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Education Support Professionals Day

Education Support Professionals (ESP) Day, Wednesday November 19, 2014, focuses on the importance of these school employees, who take care of students every day, making sure they have the tools they need to succeed in school.

Education Support Professionals (ESP) Day was first celebrated in 1987, after NEA's Representative Assembly called for the creation of a way to honor the contributions of school support staff.

In 2003, Karen Mahurin, then president of NEA's National Council of Education Support Professional (NCESP) members, led a successful campaign at the NEA Representative Assembly to change the ESP formal name from 'Education Support Personnel' to 'Education Support Professionals.' "The name change to 'professional' acknowledges the major contribution ESPs make to children and public education every day," said Mahurin, a secretary with 22 years of experience. "We impact the lives of children every day in our own special and professional ways."

The name reflects a growing pride in the valuable role ESPs play throughout America's public schools. Today's support professionals provide invaluable services that enable students to learn in positive, supportive environments. ESPs are equal and essential partners in the education process.

Find out more about ESPs, who comprise more than 40 percent of the total K-12 education workforce. Illinois custodian and NEA member Dave Arnold shares this poem about our ESP members.

Download ESP flyers from the AEW Online Toolkit and download the booklet A Guide to Celebrate National Education Support Professionals Day ( PDF, 389 KB, 17 pgs.) to use for your AEW celebrations.

 

Video

A Day Without Education Support Professionals (ESP)

A Day Without Education Support Professionals (ESP)
See for yourself how important every education support professional is to the daily lives of our students and our schools. This poignant video illustrates the value of our work on so many levels. It was produced by Indiana member Mary Neylon.

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