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Paraprofessionals play an essential role within school districts. Under the supervision of a licensed teacher, a paraprofessional supports teachers and students in many ways. For instance, a paraprofessional can tutor students or assist the teacher with managing the classroom and organizing instructional materials.

This page provides the licensure requirements to obtain a paraprofessional educator license or a short-term paraprofessional approval in Illinois.​​​​

 Endorsement Requirements


  • At least 19 years of age to serve students in grades PK-22.
  • Beginning January 1, 2023, individuals who are 18 years of age may qualify for the ELS-Paraprofessional to serve students PK-8 by meeting the requirements outlined below.
  • One of the following required:
    • Associate’s degree or higher
    • 60 semester hours of coursework
    • High School Diploma or GED and a score of 460 or higher on the ETS Parapro
    • High School Diploma or GED and the following scores on the ACT Workkeys​:
      • Applied Mathematics/Applied Math (with a score of 4)
      • Reading for information/Workplace Documents (with a score of 4)

Years Valid

5 fiscal years


  • Must work under the direct supervision of a licensed teacher
  • No limit on days worked


May be renewed with payment of registration fees


  • ​If you hold a Paraprofessional License and have a Bachelor’s Degree on file, you are qualified to be a substitute teacher.
  • Coursework must be at the 100-level or higher from a regionally accredited college or university.​​​​

 Short-Term Approval Requirements

Approval Type

Short-Term Approval for Paraprofessionals

​Valid: 3 fiscal years

Renewable: No

  • No limit on days worked

*Short-Term Paraprofessional Approvals are available for application until June 30, 2025, and may not be renewed.

  • High school diploma (or equivalent), or higher​
  • At least 19 years of age to serve students in grades PK-22.​
  • While working on the approval, educator must be fulfilling requirements for the full license.​​

* * * This page has been archived. The content on this page may no longer be in effect. * * *

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