Registration is OPEN for the Inclusive Classroom Conference on February 9 (sessions recorded and renewal credit available)

Educators! Register today for the FREE Inclusive Classroom Virtual Conference. Sessions are recorded, so you can watch them anytime. You won’t want to miss the strategies to help you utilize individualized instruction to empower students! Technology and instructional interventions can be designed to support all students.

Click here to register for the virtual conference.

Renewal Credit is available! Login to the AEA Professional Learning System to Register:

PL – Inclusive Classroom Conference Learning and Implementation, course number 202764

The last day to register is February 10, 2022, Registration closes February 11, 2022.

Virtual Course: An Educator’s Guide to PTSD in Children

Photo by Vlada Karpovich on

This virtual course is great for Paraeducators or Substitutes to use to renew their certification!

#167863 GP – An Educator’s Guide to PTSD in Children

Virtual Meeting Dates

  • Saturday, January 29, 2022   08:00:00 AM – 04:30:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 05, 2022  08:00:00 AM – 04:30:00 PM  
  • Register by January 24th

Each participant needs to purchase the book, Does My Child Have PTSD? What To Do When Your Child Is Hurting from the Inside Out. It is available on Amazon.

The Cornerstone – November, 2021

WACO Core Board gives student a way to communicate with friends

You may remember this story 3 Grand Champion Team Winners of the Next Top AAC Model Competition! when we announced that 3 districts were awarded a customized all-weather, outdoor playground communication system to expand communication all day, every day, with everyone and in all places – like the playground with peers! Other Districts, like WACO, also took the initiative and installed one on their school grounds.

Shared by Tina Whalen, Special Education Consultant

One of our (WACO) students with autism was very excited to interact with the new Core Board during recess. At first, she kept pulling her para to the board to point to different pictures. Next, a classmate joined her and they took turns pointing and saying different words. They were laughing and playing all recess long. 

National School Psychology Week – November 8-12, 2021

GPAEA School psychologists help children succeed academically, socially, and emotionally. They collaborate and consult with teachers, administrators, parents, and other professionals to find effective solutions to learning and behavior problems. They assess academic skills, aptitude for learning, and social-emotional-behavioral issues, and evaluate eligibility for special services. Evidence-based research is used to develop and/or recommend effective interventions. Counseling, crisis management, teacher training, and helping parents to access community services are just some of the additional services provided.

School Psychology Awareness Week (SPAW) is November 8-12, 2021 and we celebrate our school psychologists for the work they do for students & families in our area!

Thank you to our GPAEA School Psychologists!

Join GPAEA’s Instructional Coaches’ Network!

Who is this for? Instructional Coaches in Great Prairie AEA

What: The school improvement consultants at Great Prairie are excited to host a monthly virtual network for instructional coaches. This network will not be “sit and get” but instead, will hold space for instructional coaches to collaborate, share resources, and problem-solve with each other.

When: Our first meeting is December 6th, 1-2 pm

Where: We will meet virtually via Zoom (Look for an invitation in your email soon!)

Why: We know the instructional coaches at Great Prairie are in positions to have a tremendous impact on the teachers and students they serve. We believe the power of a learning network is in hearing each other’s questions and considering new ideas for yourself and your school district. The purpose of this network is to enable coaches to learn from each other’s work and increase the spread of high leverage practices that impact teacher efficacy and student achievement.

Additional information: The meeting each month will focus on a specific topic. The topic for December is “Share your go-to coaching practices”

GPAEA School Improvement Consultants

Future Ready Spotlight (November): Albia, Centerville, North Mahaska, Wapello, and Winfield-Mt. Union

Jessica Vance, School Improvement Consultant

Shout-out to Albia, Centerville, North Mahaska, Wapello, and Winfield-Mt. Union for helping their seniors be Future Ready! These five Great Prairie AEA school districts were able to significantly increase the percentage of seniors who completed the FAFSA, from the previous year. They also each outperformed the state average of 53.8% FAFSA completion.

Encouraging and educating families about the benefits of FAFSA is vital to a high completion rate.

Luann Eakins, Centerville High School

Why is FAFSA completion so important? According to the FAFSA Completion Initiative, 90% of students who complete the FAFSA go on to enroll somewhere they can earn a postsecondary credential. Great Prairie shares weekly updates about FAFSA completion with school counselors, giving them the opportunity to “check-in” and engage in meaningful conversations with students – ensuring all students have a postsecondary goal and plan.

When asked about the tremendous increase in FAFSA completion at her school, Luann Eakins, the professional school counselor for Centerville High School stated, “Counselors and schools, in general, have a tremendous responsibility in educating students and parents about FAFSA. Encouraging and educating families about the benefits of FAFSA is vital to a high completion rate. It’s also important that families feel as if the school is a partner in the process. Having dedicated FAFSA nights and experts help makes the process smooth and further builds the vital relationships we need to help our students be successful in their post-secondary education.”

October brought the opening of a new FAFSA season and schools can soon look forward to receiving FAFSA completion data through our partnership with AEA PREP and Iowa College Aid.  If you want additional support with your local FAFSA completion initiative, please contact

Register for Virtual Substitute Authorization Class beginning in December or Face-to-Face in January at Keokuk


#190031 GP – Substitute Authorization Grades Pk -12 (Virtual)

Sunday, December 19, 202105:00:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Monday, December 20, 202105:00:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Tuesday, December 21, 202105:00:00 PM – 08:00:00 PM

Additional Instructions:  A mandatory handbook is available from 1. Click the STEDI link. 2. Click on add to cart. 3. Proceed to checkout where you will create your account. Please choose Great Prairie AEA as your district. The book is $24.95.


#160422 GP – Substitute Authorization Grades Pk-12
#309641 Keokuk CSD Jan 7 2022 (Use this link to register)

Thursday, January 07, 202104:30:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Thursday, January 14, 202104:30:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Friday, January 15, 202108:00:00 AM – 03:30:00 PM

Additional Instructions:  A mandatory handbook is available from 1. Click the STEDI link. 2. Click on add to cart. 3. Proceed to checkout where you will create your account. Please choose Great Prairie AEA as your district. The book is $24.95.

Butterflies, STEM Scale-Up Awardees, & Wapello Elementary Grants

Tracy Jarrett, GPAEA Science Consultant

wapello teachers
Wapello Teachers Group Photo: Front L- R Leslie Small, Laura Daisy, Samantha Smith, Sara Jurgill, Dayna Kinsey.  Back Row L-R Jenna Dopler, Cari Cline, Teresa Good, and Beth Hines, not pictured Abby Shafer. 

Wapello Elementary teachers are growing in science. Kindergarten through fifth-grade teachers are participants in a grant with the University of Iowa. This grant has provided three years of professional learning through a partnership with GPAEA. 

The Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) is an approach to teaching science that centers around three big ideas: language, dialogue, and argumentation. These tools are used epistemically for learning in an environment that is equitable for all learners. Wapello Elementary teachers have come together each year for eight days of professional learning and collaboration with six other districts and their participating teachers at the GPAEA Burlington’s campus. This grant provided funds for their classrooms and opportunities for them to connect with other projects such as The Iowa Monarch Conservation through Iowa State University Extension and STEM Scale-Up Grants. These programs provide authentic learning opportunities for their students.  

“SWH has provided me with a framework for teaching Science.  My students are able to explore and guide the direction of our learning which has helped build a love for science in my classroom!” 

 -Teresa Good 

“SWH creates a classroom environment where ideas are debated and everybody has a chance for success – the emphasis is on understanding and practicing science not memorizing scientific facts. In other words, science learning becomes very personal.”

-Dayna Kinsey 

STEM Scale-Up Awardees: Teresa Good & Dayna Kinsey

Teresa and Dayna both applied and received two STEM Scale-Up awards for the 2021-22 school year. They are pictured with their Ioponics STEM Scale-Up station. Participants receive free materials, professional learning, and a stipend for their time. Dayna Kinsey is also participating in the Monarchs project and collaborates with the Louisa County Conservation which helps her students tag and release the monarchs.

Register today for VIRTUAL Substitute Authorization PK-12 beginning November 8

Are you interested in becoming a substitute teacher? Register today!

#190031 GP – Substitute Authorization Grades Pk -12 (Virtual)

Monday, November 08, 202105:00:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Tuesday, November 09, 202105:00:00 PM – 08:30:00 PM
Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Contact Michelle Dickey at with questions.

GPAEA Schools Engage in Authentic Learning

Did you know GPAEA Schools are engaging in authentic projects with community partners? Check out these success stories on the Clearinghouse for Work-Based Learning website to learn more.





Check out the Clearinghouse for Work-based Learning Project Board to find a project for your students today! Contact or to support you in launching your first project! 

Join at