Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board


Dec. 24, 3 p.m.

The agency closes for winter break and will reopen on
Jan. 2, 2013, at 7:30 a.m.


Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day

May 13, 2014



SchoolReach Phone System
Electronic W-2's Now Available
Universal Precautions/Bloodborne Pathogens
Our Condolences...
Bouquets and Kudos...
HyVee Receipts
Webinar, Dec. 17
Recycling with Rick
GWAEA iPad Refresh
Using Google to Refresh Spreadsheets
Link to the GWAEA Daily
Like Us on Facebook and Twitter
TQ Professional Development dates
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities


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.

SchoolReach Phone System

As in the past when there is a need to call all staff quickly (typically in the event of a weather-related building closure), Grant Wood AEA will use the SchoolReach Phone Notification System. One slight change has been made to the system. Instead of manually updating the phone numbers in the system by first collecting numbers through a Zoomerang, numbers will automatically be taken from the Personal Information section as entered in the Employee Self Service System. When a need arises for a call, the SchoolReach system will try two numbers. Home Phone and Cell Phone. However, if the release for either or both of these numbers is “No One”, that number will not be called.


Please sign in to the Employee Self Service sometime before January 1 and update your phone numbers and release information. Sometime shortly after January 1, a test call will be made with the SchoolReach system. If all goes well with the test call, Agency closures will be announced through the SchoolReach system after that. Until that time, please check the local TV and radio stations for GWAEA weather-related announcements.  As a reminder, in the event of an Agency closing a voice mail message is also sent to all staff voice mailboxes and a notice is posted on the home page of the Agency web site.


Below is information on how to sign in to make updates using the Employee Self Service.

To update:
1)    Go to GWAEA home page, click on Staff Website, click on Employee Self Service
2)    Enter username (first initial & last name) and your password (click on green box if you have forgotten your password)
3)    Click on Personal Information (found under my information)
4)    Update the appropriate phone numbers and release information  
5)    Click on Save Changes or Delete this Contact
If you have questions or need additional information, please contact the Human Resources Office at ext. 6703.  Thank you for keeping this information current.

Electronic W-2’s Now Available

The Grant Wood Payroll System now includes functionality to distribute Form W-2 Wage and Tax Statements electronically to employees who give proper consent.  By giving electronic W-2 delivery consent, this means you will not receive a paper W-2 Form in the mail.  Instead, you would receive an email indicating that your W-2 Form is available to view and print on the Employee Self Service (ESS) site.


This option is available and can be made within the ESS at:  Log in with your username and password. Under the ‘my information’ column select the W-2 History tab.  Read through the Electronic W-2 Delivery Consent bubble to give your consent.




Contact Cathy Kearns, Compensation/Benefits, with any questions about W-2 Forms and/or electronic delivery consent.  Email:  or phone:  319-399-6706.

Universal Precautions/Bloodborne Pathogens

To promote a safe working environment and prevent and control the transmission of communicable diseases, employees are to use universal precautions in the delivery of services.  Universal precautions are identified in the Agency’s exposure control plan for bloodborne pathogens, which is reviewed on an annual basis.  Key components of the plan are summarized here for employee information and reference.


Wallet-sized cards outlining these procedures have previously been provided to all staff.  If you need additional cards, have questions or would like more information, please contact the Human Resources Office, ext. 6703.  Thank you.

Our Condolences...

  • to George Held, GWAEA Communications Supervisor, on the passing of his wife, Pam, on Dec. 12.  Arrangements are currently pending.

  • to Emily Hart, GWAEA speech-language pathologist, on the recent passing of her mother, Eleanor Hart.

  • to the family of Dee Dennis. Dee passed away on Nov. 26. She worked as Compiler Clerk in GWAEA Media for 41 years, retiring in 2008. An obituary is available.


Henry James Vitense was born on 12/7 at 12:01 a.m. He weighed 7 lbs, 4 ounces and was 20.5 inches long. Mom and Henry are both doing well! Proud parents are Jake (Behavior Consultant) and Tonya (School Psychologist).

Bouquets and Kudos...

Hy-Vee receipts for GWAEA/Detention School Program

HyVee has approved the Grant Wood AEA/Detention School Program for the Cash for Students program for this school year.  We collect HyVee receipts from May 1, 2013 to April 30, 2014.  For every $200 in receipt collected, $1 is received from HyVee. The program is hoping to purchase some much needed library books for the program. HyVee receipts can be collected from the store, Drugtowns, or gas stations from Cedar Rapids or Marion. There is a collection envelope in the staff lounge at GWAEA on 6th street or receipts can be sent van mail out to Detention on van 2-1.

After School Special - Teen Dating Violence: What it looks like. What to do.

Webinar on Dec. 17, 2013

Presenter: Kirsten Faisal, Director of Training and Technical Assistance for the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence (ICADV)

Space is limited. Reserve your Webinar seat now.


The goal of this webinar is to increase educator awareness of and capacity to respond to intimate partner violence among youth, by informing participants on how to:
     -Identify non-violent behaviors that are part of a pattern of ongoing physical abuse.
     -Engage youth in conversations about unhealthy relationships.
     -Assist victims in accessing resources and developing strategies to be safer and cope.

"After School Special" is a series of educator relevent webinars hosted by the Advisory Council on Brain Injuries in partnership with the Brain Injury Alliance of Iowa and presented by guest speakers.  For access to archived webinars please visit

Recycling with Rick

Just a reminder... It is refrigerator cleaning time.


As you leave for the holiday time, please take items that you want to save from the fridge.


Anything left behind will be disposed of over the break.


Have a safe and Happy Holiday season.


Your Marsden Staff,
Curtis, Rick, Gerry, Linda, Morgan, & Joey

iPad Air Refresh

After evaluating the budget and needs of our staff, we have decided to replace 155 of our agency iPad2s with 32GB iPad Airs, which is the most current model. The plan is to refresh approximately the same number of devices next year and then implement a 3 year rotation cycle the following year, repurposing the iPads that will be replaced.

Employees who will receive a new iPad will need to sign up for a time to trade their current device and set up the new one.  They will also need to order a new case, which will be done at the same time.

To determine who will be eligible for the first round of refresh, the following criteria was applied:

1)  Age of the device

2)  Usage of iPad

3)  Contributions to required data collection

4)  Participation in shared learning

5)  Job category

Following is the list of employees who will receive iPads during the first refresh cycle. An email will be sent to each of the individuals on the list with more information about device turn in, new set up and case ordering . You will need to sign up by 5:00 pm on Thursday, December 19 as the order will be placed prior to leaving for holiday break.  

Plans will be made to repurpose many of the devices for staff check-out and use.  If you have any suggestions for other ways in which they might be repurposed, please email Stacy Behmer,

Update to Google Spreadsheets

If you are using Google forms or spreadsheets to look at data improvements have been made! Filter views is a new feature unique to Google Sheets that lets you quickly name, save and share different views of your data. This comes in handy when you’re collaborating so you can sort a spreadsheet without affecting how others see it. New function help and examples guide you as you type, and error highlighting and coloring make it easy to spot and fix mistakes. Other updates that come along with the new Google Sheets, include:  colored sheet tabs, custom number formatting, paste transpose and more. Check out the blog!



Link to the GWAEA Daily -

Looking to expand your PLN (Personal Learning Network), but don’t know where to start or who to follow. We have put together a site to get you started! This site is published daily pulling resources from Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, blogs and other social media. You can select the subscribe button and have it emailed to you. Readers can also easily select a story, video, photo or link and share it with others! All you need is an email address to subscribe to this electronic newspaper!


Resources can be added to our paper, so if YOU are writing blog posts, adding to a Youtube channel or sending Tweets let us know! If there is another organization or professional to include in the paper fill out the Contributor’s Form. This is something that we will be sharing with LEAs as well.  Happy reading!

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

Feb. 26, May 28, 2014
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. 



iPad Professional Development

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



Deeper Learning on the FBA Process and How it Leads to Intervention Planning

This course will provide GWAEA staff information related to the functional behavior assessment process and how the process informs our behavior intervention planning for children displaying challenging behavior. Practice collecting behavioral data via indirect and direct assessments along with practice analyzing this data will be a focus of the course. Practice with beginning the process of developing interventions based on data will be provided as well. Participants will be encouraged to bring behavioral data for a student on their current caseload (for the last two sessions). Content about the principles of behavior will be embedded throughout the course. All GWAEA staff who are involved in consulting or coaching school teams in creating FBAs and BIPs as a part of their role are encouraged to attend.

Number: 5542-13-01

01/14/2014 8:30 AM-4:00 PM

02/06/2014 8:00 AM-12:00 PM

02/12/2014 12:00 PM-4:00 PM

Number: 5542-13-02

03/06/2014 8:30 AM-4:00 PM

04/02/2014 12:00 PM-4:00 PM

04/08/2014 8:00 AM-12:00 PM

Strategies to Support Executive Functioning

The course will discuss the meaning of executive functioning and how deficits in this area impact student learning. Class time will be spent learning how to identify executive functioning deficits and how to match strategies to support learning in the areas of emotional control, working memory, planning skills, organization, and focus and attention skills.
Number: 4675-13-01

01/14/2014 5:00 PM-8:00 PM
01/28/2014 5:00 PM-8:00 PM
02/11/2014 5:00 PM-8:00 PM
02/25/2014 5:00 PM-8:00 PM
03/11/2014 5:00 PM-8:00 PM

Introduction to Sheltered Instruction

This course will provide participants with a research-based framework to guide differentiated lesson planning, delivery, and assessment that meet the needs of ELLs and other diverse learners. Teaching strategies and demonstrations specifically designed to facilitate simultaneous learning of language and content will be presented by a variety of veteran educators.


Location: Coralville Public Library

1401 5th Street, Coralville,
Number: 4269-13-01


01/25/2014 8:45 AM-4:15 PM
02/08/2014 8:45 AM-4:15 PM
02/25/2014 4:30 PM-6:30 PM



See flyer for details.

Thinking About Thinking: Practical Social Thinking Strategies for Students with Social Learning Challenges

This workshop is designed to introduce attendees to Social Thinking and social learning related to functional treatment strategies to use both at school and at home. The ILAUGH Model of Social Thinking will be introduced which helps to demonstrate how social processing difficulties impact many of our students, not only their social skills but also their ability to work as part of a group and focus on specific academic tasks such as written expression, reading comprehension and organizational skills.


A deeper discussion about WHY students with social skills difficulties have related academic challenges, which impact them across their school and home day will also be a part of the workshop day.


Emphasis will be given to understanding the Common Core Standards (CCSs) and how these related to individuals who are more literal, aloof, miss sarcasm, are less organized, show marked difficulty reading social contextual cues from people and the situation, comprehending language arts material, expressing themselves in written expression, and appear more awkward in their attempts to socially engage with their peers. The emphasis of this day will be around expanding our understanding of where to start and how to progress with these students based on their age, what is realistic to teach, and how to apply this learning in the inclusion-based classroom.


Number: 19230-13-01
Date/Time: 02/07/2014 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

Significant Disabilities Miniseries: Literacy Instruction for Students with Significant Disabilities

This session will introduce the basic principles of literacy instruction for use by regular and special education teachers for students with significant disabilities. This content is based primarily on the research of Karen Erickson from the Literacy and Disabilities Studies Center at UNC-Chapel Hill. Join us as we discuss this framework of instruction as well as practical implementation strategies to get you started.
Number: 19214-13-01

Date/Time: 02/07/2014 1:00 PM-4:00 PM

Supporting Brain Functioning in the Classroom

Participants will gain an awareness of the GWAEA Brain Injury Resource Team. Content will include discussion and interactive learning that includes parts of the brain and their executive responsibilities. Additionally, participants will learn about the potential classroom impacts of brain injuries with a primary focus on classroom strategies to support individuals with brain injury and support universal learning for all students.
Number: 19212-13-02
Date/Time: 02/11/2014 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

Crisis Prevention Intervention Certification

Crisis Prevention Intervention (CPI) is a behavior management training program designed to provide safe and secure behavioral intervention. It is a respectful, noninvasive method to use in defusing escalating behavior and safely manage physically aggressive behavior. This approach emphasizes prevention and teaches educators how to de-escalate potentially disruptive or violent situations. Participants also learn how to design school-wide behavior crisis management systems and to create behavior crisis intervention teams. Participants who complete CPI training are certified for one year by the International CPI Association.
Please bring a sack lunch as it is a working lunch.
Number: 9303-13-03
Date/Time: 02/13/2014 8:00 AM-5:00 PM

An Evidence Based Approach to Standing and Walking for Children with Moderate to Severe Motor Dysfunction

This one day course will focus on infants and children with moderate to severe gross motor dysfunction. Standing and walking will be presented using a review of the evidence interspersed with case studies using videos from the presenter's personal experiences.
Number: 19239-13-01
Date/Time: 02/20/2014 8:30 AM-5:00 PM

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: 19205-13-03
Date/Time: 02/25/2014 8:30 AM-11:30 AM


Comprehensive Implementation Training

April 14-15, 2014

8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Check & Connect is a model of sustained intervention for promoting students’ engagement at school and with learning.


See flyer for details.


Register Online. Special needs should be indicated on registration information. Fees: $575. Register by April 6, 2014

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.


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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