2018 Global Education Institute for Teachers – December 8-9


The 2018 Global Education Institute for Teachers will be held on the University of Iowa campus on December 8-9, 2018.  The institute is sponsored by the Stanley Foundation and UI International Programs.

K-12 teachers of all disciplines are invited to attend this year’s institute, a two-day, one license renewal credit experience taught by University of Iowa professors Greg Hamot and Jason Harshman.

FREE tuition! The first 20 teachers to register who live outside a 25-mile radius of Iowa City will also receive FREE housing at the Iowa House Hotel.

Registration deadline is November 12, 2018.

More information may be found on our website at https://international.uiowa.edu/connect/programs/k-12/institute.

Please contact Amy Green at amy-green-1@uiowa.edu or 319-335-1433 with any questions.

Global Education Institute 2018
2018 Application Form

The dissemination of information from external organizations by Great Prairie AEA does not infer sponsorship or endorsement of the information. It is being passed on to our stakeholders for its educational value.

Keokuk & Ottumwa Awarded 2018 STEM Best


STEM BEST (Businesses Engaging Students and Teachers) focuses on teachers and industry professionals working side-by-side to craft curriculum and projects that prepare students for exciting STEM careers local to their community in manufacturing, information technology, bioscience (agriculture and medicine), finance, and more.

The STEM Council Executive Committee voted unanimously in October 2018 to award 13 competitively-selected school partnerships. Awards are used for equipping collaborative workspaces, educator training, and development in workplace-classroom integration, and curriculum development and coordination.

Congratulations to the two Districts in GPAEA Awarded 2018 STEM Best:

Keokuk Community School District in the Southeast STEM Region

The Keokuk Community School District will create an active learning center to include learning hubs, flexible seating and technology. This will provide a sophisticated space for students to interact with professionals to develop soft skills, job awareness and community partnerships.

Contact: Heidi Harness at Heidi.harness@keokukschools.org

Ottumwa Community School District in the South Central STEM Region

Ottumwa Community School District will expand their SparkTank program, which provides an off-campus, hands-on learning to link instruction with authentic work experiences through partnerships with local employers. The district will add two additional strands, STEM summer camp experiences for middle and high school students and professional development for teachers to incorporate more career exploration opportunities.

Contact: Kim Hellige at kim.hellige@ottumwaschools.com

GPAEA also wishes to congratulate the other Districts awarded this year: Allamakee Community School District; Belle Plaine School District; CAM CSD; Cedar Falls Community School District; Central Community School District; Des Moines Independent Community School District; No boundaries and Iowa’s Middles; Sioux City Community School District; St. Mary School (Humboldt); St. Theresa School (Des Moines); and Woodbine Community School District.

View original post at https://iowastem.gov/stembest/2018?fbclid=IwAR1ldHMwNHFx7ccpKF7bNYk3Exg-zgTlT39ANQMmiYXTNkxkXg038jo_Jws

Drake Continuing Education & PD Offerings for Educators, Spring 2019

drake education logo

Spring Registration Starts October 29!
Start planning your online professional learning schedule for Spring now! All of our online graduate courses are interactive and include practical information. Click on any of the course titles for additional information and offering dates.

Spring 2019 Offerings

Visit www.drake.edu/cepd/distance/onlinecourses or call 1-800-76-TEACH (8-3224) for more information about all of our offerings including those from PLS 3rd Learning.

Students seeking to use these courses for recertification or salary advancement should seek prior approval from their school district or appropriate licensing agency.

The dissemination of information from external organizations by Great Prairie AEA does not infer sponsorship or endorsement of the information. It is being passed on to our stakeholders for its educational value.

Paraeducator Courses Available in Keokuk beginning November 7

Paraeducator Courses available at Keokuk District beginning November 7. Click on the title of a course to register.

Having trouble registering? Learn more at https://www.gpaea.org/professional-development/gpaea-pd-course-catalog/.

Virtual Information Sessions: Iowa PK-12 Principal/Supervisor of Special Education license #189

viterboSummer 2019 start term (GPAEAOttumwa Office)

Register for one of the sessions below:

Educational Leadership (2-tracks)

  • Iowa PK-12 Principal/Supervisor of Special Education #189 – License only
  • MAE w/ Iowa PK-12 Principal/Supervisor of Special Education #189

Important information:

  • Start Term: Summer 2019
  • Both tracks are financial aid eligible programs
  • Location: Great Prairie AEA, Ottumwa site office


Contact: Michael Gonzalez
Iowa Graduate Admissions
515-224-4811 or 888-235-2200

The dissemination of information from external organizations by Great Prairie AEA does not infer sponsorship or endorsement of the information. It is being passed on to our stakeholders for its educational value.

The Cornerstone – October 2018


Enjoy this issue of The Cornerstone by clicking on a post below or scrolling.

GPAEA Staff Participate in Statewide & National Conferences/Projects

The 2018-19 School Year has just begun but GPAEA Staff has already presented at a variety of statewide and national conferences as well as participated in a number of exciting projects. We can’t help but be proud of our Staff!

This is just the beginning and doesn’t even begin to include the number of Statewide Committees that GPAEA Staff represent the area on. Thank you to our Staff and others in the state for their dedication to Iowa’s students!

Iowa Future Ready Summit, September

  • Seth Denney, Instructional Technology
  • Laura Williams, 21C Specialist

Closing the Gap Conference, MN, September

  • Ellie Hamilton, Assistive Technology Specialist

Grant Project from Institute of Education Sciences

  • Angie Green, Early ACCESS Home Interventionist

Texas Instrument Webinar: How do you Squeeze more STEM into your Science Classroom?, October

  • Tami Plein, Science Specialist

Creating Coaching Partnerships: A Coaches Forum, October

  • Shelli Blazic, School Social Worker, PBIS Coordinator

Iowa School Mental Health Conference, October

  • Dr. Angelisa Fynaardt, Associate Administrator

Professional Learning Courses Available in October

h o t - a i r

Courses are added and updated daily, so login to the professional learning system for the most current listing. Learn more or REGISTER at https://www.gpaea.org/professional-development/gpaea-pd-course-catalog/.

160422GP – Substitute Authorization Grades Pk-12
Location/Date: Burlington AEA October 9 2018

160407GP – SOAR Ratio and Proportion Training
Location/Date: Burlington AEA, Oct 18, 2018

160682GP – Paraeducator Course II: Facing New Challenges Roles and Responsibilities (OTT)
Location/Date: Ottumwa AEA Oct 18 2018

167594GP – GPAEA Science Networks 2018
Location/Date: Burlington AEA Oct 22 2018 (High School)

162410GP – MTSS at Work within Professional Learning Communities
Location/Date: Bridge View Convention Center October 23 2018

160409GP – Paraeducator Course II: Facing New Challenges Roles and Responsibilities (BURL)
Location/Date: Burlington AEA Oct 25 2018

167594GP – GPAEA Science Networks 2018
Location/Date: Ottumwa AEA Oct 25 2018 (Middle School)

160491GP – Structured Teaching for Autism 4 Day (STAT 1 and STAT 2 Combined)
Location/Date: Ottumwa October 29 2018

Celebrating Principals during October #ThankAPrincipal

NASSP18NPM-0008_SocialMedia_Insta_P1cJoin the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and the American Federation of School Administrators this October as we honor the hard work and dedication of America’s principals all month long.

National Principals Month is your opportunity to say “thank you” to principals everywhere and to share with the community all the great things that principals do.

We at Great Prairie AEA wish to say THANK YOU to all of our area Principals for their dedication to the students of southeast Iowa!

Learn more about National Principals Month at https://www.principalsmonth.org/.


Dr. Lonna Anderson named to Dyslexia Task Force & October is National Dyslexia Month

Anderson, Lonna

Dr. Lonna Anderson, Great Prairie AEA

Director Wise announces members of new Dyslexia Task Force
Date: Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise today announced members of a new state task force that will study the needs of students with dyslexia.

The Dyslexia Task Force, established as part of Senate File 2360, will consider issues such as student screening, interventions, teacher preparation and professional development, classroom accommodations, and assistive technology. Recommendations are due by Nov. 15, 2019.

Learn more at https://www.educateiowa.gov/article/2018/10/02/director-wise-announces-members-new-dyslexia-task-force

October is Dyslexia Awareness Month!

Young boy learning letters during a session with speech therapistThe C4K (Collaborating for Iowa’s Kids) group, a collaboration between Iowa’s AEAs, Iowa Department of Education and local school districts, has developed an Iowa Dyslexia Resources site with resources to support educators who serve students identified with dyslexia and parents of students with dyslexia. The site offers information for educators and parents, including:

  •  Definition of Dyslexia in the State of Iowa
  •  Presentation for educators on Dyslexia
  •  Letter for parents about the services that districts and AEAs can provide students with reading concerns
  •  Information about seeking a diagnosis

Decoding Dyslexia Iowa also has great information and resources to help you learn more and raise awareness about dyslexia.

October is National Physical Therapy Month

October is National Physical Therapy Month, and an opportunity for Great Prairie AEA to celebrate and recognize our six physical therapists and three physical therapy assistants for the work they do with children birth to 21 in our area.

Great Prairie AEA’s Physical Therapy program provides therapeutic services to maximize children’s functional motor abilities through assessment, intervention, advocacy and education related to their unique needs with the educational atmosphere of mutual respect and cooperation. Physical therapists design interventions that improve a student’s physical ability to access and participate in their educational program.

Physical Therapy Month is sponsored through the American Physical Therapy Association and is celebrated nationally. For more information see http://www.apta.org/NPTM/

Thank you to our Physical Therapists:


Thank you to our Physical Therapy Assistants:


Learn more about Physical Therapy Services at GPAEA:

Visit https://www.gpaea.org/services/physical-therapy/

Update your Professional Learning Profile

AEA_learning systemPlease go to the AEA Learning System (training.aealearningonline.org) to update your Employment Information under your profile. This is important if you are trying to register for a course that is specific to your district.

To update your Employment information:

  1. Click on the Profile icon near the top of the screen
  2. Click the Employment Tab
  3. Are you employed by a district or AEA? Select “Yes”, if you are an employee of a district even on a substitute basis
  4. Select your District
  5. Enter the District Password provided by the District Administrator contact.
  6. Select Building, Position, Subject Taught, and Grades Taught (you may leave as Not Applicable)
  7. Then click Save Employment Info button.
Please note: Any changes you make in the AEA Learning System will take until the next business day to update as there is a nightly upload into the Statewide Registration System.

Contact Shannon Johnson or Michelle Dickey with any questions regarding updating your account. michelle.dickey@gpaea.org or shannon.johnson@gpaea.org.

Small Change: Building Financial Security Offerings for Educators and School Personnel

image003Small Change: Building Financial Security Offerings for Educators and School Personnel

Improve your personal finance knowledge, skills and confidence and prepare yourself as a professional to address financial literacy in our schools!

Small Change is a blended (in-person and online) course designed for Iowa educators. Course content is embedded in the financial literacy standards of the Iowa Core 21st Century Skills and Social Studies and connects participants with curricula, resources and school-based programs for elementary, middle and high school levels. Educators can earn one Iowa License renewal credit.

The course requirements include:

  • Attend a 2-hour in-person introductory workshop on November 1st, 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Iowa Wesleyan University, Iowa Wesleyan University  – 601 N Main St., Mount Pleasant, IA 52641, Adam Trieschmann Hall of Science, Computer Lab B
  • Complete at least 4 of 12 game-based online lessons covering financial topics
  • Complete assignments to promote financial literacy

Explore lessons that are timely and relevant to your life stage. Topics include:

  • Finance Fundamentals—getting organized, smart borrowing, estate planning
  • Insurance—life, health, disability, long-term care, auto, home, liability coverage
  • Investing—risk tolerance, investment choices, funding long-term goals
  • Retirement—preparing for retirement, building a nest egg, Social Security, IPERS

The course fee is $20 to ISEA members and non-members. Register online at: https://isea.org/course/. For more information, contact Mary M. Weinand at mweinand@iastate.edu or 319-931-5087, or Rhonda Plimmer,rhonda.plimmer@isea.org or 515-471-8052.

Small Change is offered by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach with support from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation.

The dissemination of information from external organizations by Great Prairie AEA does not infer sponsorship or endorsement of the information. It is being passed on to our stakeholders for its educational value.