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Bulletin Board


Nov. 27, 3 p.m.

Agency closes at 3 p.m. in observance of Thanksgiving


Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day

May 13, 2014



In this issue:

Iowa's NAEP results show some gains, need for improvement
Community Health Charities Campaign Begins
Welcome, New GWAEA Staff
Our Condolences...
Google iPad
GWAEA iPad Refresh
Download the GWAEA App
Financial Planning Seminars
Like Us on Facebook and Twitter
TQ Professional Development dates
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities
Buy, Sell and Trade


Agency Advisory Minutes

Grant Wood AEA Staff Openings

The GWAEA Board Book

The GWAEA Board Minutes


Past Issues







Grant Wood AEA


To ensure success for all learners.

Grant Wood AEA Goals:

1. Increase the academic performance of all learners.

2. Increase the percentage of students who perform at the proficient level.

3. Increase student acquisition and application of 21st century skills and knowledge.

Iowa’s NAEP results show some gains, need for improvement


Iowa’s student results on the National Assessment of Educational Progress show some gains in math and reading since 2011, but stagnation over the long term remains a challenge statewide.


“We see some bright spots in today’s results, but they largely underscore the need to continue pushing forward with our education priorities,” Iowa Department of Education Director Brad Buck said.


Iowa has participated in NAEP assessments since they were first administered in 1990. Today’s NAEP results cover math and reading for grades 4 and 8. Iowa’s results show small growth from 2011 in fourth- and eighth-grade reading and fourth-grade math. The long-term trend remains flat in reading at both grade levels, with small growth in math.


The results also show no single demographic group stands out for Iowa’s relative stagnation. White students, who make up 81 percent of Iowa’s student population, are behind their white peers nationally across all tested grade levels and subject areas.


Significant gaps in achievement also remain for black and Hispanic students, students who do not speak English as their native language, students from low-income backgrounds and students with disabilities.


See the website for additional information.


Community Health Charities Campaign Begins


Per the request of some agency staff, Grant Wood AEA is pleased to support Community Health Charities and its member charities by providing pledge forms for donating. Community Health Charities makes it easy for employees to connect with 32 of Iowa’s most trusted health charities – including the American Diabetes Association, The Arc of Iowa, Tanager Place, Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA),  the March of Dimes, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Alzheimer’s Association – and to support the health issues that are most important to them and their families.  To read more about the impact donations have, please visit

We do not offer payroll deduction for the Community Health Charities; so if you wish to give, please attach a check to the pledge form and submit it to the Communications Office. We will forward all of these pledges to the Community Health Charities office for our area. Pledge forms and brochures are already or soon will be in staff mailboxes. Please return your pledge/check by no later than Friday, December 6. Thank you for supporting this important charity.

Welcome, New GWAEA Staff


Ann Marie Hoban

Our Condolences...

  • to the family and friends of Kathryn Joan Falb Gutz, who passed away on Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013. Kathryn served as a Grant Wood AEA board member in the early years of the agency.

    Her obituary is available in The Gazette.

The New Google App Launcher

You may have noticed the beautiful black bar is no longer on your web browser in Google. The video below will show you how to now reach your sites, drive and other tools.

Google and the iPad: The Best of Both Worlds

This workshop will help you discover how to best utilize Google Apps and your iPad to manage your information and workflow. Learn how to transfer information in document, picture, or video form from your iPad for storage and easy access in your Google Drive and Youtube. Register today for this half-day workshop from 8:30-11:30 on December 3rd, Course Number 6922-13-01 or 1:00-4:00 on January 27th, Course Number 6922-13-02, in the SCALE-UP Classroom.

GWAEA iPad Refresh

The announcement was made about the new iPads in August. We elected to wait until the new iPads came out and they were just released November 1st. We have ordered a few to preview, to see if we need new cases, features etc. The refresh will hopefully be taking place in December and we will use data from the feedback forms to decide who will be part of the first wave of refresh. This is not going to be an easy process and we will try to meet the needs of as many staff as we can. Be watching the The Bulletin Board for updates.


Download the GWAEA app

Grant Wood AEA is introducing a new iPad/iPhone/Smart Phone app. The app features links to the following:


About Us

Information for Educators

Media Center

Professional Development

Special Education


This app is free, and available from the iTunes Store or the Google Play Store by searching for Grant Wood AEA or GWAEA.

For more information, contact Stacy Behmer, GWAEA Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology,

Here is an overview of the Agency App and what is there. Turn your notifications on, so you will be notified with important events and reminders.

Financial Planning Seminars for GWAEA staff

The LIFE Group has indicated their "Whats Important to YOU" survey generated the following results:

  • 35% said Long Term Care

  • 24% said Estate Planning

  • 22% said Life Insurance

  • 19% said Debt Reconstruction and College Planning

Some staff wrote additional questions concerning:

  • Reducing taxes

  • How do I know when to retire?

  • How do other earnings affect IPERS?

  • Securing retirement

  • Annuities and other investment concerns

The organization’s workshops will be held on November 12th in Coralville and November 13th in Cedar Rapids to learn more. The 4:30 session will answer the above questions. The 6:00 session will be focused on IPERS and Retirement Planning.


The LIFE Group would appreciate staff providing an RSVP for sessions. If none of these times work, they have offered to meet with staff individually. Spouses/significant others are welcome to attend as well.  The organizer, Chad Hruska, can be contacted through email at or by phone at 563-587-7826.

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.

New TQ dates 2013-2014

Nov. 13, Feb. 26, May 28
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 2013-2014 is now on the Professional Development Google Site.  To access the Google site, log into your Google account, click on Sites, and browse sites. 

Mandatory Reporter, Bloodborne Pathogens and/or Chapter 103: Seclusion and Restraint training

Reminder notices are being sent. Please submit certificates of completion to Tammy Carolan in the Professional Development Office.



iPad Professional Development

There are a series of Google and iPad workshops being offered. See the GWAEA Professional Development site to register.



Assistive Technology Consideration and IEP Team AT Resources

This workshop will discuss the requirements for assistive technology consideration during the IEP process and how to include that information on the new Iowa IEP forms. The content of this workshop will also provide tips and methods for carrying out successful AT consideration in an IEP meeting. A form used by many AEAs and highlighted on the Iowa Department of Education website will be highlighted and discussed. Assistive Technology resources and related forms for documentation will also be highlighted. These AT tools and resources are available on the GWAEA AT Website for district IEP teams to utilize as they seek to meet the needs of students with disabilities. Participants are encouraged to bring their own technology device (BYOD) to this workshop in order to access and bookmark web-based resources that are discussed in this workshop.
Number: 19205-13-01
Date/Time: 11/11/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM
Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404

Section 504 Plans

Participants will learn about the purpose of Section 504, eligibility requirements, due process requirements, and the process to follow to develop a quality 504 Plan for eligible students.
Number: 9185-13-01
Date/Time: 11/11/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

Creating Inclusive Environments in Culturally Diverse Classrooms

Diversity in inclusive environments enhances learning. This workshop will provide educators with the basic skills and tools necessary to create inclusive classrooms in this diverse world. Oftentimes we forget that diversity and inclusivity goes hand in hand. By providing an inclusive learning environment teachers will enable their students to excel.
Number: 19236-13-01


11/15/2013 8:00 AM-1:00 PM



See flyer for details.

Curriculum Based Evaluation for Reading and Written Language

This course is recommended for AEA staff and reading support staff. The Decoding, Comprehension, and Written Language Curriculum Based Evaluation (CBE) tools have been designed to gather more in-depth diagnostic information about literacy performance. The information can help teams develop interventions, monitor student progress, and make decisions about identifying and focusing resources and support services. The is a $50 materials fee for non Grant Wood AEA staff.
Number: 4507-13-01
Date/Time: 11/18/2013 8:30 AM-4:00 PM
11/19/2013 8:30 AM-4:00 PM
02/28/2014 8:30 AM-10:30 AM

GWAEA Professional Development Opportunity

Special Education and Iowa Core Mathematics

Dec. 9, 2013 • 8:30 AM-3:30 PM


Registration Deadline: Dec. 4, 2014,
6:00 a.m.


See flyer for details

PAR-ty: Selecting Reading Accommodations for Struggling Students

Big news! There is a tool available that has been making a big difference in identifying the best reading accommodations for struggling readers. This new tool is called PAR (Protocol for Accommodations in Reading) and it is a free download from Don Johnston, Inc. Whether you've never heard of it - or have already downloaded it - this workshop is to help us all get started using this tool the right way. And what better way than with a party? Or rather, a PAR-ty! Come join us to learn more about the tool and get your materials together, along with a chance to practice PAR on a fellow colleague or two.
Participants are asked to bring a laptop with them to the training and to download the PAR guide and to print resource guide prior to workshop.
Number: 19202-13-03

Date/Time: 12/12/2013 12:30 PM-3:30 PM

Selecting Writing Accommodations for Struggling Students

Join us as we introduce to you the Written Productivity Profile (WPP) for use with struggling writers as a means to determine the most appropriate accommodations for written expression. The updated version of the Written Productivity Profile is to be released by this fall via the Don Johnston website. Participants may be encouraged to download this tool (for a small charge) prior to attendance. There will be opportunity for you to observe step-by-step administration of this tool. In addition, we will introduce additional free writing assessments and low cost AT supports that enable teachers to closely examine the writing process for ALL students including those with mild to significant disabilities.
Participants are asked to bring a laptop with them to the training and if possible to download the updated Written Productivity Profile from the Don Johnston website.
Number: 19201-13-03

Date/Time: 12/12/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

Sink or Swim: How to Modify High School Curriculum for Learners with Special Needs

This workshop will provide participants a process which will enable them to modify any course content so that students who are included in the general education classroom will be able to understand, know and be able to do the basic requirements for the course.
Number: 19217-13-01


01/06/2014 9:00 AM-3:30 PM



See flyer for details.

Evaluator Approval Information

Professional Administrator Licenses require approved Evaluator Approval coursework as a part of the licenses renewal credits.  The course options include Assessing Academic Rigor and iEvaluate. A letter from the DE/BOEE is attached for additional information. Please contact the PD office if you have further questions.

Buy, Sell or Trade

Wanted: Alto saxaphone, reasonable price. 447-4274 after 5:30 p.m.


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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