Renay has been thinking about next week a lot. February 28th is a birthday of sorts for ParaEducate. It’s been five years since the book ParaEducate went live and was available for purchase. To date: it is still our number one seller of all our books that we have published. And that honestly speaks volumes to the need in education at large for paraeducators/paraprofessionals. Five years out was not something that Renay honestly directly thought about when looking at the business plan for ParaEducate, but here we are, five years and we still are as dedicated as we were that first day when we made the announcement on our page that our book was available for purchase.
When we look at the posts that celebrate this special event, we think a lot about how far we’ve come from those early days when we were in a corner scratching out ideas that summer and the triumph of publishing in seven months. The website, the blog, the conferences, the professionals, the parents we’ve all reached out to and learned more about since we started. And we would not be as successful without our support from Facebook (631 followers) and Twitter (639 followers). Without your support: ParaEducate would not have the success we’ve slowly gathered over the years. All of these incremental steps have enriched our value as professionals to each other and inclusive education.
The story of ParaEducate isn’t captured in the bits of data online nor in the pages of our books. It’s encapsulated in every moment of professional exchange between educators, it’s every moment working directly one on one, and it’s in every time we’ve seen success with students.
In reality, like we discussed with another paraeducator, like when an observation happens with a specialist (Behaviorist, Speech Therapist) it’s not about the paraeducator, it’s about the student. And time and time again, we’ve seen paraeducators put their students first. Demonstrating and modeling behaviors and academic expectations, providing direct supports for academic, social, or emotional growth, contributions to the academic material all students experience, and bringing qualities that improve the climate of the entire campus.
We at ParaEducate know our work is never done. There’s always one more student teacher to help reach, there is always one student with behaviors that needs that extra support, there is always one more data sheet that needs to be examined, and always one more IEP that needs to clarify information about a student. Rest assured, we will continue to be here supporting paraeducators through the ups and down of the job.
We’re skipping a trip to Cal-TASH next week in favor of a lengthy SXSWEdu visit for the following week in March. We’re sorry to miss our friends from Cal-TASH this year, but we’re also looking forward the opportunity to branch out and reach even more professionals.
Last week we announced that Renay will be signing books, the time has changed. Find Renay Wednesday 1:30 to 2:00 pm at the SXSWEdu book store. She will be signing copies of ParaEducate. Come up and meet her before she presents at 3pm in Salon E.
Do you have any questions about this week’s blog? Do you want to offer a guest blog? Find ParaEducate online here, here, here, here, and on our website. ParaEducate is a company interested in providing materials, information, and strategies for people working in special education inclusion settings for grades K-12. ParaEducate, the blog, is published weekly during the academic school year on Thursdays, unless a holiday. ParaEducate shares their findings at conferences, through their books, and their academic adaptations.