Rochester paraprofessionals join Education Minnesota

For more information, contact:

Megan Boldt
651-292-4818 (work)
651-245-9163 (cell)

Chris Williams
651-292-4816 (work)
651-247-5539 (cell)

ST. PAUL, Minn. May 22, 2018 – Paraprofessionals in Rochester Public Schools voted overwhelmingly to form a local chapter of Education Minnesota, the statewide labor union of more than 86,000 educators.   

The Bureau of Mediation Services confirmed the election results Tuesday. The group of nearly 700 paraprofessionals will now elect their local leaders and continue to be a positive force for change for their students, profession and communities.  

"We are excited to fight for the well-being of our students alongside our teacher colleagues as part of Education Minnesota," said Janel Monson, a student support services paraprofessional at Sunset Terrace Elementary School in Rochester. "We will continue to advocate for safe, welcoming schools for all and respect for the profession; being part of a strong union only elevates our voice further at the state level to do that." 

Nineteen new bargaining units joined Education Minnesota since January 2016. They represent hundreds of paraprofessionals, education assistants, custodians, behavior specialists, media assistants and teachers.  

"Education Minnesota is thrilled to have Rochester paraprofessionals join our union family -- tens of thousands of their fellow educators -- in raising their collective voice for what's right for students, families, educators and public education," said Denise Specht, president of Education Minnesota.  

"More and more educators understand that coming together in union gives them the ability to make meaningful improvements to learning and working conditions in our schools and help build vibrant communities across our state," Specht said. "Our union has never been stronger."

About Education Minnesota
Education Minnesota is the voice for professional educators and students. Education Minnesota’s members include teachers and education support professionals in Minnesota’s public school districts, faculty members at Minnesota’s community and technical colleges and University of Minnesota campuses in Duluth and Crookston, retired educators and student teachers. Education Minnesota is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO.