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Grant Wood Area Education Agency

The Bulletin Board logo

In this issue:

Mark your calendars!
Flood Wall update December 3
What to Do When It Snows
PE4Life Activity Fair planned on Dec. 7
Sesame Workshop Webinar: Talk, Listen, Connect - Dec. 7
Grant Wood AEA to Present Sarah Brown Wessling, National Teacher of the Year, Dec. 14-15
Grant Wood AEA Charitable Giving Opportunities
Going Google - Upcoming Training Sessions
Access Resources for Technology Training
Olweus honored with award
Copyright for Students – updated version available

Upcoming TQ Professional Development proposals submission dates for the 2010-2011 school year
Chair Massages
Buy, Sell or Trade
Wanted: Pink Yoplait lids
Grant Wood AEA Professional Development opportunities

Grant Wood AEA Webinars
Grant Wood AEA Online Resources Webinars
Vacancies, Dec. 3, 2010

Mark your calendars!

Dec. 8


Flexible Spending Plan Enrollment Forms for Year 2011 due into the Business Office

Dec. 14, 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Holiday Potluck - Sixth St.

Dec. 15, 5:30 p.m.


GWAEA Board Meeting

Dec. 20, 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Holiday Potluck - Coralville

Dec. 23, 3 p.m.


Agency closes at 3 p.m. for Winter Break

Dec. 24


Winter Break - Agency closed

Dec. 31


Winter Break Ends

Flood Wall update December 3

Workers have completed applying the waterproof barrier strip from the northwest around the north side of the building, the loading dock and along a portion of the northeast corner. It has been covered by cement board and will be painted in the spring.

Weather permitting, concrete will be poured near the bunker on Friday, Dec. 3, Allowing the concrete to cure over the weekend, we should be able to eliminate the detour around the back of the bunker early the week of Dec. 6.

The SW entrance is awaiting some brick work and stone before it is complete and ready to re-open. The cement has been poured and once the stone is in place, the track for the flood gates will be installed into the stone columns. Once the SW entry has been completed, work will begin on the SE entrance. 

The stone caps are being delivered and installed on top of the brick walls starting on the east side. (See photos below.) With good weather, the stone caps should take about 2-3 weeks to complete. Key words are “good weather." The tracks for the flood gates will be embedded into the stone at each sidewalk entrance and garage doors.


winterWhat to Do When It Snows

The agency doesn’t expect staff to travel during unsafe driving conditions. You have to be the judge of what is safe or not safe driving conditions in your area.  

Most of the agency staff have the flexibility to make adjustments to their calendars to respond to bad weather situations. If the school you serve has closed, consider making a calendar change and take a nonwork day. If the schools close early, you might take work home and complete your workday in the safety of your home.

In the event an Agency Center closes, a voice mail message will be sent to all staff via the SchoolReach system. We will also do an all agency voice mail system message. Employees scheduled to work during the time an agency center has been closed will be required to make up the work time missed while the Agency Center was closed. Options for making up the work time include: calendar change, emergency leave, personal leave or leave without pay.

An additional option for contracted staff includes comp time that has previously been earned and approved by the supervisor. Additional options for full-time classified staff include a) vacation, b) a longer work day for a period of time not to exceed one 7-day pay cycle or c) work the make-up time on a weekend day. In the event an employee performs assigned or approved work during a closing, the amount of time spent performing such services will be recognized and considered as work time.

As always, be smart, pack appropriate emergency supplies in your car, and plan ahead for bad weather.  If you have any questions about how you should respond to a weather delay or cancellation, talk to your supervisor before the weather turns bad to confirm how you should plan to act in such an emergency.  

PE4Life Activity Fair planned on Dec. 7



A PE4Life Activity Fair is planned on Tuesday Dec. 7, from 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m in the Life Group Room and throughout the River Ridge Building, 4050 River Ridge Dr. NE, Cedar Rapids.

Grant Wood Area Education Agency was one of 10 Iowa schools selected to receive physical education professional development and funding support through the Iowa Business Council/PE4life Adopt-A-School Challenge, a statewide program created to enhance the quality of physical education for elementary and secondary students in Iowa schools.

The Grant Wood AEA Off-Site Programs Life Skills, Adolescents with Autism Regional Education (AWARE), and Social-Emotional and Autism Disorders (S.E.A.D.) are currently in a partnership with St. Luke’s Hospital Child Specialty Clinics to provide unique educational offerings for students with significant needs.  All of these programs will be the focus of the Adopt-A-School Challenge grant.

The activity fair will feature Information about PE4Life as well as brain breaks for students and staff, Wii games, cup stacking, videos, and other activities.

For more information about the event, contact Ann Griffin, GWAEA Adapted PE Consultant, ext. 6858.

Sesame Workshop Webinar: Talk, Listen, Connect - Dec. 7

Join Sesame Workshop Tuesday, December 7, 2010, 1:00 p.m. EST, for an introduction to Sesame Workshop’s groundbreaking initiative for military families, Talk, Listen, Connect.

Developed in conjunction with military and mental health experts, Talk, Listen, Connect is a bilingual, multimedia outreach program designed to help military families with young children coping with challenging transitions in their lives. Through video, music, and print materials, beloved Sesame Street characters — including Elmo and Rosita — address issues such as deployment, a parent’s return home changed due to combat-related injury, and the death of a parent.

During the Webinar, trauma experts, military experts, and members of the Sesame Workshop team will share clips from the Talk, Listen, Connect initiative, discuss key lessons learned during the development process, and review how clinicians and caregivers can use Talk, Listen, Connect to help military families and children.

To join the Webinar:

Step 1: Create an account (free) at
Step 2: Check your e-mail and confirm your account (click on link).
Step 3: Login at  and enroll in the Military Family Learning Community Master Speaker Series course listing.
Step 4: On December 7, 2010 at 1pm EST, login to participate.

For NCTSN Learning Center technical assistance email

Grant Wood AEA to Present
Sarah Brown Wessling, Dec. 14-15


Grant Wood Area Education Agency will host Sarah Brown Wessling, 2010 National Teacher of the Year, on Dec. 14 for AEA staff from 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., from 5:30-7:30 p.m., and Dec. 15, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the agency’s facility located at 4401 Sixth St. S.W. in Cedar Rapids.

Wessling is a high school English teacher at Johnston High School in Johnston. She was recognized as Iowa’s Teacher of the Year and is the recipient of the 2010 National Teacher of the Year award. Wessling accepted the award from President Barack Obama during a ceremony held at the White House on April 29, 2010.

The session during the day on Dec. 14 with Sarah Brown Wessling is for AEA staff only and will focus on the Iowa Core and Outcome 4 and 6 - teaching meaninful content effectively - and make Iowa Core accessible to all students.

The evening session on Dec. 14 is planned as learning and conversation with Wessling for community members, area educators and administrators, school board members, and others who are interested in learning more about the Iowa Core and exemplary instruction.

The vision for the Iowa Core is to ensure the success of each and every student by providing a world-class curriculum. The core is designed to improve achievement of all students, preparing them for the world of work and lifelong learning.

The 2008 legislative session, through Senate File 2216, requires all school districts and accredited nonpublic schools to implement the Iowa Core by July 1, 2012 for grades 9 through 12 and 2014-15 for kindergarten through 8th grade.

The evening session will provide information to deepen the understanding of the intentions of the Iowa Core. Participants will have the opportunity to better understand and appreciate how the Iowa Core looks when implemented, and the possibilities for improving teaching and learning for all.

Registration information:

To register for Ensuring Success: Iowa Core in Action on Dec. 14, 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. (AEA staff only), visit the Professional Development section of the Grant Wood AEA website at and register for course number 9726-10-02.

To register for Iowa Core with National Teacher of the Year on Dec. 14, visit the Professional Development section of the Grant Wood AEA website at and register for course number 9728-10-01. There is a $10 fee for the workshop, which includes a light dinner. The registration deadline is Dec. 10, 2010.

On Dec. 15, Ensuring Success: Iowa Core in Action is a full-day professional development session planned for educators, administrators, and Iowa Core team members. To register, visit the Professional Development section of the Grant Wood AEA website at and register for course number 9726-10-01. The cost of the workshop is $25. The registration deadline is Dec. 8, 2010.

Grant Wood AEA Charitable Giving Opportunities

While we recognize the needs of all charitable organizations, this year the Agency has selected the following four organizations to channel our holiday giving.  Please consider participating in one or more of the opportunities listed below between Monday, November 22 and Friday, December 17.
The Linn Community Food Bank – donation box in Administration Area (6th Street, 1st floor)
Canned goods – pork and beans, green beans, soup, corn, peas, tuna, fruit, applesauce
Mac and cheese, peanut butter, saltine crackers
Box items – pudding, jello, muffin mix, pancake mix
Toilet paper, bar soap
Vinton Animal Shelter – cash donation or sponsor a pet – pet ornament tree located in IMS area (6th Street, 2nd floor)
Adopt Local Families in Need – details regarding specific gift items and/or cash donations at Jan Baburek’s desk, NE Region Secretary (6th Street, 2nd floor)
Salvation Army Johnson County – cash donations to be sent to Barb Aanonson in the Coralville facility

We appreciate your support!

Going Google - Upcoming Training Sessions

As we prepare to "Go Google" in January, we are ramping up training for staff. In 2011, we will be hosting two 1/2 days Google Apps sessions every other week through March. Space is limited, so please get signed up today. Sessions are focused on Docs, Sites, or Calendar. Here is the schedule:

Google Calendar - Let's Get Started
This workshop will cover the basics of using Google calendar. Participants will utilize the calendar tool with their Google account and set up their own calendars during the workshop. We will learn how to set up multiple calendars, share them and customize calendar settings. Participants will need to bring their own laptops.

Number: 6503-10-02 Cancelled
Dates/Time: Dec. 8, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Number: 6503-10-03
Dates/Time: Jan. 12, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Number: 6503-10-04
Dates/Time: Feb. 7, 1-4 p.m.
Number: 6503-10-05
Dates/Time: Mar. 2, 1-4 p.m.


Google Docs
Want to learn how to collaborate online with word processing docs, spreadsheets, and presentations? What about creating forms to collect data? Google docs allows you to do all of these things from the "cloud"!

Number: 6501-10-01
Dates/Time: Jan. 18, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Number: 6501-10-02
Dates/Time: Feb. 22, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Number: 6501-10-03
Dates/Time: Feb. 22, 1-4 p.m.
Number: 6501-10-04
Dates/Time: Feb. 24, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Number: 6501-10-05
Dates/Time: Feb. 24, 1-4 p.m.


Google Sites
Participants will learn how to use Google sites to create a dynamic web presence that you can enhance communication and collaboration. Google sites allows you to easily integrate many web tools without know any code!

Number:6500-10-01 Cancelled
Dates/Time: Feb. 7, 1-4 p.m.
Dates/Time: Feb. 7, 8:30-11:30 a.m.


Google Sites-Beyond the Basics
Are you looking at going to the next level with Google Sites? this half day workshop will cover more advanced features in building high quality Google Sites. Our Google Apps Certified Trainer will focus on embedding objects, improving navigation, and how to customize your site to meet your exact needs.

Dates/Time: Mar. 2, 8:30-11:30 a.m.


Not available for a face to face training? No worries. You can access or for some online tutorials on Google Docs, Sites, and Calendar. Contact Andy Crozier for username and passwords for or log in directly when you are at GWAEA @

Previous articles in The Bulletin Board:
Going Google - New Features in Google Sites (Nov. 5, 2010)
Grant Wood AEA moving to Google Apps Domain
(Oct. 29, 2010)
Grant Wood AEA - Going Google Apps (Oct. 1, 2010)

Access Resources for Technology Training



Are you looking for a more sophisticated training on a certain technology application? We now provide access to for staff to use. is a robust online tutorial service that covers applications from Microsoft, Google, Apple, Adobe, and much more. has a similar interface and style as,  but their videos go much more in depth on certain topics within applications.

If you would like to try, you can do it in a few ways. If you are at Sixth Street, Coralviile, or 33rd Avenue locations, simply go to No username or password is needed. Two users can access at one time. If you are off campus, you will need a username and password. We have a few of these to give out to users temporarily. If you need a username and password, please contact Andy Crozier.

Olweus honored with award

Dan Olweus has just been named the 2011 recipient of the American Psychological Association’s Award for Distinguished Contributions to the International Advancement of Psychology.  This is a very prestigious award, which honors an individual “who has made sustained and enduring contributions to international cooperation and the advancement of knowledge in psychology.”
Dr. Olweus, who was born in Sweden, received his doctoral degree at the University of Umeå, Sweden, in 1969. He is a research professor of psychology, affiliated with the Research Center for Health Promotion (HEMIL) at the University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway.
For 40 years, Dr. Olweus has been involved in research and intervention work in the area of bully/victim problems among school children and youth. In 1970, he started a large-scale project which is now generally regarded as the first scientific study of bully/victim problems in the world, on which the Olweus Bully Prevention Program is based.
There are a number of school districts in AEA 10 which have implemented the Olweus Bully Prevention Program.  If you would like more information about the program, please contact GWAEA School Improvement Consultant Anne Taylor, who is a certified Olweus trainer.

Copyright for Students – updated version available

The updated brochure “BriefNOTES: Copyright for Students” is now available at the Iowa AEA Online website at
Two versions, a screen version and a higher quality print version, are available for download.

If you have questions or would like to request a printed copy, contact Debbie Crane, ext. 6455 or e-mail

Upcoming TQ Professional Development proposals submission dates for the 2010-2011 school year:

- February 10, 2011
- April 28, 2011

The proposal templates and directions are on the GWAEA Staff Portal under the Teacher Quality Committee link.

Chair Massages

Terri Nicol, LMT, will provide chair massages on Thursday, Dec. 16, 9:20 a.m. - 1:20 p.m., in the Cedar Conference Room, Sixth St. Facility. The chair massages are 15 minutes long and cost $10. E-mail Stacy Murphy at to schedule an appointment time.

Buy, Sell and Trade

For Sale: used games for the PS3.  All are in great shape and would be a great Christmas gift!
Prototype, $15; Metal Gear Solid 4, $15; Killzone 2, $20; Infamous, $20; God of War 3, $25. Wireless keyboard, mouse combo for sale, $30. Originally purchased for $80, have used 6-7 times only.
Please call 361-3004 for more info.

Free: I have five trunks available for free. They are about 30”x15”x12” made from hardwood plywood with metal trim. They have metal hinges and 3 metal closures, one of them with a lock. A key is included. Four are in good shape, one needs repair. Stop by the 6th Street front desk to have a look or call Cathy Nelson for more information at extension 6544.

Wanted: Pink Yoplait yogurt lids

Stacy Murphy, IMS operator, is collecting pink Yoplait yogurt lids to support the annual "Save Lids to Save Lives" drive for breast cancer research. A collection container is available in the break room of the Sixth St. facility. Staff may also send the labels to Stacy or contact her at ext. 6888.

Grant Wood AEA Professional Development opportunities

For more information, contact Sherry Sines, Professional Development coordinator, Ext. 6517.

Grant Wood AEA Webinars

Archives of Grant Wood AEA Webinars and Assistive Technology Webinars are also available.

Grant Wood AEA Online Resources Webinars

Webinars featuring information about the online resources.

Vacancies, Adobe PDF logo December 3, 2010

The Bulletin Board is published and distributed weekly to all GWAEA staff and Board members. Buy, Sell or Trade items are run for 2 consecutive issues, unless we are notified to remove an item. If you wish to submit items, please do so by Wednesday of the week you wish the item to be posted. Send items via email to George Held in the Communications office (

Please note: The Bulletin Board is also posted on the agency's Web site and is publicly accessible. We recommend you use your office or voice mail phone number instead of your home telephone number for any items listed in this newsletter.

Grant Wood Area Education Agency extends equal opportunities in its employment practices, educational programs and services, and does not discriminate on the basis of color, gender, race, national origin, religion, creed, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability, veteran status or as otherwise prohibited by law. If you believe you or your child has been discriminated against or treated unjustly, please contact the Agency's Equity Coordinator, Maria Cashman, at 319-399-6847 or 1-800-332-8488 or TDD 319-399-6766, Grant Wood AEA, 4401 Sixth St SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.

The Bulletin Board is the official employee information publication of Grant Wood Area Education Agency, 4401 Sixth Street, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52404