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In Support of Education
Education Support Professionals (ESP), or classified employees, are an important component of our public schools. ESPs include school bus drivers, para educators, lunch room workers, school secretaries, registrars, custodians, and maintenance workers to name a few. In short, they are the nuts and bolts of a public school, working behind the scenes to make sure that our schools run smoothly, effectively, and safely. Though dedicated and hardworking, ESPs are among the lowest paid employees in our school systems, many working primarily to provide health benefits for their families.
When every penny counts in a family’s budget, it is no wonder that our ESPs need to know that becoming a member of the Idaho Education Association is an investment worth making.
ESP membership in the IEA offers:
- Protection – As with certificated members, ESP members are offered legal representation, liability insurance, compensation and benefits.
- Savings – ESP members can save by using their membership card to access discounts for purchases made locally or across the nation. You can recoup your membership dues by using your card on local purchases alone!
- Representation – ESP members are represented in the region and at the state level by the Education Support Professional Committee, as well as on the IEA Board of Directors. Your voice can be heard.
- Advocacy – The Idaho Education Association is the only entity actively working for the rights and responsibilities of Idaho’s ESPs. This year, the Idaho Education Association sponsored Senate Bill 1232 which amends current law to provide that school bus drivers, while they are acting within the scope of their duties, will not be civilly or criminally liable for reasonably acting to assist a bus passenger whom the driver believes to be in imminent danger of harm or injury. SB 1232 was signed by Governor Butch Otter and goes into effect on July 1, 2014.
Membership has many benefits. Take the time to sit down and visit with your ESP colleagues and share this information with them. It could make a world of difference.
–Bobbie Steffensen, ESP Committee
The Idaho Education Association has a state ESP Committee working on issues of concern to ESPs. The Co-Chairs are Debbie Flory, ESP Board At-Large member and Kim Bermensolo of Region 6. The IEA Board will consider members to fill vacancies in August 2014. If you are interested in applying for the committee, please contact IEA President, Penni Cyr or watch for the application this spring.