Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board


Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day

May 13, 2014


In this issue:

GWAEA Three in 1 K
Welcome, New Staff
Kids on the Block
Our Condolences
Thank you
Lunch planned Sept. 24
Agency App Order Opens Sept. 6
Like Us on Facebook and Twitter
TQ Professional Development dates
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities
Lost & Found
Buy, Sell or 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.


Grant Wood AEA Three in 1 K is planned Oct. 9, 10 a.m.
(33rd, Sixth and Coralville facilities)

Grant Wood AEA is again joining the Healthiest State Initiative with a Three in 1 K on Wednesday, Oct. 9.


Walks will originate from the front door of all three agency offices. Do the walk over your break or over the noon hour. For the signup purposes, only the Sixth St. office address is shown at the following link, but all three office sites will be part of the event.


See more and register at:


Watch for more information in upcoming issues of The Bulletin Board or contact
George Held, ext. 6714, Kim Martin, ext. 6710, or Valerie Taylor Hill, ext. 6824,

Welcome, New GWAEA Staff


Brent O'Rourke
School Psychologist
Ed.S., University of Northern Iowa

Brent previously was a school psychologist at Keystone AEA,, Aug. 2011 - June 2013


Amanda Osborn

School Psychologist
Ed.S., University of Iowa (working toward Ph.D.)

Amanda was an adjunct faculty member at Kirkwood Community College, Aug. 2009-2013.


Kaneisha Pettaway
School Psychologist
M.S., Ed.S., Fort Hays State University


Allison Poss

School Psychologist

M.S., Ed.S., University of Nebraska at Omaha

Allison worked for two years as a school psychologist at Green Hills AEA. She is currently completing an Ed.D. in Leadership from Creighton University.


Ashley Ray
School Psychologist
School Psychology, Humboldt State University

Ashley's background includes positions with Orchard Place, providing private respite care, substitute teaching, GWAEA school psychologist and psychologist with the DMPS.


Gina Rogers
Technology Consultant
M.A.,Middlebury, B.A., University of Iowa

Gina has held positions as a high school English Teacher at West Branch SD, Lisbon SD, and Ridgeway, Colorado as well as an at-risk coordinator at Highland SD.


Melissa Scherkenbach
Curriculum Consultant
M.A., Instructional Design & Technology, University of Iowa; Reading Specialist, Drake; K-8 Principal Endorsement, Drake

Melissa has held positions as an elementary teacher in Arizona, Chicago and Cedar Rapids; a GWAEA school improvement consultant, and a reading specialist for the
Linn-Mar SD.


Bridget Schuster
Autism and Special Education Consultant
M.A., Special Education, Morningside

Bridget was a teacher in the autism program at Harding Middle School, Cedar Rapids.


Anne Speer

Curriculum Consultant

M.A., Educational Administration, University of Northern Iowa

Anne's background includes positions as a 7th grade Language Arts teacher with the Independence Community Schools and 7th grade Literacy teacher with the Ames Community Schools.


Amy Stevens

Special Education Consultant

B.S.Ed., Illinois State Univ.; M.A., Morningside

Amy worked as an 8th grade Level I special education teacher at Excelsior Middle School, Linn-Mar SD since 2004.



The Kids on the Block

Grant Wood AEA needs puppeteers for “The Kids on the Block”.  The “Kids on the Block” are a troop of puppets, some of them handicapped. This is the twenty ninth year this exciting disabilities awareness project is being made available to third grade students within our AEA, for awareness and acceptance of disabled persons. This is a fun and satisfying experience for both puppeteers and students.


Puppeteers work in teams of three.  A puppet presentation is approximately 1 hr. in length.  Shows are usually scheduled at 1:00 or 1:30pm.  This involves a commitment of one afternoon per month, although you can perform as often as desired. We hope to gain more teams so that every school that would like a show is able to book one.


Teams are now being formed so if you are interested in becoming a puppeteer, please call or email Cathy Nelson by Wednesday, September 18. If you know anyone else that is interested that you would like to have on your team, let me know. If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Cathy at 6544, or email at


Information needed is:

1. How many times a month you would like to perform.

2. The best afternoon to schedule you OR a list of dates you are available in case your schedule varies.

3. Who you would like on your team if you know others you want to perform with.

Our Condolences... Erlene Spicer, GWAEA Secretary, on the death of her father-in-law, Hubert Spicer,
on September 7, in South Bend, Indiana. Funeral services were held on Monday, September 9, in
South Bend. Nancy Lochner on the death of her husband, Frank, on Sept. 10. Visitation will be at Murdoch Funeral Home in Marion on Thursday, Sept. 12, from 4 to 8 p.m. Services will be held on Friday, Sept. 13, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Marion. Nancy is a former GWAEA executive assistant.

Thank you

I would like to thank everyone who contributed to my donation to the Iowa SIDS Foundation in memory of my son, Zachary. This year’s walk was another  GREAT success and it was a meaningful time to remember ALL of the families and babies who have been affected by SIDS. Your donation and support to the foundation help to increase awareness and research to hopefully someday find a cause and a cure for SIDS.


Thank you,

Annette Renaud

Agency App Order to Open Friday, September 6!


The order form will be available for agency purchased apps from 3 p.m. on Friday, September 6 until noon on Monday, September 16.


Once we receive all of the orders, we will purchase and distribute app codes.


If you have previously ordered apps we are asking that you limit your order to three additional at this time. If this is your first order we are asking you limit your order to eight apps total from the Tier 1 or Tier 2 list.


The apps on the Tier 2 list generally cost significantly more than those on the Tier 1 list, so you will be required to provide additional information on how you hope to use these apps. We will also pass these requests to RAs or other management staff for approval so that we can ensure that the right people are getting the right apps.

If you are new to the Agency, or have not ordered apps before, please click here to read about the difference between Tier 1 and Tier 2 apps. Descriptions of each app and a link to the iTunes Store can be found on the GWAEA iPad Project Site.

You can access the order form by clicking here or by visiting the GWAEA iPad Project Site. Please note, YOU WILL BE REQUIRED TO SIGN IN WITH YOUR GOOGLE ACCOUNT BEFORE YOU ORDER. ORDER FORM LINK

Instructional Technology Support at the Southern Facility

Our new technology consultant, Gina Rogers, will be serving southern districts and also supporting GWAEA staff. She will be working out of the Coralville office and will be available to help staff who work out of that office. Each week Gina will post her “office hours” so if you need to drop in with an instructional tech question or iPad question she will be there. For hardware support you will still need to see the IT department in Cedar Rapids.


The "I"s have it!

We are celebrating our brand new Web IDEA applications:


Hotdog Lunch

Sept. 24, 2013, 11:30-12:30 p.m.

GWAEA Garage, Sixth St. facility


Bring a dish to share, something to drink, and your own table service.


See flyer for details.



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

Sept. 18, 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. 




iPad Professional Development

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



2013-2014 GWAEA Professional Development Early Childhood Education Offerings




See flyer for details


Assistive Technology at
Grant Wood AEA


See flyer for details and links to registration through Grant Wood AEA Professional Development.




Personalized Learning Networks

Rob Mancabelli will share ideas on how to create globally connected classrooms, implement powerful project-based curricula, and introduce students to tools and technologies with transformative potential. He will also share information about the partnership between BrightBytes and GWAEA to collect and analyze information about how technology is being used to impact teaching and learning in your districts.
Number: 19220-13-02
Date/Time: 10/02/2013 6:00 PM-8:00 PM


RESPECT: Recognizing Everyone`s Strengths by Peacebuilding Empathizing, Communicating and Trustbuilding

This course is intended to enhance learning for students receiving special education services by respectfully and creatively building and growing relationships between educator and family members of IEP teams. This goal is based on the theory that the power of an IEP team to produce results that will meet student, educator and family needs is rooted in the quality of the relationship

among team members. The quality of the relationships is dependent to a large extent on the way team members work collaboratively to bridge differences. Parents are highly encouraged to take the course. The course is scheduled over four months to allow participants time for strategy application and reflection on new learnings.
Number: 4001-13-01
Date/Time: 10/03/2013 8:00 AM-4:30 PM
10/23/2013 8:00 AM-4:30 PM
11/22/2013 8:00 AM-4:30 PM
12/04/2013 8:00 AM-4:30 PM

The Brain Injury Resource Team presents...

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: 19212-13-01
Date/Time: 10/10/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

STAR Autism Program Training

The STAR Autism Program teaches children with autism the critical skills identified by the 2001 National Research Council. The ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) instructional methods of discrete trial training, pivotal response training and functional routines form the instructional base of this comprehensive program for children with autism.


Participants will learn the techniques of discrete trial training, pivotal response training and teaching functional routines. They will receive examples of the STAR Autism program lesson plans at each instructional level in order to practice their skills in implementing the program. The course content will include the following: An overview of the three instructional methods (discrete trial, pivotal response training and functional routines) and how they are used in combination to form the STAR Autism Program. A comprehensive how to training on the use of discrete trial training. An introduction on how to implement pivotal response training.


The STAR Autism Program has been used to provide intensive instruction in critical skills for children with autism in both self-contained programs and inclusive education programs. The program provides a structure that allows teachers to implement instruction throughout the child's day through typical school routines and provides techniques to teach the child in short 1:1 instructional sessions. The skills the child learns in the 1:1 instruction can be immediately practiced in the natural environment through the functional routines lessons.

This course will be presented by staff from STAR Autism Support.
Number: 4549-13-01
Date/Time: 10/10/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM
10/11/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM
11/04/2013 5:00 PM-8:00 PM

Smart but Scattered: Executive Dysfunction at Home and at School

Youngsters with poor executive skills are disorganized or forgetful, have trouble getting started on tasks, get distracted easily, lose papers or assignments, forget to bring home the materials to complete homework or forget to hand homework in. They may rush through work or dawdle, they make careless mistakes that they fail to catch. They don't know where to begin on long-term assignments, and they put the assignment off until the last minute, in part because they have trouble judging the magnitude of the task and how long it will take to complete it.

Their workspaces are disorganized, and teachers may refer to their desks, backpacks, and notebooks as "black holes." Student with executive skill deficits present tremendous challenges to both parents and teachers who often find themselves frustrated by children whose problems in school seem to have little to do with how smart they are or how easily they learn.
Number: 19223-13-01
Date/Time:10/21/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

The Zones of Regulation

The Zones of Regulation is a framework and curriculum designed to foster skills in self-regulation, including emotional control, sensory regulation, and executive functions. It is a systematic, cognitive behavior approach that uses four colors to help students visually and verbally self-identify how they are functioning in the moment given their emotions and state of alertness. The model incorporates Social Thinking concepts to help students use perspective taking, to identify how they are thinking and feeling, and understand how their thoughts and behavior impact those around them. Through using the curriculum, individuals become more self-aware and learn tools they can use to regulate to a more expected state.

Books and materials will be available for purchase onsite. Book cost $42, posters $5.
Number: 19222-13-01
Date/Time: 11/05/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

Developing Readers in Disciplinary Literacy

Secondary educators teach in a variety of disciplines, but all are responsible for literacy within their subject areas. The national CCSS standards for Literacy represent a historic shift, requiring that all teachers -- science, technical education, social studies, music, family and consumer education, mathematics, literature, art, world languages, and others -- address reading, writing, language, and speaking/listening standards through disciplinary instruction. Disciplinary Literacy can be understood as the merging of content knowledge, experiences, and skills with the ability to read, write, listen, speak, think critically and perform in a way that is meaningful within the context of disciplinary learning.

During this course, participants will examine literacy practices that boost comprehension as well as mentor students as readers of complex texts as they strive to meet the literacy challenges within the different academic disciplines they study.

Number: 4665-13-01

11/07/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


12/16/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


02/27/2014 8:30 AM-3:30 PM AEA 10 Location
4401 6th St SW
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


04/04/2014 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404

Staying the Course:
Sustaining Your School Improvement Focus with
Steve Ventura

Feb. 17, 2014 • 8:30 AM-3:00 PM


Audience: PreK-12 Administrators, Special Education Teachers, Media Specialists, Counselors


South Slope Community Center
980 North Front St
North Liberty


Course Number: 19219-13-01

Fee: $60



See flyer for details


Registration Deadline: Feb. 3, 2014, 6:00 a.m.

Steve Ventura from the Leadership/Learning Center has served as a school leader at the elementary, middle and high school levels. This professional learning session will provide participants overview skills to implement the data team model which will provide school teams skills to analyze current student performance, select high leverage instructional practices, create a plan of action and monitor the plan of action.

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.

Lost & Found:

Lost: The SPEL Team is missing a box that had two very large rolls of Velcro Dots. It is missing from the top of the mailboxes in the Northwest Region area. Someone apparently picked it up by mistake.
If found, please deliver to Lisa Becker. Thanks!

Buy, Sell or Trade:

For Sale: Four tickets to Iowa vs. Western Michigan on September 21st. Asking face value, $60.00 per ticket. Call Megan at ext. 6545 or email


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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