Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board

Mark Your Calendar

May 30, 2016
Agency closed in observance of Memorial Day


June 13-Aug. 12, 2016

GWAEA Summer Hours


Aug. 17, 2016

GWAEA All-Agency Inservice
9:00-11:30 a.m.

College Community


Aug. 18-19, 2016

SAVE THE DATES: Various technology sessions offered for GWAEA staff. Registration coming soon.

In This issue:


Continuing Our Mentoring and Induction Work Beyond i3 Funding
Phone System Software Upgrade Planned May 24
Wanted: Feedback on Agency Banquet
GWAEA Emergent Lit Team Receives $4,000 Grant for Read to Me! Talk to Me! Program
Grant Wood AEA summer hours, June 13-Aug. 12, 2016
A Note From Business Office/Human Resources
Grant Wood AEA Garden Update
Retirement Celebrations
Quota Golf
Tech Tips
GWAEA GROW News/Upcoming Events
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities
Buy, Sell or Trade
Lost and Found

Agency Advisory Minutes

Grant Wood AEA Staff Openings

The GWAEA Board Book

The GWAEA Board Minutes



Past Issues








Articles for The Bulletin Board are due end of the day on Wednesdays. Submit your items email to
Valerie Taylor Hill
GWAEA Public Information Specialist




Grant Wood AEA Mission: To ensure success for all learners.


Continuing Our Mentoring and Induction Work Beyond i3 Funding

Supporting our school districts through professional development services so that all students can succeed is part of our mission. Our organization's partnership with the
New Teacher Center and work related to mentoring and induction is directly connected to increasing student learning by accelerating the effectiveness of new teachers, experienced teachers and school leaders, and it's getting accolades around the nation.

Grant Wood AEA and NTC built, supported and sustained a consortium model that creates equitable learning opportunities for both rural and urban students, and allows smaller districts to operate like their large, urban counterparts in mentoring beginning teachers through a research-based comprehensive induction program.


The work in our agency is rooted in New Teacher Center's induction model, and includes what beginning teachers need most in order to provide:

  • Rigorous instructional mentoring to provide teachers with the skills to prepare their students for college, career and community.

  • Frequent and actionable feedback

  • Skills needed to build meaningful relationships within their school.

And while the original funding for our program, provided through an i3 grant received by the New Teacher Center, will be depleted at the end of this year, we have 20 districts in the
Grant Wood AEA service area signed up to continue the program at a higher cost. Additionally, Grant Wood AEA is helping other AEAs in the state build similar consortiums for their own districts.


Last month, Kim Owen, Mentoring and Induction Regional Administrator at Grant Wood AEA, wrote a guest column for EdTech Digest outlining how in partnership with NTC, the GWAEA Induction. Read more about the success of the program in the EdTech Digest article here.

Phone System Software Upgrade Planned May 24

On Tuesday, May 24, 2016, from 6:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. the Grant Wood AEA phone system will be will be inaccessible while routine maintenance is being performed on the system. If you have any questions, please contact Heath Ayers at ext. 6586 or  

Wanted: Feedback on Agency Banquet

We'd like your feedback! Each year the agency coordinates the staff recognition and partnership awards banquet, and we'd like feedback from staff who attended as well as those who chose not to attend this year's event.


This survey will remain open through Friday, May 27.

GWAEA Emergent Lit Team Receives $4,000 Grant for Read to Me! Talk to Me! Program

Grant Wood AEA has again received grant funding for an initiative called “Read to Me!--Talk to Me!”, an outreach program that aligns with our agency's emergent literacy efforts.  


This year's effort has been supported by two organizations: the Wal-Mart Foundation has awarded the program $1,000, and the Alliant Energy Foundation has awarded $3,000.

These funds will be used to purchase books that GWAEA will distribute through district preschool programs so they can establish home check-out libraries in their early learning classrooms. Each book is paired with a prompt card developed by the GWAEA Emergent Literacy Team that are designed to help parents build their child's language and literacy skills as they read the book several times with their child.


“Research has told us for a long time that reading to young children is critical to their literacy development. What has become even more apparent is that we need to do more than just read to them. We have to make the reading experience interactive. We need to give children opportunities to have conversations about books,” said Kim Smith, one of our GWAEA Emergent Lit team members who helped write the grant applications. “This program gives parents suggestions for research-based strategies and other interactions to help the parent take the reading experience to a higher level.”


The books and prompt cards will be assembled July 20 and 21 so they will be ready for distribution to preschools this fall. Any staff or adult volunteers who are interested in helping with the effort are encouraged to contact Kim.

Grant Wood AEA summer hours, June 13-Aug. 12, 2016

Agency hours during the summer (beginning the second Monday in June through the second Friday in August) are from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a half-hour lunch period. Staff have the opportunity to work a flex-time, 9-hour day Mondays through Thursdays (7:30 a.m.– 5 p.m.) and four hours on Fridays, leaving at 11:30 a.m. However, arrangements must be made for areas to be covered at all times. Any other deviations from the normal work hours will be handled within each program.

Click here to reference Administrative Regulation AR #4190A concerning flex-time and summer hours.


A Note From Business Office/Human Resources

In an effort to wrap up Grant Wood AEA’s fiscal year end in a timely manner the Business Office/Human Resources staff is asking for your help.  Please note the following deadlines.


June 10, 2016 

Final deadline to submit all remaining fiscal year (July 2015 – June 2016) invoicing requests.

June 30, 2016

Final deadline to submit all leave forms for the current work year (July 2015 – June 2016).

June 30, 2016

Final deadline to submit claims for mileage and travel

reimbursement for the fiscal year (July 2015 – June 2016).


Thank you from the Business Office/Human Resources staff.

Grant Wood AEA Gardens Planting Scheduled May 19

Planting in the Grant Wood AEA Gardens will begin on Thursday, May 19, 2016.


Please bring plants on May 19. Garden donations received before May 19 may be delivered to the loading dock or to Stacy Murphy.


If you would like to help plant on May 19, the group will meet in the area on the north side of the Sixth St. facility starting at 4:30 p.m. Dave Brousard is planning to have the area mulched in advance. Thank you everyone!


Questions? Email Stacy Murphy, or call ext. 6888.



A retirement reception celebrating Mary Beth Ross and Cheryl Nevenhoven was held at the Coralville facility on Wednesday, May 18, 2016. Mary Beth and Cheryl are both GWAEA school psychologists. Congratulations!



August Quota Club Golf Tournament Benefits
GWAEA Program

Registration deadline is Saturday, July 23; golf tournament, Saturday, Aug. 6

It's that time of year again and Quota International of Cedar Rapids is hosting the 14th annual charity golf tournament on Saturday, Aug. 6 at Wildcat Golf Course in Shellsburg. Check-in at 7 a.m.; start time, 8 a.m.


A portion of the proceeds from this tournament will be given to Grant Wood AEA's Itinerant Teachers of the Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing
to support their mission for children who are deaf and hearing-impaired.


Interested golfers and Grant Wood AEA teams are welcome. The registration deadline is July 23.



Click here for registration information or contact Emily Lee, GWAEA Itinerant Teacher of the Deaf/Hard of Hearing, ext. 6899.

Technology Tip - Synergize Support in Mail/Calendar/Drive

Google has acquired Synergize in the last couple weeks, which means all of the training is FREE for Google for Education users. You may have noticed a new little icon in the top right corner when you are in your email or another Google App. If you select the icon you will get a help search that will walk you through the how-to within your own account. In order to see this icon, you must be logged into the Chrome web browser with your Grant Wood AEA email address. This is great way to support our learning to reach our goal using 21st century skills.



PD Palooza is Coming!

As we work towards our agency goal to increase student acquisition and application of 21st century skills and knowledge, we will again be holding two days of professional development for our GWAEA staff on August 18-19. Registration is now open. Take a look at the schedule and get signed up!


GROW News/Upcoming Events

- Blue Zones Project Upcoming Events

- GWAEA GROW Bike Bingo Challenge

- Chair Massages during June, July

- Mindfulness 101

- Coloring Supplies in GWAEA Break Rooms

- Weight Watchers

- Yoga Club at GWAEA


Contact a member of the GROW Team for information.

Visit these Facebook links for upcoming activities and events:

Cedar Rapids Blue Zones Project

Iowa City Blue Zones Project

Marion Blue Zones Project


Keep improving your well-being by participating in one of the many Blue Zones Project events in the Cedar Rapids, Marion and Iowa City areas.


In support of Bike Month, the GROW Committee is sponsoring BIKE BINGO.  The week-long challenge begins on Monday, May 16, and ends on Friday, May 20.


To participate, pick up a BINGO card at the reception desk in your building OR print a BINGO card using this pdf link. You can actually BINGO without taking a bike ride. 


Once you have a BINGO, fill in your name at the top of the card and return it to Kim Martin, GWAEA Administration, or scan and email it to All entrees must be received by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, May 20, 2016 to be eligible for a drawing of one of two gift certificates to a bike shop of your choice. The winners will be announced in the Bulletin Board on Thursday, May 26, 2016.  

Bike Bingo Card

Celebrate Bike Month During May

This year, Bike to Work Week is May 16-20, 2016 and Bike to Work Day is Friday, May 20. Mark your calendars! Visit the Bike Month 2016 link for a list of area events.


The tentative schedule in Cedar Rapids includes:
Monday - Bike Week Proclamation

Tuesday - Pit stops

Wednesday - Bike to Lunch with the Mayor

Thursday - More pit stops

Friday - Handlebar Happy Hour/ Wrap Up Party

Chair Massage Schedule for June and July

Marcia will be here June 9 and July 14. Please email Stacy Murphy for an appointment.

Mindfulness 101:  Stress Reduction and Wellness

Location: Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility

Class dates are June 21, 28; July 5, 12, 19, 21, 26;
Aug. 2, 2016
, 1:00-3-30 p.m.


Registration fees are $125, a reduced fee through the support of the agency's GROW Committee. License renewal credit is available. Register on the Grant Wood AEA PD website. See the April 28, 2016 issue of The Bulletin Board for details.

Coloring Supplies Available in GWAEA Break Rooms

Looking for a break from stress?

Grant Wood AEA's GROW Committee is now offering coloring supplies in the break rooms. Available supplies include coloring sheets, markers, crayons, and colored pencils.


What are you waiting for? Sit down and color stress away.



Weight Watchers At Work


New registrations accepted each week! Since the November 2014 launch of the Grant Wood At-Work Weight Watchers program, members have lost a total of over 
720 pounds (or the weight of three full-grown zebras)!



Weight Watchers At-Work
New Session Begins 6/7/2016

Membership Opportunity extended to staff, family and friends (you may attend at any community location or at GWAEA on Tuesdays. Tuesday’s meeting weigh-in is available at 4:30 p.m. and the meeting begins at 4:45 p.m.). You are not required to attend Tuesday’s meetings, you can go to any other community meetings that suit your schedule.


Payment options: Payable at time of registration one check or credit card payment. You can also pay 3 checks, which will be deposited during different weeks of the session. If joining mid-session, cost will be pro-rated for remaining weeks.

Weight Watchers for Diabetes

Contact Kim Martin ( or Elizabeth Steffensmeier, ( with questions or to sign up.

Yoga Club at Grant Wood AEA

Mondays and Thursdays at 4:30 p.m. 
Media Center (outside the Glass Classroom)

There is no fee or sign-up required to join. Come when your schedule allows. Tara Johannsen and Cathy Kearns will facilitate the weekly sessions with the assistance of yoga DVDs and YouTube.


2016-2017 Leadership for Continuous Improvement

The 2016-2017 LCI series is a joint effort supported by GWAEA consultants and national presenters. This professional learning provides leadership teams and educators the opportunity to interact with relevant content and work collaboratively to implement this content into district improvement plans.


See flyer for the various offerings.


Further information will be provided by the GWAEA regional administrator or school improvement consultant for your district.


For information, contact:

Grant Wood AEA




Instructional Coaching

Instructors: Jim Knight and Ann Hoffman


Target Audience: Administrators

• How Principals Can Support Coaches and Vice Versa

June 16, 2016

Number: 19350-14-01




See flyer for dates, times, and locations

2016-2017 Instructional Coaching

Instructors: Jim Knight and Ann Hoffman



See flyer for dates, times, and locations


Target Audience: Instructional Coaches, Administrators, Lead/Model Teachers


• Instructional Coaching Seminar

Aug. 15-16, 2016

Number: 19351-16-01


• High Impact Instruction

Nov. 30-Dec. 1, 2016

Number: 19353-16-01


• Focus on Teaching, Using Video to Gather Data

March 3, 2017

Number: 19355-16-01


2016-2017 Grant Wood AEA Assistive Technology
Professional Learning Opportunities

See flyer for course offerings, dates and registration information.




See flyer for dates and details



2016-2017 Grant Wood AEA Resources for Educators and Parents Working or Living with Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders


See flyer for course offerings, dates and registration information.




See flyer for dates and details

Coaching for Tech Confidence & Competence

Participants will learn how to effectively coach teachers for technology confidence and competence. Coaches will learn foundations of coaching adults and how to best meet the needs of all the teachers they work with, novice to veteran. Additionally, coaches in this cohort will begin to develop a PLN to help assist their learning of how to support teachers with technology integration.


Relicensure, Drake-EDMA, or Morningside credit is available –
3 sem. hrs.




See flyer for dates and details

Registration information is available here.


Grant Wood AEA Math PD Courses, 2016-2017

See flyer for course offerings, dates and registration information.






See flyer for dates and details

Strategies for Improving Reading

Each workshop will focus specifically
on strategies supporting instruction
for one of the five Components of Reading – Phonemic Awareness, Phonics, Fluency, Vocabulary and Comprehension. Participants will engage in demonstrations, practice and application of learning, including an emphasis on:

• Core instruction (whole group and differentiated)
• Assessments (including FAST screening and diagnostic)
• Interventions
• Iowa Core Standards


See flyer for dates and registration information.


Visible Learning for Literacy

Doug Fisher, Heather Anderson, Aida Allen

Sept. 30, 2016


What if you knew the literacy practices that ensure students demonstrate more than a year’s worth of learning for a year spent in school?

Doug Fisher and colleagues will show you how to use the right approach at the right time to intentionally design classroom experiences that hit the surface, deep and transfer phases of learning.

Participants will apply Hattie’s research to develop practices that are “visible” for teachers and students to see. Because their purpose has been made clear, visible practices are implemented in the right moment in a student’s learning and their effect is tangible.


See flyer for information


Course Number: 19445-16-01
Registration available after May 15, 2016

$150 GWAEA Educators
$175 Non-GWAEA Educators

Visible Learning Foundations

Dr. John Hattie, Steve Ventura

Oct. 10, 2016

DoubleTree Cedar Rapids
Convention Complex

350 1st Ave N.E., Cedar Rapids, Iowa

During the Visible Learning Foundation Day Institute, participants will identify and discuss the most important messages from the Visible Learning research, learn about the five strands of Visible Learning, and know the difference between the influences that ‘do’ and ‘do not’ make a significant difference to student achievement. This Institute provides practical activities and take-away tools and is the first step of the Visible Learning Foundation Series that will help you become a Visible Learning School.


See flyer for information


Visible Learning is an in-depth school change model of professional learning and development based on the research of Professor John Hattie. Through the lens of Visible Learning evidence, you will learn to systematically examine effective instructional practice in order to determine the “impact” on student achievement and learning. By considering the effects of the practices of teachers and leaders, schools will be able to make substantial gains in student achievement.

Audience: All Educators

Course Number: 19440-16-01
Registration deadline: Oct. 3, 2016 at 6:00 a.m.


• Educators in Grant Wood AEA area, Total for non-credit $175
• Outside of Grant Wood AEA area,Total for non-credit $200


2016-2017 Grant Wood AEA Seminar Series

National presentations brought to you locally by Grant Wood AEA.


1:00-3:00 p.m.

Grant Wood AEA, 4401 Sixth St. S.W., Cedar Rapids


Oct. 5, 2016 - 19446-16-01

Buddy Berry - The Future of Personalized Learning: Reinventing Education


Nov. 2, 2016 - 19447-16-01

Dr. Robert Dillon - How Digital Learning Helps Close the Gap Around Educational Equity


Dec. 7, 2016 - 19448-16-01

Thomas Murray - Creating Schools and Classrooms that are Future Ready

See flyer for dates and registration information.


Jan. 4, 2017 -19449-16-01

Dr. Anthony Muhammad - All Means ALL! Creating Equitable Learning Environments



March 1, 2017- 19450-16-01

Zac Chase - Building School 2.0: How to Create the Schools We Need

2016-2017 AEA Teacher Leader Support System (TLSS)

Purpose: to establish a comprehensive multi-year regional program to develop important teacher leader skills and competencies and build capacity among a network of teacher and district leaders to promote long term system sustainability aligned with the Iowa Department of Education’s TLC Layered Approach for Support.


Fee Structure:
$1200 for District Annual Membership Fee and $750/instructional coach for one year of professional learning sessions.

2016-2017 AEA Teacher Leader Support System,
NTC Professional Learning Sessions Systems of Support for TLSS Districts
, and

Access to Optional Courses




See flyer for details


2015-2016 TQ Dates

Proposal Deadline: May 25, 2016


Visit the new TQ Google site.

The TQ proposal template and directions are available on the GWAEA Staff Portal under the
Teacher Quality Committee
link. Please submit your proposal electronically to Sherry Sines at by the dates listed above. Proposal reviews are typically completed by the TQ committee within 7 - 10 days after the due date.


TQ funds are available to support professional learning. All contracted staff in a position that requires educational licensure are eligible. Funds can be used to support learning time and resources for agency-wide proposals, region/discipline/program proposals and individual proposals. During the 2014-2015 school year, 31 proposals were approved to support professional learning in Literacy, Math, Early Childhood, Autism, Behavior, Science, Coaching, Mentorship, Speech Language, ELL, and Leadership Development. The application documents can be accessed on the Staff Portal. Committee members are happy to answer questions about proposal development. Contact Sherry Sines, Terri McGraw,
Lisa Haverkamp, Hillary Prall, Susan Parker, and a member to be determined.


Grant Wood AEA Professional Development Opportunities


Information for Professional Development National Speakers is now available on the link to
GWAEA Featured PD
on the homepage. Pre-registration is required for all participants including practicum, interns and student teachers.








June 2016

July 2016

August 2016

September 2016

December 2016

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, Fierce Conversationand iEvaluateA letter from the DE/BOEE is attached. Please contact the Grant Wood AEA Professional Development office if you have further questions.

Buy, Sell or Trade:

For Sale: 2009 Dark Blue Honda Accord LX 4-door, 90K miles, Automatic, 4-cylinder, 2.4 L. with power windows, power locks, air conditioning, and light gray fabric interior.  Well maintained.  Recently detailed inside and out. Price: $8,500 O.B.O.  Contact Linnea Starkey for more info:

Lost and Found:

The glasses were found in the parking lot at Grant Wood AEA, Sixth St. Please see Cathy Nelson at the switchboard to claim these items.



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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