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Paraprofessional Pathways to Teaching

Certification K-12 Mild/Moderate Cross-Categorical Special Education

“Earn While You Learn.” The Paraprofessional Pathways to Teaching program offers teacher certification coursework for the adult learner who is currently working in a school setting and wishes to gain certification as a special education teacher, as well as complete a bachelor’s or earn a master’s degree. 

If you are employed as a paraprofessional, teacher assistant, or other school employee working with children, this program could be your pathway to a career as a special education teacher. 

Due to the unique structure of the Pathways program, you will be able to continue working while you complete your degree and certification.  Students with approximately 60 transferable credits may earn a Bachelor of Science in Special Education, along with certification.  For those with a bachelor’s degree, a Master of Arts in Teaching with a concentration in Special Education will be completed with certification.

Learn more about earning your certification and bachelor’s degree or certification and master’s degree and the special discounted tuition rate you may be eligible for with our educator’s tuition discount. 

Paraprofessional PathwaysSM Program Format

Paraprofessional PathwaysSM coursework is available in an online format.  

  • The online format offers two 16-week online courses in the fall and spring, along with two 10-week online courses in the summer. The two clinical/practicum experiences must be completed on-the-job.

The clinical experiences are a part of the degree and certification requirements. These are completed on-the-job, so students may continue to work throughout the entire program. All clinical experiences include a component of university supervision.

Students usually complete the program in nine semesters or three calendar years, but the actual length of time required is based on your transfer credits and the pace at which you complete requirements. It is possible to accelerate your program by taking additional courses each semester. We will work with you to chart an educational path consistent with your personal needs.

Educator’s Tuition Discount
Students enrolled in the Pathways Program may receive a 15 percent discount on graduate tuition and 25 percent on undergraduate tuition, if employed at least half-time. 

Financial Aid
Students seeking financial aid will work with the University’s financial aid office after being officially admitted to the program.  The first step is to complete the FAFSA form at www.fafsa.gov.  Fontbonne University’s school code is 002464.  You must be registered for a minimum of six credit hours per semester to receive financial aid.  For more information, contact financial aid at (314) 719-3576.

At this time, the Paraprofessional Pathways program is only available to residents of certain areas within Missouri and Illinois.

Find out More
Please contact Mrs. Alexandra Gwydir at (314) 719-4358, fax (314) 719-8002 or pathways@fontbonne.edu.

The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has designated Paraprofessional Pathways as an approved, Innovative Program.  All education programs at Fontbonne University are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), 2010 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20036; (202) 466-7496.  NCATE LOGO.