State Rep. Terra Costa Howard accepts IEA ‘Friend of Education Award

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LOMBARD – State Rep. Terra Costa Howard proudly accepted the Illinois Education Association’s Friend of Education Award at an end-of-school celebration Tuesday evening.

The celebration, held at Common Good Cocktail House in Glen Ellyn, honored Costa Howard’s successful effort to pass HB 12, which extends Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) coverage to teacher’s aides, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, school nurses, custodians, office workers, and other hourly employees of public schools, community colleges, and university systems.

“Our hardworking support professionals are the unsung heroes and heroines of our educational system,” Costa Howard said. “I am passionate about public education, and I am deeply pleased that the people who keep our schools running smoothly now have fair access to FMLA when they face illness and other life-changing events in their families.”

The IEA, which announced the award in April, commended Costa Howard for her passionate supporter of public education throughout her two terms as a state legislator. “When this pandemic started, it was our education support personnel (ESP) that were called upon to make sure that our children continued to learn and get the vital services so many of them need,” said IEA President Kathi Griffin. “Rep. Costa-Howard took the initiative to make sure that our most vulnerable, front-line workers are given the ability to care not only for themselves but for their loved ones as well. Rep. Costa Howard is a champion of the rights of our education employees. We are proud to honor her with our Friend of Education award.


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Caption information: 

Jill Scarcelli, IEA ESP chair, and Al Llorens, IEA Vice-President, presented the Friend of Education Award to State Rep. Terra Costa Howard (center)