Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board


April 6, 2012
Agency closes at 3 p.m.


April 11, 2012
GWAEA Board Meeting, 5:00 p.m.


All Agency Inservice

August 13, 2012 (morning)


In this issue:

Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day, April 2
Accreditation Visit a Success for Grant Wood AEA
Iowa's AEAs are "Impacting Lives"
All-Agency Inservice, Aug. 13
Severe Weather Preparations at GWAEA
Planned outage on April 12
iPad Update
Your Child's Future...The Possibilities are Endless
Teacher Movie Night
Halibut! America's Favorite!
Kernels Night to benefit
Special Olympics
GWAEA on Facebook, Twitter
Iowa Core
GWAEA Webinars
TQ Proposal Application Date - April 18
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities
Buy, Sell or Trade
Lost and Found
Vacancies, March 30, 2012


Past Issues


March 23, 2012

March 16, 2012

March 9, 2012

March 2, 2012

February 24, 2012

February 17, 2012

February 10, 2012

February 3, 2012

January 27, 2012

January 20, 2012

January 13, 2012

January 6, 2012

December 16, 2011

December 9, 2011

December 2, 2011

November 18, 2011

November 11, 2011

November 4, 2011

October 28, 2011

October 21, 2011

October 14, 2011

October 7, 2011
September 30, 2011

September 23, 2011

September 16, 2011

September 9, 2011

September 2, 2011

August 26, 2011

August 19, 2011

August 12, 2011

July 29, 2011

July 15, 2011

July 1, 2011

June 17, 2011

June 3, 2011

Archive issues of The Bulletin Board




Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day, April 2

Inspiring the transformation of education through innovation: A Showcase of Talents

Please join us for an afternoon of exploring new ideas, innovations and teaching techniques being explored and developed by Grant Wood AEA staff.


Monday, April 2, 2012
2 - 5 p.m.

Grant Wood AEA Conference Center


This special event is open to agency staff, school administrators, curriculum directors, elected public officials, etc.


The following are among the innovations and activities that will be on display:

  • Using Social Networking to Share GWAEA Re-sources

  • Turning Materials into ePubs/eBooks

  • Flip a Classroom

  • Blended Learning: Innovating Delivery

  • Inquiry Cycle with special education tools to Close the Achievement Gap

  • Instructional Strategies Video Coaching Tool

  • Supporting Our Rural LEAs in Serving Students with ASD Using 21st Century Tools

  • Tech Connections in Emergent Literacy

  • eBooks in the Media Center at Grant Wood AEA

  • ELL Resource Team

  • The Special Education Literacy or SPEL team

  • Computer Services at Grant Wood AEA

  • Early Childhood Instructional Practices Video Coaching tool

  • Creative Services at Grant Wood AEA

  • GWAEA Assistive Technology: Redesigned

Accreditation Visit a Success for Grant Wood AEA

Lead members of the accreditation team provided feedback last week at the end of their visit. The team reported that they plan to recommend full accreditation to the agency in all areas. This recommendation will be shared with and reviewed by various administrators at the Department of Education, including Director Glass. Their recommendation will be forwarded to the State Board of Education for their meeting on the second Thursday in September. The State Board has the ultimate responsibility for reviewing and approving our accreditation. The final report that goes to the State Board should be ready in August.


The accreditation team was very impressed by the agency staff members they interviewed. They commented repeatedly about how passionate our staff members are and how our folks relentlessly focus on students and positive outcomes for kids.


Another strength the team observed was our collaborative partnerships with other Agencies. The team said this was very evident. The team also felt the agency’s School Technology and Media were "standouts," and they had high compliments on work the agency is doing with Iowa Core professional development.


Also, the team said Grant Wood AEA’s PD received many positive comments in general. The agency’s willingness to go to districts to deliver PD has been greatly appreciated. LEAs also have appreciated our bringing in high-profile speakers and the customization of PD services on their behalf.


Regarding our special education services, the findings were very positive. The team noted that AEA10 is making good progress in converting to RtI – we are basing decisions on data and student performance. They concluded that as a result, we are "strategically in a better place than many areas of the state on RtI."


The team pointed out we need to continue to work on looking at Cultural Competencies and providing more PD for AEA and LEA staffs. They may also include other recommendations in their final report.

"Impacting Lives" Newsletter Shares How Iowa's AEAs Make a Difference



April is National Autism Awareness Month. All of Iowa’s Area Education Agencies have people  who specialize in supporting children and students with autism spectrum disorders, their families and the classroom teachers who work with them. This edition of Impacting Lives provides examples of AEA expertise for supporting autism as well as other topics that include Iowa AEA Online, curriculum instruction and technology support.

  • AEA ‘Angel’ Gave Hope to Family Living with Autism

  • Oscar’s Story: Supporting a Child with Autism

  • Northwest AEA Employees Present Research at International Autism Conference

  • Learning with the Resources of Iowa AEA Online

  • AEA Social Workers Serve as Link Between Families and Schools

  • My Ears Help Me Read: The Important Role of AEA Audiology Staff

  • Training Aims to Increase Teachers’ Skills in Literacy Instruction

  • How Putting Laptops in Student Hands is Changing Education Today

  • Grant Wood AEA Launches iPad Project

  • Capturing Student Interest through the Use of Virtual Reality


Mark your calendars for the All-Agency Inservice planned the morning of Aug. 13, 2012.

Severe Weather Preparations at GWAEA

Tornado Drill planned Wednesday, April 4, at 10 a.m.

On Wednesday, April 4, at 10 a.m., the agency will have a tornado drill to prepare staff for possible severe weather situations we might have this spring.


The fire alarm system is no longer used to provide tornado alerts. Instead, zone leaders throughout the building will be alerted if there is an emergency, and they will use air horns (similar to what you hear at some athletic events) to alert staff. If you hear the air horns sounding, head to your work zone’s safe area. (Your zone leader will direct you to where that is.)


During a drill or during an actual tornado alert, when you hear a tornado warning, please follow these steps:

  • Go immediately to the designated SAFE area identified by your zone leader.  

  • Do NOT go outside or try to call home.

  • Once you are in a SAFE area remain there until notified that the warning has been removed or has expired.

  • Secretaries should take their flashlights with them.

A Tornado Watch means conditions are favorable for a tornado to form.
A Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted in the area. We will alert staff in the building only when a Warning has been issued.

Planned outage on Thursday, April 12

The web IEP, web IFSP, IMS, I-Plan and GEI applications will not be available on Thursday, April 12 from 9:00 a.m. until approximately 11:00 a.m.
For more information about this two-hour planned outage, go to

iPad Update 3/30/12


Data Collection
A form will be sent out via email to all staff issued an agency iPad to collect usage data and to find out how we can continue to support your use of these devices. Part of this process will be to look at what apps are being used by each discipline and it is our intention to share that data with you, so you can see how apps are being adapted to address instructional goals. Please take five minutes to complete the survey and if you have questions contact Stacy Behmer


iPad Video Tutorials
Over the next few weeks we hope to add to our GWAEA collection of iPad video tutorials. We are in the fortunate position that we are able to customize these to the needs of our staff. So, if you can’t come in to Sixth Street for a quick lesson, but you would really love to learn how to do something new on your iPad, let us know! :) Feel free to email your requests to, and check out all our videos here.


App of the Week


This week’s App of the Week is perfect for SLPs - Articulation Station Pro. Maggie Slaymaker has been trialling this app for the agency and was impressed by all that it can do. She says that it is similar to ArtikPix, but it looks a lot nicer, is more interactive, and has a wider range of practice levels for students. So, head on over to the GWAEA iPad Project website to read all she has to say about it.

2012 Grant Wood AEA Staff Recognition & Partnerships Banquet,
Thursday, May 3



All employees with 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 or 40 years of employment with
GWAEA, retirees, and persons nominated and selected by agency staff will be honored.

Ponderosa Hall & Ballroom
195 1st Street S.

Social Hour: 5:30 p.m.
Dinner: 6:00 p.m.


Click to access the banquet invitation. Printed copies are available if needed. Registration forms can be found with Cathy at the front desk.

GWAEA Board Members and Employees: $5

Spouses, Friends and Retired Staff: $20 per person


Reservations: Due April 18, 2011


Groups may reserve a table. Please submit all reservation requests to Cathy Nelson at Sixth Street, ext. 6544.


Parent Transition Night

"Your Child's Future...The Possibilities are Endless"

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

6:00-8:30 p.m.
Grant Wood AEA
4401 Sixth St. SW, Cedar Rapids

Mark your calendars now for the first annual transition conference, "Your Child's Future…The Possibilities are Endless." This workshop will provide valuable information to parents and professionals about the transition process for middle and high school students who receive special education services.


The keynote speaker will be Michael Kutcher, twin brother of actor Ashton Kutcher. Michael is an effective national cerebral palsy advocate and a passionate motivational speaker. His personal story of living with CP and his journey to overcome challenges in order to live a typical life is inspirational. Michael graduated from Mount Mercy University with a degree in Business Management and Finance and lives in Cedar Rapids with his son.


There will be speakers, breakout sessions, and informational booths for parents and professionals to learn a wide variety of services in the area of living, learning and working. Door prizes will be presented.


To register, visit the Grant Wood AEA Professional Development website and click on course number 19052-11-01.



See flyer for information




Session information

The Linker, Summer 2012 is online

The Linker, Summer 2012 is available for viewing and download at along with archival copies. Distribution of copies to staff mailboxes is underway.


Included in this issue...

"VAST Center Toolkits"

"GWAEA pilot programs expand"

"Career Connections: Leading today's youth into tomorrow's workforce"

"WLC - Connecting teachers and students in Area 10 with summer offerings"

"Mobile site for Progress Monitoring"

"Your Child's Future...The Possibilities are Endless,"

and Professional Development and Media articles.




The Linker, Summer 2012


Distribution in print or electronic will be to all area educators, school board members, legislators, libraries, and professors of education. For information or to suggest an article for the Fall 2012 issue, contact Valerie Taylor Hill in the Communications Office, ext. 6824.


Sponsored by Pearson and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.


Join us for a free screening of Mitchell 20—an inspiring documentary about teacher quality—and a panel discussion with area educators.


Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Registration: 5 p.m.

Movie Time: 5:30 p.m.

Grant Wood AEA Conference Center


The registration page below will be active the week of March 26, 2012. Registration will be available at


See flyer for details.


Iowa AEA Online resources and the Iowa Core



See attached flyer for dates and registration information.

Please bring your laptop!

Halibut! America's Favorite!

The next session is planned April 5

Three workshops for AEA staff on the Iowa AEA Online resources and Iowa Core:

  • Support Reading

  • Concept Learning and Research

  • Increase Opportunities to Learn

Open the GWAEA website, click on PD, scroll to learning for GWAEA staff - and that is where the workshops are posted. Log in and sign up.


Thrivent Night at the Ballpark

Wednesday, May 2 at 6:35 p.m.
Cedar Rapids Kernels vs. Beloit Snappers
at Cedar Rapids Veterans Memorial Stadium
Tickets are $5.00 for General Admission

Proceeds will benefit the local Iowa Special Olympics program. For tickets, contact
Kim Martin, 399-6710 or

Grant Wood AEA on Facebook facebook logoand Twitter twitter logo

Are you connected with Grant Wood AEA? The agency has a presence on both Facebook and Twitter. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For questions, contact the Communications Office.

Iowa Core Learning Opportunities for AEA Staff

The following learning opportunities are available for AEA 10 staff members. Compensation for time beyond contract day will be provided through Iowa Core Teacher Quality funds.  If you have any questions, requests, suggestions… please contact Myra Hall: 319-350-5464 (cell), 319-399-6820 (VM), Contact Jan Baburek to sign up: 319-399- 6851,

Iowa Core: Alignment of Content-Instruction-Assessment Professional Development - workshop
April 5, 2012   3:30 - 5:30
Iowa Core in Practice: facilitated 1/2 day learning experience focused on Iowa Core content and implementation of characteristics of effective instruction.
April 6, 2012   12:30 – 3:30
Online Modules for Instructional Coaching: Introduction and exploration of state-developed resources for individual or collaborative team learning:
April 9, 2012   3:30 - 5:30

Grant Wood AEA Webinars

Visit the link above for a current schedule, registration information, and archives of the
Grant Wood AEA webinars.


The next webinar is April 4: Free Online Audio and Video Resources, 19032-11-01

The next TQ Professional Development proposal application date is April 18

The proposal templates and directions are on the GWAEA Staff Portal under the Teacher Quality Committee link. Please use the updated proposal template from the web.


Teacher Quality Update – Professional Development Dollar, January 2012

Grant Wood AEA Professional Development opportunities

Professional Development Announcements – March 2012

Technology Integration Opportunities:


Free Online Audio and Video Resources Webinar  



3:45 PM-4:45 PM 


Technology Tools Team with Teaching Literacy Webinar  



3:45 PM-4:45 PM 


Grant Wood AEA Staff training opportunities:



Using Iowa AEA Online Resources and Iowa Core to Increase Opportunities to Learn  



8:30 AM-10:30 AM 


Using Iowa AEA Online Resources and Iowa Core to Increase Opportunities to Learn  



3:30 PM-5:30 PM 


Social Work Ethics  



12:45 PM-4PM 


How to Support Teachers in Early Childhood Classrooms with Speech and Language Concerns  





All weather related cancellations of workshops and courses will be posted on the Grant Wood AEA webpage and KCRG.

For a complete listing of all upcoming trainings:


For more information, contact Sherry Sines, Professional Development Coordinator,
ext. 6517.


Containers such as empty plastic coffee cans, empty oatmeal canisters, etc to be collected and sent to Ann Kessler.  Requested by the Early ACCESS Autism Team members.


Buy, Sell or Trade

For Sale:  Wheelchair in good condition.  Approximate weight – 30 lbs. Best offer.  Call 319-389-2293.


Lost and Found:

Lost: 20-30 professional books. Many have Mike Ostlund’s name on the inside cover. Please contact him if you have seen any of these books:

Vacancies, Adobe PDF logo March 30, 2012


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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 800-332-8488 or TDD 319-399-6766, Grant Wood AEA, 4401 Sixth St SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.

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