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Grant Wood Area Education Agency

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Mark your calendars!

Sept. 15, 5:30 p.m.


GWAEA Board meeting

Email Advisories Requesting Personal and Account Information

Agency staff members continue to receive occasional emails from scam artists who portray themselves as Technology Support, the Mail Support Team or other such generic titles. In most cases, these emails request (and sometimes demand) that you provide your email address, your email password, and your birth date.
Please don’t reply to any of these types of emails. The scam artists continue to try new variations around this same theme. But in most cases, they continue to ask for email username, password and/or birth dates. These emails often include a warning that if you don’t respond within a restricted time frame, your email account will be frozen or terminated.
You need to know our tech support department and email administrator don’t need you to provide any of that information! These are pfishing emails that occasionally slip through our email filters. You don’t need to alert anyone that another came through. DON’T REPLY to them, either. Just delete them!

Reminder to update emergency contact information and beneficiaries

In the event of an emergency, we want to be sure to have accurate, up-to-date emergency contact information on file for employees. To ensure that this information is current, employees are asked to review this information annually.  As a reminder, in an emergency situation, we will always try to contact a spouse first, if identified, then Contact 1 or Contact 2.
To update:
1)   Go to GWAEA home page, click on GWAEA Staff – Business Services & HR, click on Employee Information. (
2)  Enter your first and last names and the last 4 digits of your Social Security number.
3)  Click on Contact List (found under Navigational Links).
4)  Click on the text under either ‘relationship’ or ‘name’ to update the record.
5)  Click on Save Changes or Delete this Contact.
If you have questions or need additional information, please contact the Human Resources Office at x6703. Thank you for keeping this information current.
Please also remember to update beneficiary information as family changes occur.  Employees designate beneficiaries for the group life and IPERS benefits.  Contact Cathy Kearns, Compensation/Benefits, at x6706, to make any beneficiary changes.

Fire Drill for Agency Offices – Sept. 15

The agency will hold a fire drill at all agency facilities at 10 a.m. next Wednesday, Sept. 15. This is the first of two fire drills we will hold this fall. Iowa code requires us to conduct several fire drills each year. We always announce the day and time of the first fire drill. The second one is not announced, and will occur later this fall.

Please take a minute between now and Sept. 15 to review the map in your building for the nearest exit in case there really WAS a fire. When the alarm goes off, plan to exit the building based on the information on these maps.

When you exit the building, please don't stand outside the door. If this were a real emergency, fire and/or police would need quick access to the building. Walk to the other side of the parking lot away from the building. A designated individual at each of the facilities will announce an all clear for staff to return to the building following the drill.

Teacher Quality Funding periods for 2010-11

- November 4, 2010
- February 10, 2011
- April 28, 2011

The proposals are due to Sherry Sines, Professional Development Coordinator, by 4:30 pm on these dates to be considered for that funding period. Teacher Quality proposal directions and application forms can be found on the GWAEA website under the staff link at

Parent Education Consortium Fall Parenting Education Programs

Click for a PDF copy of parenting classes, brought to you by the Parent Education Consortium. Classes are offered FREE of charge to all families. Sessions include a family meal, light refreshments, program materials and/or on-site child care. For information, contact Jennifer Cira, parent education outreach specialist, ext. 6809 or

Bouquets and Kudos...

•   to Andy Crozier, GWAEA Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology, on being named as one of the top 100 technology leaders by Tech & Learning. To celebrate its 30th anniversary, the organization is highlighting 100 technology leaders – past, present and future- in its “100@30” series. The article recognizing Andy and leaders of the future is available online at

Grant Wood AEA webinars

A list of current and archive Grant Wood AEA webinars is available online. To access, click on either of the following links:

Upcoming webinars

Webinar archives

For information, contact Andy Crozier, Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology, or ext. 6866.

Erratum for Education Directory

For those staff who asked for paper copies of the Education Directory, we have a correction you may need to know about. Two of the principals for the Vinton-Shellsburg schools were not correct in the printed version of the agency’s new education directory. The principal for the middle school is now Shelly Petersen ( and the principal for the Shellsburg Elementary is Sheila Wendel ( The listings in the on-line version of the directory have been updated with this new information.

The Linker is celebrating 30 years of publication

Grant Wood AEA's The Linker is celebrating 30 years of publication, providing how-to articles and practical information to educators. With a quarterly distribution of 9,000 copies, The Linker reaches area educators, school board members, legislators, libraries, professors of education, as well as AEA staff.

The Fall 2010 issue of Grant Wood AEA's The Linker has been distributed. Please contact Valerie Taylor Hill in the Communications Office, ext. 6824, for a copy or click to access a portable document format (PDF) copy.

Puppeteers wanted!

Grant Wood AEA needs puppeteers for “The Kids on the Block.” Teams are now being formed so if you are interested in becoming a puppeteer, please complete the form and return by Wednesday, September 15th to Cathy Nelson in the Northern Facility.

Welcome, New Staff!

Blackmore, H

Heather Blackmore
School Social Worker
University of Iowa – MSW

Welcome to Grant Wood AEA, Heather!


Robert Butikofer
Science Center Technician

John worked for 20 years as a Senior Engineer at the John Deere Waterloo Works. Welcome to the VAST Center team, Robert!


Nicole Ensminger
Inclusion Resource Specialist
Western Illinois University

Nicole has worked as a special education teacher for the past 16 years in Decorah, Marion, South Winn, and Mount Pleasant school districts. We are pleased to have you join our organization, Nicole!




Lindsey Fisher
Speech-Language Pathologist
University of Iowa – MA

Lindsey graduated from UNI in May of this year and is starting her career as an SLP with Grant Wood AEA. We are delighted she chose AEA10 as her first career step! Welcome, Lindsey!




Nickie Gael
CART Service Provider
Kendall College – BA in Early Childhood Education

Nickie was the LECC Director for the Lisbon School District prior to joining GWAEA. She was the Early Intervention Program Director for Core Management Services in North Carolina before that, and she served as the Birth-Three Manager for Encompass NW in Washington for 3 years before that. She also was a family service coordinator in Arapahoe City, Colorado. Welcome to GWAEA, Nickie.

Control Key


More ways to use the control key

When you hold down the control key and press the left or right arrow in Word, you move to the start of the next word. Your accuracy in moving to a word in the document is much faster than fiddling with your mouse.

To highlight a word or words, use the control key to get to the word, then press and hold the shift key and the control key at the same time and tap the arrow key to move from word to word to highlight the text.

You can delete an entire word by holding down the control key and pressing the delete key. Again this is a much faster and accurate way of editing than holding down the delete key and waiting for it to slowly delete character-by-character.

Chair Massages

Terri Nicol, LMT, will provide chair massages on Sept. 23, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m,. in the Jones 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.

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 will be 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 September 10, 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