Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board


Grant Wood AEA Board Meeting
Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012
5:00 p.m.
Grant Wood Room



In this issue:

Media & Technology Update
Expanding the Use of EduVision
All-Agency Inservice presentations online
Online System Upgrades
Media Center Updates
Corridor STEM Initiative at the Iowa State Fair
21st Century Learning Institute
iPad Update
NAEP recruiting assessment administrators
United Way Pledge Sheets Coming Soon
GWAEA Team - Especially for You Race
Trip to Tuscany
Agency Historical Timeline to Move to Facebook
GWAEA on Facebook, Twitter
Recycling with Rick
Chair Massages
GWAEA Webinars
TQ Professional Development dates
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities
Buy, Sell or Trade


Past Issues

Aug. 10, 2012

Aug. 3, 2012

July 20, 2012

July 6, 2012

Archive issues of The Bulletin Board





Media & Technology Update

by Lisa Fry
GWAEA Programs/Services Administrator for Media & Technology

The GWAEA Media and Technology Team continues to leverage technology to connect educators to data, content, resources, expertise and learning experiences to ensure success for all learners. This fall, we will be piloting new online products (Reading A-Z and Raz Kids) with 25 GWAEA and 25 LEA staff, expanding the Rotating Reads program to grade 4, and providing support for accessing digital resources in Equella.  

Reading A-Z and Raz Kids is an online resource that provides users with books and other supplemental reading materials in a variety of areas. Books may be printed off and used with students to support areas such as leveled reading; phonics, vocabulary, fluency and assessment.  Grant Wood AEA is the first and only agency that the company has agreed to work with in a non-school setting. Members of the SPEL and hearing team will be working with area teachers to learn the program.  

Rotating Reads is a program that supports reading and supplements the school library by providing sets of books for the classroom. Over 400 are currently participating. Boxes of books at a designated grade level are delivered on a rotating basis to each teacher who is participating in the program.   

To support our districts in using digital resources for classroom teaching as well as online and blended learning, we will begin offering support for accessing resources in Equella.  Equella is a digital repository that provides one system to house teaching and learning, research, media and library content.  This repository was purchased cooperatively with other AEAs to develop a state-wide digital delivery system that will offer resources online. 

Expanding the Use of EduVision

Plans are in place to expand the use of EduVision, which is a video streaming platform and internet broadasting television service that allows us to upload and run videos on our GWAEA website.  Our goal is to share, manage, and distribute videos of best practices to our schools as well as stream news and professional development opportunities.  To expand the use of this tool, the following plans are in place:

  1. Provide training to LEAs to expand their capacity to use the EduVision portal.  The training will provide districts with the opportunity to receive a license and channel for their use.

  2. Provide training to both AEA and LEA staff to use Camtasia and Snagit software to create quality videos. 

  3. Create an editing bay for staff to edit and produce quality video models.

  4. Begin developing our own video models.  We currently have three areas being developed:  collaborative behavior interventions, strategies/techniques to reach and support students on the autism spectrum, and instructional strategies coaching tools. 

  5. Provide professional development and model the use of video to flip the classroom.

  6. Begin streaming and scheduling events.  

We are excited about the potential uses for this video repository.  We believe that strong video models of effective teaching and learning practices along with opportunities to use video as a learning tools for both students and adults will positively impact classroom pedagogy.   The training dates will be announced at a later date.

All-Agency Inservice presentations...

...have been posted online to the Communications Office web page. Click for the presentations by Troyce Fisher and Joe Crozier.

Online System upgrades

Over the summer there were major upgrades to two of the Agency’s online systems. Information about the changes was sent out by All-Agency email on 6/25, as well as in the 7/6 Bulletin Board.  Please save the new links below in your favorites/bookmarks!  They are also accessible from the Agency website under ‘Staff Website’.
Employee Self-Service (ESS) System
Applications here include Leave, Calendar, Time Card, Agency-Directed Travel.  Staff may also see Job History, License Status, along with new options that allow you to view copies of W-2 forms and paycheck or direct deposit history.
New username/password combinations have been set up for this system.  The username has been defaulted to your current Agency email prefix (ex:  bharms).  The password for returning staff has temporarily been set to an 8-digit number – the last 4 digits of your SSN plus your 4-digit birth year (ex: 99991962).  New staff received different password information.  At the first login you will then be prompted to change your password.
If you have difficulty logging in to the ESS system, please contact:

 Kathy Resewehr


Barb Harms



Business Applications System -
Applications here include Claims for reimbursement and Purchase Order requests.
Your username/password combination should be the same as before the upgrade, but some staff had multiple passwords because of old links directly to the Claims or PO systems.  
Once you are logged in you should see tabs across the top for the applications that you have access to (Claims, PO, Human Res, GW Finance).
If you have difficulty signing on to this system, please contact:              

  Amy Cameron


Rita Merta



Media Center Updates – Delivery 2012-2013

  • Van Delivery

    • Regular delivery began Monday, August 13.  

    • School personnel are advised to send student records through the US Mail.  

    • If student records are sent via van mail, they should be placed in a new envelope and the destination should be clearly identified using the following format:

      • Person to receive the documents

      • Building

      • District

      • Route

    • River Ridge has been added to the 3-2 (Tuesday-Friday) route.

      • Mail for River Ridge should not be sent to Cedar Rapids.

  • Cedar Rapids delivery

    • There are changes with the delivery and pick up of materials from the Cedar Rapids schools.

    • Cedar Rapids drivers will pick up data processing materials only.  

    • A Grant Wood AEA van driver will take all materials assembled and boxed in the route area to the new ELS – Educational Leadership and Support Center between 7:00 and 7:30 – Monday through Friday.   

    • The driver will pick up all materials and mail that was picked up the day before by the Cedar Rapids drivers.  

    • Those items will be returned to the Grant Wood AEA route area around 8 am.

    • Large bulk mailings for Cedar Rapids schools should be taken directly to the ELS by the person or group sending the mailing. (Examples: mailings for every teacher or student).

Corridor STEM Initiative at the
Iowa State Fair, Sunday, Aug. 19


The Corridor STEM Initiative will participate in STEM @ the Iowa State Fair 2012, Sunday,
Aug. 19, 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. A variety of hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities will be featured in the booth, which will be located in the KIDS ZONE.


CSI is an initiative aimed at engaging Iowans to help shift the culture and mindset around science, technology, engineering and math so that Iowa is recognized as the premier state in delivering this important type of education. Grant Wood AEA and the Grant Wood AEA VAST Center are among the CSI partners.


For information about the Corridor STEM Initiative, contact Jim Thornton, CSI Coordinator,


21st Century Learning Institute

Remember we will again be offering the 21st Century Learning Institute for Grant Wood AEA staff. This course is is intended to build knowledge of the Iowa Core Curriculum technology literacy skills while creating a collaborative community of learners. Participants of this institute go on to mentor colleagues in integrating technologies in their position. Please let Stacy Behmer, know if you have questions about the institute and see the GWAEA Professional Development site to get registered for this year’s cohort.

iPad Update

by Stacy Behmer, Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology

Welcome back! Next Agency App Ordering window will be from August 27th-September 7th - Information will be included in the iPad User Group and in The Bulletin Board next week. Check the GWAEA iPad website to see what apps are on the list to order.  


iPad User Group

There have been a lot of great information about free apps and what apps people have been using and how they have been using them on the user group lately. If you are not signed up, I’d suggest you take a look and consider at least signing up and getting one email a day to keep you in the loop and further your own learning!

GWAEA User Group: How are you using your iPad? Share your success stories and find out about new apps to use. We will post announcements and information to this user group, so get signed up today!

Gmail Transition

We will be moving to the Gmail interface this fall! This will be an exciting change that will enable us to be more efficient in our work. More information will be sent out to all staff on Monday, August 20th!

Please Share This with Your Retired Educator Friends

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as The Nation’s Report Card, is recruiting for Assessment Administrators in Iowa. The position is ideal for retired educators. If you know of teachers or former school administrators who would like a little part-time work later this year and early next year, please contact them at 1-888-237-8036 or email them at  
To apply, go to and select “Search Field Data Collection Jobs.” Select the state and then “Apply for Job.”
For more information about NAEP, you may visit their website at


United Way Pledge Sheets Coming Soon

In the next week, you should see a United Way pledge sheet in your mailbox. To simplify things, we’re going to start with putting Johnson County pledge sheets in all Coralville office staff mailboxes. In the Sixth Street and 33rd Avenue facility mailboxes we will put United Way of East Central Iowa (UWECI) pledge sheets.
We know some of you work in Johnson County but live in counties served by UWECI and vice-versa. So, we will make it easy for you to pledge to the United Way office you prefer. Elizabeth and Angela will have extra copies of the UWECI pledge sheets on hand at the Coralville office, and the front desks at both 33rd and Sixth Streets will have some Johnson County pledge sheets. If you need the alternate pledge sheet, just ask and they’ll give you one.
Please send your United Way pledges to attention of George Held in the communications office.

Registrations due Aug. 29 for GWAEA's Team - Especially for You® Race Against Breast Cancer

To register as part of the GWAEA team, registration forms and fees are due by Wednesday, August 29.  For registration forms and/or additional information, please contact Kim Martin , Stacy Murphy, Karen Desmarais, or Elizabeth Steffensmeier.  See the July 20 issue of The Bulletin Board for complete details.



$100 Rebate on trip to Tuscany

Nancy Dearborn, Retired GWAEA school psychologist and current Group Coordinator with Go Ahead Tours is offering a WALKING TOUR OF TUSCANY (Italy) Sept. 16-26, 2013 (next year). She is giving a $100 cash rebate to the first six people who sign up by August 31, 2012.  For a complete itinerary, see  Nancy can be reached at 319-573-5877 or

Agency's historical timeline is moving to Facebook

During the 1999-2000 year, Iowa's AEAs celebrated 25 years of service to the state's students and families. During that year, Grant Wood AEA displayed a historical timeline of agency history in each of the agency's buildings.




In the coming weeks, the timeline will be reintroduced and shared via Facebook. Like us on Facebook to follow along as we share a glimpse of Grant Wood AEA's past and present.

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.

Recycling with Rick

• Did you know every year Americans discard 1.6 million pens? Placed end to end they would stretch 151 miles. Let’s do our part to recycle unwanted pens and pencils from home and office.  


Pen and Pencil Donation boxes are in both break rooms at Grant Wood AEA Sixth Street facility and one in the Southern facility. We will partner with Terracycle to keep these items out of the landfill. Any brand and any size pens, pencils, mechanical pencils, wooden pencils, markers and highlighters, sharpie and dry eraser markers are accepted. No crayons, please.


See the July 6 issue of The Bulletin Board for a list of agency recycling bin locations.

Chair Massages

Terri Nicol, LMT, will provide chair massages on Sept. 10 and Sept. 27, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m., Sixth St. Facility. The chair massages are 15 minutes long and cost $10. E-mail Stacy Murphy at to schedule an appointment time.

Grant Wood AEA Webinars

Visit the link above for archives of the Grant Wood AEA webinars.

The 2012-2013 TQ Professional Development proposal application dates are:

Sept. 6
Nov. 21
Feb. 27
May 29

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

Grant Wood AEA Professional Development opportunities


Information for Professional Development National Speakers for 2012-2013 is now on the Professional Development Google Site.  To access Google site, log into your Google account, click on Sites, and browse sites. 

Professional Development Announcements – August 2012



Basic Administration, Scoring and Interpretation of Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS-Next)


Advanced Reading Assessment and Instruction


Curriculum Based Evaluation for Reading and Written Language


Leading Groups: Effective Strategies for Professional Community Building


Instructional Practices Inventory: A Process for Analyzing and Improving Student Engaged Learning



iPad Professional Development

There are a series of iPad workshops being offered in the next couple of weeks. Visit the schedule of GWAEA Professional Development iPad learning opportunities planned during August



Grant Wood AEA Staff training opportunities including Gmail transition workshops:



For a complete listing of all upcoming trainings:


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

Immediate part time general cleaner position available for Grant Wood location in Coralville. Approx 2 hrs per night M-F after 5pm. Also USCell store south of the Coralville mall after 8pm M,Th,Sat. $9.50 per hour to start. For those interested call Gary Marske at 515-865-3808 with Marsden Building Maintenance or email at Elizabeth at the reception area will have applications.


Buy, Sell and Trade


For Sale: Men's Waterfront Venice Keen Sandals. New - never worn. Size 8,
Brindle/Forest Night. $75.00. If interested please call 563-920-9059.


For Sale: Baldwin piano with cherry finish, excellent condition, tuned regularly.  Includes bench. $1750. 319-365-8061.


GW logoAEA logo

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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