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About Education Support Professional of the Year

Every school community in Oregon is comprised of dedicated professionals who spend their day in support of students and educators. The Oregon Department of Education, in partnership with the Oregon Lottery, is proud to facilitate the Oregon Education Support Professional of the Year award. This award honors the contributions of individuals across the state who provide exemplary support of Oregon’s most valuable resource: our students.

What is an Education Support Professional?

Education Support Professionals (ESP) work together with teachers and administrators in Oregon public schools to perform a variety of jobs promoting quality education, fostering positive learning environments, offering nutritious meals, providing reliable transportation, and maintaining safe and clean schools for all students.

The primary ESP job families include:

  • Clerical Services (Secretarial, financial or administrative support)
  • Custodial and Maintenance Services (Building and grounds maintenance and repair)
  • Food Services (Planning, preparation and delivery)
  • Health and Student Services (Nursing, health and therapy support)
  • Paraeducators and Education Assistants, including Early Childhood Education (working under the direction of a licensed or certified teacher)
  • Security Services (School guards and resource personnel)
  • Skilled Trades (Electricians, carpenters, painters, and printing services)
  • Technical Services (Computer, audio-visual, and language technical support)
  • Transportation Services (Bus driving and delivery services)


Professionals nominated for Education Support Professional of the Year must be currently employed by an Oregon public prekindergarten program or K-12 school or school district within the definition of an ESP in Oregon.

Nominees should embody the following core values:

  • Accountability: The ESP owns and takes responsibility for student outcomes and success within their scope of influence.
  • Equity: The ESP creates and fosters an environment where every student has access and opportunity to thrive.
  • Excellence: The ESP collaboratively manages the resources they are entrusted with to achieve the best possible outcomes for every student.
  • Integrity: The ESP is honest and transparent regardless of the situation they are facing.


Thanks to the Oregon Department of Education’s partnership with the Oregon Lottery, the Oregon Education Support Professional will receive a gift award of $5,000. They will also receive a plaque and banner to commemorate this significant achievement.



Nominations for the 2024 Oregon Education Support Professional of the Year are open now through February 2024. The winner will be announced via a surprise event in the spring of 2024.

Learn more about the 2023 Oregon Education Support Professional of the Year, Zandra Jansma.

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