On November 2, 2023, PDE Bureau of Special Education (BSE) Director Carole L. Clancy, sent a PennLink to all LEAs titled Revised Entry Level Credential of Competency Checklist for 2023-2024 School Year. The message states that for the 2023-2024 school year, the BSE is introducing a revised Special Education Paraprofessional Entry Level Credential of Competency Checklist. This revised checklist aligns with the updated Council for Exceptional Children’s seven core competencies for knowledge and skills for pre-service preparation, ongoing professional development, and performance assessment of paraprofessionals.
Per 22 Pa. Code § 14.105, instructional paraprofessionals are required to meet one of the following qualifications:
(i) Have completed at least two years of postsecondary study;
(ii) Possess an associate degree or higher; or
(iii) Meet a rigorous standard of quality as demonstrated through a state or local assessment.
The Entry Level Credential of Competency Checklist serves as the state assessment and satisfies the third pathway under 22 Pa. Code § 14.105. If a paraprofessional in a local education agency chooses this path, their supervising administrator must document the paraprofessional’s attainment of the seven competencies outlined in the Special Education Paraprofessional Entry Level Credential of Competency Checklist and submit the form to the PA Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education. Upon review and approval of the submitted documents, the applicant will be issued an Entry Level Credential of Competency.
Additional options, beyond the Entry Level Credential, are currently being developed and will be available prior to the start of the 2024-2025 school year.
Please note, starting next school year (2024-2025), the Bureau of Special Education will only accept applications using the revised Entry Level Credential of Competency Checklist. The checklist must be completed electronically and emailed to [email protected].
For questions about the revised Entry Level Credential of Competency for Special Education Paraprofessionals, please email [email protected].