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American Education Week provides a wonderful opportunity to celebrate public education and honor individuals who are making a difference in the lives of California’s students. CTA will join NEA to celebrate the 99th American Education Week from Nov. 16-20, 2020! As soon as we have more information for 2020, it will be added here.


  • Each year, American Education Week is observed during the first full week before Thanksgiving.
  • American Education Week began in 1921 with the NEA and the American Legion as cosponsors. The goal was to generate public awareness and support for education because of concerns over illiteracy. A year later, the U.S. Office of Education signed on, and the PTA followed in 1938.
  • In addition to NEA and the American Legion, cosponsors now include the U.S. Department of Education, National PTA, the American Association of School Administrators, the National School Boards Association, the American Federation of Teachers, the American School Counselor Association, the Council of Chief State School Officers, the National School Public Relations Association, the National Association of School Boards of Education, the National Association of Elementary School Principals and the National Association of Secondary School Principals.


Here’s what we did to celebrate in 2019:


Monday, November 18: Kickoff Day 

Nationwide Kickoff. Across the country, schools will celebrate excellence in education by hosting kickoff events and activities. 

Promote American Education Week Kickoff! Download and customize to kick off your school’s AEW celebrations:


Tuesday, November 19: Parents Day

Schools will invite parents into the classroom for a firsthand look at what the school day is like for their children.

Use these samples to invite parents to participate their very own AEW day, provide them with a form to confirm their participation, and to let your local media know about your AEW Parents Day celebration.

Wednesday, November 20: Education Support Professionals Day

Education Support Professionals keep schools running and students safe, healthy and ready to learn. Host an appreciation event for ESPs in your schools and communities and celebrate them online using #WeLoveOurESPs.

Learn more about AEW 2019 Education Support Professionals Day, and get materials to promote it, here.


Thursday, November 21: Educator For A Day

Community leaders will be invited to experience the day as educators and experience the challenges of teaching and the needs of students. Learn more about this program through the Educator for a Day Promotional Kit.

Promote Educator for a Day!


Friday, November 22: Substitute Educators Day

Substitute educators play a vital role in the maintenance and continuity of daily education.

Promote Substitute Educators Day! Download and customize for your ESP Day AEW Celebration:


Additional American Education Week Resources

  • Promotional Materials
    Resources you can use to promote your American Education Week (AEW) events and activities.
  • Activity Ideas
    Plan your AEW by browsing through these ideas to create a special celebration that honors the individuals who are making public schools great for every child.
  • Media Tips
    Learn how to build great relationships with your local media to drive AEW message reach as efficiently as possible.
  • Writing a Press Release
    Craft powerful, attention-getting AEW press releases.
  • Fact Sheets
    Provide your audiences with background information about AEWand its individual themes.