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News Release

For Immediate Release
Oct. 1, 2014


Grant Wood AEA
Communications Office

Grant Wood Area Education Agency Receives Recognition for Excellence  

State and National Awards for Chief Administrator and Agency


CEDAR RAPIDS – October 1, 2014– The Grant Wood Area Education Agency (GWAEA) has grabbed regional and national headlines for its contributions as an educational service agency and as an employer.


Joe Crozier, Chief Administrator for GWAEA, has won the 2014 Justus A. Prentice Award Award, a prestigious national honor bestowed by the Association of Educational Service Agencies (AESA). The award is given to an individual annually for outstanding contributions through executive leadership of regional educational service agency programs at the regional, state, and national levels.


"Joe is an outstanding professional, mentor, teacher and colleague, and is most deserving of this award," said GWAEA Board President Jim Green. "He has personally dedicated himself to the widespread growth of service agencies and the support they provide for children, and he shares his vision with the industry."


Joe Crozier


The Grant Wood AEA instructional technology, business support and PowerSchool teams also were recognized by the AESA.  As winners of the Brian L. Talbott Award, AESA acknowledged the team's contributions in the area of technological innovation and business systems support to local districts and educational service agencies.


 "At the beginning of last school year," says Karl Kurt, Superintendent, North-Linn Community School District, "we lost our Technology Director, and GWAEA became our technology consultant by implementing a purchased service model, essentially employing their services to replace our Technology Director.  Our Board of Education was very happy with the cost savings of this partnership, and I am pleased that GWAEA proposed an innovative program to better support the needs of small school districts like North Linn.  This is a prime example of the support that area schools receive from the Grant Wood Area Education Agency."


Additionally, GWAEA was recognized by the Des Moines Register as one of Top Iowa Workplaces in 2014. These 122 companies were recognized as Top Workplaces based solely on surveys about the workplace completed by their employees.  The agency's employees ranked their employer through an anonymous survey, commenting “I have the opportunity to make the world a better place for children with disabilities," "I feel valued and appreciated,” and "I feel I can bring hope and help in difficult situations.”


"Our agency is staffed with dedicated employees who are committed to improving the learning outcomes for students," said Crozier.  "We have worked hard to cultivate a healthy  environment where they feel valued and supported, and we're proud to see our employees  appreciate the opportunities we provide."


Grant Wood Area Education Agency (GWAEA) is one of nine Iowa area education agencies (AEAs) chartered to provide equity in educational programs across the state of Iowa, and GWAEA’s team of 500 employees combines their efforts to support 32 K-12 public school districts, 22 accredited nonpublic schools, a number of preschools and daycare centers, as well as families of infants and toddlers.  Every program and service at GWAEA is concretely focused on meeting agency goals of increasing the academic performance of all students, increasing the percentage of students who perform at the proficient level, and students’ acquisition and application of 21st century skills and knowledge. 


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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.

ADDRESS: 4401 Sixth Street SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404
TELEPHONE: 319-399-6700 | 800-332-8488
Fax: 319-399-6457
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