Welcome to OPEPP​
Ohio Partnership for Excellence in Paraprofessional Preparation

OPEPP Partner District FAQs

Partner Services: 

Customized technical assistance and consultation to support district and school teams. 

OPEPP Expert Consultants:

  • Orient partner teams to the OPEPP model 
  • Facilitate District Action Planning process alongside the team and provide ongoing implementation support
  • Share data and research inquiries, findings, and reports
  • Support partnering teams as they create sustainable products, policies, procedures, and practices that systemically change the school landscape

Frequently Asked Questions       

An OPEPP partner district collaborates with OPEPP, an initiative of the University of Cincinnati Systems Development & Improvement Center and funded by the Ohio Department of Education, to engage in continuous learning activities that improve the effectiveness of educators–especially paraprofessionals–in meeting the educational needs of all students. The OPEPP work focuses on systemic improvement efforts grounded in evidence-based practices that optimize benefits for all learners.

What are the commitments of an OPEPP partner district?

An OPEPP partner district agrees to do the following:

  • Create a district-level team of 5-7 members including a lead contact who will guide the OPEPP work. Members might include a director of special education, director of curriculum or professional development, principal, general education teacher(s), intervention specialist(s), and paraprofessional(s);
  • Send the Site Coordinator to a PreAcademy in person or via zoom to connect to other partners across the state in the start of the school year. 
  • As a team, participate in a one-day Fall Academy and a one-day Spring Academy online via zoom.
  • Collaborate with a designated OPEPP consultant to complete a District Action Planning Process and use that process to guide the work to support the work;
  • As a team, collaborate with the OPEPP consultant through face-to-face and virtual meetings, on a schedule mutually agreed upon by the district and consultant. The purpose of the meetings is to discuss and strengthen the district’s use of paraprofessionals and to take actions that develop paraprofessionals’ knowledge and skills;

How can a district benefit from participating in OPEPP?

Districts that have partnered with OPEPP have reported the following benefits from their participation in OPEPP:

  • Creation of a district culture in which paraprofessionals are included, respected, and supported in ways that promote continuous growth;
  • Clarification of paraprofessionals’ roles and responsibilities;
  • Provision of targeted professional development for paraprofessionals;
  • Improved communication between the district and their paraprofessionals; and
  • Promotion of collaboration among paraprofessionals and their educational team to improve student outcomes.

Where can a district get more information about becoming an OPEPP partner district?

Districts that are interested in an OPEPP partnership with the University of Cincinnati Systems Development & Improvement Center should contact Renee Mattson mattsorr@ucmail.uc.edu

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