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ESP Resources & Tools


NEA Foundation Grants

The NEA Foundation's Innovation Grants provide an opportunity for teachers, education support professionals, and higher education faculty to develop and implement innovations that significantly improve student learning. Eligible applicants may submit a proposal at any time.

Nutrition Grants

Having a healthy and nutritious school meal is the right of every student. ESPs are on the frontline in helping to address this issue that is threatening the life expectancy of our nation's youth. Various grants are available to aid you in this journey of change. Click the link below for more information.  

Resource: Nutrition Grants  (3 pgs) 

Professional Development

NEA ESP Conference

The ESP Conference is designed to provide professional development opportunities for participants to help them gain the skills they need to: build stronger locals, build strong internal and external relationships, organize members, and enhance NEA ESP members' ability to positively influence student achievement.

Click here to review the NEA Online Degree Criteria Executive Summary.

Click here to visit our NEA ESP Conference Highlights page. 

Medical Assistant Resources

Online Medical Assistant Programs provides users with quick and easy filters to help identify medical assistant training programs in more than 2,000 schools. They also offer information on certifications, scholarships and career guides.  

Click here to begin using the Medical Assistant Program Directory.

Click here to access information on certifications.

Click here to access information on scholarships or here to begin browsing the career guide.

Web Resources

NEW! One of the NEA ESP Quality Departmental goals is to provide NEA's ESP members with resources that assist them in elevating their careers. In support of these efforts and our members, we have compiled a list of external professional development resources specific to all of our ESP categories.  Take time to review these resources and begin enhancing your ESP career journey today!

We Can't Imagine A Day Without ESPs
VIDEO: See for yourself how important every education support professional is to the daily lives of our students and our schools. This poignant video "A Day without ESP" illustrates the value of our work on so many levels. It was produced by Indiana member Mary Neylon. Also, check out a list of things that wouldn't get done in our public schools without our ESP members.

The ESP List is an E-mail discussion list (a "listserv") open to all NEA members and staff. List members use the list to talk about issues that concern education support professionals within the NEA, such as contracting out, bargaining problems, training needs, and questions about how improve and strengthen the Association.

NEA's Legislative Action Center (LAC) provides you with the latest information on pending legislation and NEA priorities, and the tools to connect with your elected representatives. Use the LAC to send E-mail messages to your Congressional delegation and your State legislators. Here's your chance to speak out for children and public education. 

NEA ESP Publications

The NEA ESPQ Department offers a variety of publications designed to support and enhance ESP careers. Below are a few of our highlighted ESP publications. For more information regarding the publications below, or from our complete publication list, e-mail or call 202-822-7131.

Common Core State Standards and ESPs  (PDF, 2 pgs) All ESPs can be included and assist in the implementation of Common Core State Standards (CCSS). This new CCSS and ESP overview can show you how.  

Let’s Learn About ESPs Coloring Book (PDF, 20 pgs) ESPs keep students safe, healthy, and engaged so they are ready to learn.  This coloring book introduces young children to each of the ESP job families and educates them on how ESPs work in their schools to ensure their success.  The coloring book is packed with pages to color, games to play, and areas in which to draw. 

ESP School Superheroes: Keeping Students and Schools Safe Learning Poster (PDF, 2 pgs) In recognition of the vital link between student success and school safety, we have created this two-sided learning poster. The front of this brightly-colored poster shows 3 ESP superheroes protecting their students. The back is divided into 9 panels packed with text from HIN's School Crisis Guide, Guide for Developing High-Quality Schools; and emergency operations plans released by the U.S. departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Justice, and Federal Bureau of Investigation and Federal Emergency Management Agency.

ESPs: Ensuring Student and School Success Learning Poster (PDF, 2 pgs) Education Support Professionals meet the needs of the whole student —physical, mental, emotional, and social. The front of this brightly-colored poster shows each of the 9 ESP job families. The back is divided into 9 panels with each panel devoted to various facts about each ESP job category. 

Celebrate ESP Day Learning Poster (PDF, 2 pgs) National ESP Day honors the contributions ESPs make to public education. This year, National ESP Day is on November 20.  It is celebrated on the Wednesday of American Education Week.  The front of this brightly-color poster shows each of the 9 ESP job families and the back is divided into 9 panels with excerpts from the Guide to Celebrate National Education Support Professionals Day.

ESP: School Superheroes Hand Out Card  (PDF, 2 pgs) ESPs are the unsung heroes that ensure and promote safety in our schools every day. The front of this brightly-colored card shows 3 ESP superheroes protecting their students. The back has additional information on how ESPs contribute to school safety. The card has additional space for labeling and postage.

ESPs: Ensuring Student and School Success Hand Out Card  (PDF, 2 pgs) ESPs ensure the basic right of every student to attend a great public school. The front of this brightly-colored card shows ESPs working together. The back has additional information on how ESPs contribute to great public schools for every student. The card has additional space for labeling and postage.

2012-2013 NEA ESP Member Benefits Flyer  (PDF, 2 pgs) provides an at-a-glance look at the many discounts, programs and other benefits available to NEA ESP members through NEA Member Benefits.

Bus Drivers and Bullying Prevention  (PDF, 583KB, 4 pgs) first in a series of briefs based on findings from NEA's 2010 Nationwide Study of Bullying: Teachers and ESP Perspectives membership survey. This brief presents data from transportation professionals who participated in the survey and provides practical tips about what can be done to prevent or intervene in bullying situations occuring on the school bus.

The ESProfessionals: An Action Guide to Help You in Your Professional Development  (PDF, 2.1 Mb, 95 pgs) provides professional development ideas, best practices and resources to help ESP do what you already do well, even better.

Exclusive for Education Support Professionals: NEA Member Benefits  (PDF, 235k, 2 pgs) showcases benefits available to NEA members.

A Guide to Celebrate National Education Support Professionals Day.   (PDF, 314KB, 22 pgs) contains ideas for celebrating, tips on media outreach, sample proclamations, letters to the editor, news releases, PSA's and more.

Legal Actions Against Educational Support Personnel (ESP) . . .Who Pays? This brochure provides information on the Educators Employment Liability (EEL) Program which covers Association members in the event of liability arising from educational employment activities or duties.

The Paraeducator Handbook provides an overview of information about key issues related to supporting paraeducators, including: building an awareness and appreciation of paraeducator roles and responsibilities; representing paraeducators in the work place; being aware of laws and regulations affecting Paraeducators; ensuring appropriate training and supervision; and .providing ongoing professional development.

Paraeducators and IDEA 2004 - Knowledge, Skills and Advocacy provides paraeducators and Association leaders and staff with information about IDEA 2004 that can be used to build knowledge and skills for advocacy.

Repetitive Stress Injuries Handbook. This 38-page publication reviews the causes of repetitive stress injuries (RSIs) for bus drivers, clerical workers, custodians, food services workers, and other ESPs. It also explains what can be done to prevent these common and serious on-the-job injuries. Available in both HTML and PDF formats.

Results-Oriented Job Descriptions describes a new approach to ESP job descriptions.

Results-Oriented Job Descriptions: How Paraeducators Help Students Achieve outlines the process by which new ROJDs can be written to help paras achieve recognition of the vital roles they pay, respect for their professionalism, job security, and equitable pay.

Supporting Our Own: A Manual for ESP Mentoring Programs    (PDF, 1.9 Mb, 48 pgs). This manual is designed to assist local Associations and school districts to plan and implement mentoring programs specifically for and by ESP.

Understanding How ESEA Affects Paraprofessionals. This series of brochures provides information about the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, also known as The No Child Left Behind Act, as well as tips to educational staff and supporters on proactive ways of responding.  Brochures are available specifically for paraprofessionals, administrators, teachers, and local leaders, in HTML and PDF format.

We're NEA ESPs and Proud of It! This set of eleven colorful brochures provides a comprehensive picture of NEA ESP members and of all ESP in the public education workforce. The first brochure, Education Support Professionals: One Education Workforce Serving the Whole Student, provides an overview of the series, and links to the other publications.