In the intricate web of a school ecosystem, classified staff members play a crucial role in shaping the overall educational experience. Beyond their administrative duties, these individuals have a unique opportunity to establish positive relationships with students.

I was blessed to partner with an exceptional paraprofessional when I began teaching. Because I didn’t go to college to become a teacher, I completed an alternative education certification program to be certified as a science teacher. So, I would teach during the day and attend classes at night.

Because I had multilingual students in my science class, a multilingual intervention paraprofessional would come into my class several times a week to support my students. We would plan to ensure my lessons meet my students’ needs.

During a scheduled observation by my mentor, she complimented me on the intervention strategies I had incorporated into my lesson. While I appreciated her feedback, I explained that I learned the technique from our multilingual intervention paraprofessional. She not only helped our students be successful, but she also helped me become a better teacher.

Intervention paraprofessionals stand out as unsung heroes, working closely with struggling students to provide personalized support that transcends academics. By fostering connections that make students feel valued and supported, these professionals significantly enhance academic success and mitigate emotional problems or risky behaviors.

Today, we’ll delve into four aspects of the profound impact of building positive relationships within the educational context.

  1. The Role of Intervention Paraprofessionals

Intervention paraprofessionals are the frontlines of support for students facing academic challenges. Their role goes beyond conventional teaching, forming an empathetic bridge between educators and students in need.

These dedicated professionals work tirelessly to understand each student’s unique learning style, strengths, and weaknesses. They personalize their approach by tailoring interventions catering to the student’s needs.

Intervention paraprofessionals show that education is about transmitting knowledge and nurturing potential, whether helping struggling readers improve vocabulary and comprehension or providing extra attention to students grappling with math concepts.

  1. Creating a Foundation of Trust and Empathy

The cornerstone of any positive relationship is trust. Intervention paraprofessionals create a safe and welcoming environment where students can open up about their challenges without fear of judgment.

Through active listening and genuine empathy, these professionals validate students’ feelings and concerns, fostering a sense of belonging within the school community. Such an environment encourages students to engage in their learning journey actively, knowing that someone is rooting for their success.

  1. The Ripple Effect: Academic Success

Research consistently highlights the correlation between positive student-teacher relationships and academic success. When students feel connected to their educators and support staff, they are more likely to engage in learning.

Intervention paraprofessionals, with their personalized assistance, contribute to a significant improvement in students’ academic performance. As students grasp concepts that once seemed insurmountable, their confidence soars, and they become more willing to participate and take risks in the classroom.

  1. Mitigating Emotional Challenges and Risky Behaviors

Education goes beyond textbooks; it’s about nurturing emotional intelligence and resilience. Students who struggle academically often face emotional challenges that can lead to disengagement and risky behaviors.

Intervention paraprofessionals act as mentors and role models, helping students navigate these challenges and teaching valuable coping strategies. They help reduce emotional distress and foster a sense of emotional well-being by providing a support system.

In the grand tapestry of education, the role of classified staff members, particularly intervention paraprofessionals, cannot be underestimated. By building positive relationships with students, these professionals create an atmosphere of trust, support, and encouragement. They not only assist students academically but also guide them emotionally, setting them on a path toward success.

It’s Unknown who said, “It takes a big heart to shape little minds,” but it’s true.

As research confirms the power of strong relationships in fostering academic achievement and emotional well-being, schools must recognize and prioritize the essential work of classified staff members in shaping the next generation.


Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own and do not represent those of my employer or any local, state, or federal government

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Dr. Kim Moore

About the author

I'm Kim, your Educational Leadership Guide. I equip educational leaders with research-based and experientially learned educational leadership principles and best practices to promote student success.