ESP Insider Update

Save the Date

ESP Council
All ESP members welcome!
Please come to our next ESP assembly! We would love to meet and support you and your membership in any way we can. See you there!
ESP assembly, Sat., Nov. 9 at 10 a.m. in Champaign.

Mark your calendar and attend an ESP assembly in your area to discuss issues of interest or concern:
 Feb. 8, 10 a.m. – Matteson IEA office
April 18, 10 a.m. – Sterling IEA office
June 13, 10 a.m. – Edwardsville IEA office
Stay connected with other ESPsIEA ESP Council websiteIEA ESP websiteESP Professional Caucus on FacebookESP Connections on Facebook
♦ Celebrate National ESP Day ♦ Nov. 20
American Education Week
ESP awards and grants
The ESP Council created the ESP STAR program to allow local leaders to recognize and publicize the good work of their ESP members across the state.

Use the online nomination form to nominate a special ESP member for a STAR Award!
The ESP of the Year award is meant to emphasize the contributions of education support professionals to their association, their schools and their communities. Nominate an ESP member by Jan. 16.
SCORE – Schools and Community Outreach by EducatorsOpen to ESPs in the first 10 years of their career.Grants up to $1,000 are available.For ideas, take a look at previously funded projects.
NEA Human and Civil Rights Awards program
Information and online nomination form.
​​​​​​​Nominations due Dec. 6.
Highlights from the IEA One Conference
This year’s conference theme, IEA Stronger United!, set the tone for workshops, ESP job category discussion forums and more than 23 professional development and enrichment sessions for ESP members.

View the One Conference photo album on Flickr.
Matthew Powell (pictured), 2019 NEA ESP of the Year, was the keynote speaker at the ESP dinner held on Friday evening.

Powell is a member of the Graves County Education Support Professionals and NEA Board of Directors. A graduate of Graves County High School, Powell has worked in the school district since August 2007, working at the elementary, middle and high school levels. He is a graduate of the KEA Fellows program and NEA Leaders for Tomorrow (class of 2016).

In 2012, while working for Graves County Schools, he earned a bachelor’s degree in educational studies from Western Governors University. Powell also served as a district softball coach and team bus driver from 2011 to 2014.“I am a strong advocate for meeting the needs of the whole student,” Powell told the Star. “This approach can only succeed when parents, teachers, administrators and support staff all work together.”
IEA-NEA ESP Emerging Leaders Academy
Class of 2019 graduates Linda Colon, Amy Evans, Nikhat Farheen, Karin Lennon, Leatreasea Lily-Madison, Lorena Lopez and Shazia Pathan were recognized and received certificates at the IEA One Conference during the ESP dinner on Oct. 4. ELA Coordinator Crystal Bush said, “Everyone worked really hard developing their leadership skills, but we had some fun times, too! I’m looking forward to watching each of you grow as leaders.” 

Applications for the 2019-20 IEA-NEA ESP Emerging Leaders Cohort will soon be available on the IEA website. For information on the IEA-NEA ESP Emerging Leaders Academy and how to apply, please go to:
After a long day, ESP emerging leaders had some fun at the NEA Leadership Summit.IEA-NEA ESP emerging leaders hard at work in Denver. ESP emerging leaders hosting a focus group at the IEA Palatine office on ESP school safety concerns.
Member benefits
*NEW* ESP-centered bargaining resources

ESP-centered bargaining resources now reside on the Members Only site of the IEA website. Included is the starter kit, consisting of a brochure explaining the member’s role in bargaining and the significance of bargaining rights, a poster and a ready-reference guide to additional materials stored on the website.
As an IEA member, there are special benefits available to you!

Log in to Members Only and access your discounts and deals today!
IEA Connect is here to help! 
Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Chat, email or call.
ESPs in the news
  • Upcoming NEA webinar for ESPs – Up Your Productivity Using Google: Are you looking for ways to make your life easier through the power of Google? This workshop will introduce three Google tools that support improved organization and productivity. Participants will learn about the new features and tips of Gmail to make their emails more manageable. Additionally, they will learn how to customize Google calendars and learn how to keep track of notes and ideas with Google Keep. Nov. 14, 6 p.m. CST. Information and registration link.
  • IEA-NEA ESP Emerging Leaders Academy: Applications are being accepted for 2020 ESP-ELA, a partnership between the Illinois Education Association (IEA) and the National Education Association (NEA) to provide a state based ESP Leadership Institute (formerly ESP Leaders for Tomorrow) for IEA ESP members. The ESP-ELA is designed to provide leadership training and support for IEA’s emerging ESP leaders. Application deadline is Friday, Dec. 6, 2019. For more information, a brochure and application go to the IEA ESP webpage.
  • Conference Scholarship Applications

Applications are being accepted for the following conferences:

o   2020 NEA ESP Conference – due Nov. 18

o   2020 NEA Higher Education Conference – due Dec. 6

o   2020 NEA National Leadership Summit – due Dec. 6

The applications also are available on Members Only under EVENTS/Funding.

Applications can either be mailed to the attention of Kathi Griffin, President of IEA, 100 East Edwards Street, Springfield, IL, 62704 or emailed to Courtney Gillespie.  Any questions regarding funding for the conferences can be directed to Courtney Gillespie.

  • Dec. 12-13: Mastering Kids Summit

Bloomington-Normal Marriott Hotel & Conference Center – Registration deadline is Dec. 2

Flier and registration links

  • IEA Representative Assembly (RA): March 5-7, Rosemont

Professional Development RFP:  If you know someone who would like to be considered to present a one-hour professional development session at the IEA Representative Assembly on Thursday, March 5, please forward this link to the application. These are due no later than Dec. 1.Presenters will be notified of their acceptance by Jan. 6. IEA RA Professional Development RFP Form or have them go to the IEA website under Events/IEA Representative Assembly.

Upcoming events and professional development
2020 NEA conference funding forms due Dec. 6 NEA Higher Education Conference funding form
NEA National Leadership Summit funding form
NEA ESP Conference funding form
2020 IEA Representative Assembly – March 5-7 Hyatt Regency O’Hare, Rosemont
Please review this IEA-RA one-pager for important information and deadlines
NEA ESP Conference – March 20-22, New Orleans Information

IEA Webinar – Nov. 12: Introduction to Non-Exclusionary Discipline for Early Childhood and Elementary Students: Delve deeper into non-exclusionary discipline specifically for early childhood and elementary students. Register today! Download a promotional flier.

IEA Webinar – Dec. 3: Educator Evaluation Update: Want to improve your local educator evaluation plan? Learn how to do just that with a new framework for teaching and alternative approaches to measuring student growth using classroom assessments. Register today! Download a promotional flier.

Professional Development

  • ***NEW*** Restorative Practices Online Course

We are excited to announce that we will begin our first Introduction to Restorative Practices online course Monday, Dec. 2. This convenient online course will allow IEA members to participate from across the entire state through interactive discussions and activities. This course is for members who have not yet participated in restorative practices training.

The course will last 4 weeks and will require approximately two hours of your time each week to participate. This means that upon completion of this course you will receive 8 clock hours. All of the course materials will be provided through the online platform we will be using for the course.

This is an asynchronous course which means you may participate in each week’s discussions and activities at a time that is convenient for you. The goal of this training is to provide you with the foundational knowledge and skills needed to incorporate restorative practices into your classroom and school. We will conclude the course with a live online component to further discuss and practice what we have learned.  

The course will be facilitated by Dr. Diana Zaleski, IEA Instructional Resource and Professional Development Director. Dr. Zaleski holds a graduate certificate in restorative practices from the International Institute of Restorative Practices.

Please register online and we will send you an invitation to register for this course. For more information, please contact

  • Nov. 14, Dec. 2 and Feb. 6: Co-Teaching Learning Series – IEA Carterville office. Informational flier with registration link.
  • Dec. 7: Prosocial Skills Training –IEA Edwardsville office: Interested in learning more about non-exclusionary student discipline? Register today to learn about prosocial skills training as a targeted intervention designed to promote prosocial behavior in adolescents using techniques to develop social skills, emotional control, and moral reasoning. This training is a great next step for those who have already attended restorative practices training. Register today! Download a promotional flier.
  • Jan. 13-14: Restorative Practices & Prosocial Skills – IEA Carterville office: Interested in learning more about non-exclusionary student discipline? Register today for one or both of our training opportunities. On day one we will learn about restorative practices as a straightforward problem-solving framework that can be used as an alternative to exclusionary discipline. On day two we will learn about prosocial skills training as an intervention designed to promote prosocial behavior in adolescents using techniques to develop social skills, emotional control, and moral reasoning. Register today! Download a promotional flier.
  • Jan. 25Self Care for Educators – IEA Bloomington office: Working in a classroom evokes moments of tension, rigidity and stress that accumulate and interfere with your physical, mental and emotional health. As an educator you are often helping others in your life: students, coworkers, family, etc. Experience how making yourself a priority through better use of your body benefits both you and your students. In this experiential workshop you will learn how to use your body more effectively throughout the day, improve your ease in and out of the classroom, reduce pain and maintain your physical acuity. Register today! Download a promotional flier.
  • Feb. 8: Assessment Literacy – IEA Effingham office: Understanding why we assess, what we asses, how we assess, and how we communicate the results of assessment is crucial to informing instructional decision making and improving student learning. This hands-on workshop provides a framework for maximizing your classroom assessments and engaging your students in meaningful assessment practices. Participants are encouraged to bring their classroom assessments. Register today! Download a promotional flier.