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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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BCBA as a paraprofessional position?
Old 02-05-2019, 07:45 PM
 
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I hope I'm not outing myself here. My district is looking to hire a BCBA for a center based program in my building. They posted it as paraprofessional position. The salary will be between $18-30 per hour. We all think that's nuts- why would someone go through all of the work to become a BCBA to work as a para?

We asked my sped director about it and she insists it's "typical for the area." She pointed out it's more than most paras make. Yes, but even the $30 per hour is going to work out to less than what all but brand new 1st year teachers make, and of course teachers will advance in salary over the years.

I don't really know any sped teachers in other districts so I have no way to verify it, but that seems insane to me and I can't imagine how they're going to fill this position. Has anyone else seen a BCBA be a paraprofessional position?


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Old 02-05-2019, 07:50 PM
 
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You have GOT to be kidding me! No way would any BCBA I know go for that job. They can make a lot more in other locations.

BCBAs in districts around here are paid a specialist salary. I think your district is nuts.
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Old 02-05-2019, 09:46 PM
 
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Yep, that's just crazy. You'll have to let us know if anyone actually accepts.
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Do they really mean certified ABA therapist?
Old 02-06-2019, 11:42 AM
 
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That is nuts! Passing the BCBA board certification is not easy and there is a reason that field is so under staffed. In my area BCBAs can have their pick of whatever jobs they want, they are in such high demand. Maybe they actually want a para who has a non BCBA certification as say, and ABA therapist or ABA assistant? I'm a sped teacher now, but while in school I worked as both a para and an ABA assistant. I got a certification that makes me a certified ABA assistant therapist but NOT a BCBA. My certification required that I worked under the supervision of an actual BCBA. I think your SPED director will be hard pressed to find and actual BCBA to fill that position.
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Old 02-06-2019, 04:32 PM
 
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It's definitely for a BCBA. The certification is required. There is one applicant so far. My sped director said that people who want to be on a school schedule (vs. working in some sort of private setting) would apply for it. If it's really true that other schools in the area pay like this too, I guess that's a possibility.


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Old 02-06-2019, 05:46 PM
 
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I had to look up what BCBA meant so we obviously don't have any in our district. Is it a 4-year degree program? We have some technical degrees that have a pay scale between a para and a teacher.
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Old 02-06-2019, 07:48 PM
 
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We've actually never had one up to this point either- I only know a tiny bit about the certification because we have a school psych who is getting certified (in the hopes of having more career options outside of the traditional school setting). It's a significant amount of work beyond a Master's degree- something like 1500 hours of field experience, tons of documentation, big exam, etc.

Since I've never worked with one, I have no idea what the actual job looks like. I'm not sure if perhaps they're thinking it's something that can be done during school hours only and that's why it's classified. Some districts around here will post "certified tutor" positions where the person has to have a teaching degree/license but is paid like $25 per hour because there is no work outside of the contract day.

Even if that's the case, it still doesn't make sense with the education required!
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Old 02-08-2019, 02:28 PM
 
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Quote:
I had to look up what BCBA meant so we obviously don't have any in our district. Is it a 4-year degree program? We have some technical degrees that have a pay scale between a para and a teacher.
We have a lot of BCBAs in this area and I work with quite a few in my (non-school-based) job. The program we have is a master's program. It's a 2-year, full time program.

Here's the official website: https://www.bacb.com
On the first page, you can see four levels of certification, with the BCBA requiring a graduate education.
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Bcba
Old 02-10-2019, 11:04 AM
 
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I have taken the course work to be a BCBA.

It was 16 hours post masters (I already had a masters) and 1500 hours of supervised clinical work before you can sit for the test, which has a relatively low first-time pass rate.

I used to work part-time trying to get the clinical hours, but it is almost impossible to find someone to supervise me.

Our district has had an almost perpetual opening for a BCBA. It is considered related services like speech, OT and PT. The pay is hourly and they do not get the state teachers pension.

Right now our district contracts out with an agency (the one I used to work for) to do FBAs or work with high-maintenance parent situations.
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Old 02-15-2019, 06:22 PM
 
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Quote:
You have GOT to be kidding me! No way would any BCBA I know go for that job. They can make a lot more in other locations.

BCBAs in districts around here are paid a specialist salary. I think your district is nuts.
I would echo everything, Dr. GraceK has said here. Come on. It is IMO the same if not more specialized than speech therapist/OT/PT.


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Old 02-22-2019, 08:39 PM
 
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Well, we are interviewing our one and only candidate early next week...we'll see how it goes!
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