aid certification. Completion of APEX, ODYSSEY, and LEXIA training (on-line learning programs).

Knowledge of:

  • Knowledge and skills in behavioral strategies for interventions with children and adolescents 
  • General knowledge and understanding of special education
  • Knowledge and skills in crisis intervention
  • Knowledge of positive behavioral supports 
  • Proficiency in computer use / technology

Skills and Abilities in:

  • Ability to relate to children and adolescents with emotional and developmental disabilities including ability to develop mutual trust and respect 
  • Ability to implement and monitor educational goals and progress
  • Ability to work well with students, parents, and school staff
  • Ability to communicate effectively with teaching, administrative, and support staff individuals
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality with student matters
  • Ability to handle difficult situations with ease and flexibility
  • Good verbal and written communication skills

Necessary Physical Abilities

The physical demands described herein are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable otherwise qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; sit; use hands and fingers, feel objects, tools or controls; operate a vehicle; reach with hands and arms; climb stairs; balance, stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl; talk or hear; and smell. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by the job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.

*Note: The statements herein are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by employees assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of employees so classified.