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Texas ESPs Win Pay Bump, Fight for Living Wage Continues

Debbie Reyes is a strong voice for her fellow ESPs (photo: Kimberly Davis)

After a year of speaking up, attending school board meetings, circulating petitions and gathering hundreds of signatures, the paraeducators and other education support professional (ESP) members of the Pflugerville Educators Association (PfEA) have notched their first victory.

Across-the-board, 5 percent pay increases for Pflugerville ESPs—equivalent to roughly $1 an hour—were approved by school board members in late 2019. At the same time, ESPs also won base-pay minimums for paraeducators ($13 an hour) and school bus drivers ($20 an hour, plus childcare), plus an additional raise for special-education paraeducatorss. Bus drivers also were rehired by the district as public employees, after their jobs previously had been privatized.