NEA ESP Conference 2019

If you get the chance…You have to attend an ESP Conference. Sometimes as ESPs we forget we are professionals, we are important, and we are NECESSARY for the success for EVERY students. When you come together with other ESPs you are reminded that what you do every day matters. You matter!!

If you think you are “just” a para professional, bus driver, lunch lady, or any of the many other essential ESP job categories. Let me remind you, You Matter!! You are a professional!!! It’s right in your job title, Education Support Professional!! You deserve respect for what you do everyday. Everyday you have the opportunity to be a light, make a difference, and change the world one students at a time. WE ARE ESP!!

Thank you!!

Education Support Professionals

Hello Las Vegas and NEA ESP CONFERENCE!

ESPs from around the country are coming together in Las Vegas to attend the NEA ESP Conference. This is a premier conference helping ESPs to develop greater skills in many areas. Just a few topics include sessions that enhance a wide variety of job category skills, ACES: Building Resilient Students, Organizing, and Racial Justice. #WeLoveOurESP

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Count Down to the NEA ESP Conference in Las Vegas!

NEA ESP Conference 2019

March 22-24, 2019

The NEA ESP conference is the premier professional development opportunity for Education Support Professionals across the nation. The goal of the conference is to grow and strengthen the professional excellence of ESP members working in Pre-K to Higher-Ed through Association-convened, educator-led, and student-centered learning experiences. With more than 60 interactive workshops to choose from over the course of four days, participants will enhance their knowledge and skills to build community relationships, organize members, advocate for educators, and sustain stronger local associations, helping members excel in their careers and positively impact student success. 

Who’s attending? What are you looking forward to most?


Three important notices from your association!

Seeking members to serve on IEA committeesProposed bylaw amendments to be considered at the IEA RAUpdate on the 3 percent repeal effort
Seeking members to serve on IEA committees
It’s that time again to begin the process of appointing committee and task force members for the next year (2019-20). Recommendations are due no later than May 15.

If you are interested in serving on a committee or task force, please review the procedures which will be followed in recommending committee appointments.
Proposed bylaw amendments
Three bylaw amendments have been proposed for consideration at the 2019 IEA Representative Assembly at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare, Rosemont on April 11-13, 2019.

These proposals have been timely submitted and have been presented to the IEA Executive Committee pursuant to the IEA Bylaws amendment deadlines. All proposed amendments must be posted on the Association website for at least thirty (30) consecutive days in advance of the RA. In addition, these proposals are emailed to each member who has an email address on record and a notice issued through association social media sites no later than thirty (30) days prior to the RA. These proposals will need approval by a two-thirds vote of RA delegates to be adopted. Additional amendments may be made at the RA at least one business meeting prior to the meeting at which the final vote is taken; however, proposals made in this fashion must be approved by at least three-fourths of the RA delegates in order to be adopted.2018-19 Proposed Bylaw Amendment 12018-19 Proposed Bylaw Amendment 22018-19 Proposed Bylaw Amendment 3The current bylaw language is printed in the left-hand column. The proposed amendments are printed in underlined type in the right-hand column.
Repeal the 3 percent update
More than 40,000 IEA members have signed the petition to repeal the 3 percent TRS/SURS salary limitation! If you haven’t already, sign the petition! Also, we are asking you to send an email to your lawmakers. All you have to do is follow this link, and the tool will walk you through the process. Click the Take Action button and enter your mailing address and your lawmakers’ names will pop up, along with a pre-written email that outlines the issue and why IEA members across the state are finding problems with the 3 percent law.Watch the videoView the toolkit

NEA ESP of the Year Award

Each year, one Education Support Professional receives the NEA ESP of the Year Award in recognition of their outstanding contribution to their schools, communities, and profession.

The ESP of the Year serves as an ambassador for Education Support Professionals around the country, promoting the value of ESP members at national and state conferences.

While it showcases one outstanding support professional each year, the Award recognizes and honors the contributions to great public schools all Education Support Professionals make year-round.

Tina Pizzitola is our 2019 Illinois ESP representative. ESPs throughout Illinois are very lucky to have you representing us. You represent the very best of our profession.

NEA will present its 28th annual NEA ESP of the Year Award at the 2019 NEA ESP National Conference on Saturday, March 23rd.  Good luck Tina Pizzitola and thank you for all you do for your students and for the betterment of all ESPs.

NEA 2019 ESP of the Year Nominies

Welcome to our newest ESP Locals!!

Welcome Carbondale Educational Support Professionals Association (Region 2)

Welcome CESPA
Pictured left to right: Secretary Amy Weber, President Tricia Lueker, Vice President Leatreasa Lilly-Madison (all three are building secretaries), Treasurer Donovan Burk and Regional Council Rep Phillip Wallen(both special education aides). Not pictured is instructional aide Joan Rogers, elected RCR alternate. 
The Carbondale Educational Support Professionals Association-IEA/NEA (CESPA) has its first set of local officers! At their maiden general membership meeting Nov.1, members ratified local bylaws and then elected CESPA‚Äôs Executive Committee. CESPA is the newest affiliate of Region 2, served out of the IEA Carterville Office. They will partner with the longstanding Carbondale Education Association which represents teachers and other certified employees of Carbondale Elementary District #95. The ESP local representing nearly 100 aides, paraprofessionals,  secretaries, cooks and maintenance staff organized last spring with overwheling support.Submitted by IEA Organizer Dave Vitoff
Welcome Johnsburg Support Staff Organization (Region 23)
Welcome JSSO
Members of JSSO met at Ringwood Elementary School in Ringwood on Dec. 11 to vote in their very first election. After a whirlwind three-month campaign, 48 paraprofessionals and teachers’ aides formed a new ESP local and they are already preparing to enter bargaining. Congratulations, JSSO!
(Pictured L to R): Jennifer Schmitt, association representative;Kathleen Zakrocky, regional council representative; Julie Young, treasurer; Laurie Stade, president;Dawn Becker, association representative; Kelly Berwick, vice president; Mary Kay Martino, secretary; and Suzy Martin, association representative.

IEA ESP Council Member Visits Region Meeting

Illinois Senator Mike Hastings

I had the privilege to attend Region 51’s monthly meeting, which was held at the IEA office in Minooka, Illinois, this past Thursday Feb. 28th. Illinois Senator Michael Hastings was the honored speaker for the evening. Many topics were discussed but the 3% cap was the hot topic of the evening and how it is effecting many districts during the already stressful time of bargaining.

How does 3% effect ESPs if it pertains to certified staff retirement compensation?

Past practices have shown that ESP IMRF contribution rules usually follow TRS contribution rules. So if we don’t speak out now our own IMRF contributions could soon be capped at the 3% limit also.

Illinois has many districts that are “wall to wall.” Wall to wall contracts cover ESPs and certified staff under one contract. This usually means that all members under the contract get the same raise. The 3% cap is effecting ESPs who are already suffering from low wages making it much more difficult to get the raises they need and deserve.

Contact your local legislator: http://www.capwiz.com/nea/il/home/

A special thank you to Region Chair Dennis Grosskopf, Vice-Chair Beth Duesing, and Region GPA Kristin McGuire

I wanted to also thank Dennis Grosskopf for allowing me speak and hand out IEA ESP Council information at the meeting. We are ESP! StrongerUnited!

Jill Scarcelli-IEA ESP Council Member