Celebrate Better Hearing and Speech Month!

May is “Better Hearing and Speech Month” and we invite you to learn more about services and supports available from Great Prairie AEA.

Hearing services at Great Prairie AEA include screenings for young children and direct services for students who have been identified as deaf or hard of hearing. Learn more at http://goo.gl/4bnNxK.

Shoutout to GPAEA’s Hearing/Audiology Team! Thank you for all that you do for the children and families of southeast Iowa.

GPAEA Audiologists

  • Joe Hanks
  • Sandy Lee
  • Sarah Titman
  • Susan Pickford

GPAEA Audiometrists

  • Lorie Baker
  • Kari Reichter
  • Debbie Reiter
  • Melissa Stringer

GPAEA Teachers of the Deaf & Hard of Hearing

  • Marcy Clausen
  • Michelle Mathews
  • Toni Welch
  • Mary Witting

Great Prairie AEA Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) work with children, birth to 21, who have a variety of communication needs. Most of these needs fall into the areas of articulation, language, voice, fluency, and early literacy. Learn more at http://goo.gl/cKPW33.

Shoutout to GPAEA’s Speech-Language Team! Thank you for all that you do for the children and families of southeast Iowa.

GPAEA Speech-Language Pathologists

  • Kelly Asperheim
  • Verla Barker
  • Christine Bergan
  • Emily Borrison
  • Stephanie Chalupa
  • Erin Crawford
  • Abby Denning
  • Sydney Dick
  • Morgan Dickey
  • Holly Drury
  • Sandra Durand
  • Lora Eddleman
  • Erika Freeman
  • Dee Gerot
  • Marilyn Goertel-Breen
  • Abby Golden
  • Mallory Gould
  • Teresa Halstead
  • Jennifer Hammel
  • Tiffany Hansen
  • Emily Hollingsworth
  • Diane John
  • Brenda Johnson
  • Jackie Lowe
  • Angie Maher
  • Kari Matthias
  • Dana McIntire
  • Laura B. Miller
  • Ann Millikin
  • Heather Muir
  • Jennifer Norgaila
  • Gina Rappenecker
  • Megan Reeves
  • Christine Riegel
  • Lindsey Rump
  • Melissa Sadler
  • Ferra Schinstock
  • Elise Sidles
  • Katy Smith
  • Kristin Sparbel
  • Rebecca Tallman
  • Virginia Van Auken
  • Jaime Vandehaar
  • Susan Wetrich
  • Rowene White
  • Donna Winegarden

GPAEA Speech-Language Assistants

  • Jill Baker
  • Kathleen Bullard
  • Rachael Butler
  • Kimberly Cobler
  • Kelley Gray
  • Tammy Greiner
  • Karen Hartl
  • Konnie Milder
  • Elaine Niggemeyer
  • Barb Winans

Iowa’s AEAs Announce Statewide K-12 Digital Resources for Fall 2017

aea_vertical_color-2Iowa’s Area Education Agencies (AEAs) are pleased to announce that for the 2017-18 school year, students and educators will continue to have access to many of the same digital resources they have come to depend on as high-quality, reliable instructional resources. In addition, two new resources will be available for upper elementary and middle school students.

Statewide resources continuing in the next school year:

  • AEA Digital Library
  • BookFLIX
  • Britannica School
  • CultureGrams
  • Gale Resources
  • iClipArt for Schools
  • Learn360
  • SIRS Issues Researcher
  • Soundzabound
  • TeachingBooks.net
  • Teen Health & Wellness
  • TrueFLIX

New resources coming for upper elementary and middle school students:

  • FreedomFLIX
  • ScienceFLIX

Two resources will be discontinued at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year:

  • Atomic Learning
  • AP Images

For more information or assistance with AEA Digital Resources, contact Tricia Slechta at Great Prairie AEA.

Selection Process Note: The statewide selection committee and RFP review process included AEA library professionals, Iowa Department of Education consultants, AEA content experts and teachers. Final selections were made after surveying teachers and students for their patterns of usage and preferences, examining past years of database usage and receiving and reviewing proposals from more than 30 vendors.

Part B Survey for All GPAEA Parents

Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) requires states to report the percent of parents with a child receiving special education services who report that schools facilitated parent involvement as a means of improving services and results for children with IEPs.

The Iowa Department of Education is gathering these data as a census for both students with and without an IEP using a brief three-question survey.

Survey Link (for Parents of Students in Great Prairie AEA ONLY) – https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/1617AEA15

Survey Information
Please use the link above to answer the following questions for each of your children. The survey will allow you to answer these questions for up to five children.

  • How old was your child on January 1, 2017? (choose 3-21)
  • Does your child have an Individualized Education Program – IEP? (y/n)
  • Did the school your child is currently attending facilitate (request, encourage or initiate) your involvement as a means of improving services and results for your child? (y/n)

The survey will be open April 15 through June 30.

If you have any questions, please contact Meredith MacQuigg, Data Consultant, Iowa Department of Education, 515.494.5610 or meredith.macquigg@iowa.gov.

Over 250 area students participate in National History Day Competition

Great Prairie AEA wishes to thank and congratulate the 14 area districts that participated in the National History Day District Level Competition held on April 7. These Districts include VanBuren, Keokuk, Ottumwa, Oskaloosa, Wayne, Mt. Pleasant, Pekin, Burlington, Sigourney, Eddyville/Blakesburg/Freemont, New London, Burlington Notre Dame, Mediapolis, and Fairfield.

This year’s theme was Taking a Stand in History and over 250 students from area schools participated. The following students will be representing our Region at the statewide competition on May 8 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines:

GPAEA Schools in the News – April 2017

Post updated throughout the month. Did we miss something? Send your school news to jennifer.woodley@gpaea.org.

Note: The articles compiled in this list come from independent media sources who are solely responsible for their content. GPAEA staff did not participate in writing any of these articles and GPAEA does not necessarily endorse the content of the articles. Some articles may be available only by subscription.

The Cornerstone – March/April 2017

Enjoy this double issue of The Cornerstone by clicking on an article below or scrolling down to view all!

Celebrate Occupational Therapy Month – April

OT webApril has been designated as Occupational Therapy Month nationally and is celebrated throughout the country.  Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants are part of an important profession that helps people across their lifespan to participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities.  Their customized approach to evaluations, interventions, and outcomes help a child with disabilities participate in school and in social situations, and offer the specialized support and services to people of all ages and in all circumstances that only occupational therapy can provide.

We want to take this opportunity to recognize and thank our own Great Prairie AEA Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants for the services they provide throughout our service area.

Occupational Therapists

  • Lynn Coppage
  • Karen Davis
  • Kelly Decious
  • Carol Havelka
  • Marty Hudson
  • Kathy Jaske-Gardner
  • Elise Spronk
  • Shanah Sullivan

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants

  • Vonn Gould
  • Ashley Hobbs
  • Joe Hudson
  • Michelle Mihalovich
  • Deb Mueller
  • Chris Williams

Learn more about OT services from Great Prairie AEA at http://www.gpaea.org/en/services/occupational_therapy/.

GPAEA Science Support for 2017-18

The goal is to promote and support networking amongst area elementary, middle school, and high school science teachers in GPAEA.  All science work is focused on supporting teachers in their learning and implementation of the new Iowa Core Science Standards and 21st Century (Redesigned) Learning for both the State Science Standards Modules and the GPAEA Science Networks.

Note: The Science Standards Module trainings are sequential and build on each other.  For that reason, Module 1 or Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 1 is needed to be prepared for Modules 2 and 3. If teachers or coaches have not attended a Module 1 session that is the prerequisite for Module 2, email Tami or Rosemary to discuss the option for background learning that would be needed before attending the Module 2 learning opportunities listed.

Iowa Science Standards Module 2 learning opportunities: *Prerequisite for Module 2:  Module 1 -OR- Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 1.

  • June 8-9, 2017 Burlington GPAEA office (link to register)
  • June 12-13, 2017 Ottumwa GPAEA office (link available on April 5)
  • June 19-20, 2017 Ottumwa GPAEA office (primarily reserved for Albia CSD- limited number of openings-link available on April 5 to those outside Albia CSD)
  • Blended Option Fall 2017 (8 hours in-district work plus 1 face-to-face date)
    • Oct 9, 2017 EAST with in-district work starting in August
    • Oct 2, 2017 WEST with in-district work starting in August

Iowa Science Standards Module 3 learning opportunities **Prerequisite:  Module 2 -OR- Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 1.  NOTE:  All of the following are actually K-12, but we would like to continue to support teacher collaboration across the agency and have designated dates to encourage this.

  • HS East  Sept 18-19, 2017          
  • HS West  Oct 12-13, 2017                      
  • MS East   Sept 28-29, 2017          
  • MS West  Oct 30-31, 2017          
  • 6th grade/K-12 West September 25-26, 2017          
  • Grades 4-5 East  Oct 19-20, 2017          
  • Grades 4-5 West   Nov 6-7, 2017          
  • Grades 2-3 East  Oct 23-24, 2017          
  • Grades 2-3 West Oct 26-27, 2017          
  • Grades K-1 East  Nov 13-14, 2017          
  • Grades K-1 West  Dec 4-5, 2017          
  • Summer Session Option- Dates TBA

Iowa Science Standards Module 3 learning opportunities for Admin & Coaches ***Prerequisite:  Module 2 -OR- Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 1.

    • November 2, 2017  Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 2 (Ottumwa site)
    • December 12, 2017  Supporting Iowa Science Standards for Administrators and Instructional Coaches Part 2 (Burlington site)

Science Networks- Collaborative Curriculum Development time

  • HS East  January  8-9, 2018          
  • HS West  January  25-26, 2018          
  • MS East   February 12-13, 2018          
  • MS West  February 5-6, 2018          
  • Elementary East March 12-13, 2018          
  • Elementary West March 8-9, 2018

GPAEA Celebrates Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month. Today, one in 68 American children is diagnosed with autism (CDC). Great Prairie AEA provides consultative support for children birth through 21 years of age who are identified with an Autism Spectrum Disorder or who demonstrate autism-like characteristics. Learn more about our services at http://www.gpaea.org/en/services/autism/.

GPAEA Success Stories

Shout out to our GPAEA Challenging Behavior & Autism Staff: Teran Buettell, Crystal Hornback, Sarah McCollum & Julie Thomas. Thank you for all that you do for area students and families!

Celebrating School Social Work

We couldn’t let Social Work Month squeak past without a shout out to our school social workers who confront some of the most challenging issues facing students and their families. March is National Social Work Month and we wish to acknowledge and thank our team of dedicated school social workers! Learn more at http://www.gpaea.org/en/services/school_social_work/.

Specially Designed Instruction in Action at North Mahaska

Inside Lindsay Miller’s North Mahaska classroom students receive small group specially designed instruction (SDI) tailored to the unique needs of each child. “We’ve noticed an increase in student achievement and also in student’s rate of progress since we started the SDI project,” Miller comments. “Its nice to see some of our students actually make that ambitious growth!”

Iowa’s SDI program works for learners of all kinds by focusing on literacy in five strands of work: Pre-K, K-6, Learners with Significant Disabilities, Assistive Technology, Family School Partnerships. The framework is the result of multiple years of work from the Area Education Agency Directors of Special Education, the Iowa Department of Education, and 150 other members of the Iowa educational system.

“We’ve had a lot of support from the AEA throughout the SDI project.” Great Prairie AEA staff provide large group professional development to teachers of students with IEPs in Grades 3-5, as well as on-site support which includes demonstration of lessons, observation of teachers, coaching, data collection and data analysis of Universal Screening, Progress Monitoring, and Iowa Assessments.

Special thanks and shoutout to the following GPAEA Staff who have helped North Mahaska find success with SDI:

  • Lynn Hodgeman, Special Education Consultant
  • Jaci Jarmes, Special Education Consultant
  • Jim Cope, Regional Director
  • Dr. Angelisa Fynaardt, Associate Administrator
  • Mike Stiemsma, School Improvement Consultant

Also, thank you to Lindsay Miller and North Mahaska for your leadership and all that you do to help students achieve.

Iowa’s Deafblind Project Summer Workshop – June 8 & 9

Iowa’s Deafblind Services Project will host a summer workshop at the Radisson Hotel and Conference Center in Coralville, Iowa on June 8-9, 2017. Topics include transition for youth to adult programs, early childhood, deafblind basics and communication. The workshop will include a family and youth panel to discuss successes and challenges in school, home and community. Learn more at http://www.iowadeafblind.org/summer/

Download PDF: DB Summer Workshop Flyer (2)

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.