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Education Support Professionals

Education Support Professionals

We’re NEA ESPs and Proud of It!

Calling All ESPs!

The National Education Association’s department of Education Support Professional Quality, in partnership with the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD),  is currently working on a new resource called ESPs: Meeting the Needs of the Whole Student.

Students learn only if they are healthy and safe and are more likely to learn if they are engaged, supported, and challenged. Our goal is to illustrate how our ESP members meet the physical, emotional, developmental, and academic needs of our students. 

If you have a compelling story about yourself or other ESP members who meet the needs of the whole student, please contact NEA ESPQ at  You, your school, and your students could be profiled in this new resource. We will be collecting stories over the next 2 months so respond immediately! 

Story topics of interest:

  • Helping students with chronic illnesses and mental health conditions
  • Asthma, Food Allergies, Diabetes, Epilepsy, HIV/Aids, Depression, Anxiety disorders, ADHD, Autism
  • Healthy Building Environments and Green Schools
  • Indoor environmental quality, green cleaning, recycling etc.
  • Promoting Health and wellness
  • Bullying or Cyberbullying
  • School Safety or School Climate and Culture
  • Social and Emotional learning
  • Character building
  • Suicide or Self harming students
  • Substance abuse
  • Peer to peer assistance and mediation
  • Children living in poverty or who are homeless
  • School nutrition and nutrition education
  • Expansion of school breakfast programs
  • Breakfast in the classroom; Grab ‘n’ go; Breakfast on the bus; Breakfast after the bell; Supper programs
  • Farm to School
  • Obesity
  • Working with LGBT youth
  • Working with migrant or immigrant children
  • Extracurricular Sports
  • Integrating physical activity in schools or the Let’s Move campaign
  • Meditation or Yoga for overstressed students
  • Civics
  • Community schools open for extended hours to families and community to provide services and activities
  • Parent education
  • Staff Wellness
  • Innovative learning and teaching — Nature walks, class weather stations, or taking care of class pets!
  • After School programs — chess or homework assistance!
  • Common Core
  • Vocational education 

We look forward to hearing from you!

ESPs Ensure Student Success

Education Support Professionals are the first and last school employees to see students in the school community. Through their various careers they touch the lives of students and ensure student success. Watch our featured video recorded at the 2014 NEA ESP Conference to hear how.

Bus Safety Orientation for Parents and Kindergarten Students The best way to ensure bus safety throughout a students school career is to make them feel safe and help them understand bus safety from day one. Read how the Lake Region Non-Teaching Association in Maine does just that.

Arkansas ESP Shares Lessons on Reaching for the Stars
Read what lessons Juain Young, an education support professional from Booker Arts Magnet Elementary School in Little Rock, Arkansas, has learned as an elementary educator. 

NEA Foundation ESP Grants
The NEA Foundation offers news about grant resources geared toward ESPs. Visit the Foundation’s website for an overview about grants, FAQs, and an instructional video. On each page, in the top right corner, you’ll find buttons that link directly to the online application.

Common Ground on Common Core
Read how paraeducators fit in as Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are implemented in classrooms across the country.

Aging School Kitchens Undermine Healthy Meal Preparation
A new report states only one in 10 school districts surveyed (12 percent) have kitchen equipment needed to serve nutritious and appealing meals to students. Read how schools are forced to improvise.

Protecting ESPs Who Are Threatened for Refusing Unsafe Work
Read what kind of hazardous work goes beyond the training of most custodians and why the New Jersery Education Association (NJEA) is pushing back for proper training and equipment for their ESP members. 

When Full-Time School Staff Qualify for Public Assistance it's Time to Fight for Professional Pay 
Had Marianne Murray taken an entry-level job at a fast food restaurant 20 years ago instead of with West Aurora School District 129 in Illinois as a Principal's office asssitant, she might be earning a living wage by now.



Tell Congress to Support the Annual National Classified School Employee of the Year Award Act.

ESPQ Director, Roxanne Dove, Blog Topics

2015 NEA ESP Conference

ESP Career Resource Center

2014 ESP Conference Highlights

Free USDA Health & Safety Publications


  • anc_dyn_linksNEA ESP Leaders for Tomorrow Overview and Guidelines
  • anc_dyn_linksNational Council for Education Support Professionals
  • anc_dyn_linksKey facts about NEA's ESP members
  • anc_dyn_linksESP Jobs
  • anc_dyn_linksESPs: Why Join NEA?
  • anc_dyn_linksThe ESP Quality Department
  • anc_dyn_linksESP Members of the NEA Board
  • anc_dyn_linksThe ESP E-mail List

Bully Free Resources for ESPs

Click here for more bullying resources.


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.

Dave Arnold: This school custodian and former Illinois Education Association ESP of the Year is a published poet. But most Association members know him best from the editorials -- Dave's View --