The San Juan Daily Star
Special Education assistants granted permanent job status
By The Star Staff
The island Education Department has granted permanent job status to 148 workers as assistants in special education, increasing to 2,566 the number of workers providing service to special needs students.
Education Secretary Eliezer Ramos Parés and the assistant secretary of Special Education, Jessica Díaz Vázquez, announced the designations at a ceremony on Monday.
It is the third consecutive year in which the department has granted permanent job status to program assistants, in accordance with the public policy of Gov. Pedro Pierlusi Urrutia. The government promotes permanent job status in a staggered manner to ensure students in the Special Education Program have the necessary resources while also ensuring stability in the educational system.
The area of special education has been a troubled one for the department for decades because of insufficient resources.
“We are pleased to continue granting tenures in positions vital to serve our special education students better. In doing so, we retain high-caliber professionals who understand the needs of our population while strengthening the services we offer our program students,” Ramos Parés said. “Our goal is to continue strengthening the system through the staggered appointment of support staff. Governor Pierluisi has been emphatic that we have to put all available resources to the direct benefit of our students. In the same way, he has been emphatic that providing our teachers and support staff with the necessary tools is essential to provide excellent service, and that is what we are aiming for.”
Díaz Vázquez said “granting these Special Education assistants permanence represents the commitment to reinforce the services of our program … according to the needs of the students.”
“We will continue pooling resources and tools to benefit program participants,” she added.
The newly appointed officials have been performing assistant functions through the Department of Education and under the provisional remedy mechanism for nearly eight uninterrupted years and meet the requirements for permanence. As part of the permanence granting ceremony, the professionals received a motivational talk entitled “I Am Part of the Change,” which focused on the importance of positive training and being entities of change.