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Grant Wood Area Education Agency

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Mark your calendars!

July 21, 5:30 p.m.


GWAEA Board meeting

Aug. 13


GWAEA summer hours end

Aug. 18


GWAEA All-Agency Inservice, College Community, Concert Hall

Iowa’s AEAs to Provide K-12 Schools With Google’s Online Tools

Iowa AEA



The AEAs are entering into an exciting agreement with Google to provide all K-12 schools in Iowa with free access to Google Apps for Education. 550,000 students and educators will have the opportunity to be connected to a common e-mail, chat and calendar system (Gmail), cloud collaboration tools (Google Docs & Groups) and multimedia tools (Google Sites & Video) that will enable them to work together and learn more effectively. AEAs will also be eligible to see these tools. Google announced its agreement with Iowa at the International Society for Technology in Education conference on June 28 in Denver.

Iowa will be only the third state in the nation (Oregon was the first, Colorado was the second) to provide these innovative tools to its schools. Iowa, however, will be the first to provide the tools to both public and non-public schools and to provide trained consultants to work with each school.

Iowa AEA consultants will receive formal certification in Google Apps and participate in hands-on training. AEA consultants will then apply this training to help teachers in their local schools learn how to use Google Apps effectively in the classroom. In addition, the consultants will be just an e-mail or a phone call away to answer questions or to follow-up with implementation advice. Students and educators will be able to begin using their new tools as the 2010-2011 school year gets underway.

Schools are able to choose whether they want to opt-in to the initiative. Those that do will see a savings in their IT budgets, and most importantly, will be teaching students the skills they’ll need to use these types of digital tools in the workplace.

“We know this will be a great partnership between the AEAs and our local schools,” Brent Siegrist, Director of AEA Services, said. “Our schools already have established relationships with our consultants and trust their expertise with technology. There may be many schools that are already using Google Apps, but they can now be formally trained to use them and have consistency across their districts.”

If you receive questions about Google Apps from school personnel, relay to them the information above, and let them know that each AEA will have two or three consultants who will be assigned to be Google Apps trainers/contacts. Those consultants’ names will be announced as soon as they are confirmed.

In the meantime, if you have any major questions about the AEAs’ agreement with Google, contact Andy Crozier, Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology, at Grant Wood AEA at

EAP Provider Update

The Agency provides an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to support staff and family members.  Beginning July 1, 2010, this program is provided through Mercy EAP Services and includes professional and confidential counseling and referral services for a variety of personal issues.  The goal of the program is to assist employees in effectively identifying and resolving personal concerns in a proactive manner before they affect job performance.
All clinicians with Mercy EAP are licensed mental health counselors and are experienced in assisting individuals in meeting the challenges of today’s busy lifestyles.  The EAP is confidential and easy to use – just call 319-398-6694 or 1-800-383-6694 to schedule an appointment.  There is no cost to employees for initial discussions – up to 3 sessions per year are provided for employees or family members.
It is hoped employees and families always lead happy and healthy lives, however if problems do occur and additional support or assistance would be helpful, the Agency is pleased to provide this valuable resource through the EAP.  If you are ready to try a new approach to addressing challenges in your life, please remember Mercy EAP Services!

If you have questions or need additional information, feel free to call the Human Resources Office at x6703 or visit

Summer Brings Merged AEA & New Chiefs to Four AEAs

Exciting changes have come to Iowa’s AEA system this summer.

On July 1, Green Valley AEA and Loess Hills AEA officially merged to becom Green Hills AEA, which will be centered in Council Bluffs. Visit the Green Hills AEA website at to learn more about the newly formed agency. This voluntary merger between Green Valley and Loess Hills brings the total number of AEAs to nine from the 15 that were originally founded in 1974.

Four AEAs also have new chief administrators this summer. Vist the Iowa AEA website for information about the new AEA chief administrators.

Agency experimenting with New Web Pages

In the next few days, some revised Web pages will be posted to the agency’s website. When you go to the Media Services, Computer Services, Facilities, or Creative Services pages on the agency’s website, you’ll encounter a new design look. These pages were developed to better explain each of these units’ services. The managers developing these sites hope the pages will provide easier access to important information and resources for both AEA and LEA personnel.
This is an experiment to see what users like and don’t like so that we can continue to enhance our website. We encourage you to take a look at these pages and then provide us some feedback. If you have thoughts about these pages, please send me an email with comments about what you like, dislike, or would like to see changed in the new pages. The agency’s internet committee is interested in what you think of them. Please contact George Held, Supervisor of Communications, with your feedback.

One of our own is going to serve...

Rob Mitchell, one of our lead printers in Creative Services, has been ordered to report for duty for deployment to Afghanistan in early August. His last day before he leaves will be Friday, July 23.


Rob Mitchell

We will be having a send-off celebration for him on Wednesday, July 21. Stop by the Staff Conference Room anytime between 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. that day to wish him well and share some treats.

Staff to appear in Orchestra Iowa’s Follies 2010: “Viva Las Vegas”

Susie Green, GWAEA Student Programs Specialist, and Kim Novotny, Team Leader-Media, will perform in Orchestra Iowa’s production of Follies 2010: “Viva Las Vegas.”  Remaining performances are July 17-18 at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

This is the largest fundraiser for Orchestra Iowa, which is normally held at the Paramount Theater, until the floods of 2008.

8th Annual Quota International of Cedar Rapids Charity Golf Tournament

It’s that time of year again and the GWAEA Hearing Dept. is participating in the Quota Club Charity Golf Tournament scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 28. We are actively searching for Team(s) Grant Wood AEA and any interested golfers for the charity tournament. Registration deadline is Aug. 14. Click here for more information.

Season tickets available for 2010 Kansas City Chiefs

With the grand opening of the new Arrowhead Stadium in 2010, the Kansas City Chiefs are offering a limited number of $250 and $390 FULL SEASON TICKETS to Iowa educators including staff, employees and their friends and family.

This full season plan provides access to all 10 home games (8 regular season and 2 preseason games). The 2010 schedule includes: Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars, San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, Oakland Raiders, the Monday Night Football Game vs. San Diego Chargers and two preseason games.

All seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Anyone interested in these seats or any other Chiefs ticket package should contact Darren Adams, account executive, Kansas City Chiefs, at (816) 920-4849 or email to Lower level seats and Club Level seats are also available.

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.

Grant Wood AEA Online Resources Webinars

Webinars featuring information about the online resources.

Vacancies, Adobe PDF logo July 9, 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