You may have heard about the NJEA program Teacher for a Day, which invites members from the community such as the mayor, council members, board members, and business owners to spend a day at school in the shoes of a teacher.
Since nearly a quarter of all NJEA members are Educational Support Professionals (ESP), you may have wondered if there was a similar program that included ESP.
Several ESP positions require special certifications and trainings that make it nearly impossible for outsiders to fulfill these roles. In addition, there are concerns with student safety and insurance liability. But there is no reason why the public shouldn’t have the opportunity to experience the difficulties and rewards of your work day as an important member of the school team.
That’s where Pinch Hit for an ESP comes in.
Most ESP careers can be shadowed, which provides the perfect opportunity to showcase the work you do. For example, a community member can ride along as a bus aide, assist with some duties in the cafeteria, and work with a custodian or paraprofessional. Think about the various job categories in your local and ask those members how they can best incorporate community members into their careers for a day.
If your local association is interested in hosting Pinch Hit for an ESP, you can learn more on the ESP page, talk with your local president, and call your UniServ region field office.