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ESP Professional Growth

To ensure a great public education for every student, education support professionals (ESPs) want and deserve high-quality professional learning and supports at every stage of their careers.
ESP Professional Growth

Education support professionals (ESPs) play a key role in ensuring student success, and their impact is even stronger when there are clear expectations, when they are valued, and when they have opportunities for professional growth throughout their careers.

AEA ESP members have access to all of NEA's ESP resources.

NEA’s ESP Quality (ESPQ) department develops, implements and promotes policies and professional supports that enhance the effectiveness of ESPs in meeting the needs of every student. These association-convened and educator-led programs support ESPs throughout their careers to build a culture of professional excellence and student success in public education.


The NEA ESP Quality Department offers a wide variety of webinars to support the professional growth of ESPs.

Professional Learning Programs

ESP Professional Growth Continuum (PGC)
Grounded in eight universal standards of professionalism, the PGC provides ESPs with clear pathways for continuous professional learning and growth. Learn more>>

Check out ESP Professional Growth Continuum Micro-Credentials

NEA ESP National Conference
This annual conference provides opportunities for ESPs to develop the knowledge and skills to build strong internal and external relationships, organize members, and enhance their ability to support student and school success. Learn more>>

ESP Peer Mentorship
ESPs: Supporting Our Own Through Mentoring is a training that guides local association teams in developing effective ESP mentoring programs in their school districts or universities. Learn more>>

Paraeducator-Teacher Teams 
Building Winning Teams: Effective Paraeducator-Teacher Teams is a training package focused on developing strong paraeducator-teacher partnerships critical for student learning and success. Learn more >>

ESP Leadership Institute (ESPLI)
ESPLI is a program that trains both current and future leaders in leadership attitudes, skills, and knowledge that will enhance their ability to be visible, vocal advocates at the local, state, and national levels of the NEA. Learn more >>

ESPQ provides supports for affiliates with ESP members facing the threat of their jobs becoming outsourced, also known as privatization. Learn more >>

NEA Micro-credentials
A micro-credential is a short, competency-based recognition for educators, including ESPs. Learn more>>


To supplement NEA and AEA programs, there are a variety of resources to support ESPs on their professional learning journey. View NEA's publications page to access digital copies or request hard copies of these resources.


Keeping the Promise of Quality Public Education

With more than 20,000 members, the Arizona Education Association (AEA) is the labor union for public school employees in Arizona. AEA members are teachers, community college professors, counselors, speech pathologists, bus drivers, secretaries, retired educators and student teachers and they belong to more than 150 local affiliates across Arizona.