The Essential Role of Educational Support Professionals In The School District

New Jersey Education Association

Welcome to the Jersey Educator Podcast, a show created by NJEA members … for NJEA members. Whether you are a teacher, an education support professional, or a New Jersey Student Education Association member, this show will serve as a platform to help YOU bring out the best in your students . . . each and every day in your schools. The shows are hosted by Jeff Bradbury of (@TeacherCast) and Jim Boice, a field representative with NJEA (@boiceinthehood). For more information, please visit and email us at

About Our Guest

Heather Sorge lives in Holland Township, NJ with her husband Ed and has three wonderful children. She has been a paraprofessional at Holland Township School for over eight years where she works with children in Wilson Reading, phonics, and as an in-class support aide for K-8. In addition to being highly involved with her local and county associations, Heather has been advocating for ESPs by providing training for locals through NJEA on how ESPs can become more proactive and involved.  Heather was also featured in the November issue of the NJEA Review for her article, “7 Questions Every New ESP Should Ask.”  You can find this article here on

What is an Education Support Professional

An ESP is an Education Support Professional. We are your highly trained, dedicated support staff working alongside teachers and behind the scenes at school to make sure that every child has a safe, happy, and successful day. As NJEA ESPs, we represent your school’s custodians, secretaries, food service workers, bus drivers, paraprofessionals, security officers, transportation aides, skilled trade professionals, nurses, and mechanics (you may have others, too). Every school district’s needs are different. Some schools have many types of ESPs. Unfortunately, some school districts have very few genres of ESP’s left due to privatization. Here is a great NEA video that sums up our value!

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Tech Tips

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Show Hosts

Jeffrey Bradbury, author of Kidblog: An Introduction to Blogging With Your Students, is the creator of TeacherCast.netTeacherCast University, and Educational Podcasting Today, is an ASCD Emerging Leader, Google Certified Teacher, Google Education Trainer, PBS Learning Media Digital Innovator, speaker, writer, broadcaster, consultant and educational media specialist. He is currently the Coordinator for Technology Integration for the Westwood Regional School District in New Jersey. In 2012, Jeff was recognized as one of top 50 educators using social media at the first ever Bammy Awards and has been nominated three times in the category of Innovator of the Year. Jeff has Keynoted for the Pearson Authentic Learning Conference, EdTechNJ and most recently at Columbia University's Teacher College and Podcast Mid-Atlantic.


Jim Boice is a field representative with the New Jersey Education Association. Prior to joining NJEA is 2012, Jim was a high school English teacher for ten years in the Pennsauken Township School District of Camden County, NJ.

About the author, Jeffrey Bradbury

Jeff Bradbury, creator of TeacherCast, and father of the famous @EduTriplets Thanks for checking out TeacherCast today. Please take a moment to find me on all of my Social Media channels!