Skip to Content

Training Opportunities for Paraeducators

NEA offers a wide variety of professional development opportunities for paraeducators. Below are a list of opportunities available through NEA and its partners.

Paraeducator Webinars

NEA ESP Quality will be offering a series of webinars on topics such as the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), effective teacher-paraeducator teams, behavior management, and more. Check below for the upcoming webinar schedule! If you have questions please email


ESSA & ESP: Organizing in the Current Environment
Date/Time - To be announced.

The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in December 2015, has given educators – teachers and education support professionals – a seat at the table to determine how the law is implemented and how to make its promise of greater opportunity real for students. For example, a state department of education must consult with a number of education stakeholders, including teachers, paraprofessionals and other staff when developing the State Plan to receive Title I funds. Furthermore, a school district must engage in “timely and meaningful consultation” with education stakeholders that include “paraprofessionals” and “other appropriate school personnel” in the development of a Local Plan to receive Title I funds.

This webinar recognizes that the leverage point for change has shifted from the state to the local school district. While State ESSA Plans have already been completed and submitted to the U.S. Department of Education, there is still opportunity for ESP advocates to affect change at the local level through Local ESSA Plans. Since Local Plans are living documents that are usually re-visited annually, it is not too late to demand a voice in how your district carries out the law.

This webinar will address timely opportunities and techniques to influence Local ESSA Plans.


To access previously recorded paraeducator webinars visit our Archived Webinar Series page.

To learn about upcoming webinars on current ESP hot topics visit our ESP Webinar page.

Building a Winning Teacher and Paraeducator Team

Paraeducators and Teachers: Building a Winning Team was created in 1996 in response to affiliate requests for assistance in the area of paraeducator and teacher team building. Paraeducator roles have changed and they have become a more active and integral part of the education team. With these changes comes the challenge of how to build a better and stronger instructional team. This training is currently being updated and will be available for pilot testing in Fall of 2018. If you have questions about this training, please email

*Only available to members of the NEA or a state or local affiliate of NEA.

NEA National ESP Conference

The NEA National ESP conference is the premier professional development opportunity for Education Support Professionals across the nation. The goal of this conference is to enhance the skills and knowledge of ESP members to positively impact student achievement, build community relations, organize members, advocate for educators, build stronger locals, and help our members do their jobs better.

Learn more...

The NEA ESP Quality Department offers additional professional development opportunities, including the NEA Leaders for Tomorrow Program and whole student training.

Learn more...

English Language Learners Training

These training topics are offered through NEA’s English Language Learners (ELL) Training Cadre.

          • Advocacy for English Language Learners
          • Assessment for ELLs
          • Standards-Based Instruction and Lesson Development for ELLs
          • Second Language Acquisition
          • Issues of Equity and Culture

Click here to download a full workshop description. For additional information or to request this training, please contact Luís-Gustavo Martínez at or 202-822-7396.

*Only available to members of the NEA or a state or local affiliate of NEA.

IDEA Resource Training

These training topics are offered through NEA’s IDEA Cadre.

Click here to download a full workshop description. For additional information or to request this training, please contact John Riley at

Note: A formal request must come through the NEA State Affiliate’s Office of Instructional Professional development (IPD) or the Office of the President / Executive Director.    

*Only available to members of the NEA or a state or local affiliate of NEA.

NRCP National Conference on the Training & Employment of Paraeducators

The National Resource Center for Paraeducators (NRCP) National Conference on the Training and Employment of Paraeducators is a unique opportunity for paraeducators, teachers, administrators and other educators to learn from nationally recognized experts on a variety of issues. Diverse workshops on how to improve the professional practice of paraeducators, foster effective paraeducator/teacher/administrator teams, and how federal and state legislative mandates impact paraeducator careers are offered. The event also offers numerous other learning and networking opportunities. NEA and the Illinois Education Association were happy to have co-sponsored the 2016 conference which was held in April in Oak Brook, IL.

For information on the 2017 conference visit or watch our site for updates.