Paraeducator Secures Classroom Grant for Student Supplies

Fraser special education paraeducator Melanie Motto figured she didn’t have much of a shot at winning a $2,500 classroom grant from a competitive award program, but her students’ needs outweighed her doubts. Motto completed and sent off an application, describing the resource room where she works with teacher Samantha Bartkowicz to support 20 K-6 students […]

Ann Arbor ESP Member Walks his Talk in College and Second Career

MEA member Gary Cooper could have relaxed after retiring from a 30-year career as an autoworker at Ford Motor Co. Instead his upbringing eventually led the 64-year-old former UAW shop steward to a full-time role as a community assistant at Pioneer High School in Ann Arbor. The support staff position requires him to wear “quite […]

School bus safety bills pass House

On Tuesday, the State House overwhelmingly passed bipartisan, MEA-supported legislation designed to improve safety on Michigan school busses. Two of the bills, HBs 4201 & 4203, would prohibit unauthorized individuals from entering a school bus without the driver’s permission and allow for notices on busses about the prohibition. HBs 4202 & 4204 aim to prevent […]

Conference Lifts ESP Voices, Roles, Strength

If knowledge is power, then MEA member Timmery Foster figures she is helping to make a stronger union by attending this year’s ESP Statewide Conference. Not only did the Howell paraeducator spend time attending sessions at the conference for Education Support Professionals – held virtually this year because of the pandemic – but she also […]

Nominations sought for ESP Caucus Board

* A mistake in the print magazine wrongly indicates the number of At-Large Director positions which are open for nominations on the ESP Caucus Board. We regret the error. Nominations are being accepted for several positions on the MEA ESP Caucus Executive Board. Open positions are as follows: PRESIDENT: 1 Position – Sept. 1, 2021 […]

Jill Wheeler: On Books, Kids, and ESP

Throughout the pandemic, MEA member Jill Wheeler has gone above and beyond to get books to kids, hand-delivering titles to classrooms and sanitizing the returns since students could no longer check them in and out in-person due to safety protocols. Much has changed in her role this year as a library aide in Sandusky Community Schools, […]

Loving Head Cook, ‘Miss Dawn,’ Wins ESP of the Year: ‘This is home to me’

By Brenda Ortega MEA Voice Editor At Parma Elementary School in Jackson County’s Western School District, students coming through Miss Dawn’s cafeteria line enjoy a generous serving of love along with their chicken nuggets, buttered corn and apple slices. “The kids absolutely love her because they know she cares,” said Principal Sue Haney. “She jokes with […]