April 11, 2011

2011 IAAE Award Winners Announced

The Newcomer of the Year Award was presented to Linda Litterer from Creative Learning Center in Fort Madison. In the two years that Linda has been in alternative education, significant changes have been made to strengthen the program.  Among other things, she has been instrumental in creating an attendance policy, goal setting with staff and students, increasing community involvement, and boosting participation in the credit recovery program.  She diagnoses students’ needs by reviewing the data, interviewing the students and families, and creates an individual education plan for students based on their specific needs. She models the expected behavior and makes the alternative classroom a welcoming and successful environment for her students. Congratulations Linda!!

The Educator of the Year Award and $50.00 "bagel bucks" for a celebration with the staff was presented to Tascha Brown of Ankeny High School.   She volunteers time to work with students after school and during the summer school program. She has branched out to other staff members and has assisted them in differentiating and understanding the variety of needs that students have and continues to advocate for school wide change to better meet the needs of all students.  Tascha is dedicated to at-risk students, working tirelessly to improve reading skills, has become a mentor to students and finds ways to reach the most unreachable.  Congratulations Tascha!!

Susan Holderness
The Jim Fenton Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Susan Holderness of Walnut Creek Campus.  She has provided exposure to a world that many students would never have the chance to experience, providing learning opportunities by taking them to performances, historical sites, large cities to experience art, food, architecture, and fashion, as well as bringing the world into the school through guest artists and speakers.  Her many years working in the area of family consumer science have focused students in finding their careers and better personal lives.  She continues to be an advocate for education in the arts, especially with alternative students. Thank you, Susan, for your  hard work and dedication!! Congratulations!

Pam Courtney and Lisa Demuth present the Hall of Fame Award

Dr. Charles Greenwood, a pioneer in alternative education in the state of Iowa, was inducted into the the Iowa Alternative Education Hall of Fame.  Dr. Greenwood was instrumental in creating the first alternative school in Iowa; the Des Moines Alternative School, now known as Scavo High School, and the Iowa Association for Alternative Education.  He has been an advocate for alternative education, often standing up to mainstream ideology that wanted all schools to be alike.  His early efforts to form a statewide association to continue to address and expand alternative school philosophies and educational strategies, to stand for student-centered education, and to find a pathway for all students to meet the education goals of their community are recognized in this award.  Thank you, Dr. Greenwood, and congratulations!
Dr. Charles Greenwood

April 09, 2011

New IAAE President Encourages Member Interaction on Website

New IAAE President, Brett Eubank, encourages IAAE members to visit his new blog on the IAAE Website http://www.iaae.net/site/. Brett will be posting his thoughts, as well as happenings from across the state. He encourages all members to sign up for a username to use this interactive feature on the IAAE website.

Here's how to sign up to use the blog feature for creating your own IAAE blog OR commenting on other's blogs:
  1. Click this link to get to create a new account. http://iaae.net/site/?q=user/register  (Note: this registration is NOT the same as the registration needed to join the IAAE mail list)
  2. Type in a unique username and your school email address (educational email addresses are the only ones automatically approved by the site administrator)
  3. Click the "Create New Account" button and wait for an email that verifies your new account.
After receiving your verification email, visit the IAAE site's Member Blogs area to comment on Brett's blog or create your own!

Don't forget to join the IAAE MailList!
Members of the IAAE MailList can ask questions any time via email to all other members who have joined the list. This year MailList members have posted questions about billing and contracts for alternative programs, alternative school attendance requirements, and the IAAE State Conference. The MailList is an easy way to find out what other alternative schools and programs are doing and to share information about IAAE events. To join the MailList:
If you use an educational email address (like k12.ia.us or .schools) you should receive an instant email verification that you are now subscribed to the maillist. Non-educational email addresses will not be automatically accepted and you will have to wait for the site administrator to verify your identity.

Once you are subscribed, you can email the list members by sending a message to maillist@iaae.net
There is a size limit for messages, so please make sure your messages are smaller than 4MB. Be sure to add maillist@iaae.net to your address book so that emails from the list can make it through your spam filter. If you have problems accessing the MailList, please contact an IAAE Board Member or leave a comment on this blog. Your problems will be shared with the IAAE site administrator.

How do you feel about the IAAE MailList? What are your thoughts about the IAAE Member Blogs feature? Leave your comments below in the comment section by clicking the word "comments".

David Zollo Wows 2011 Conference Attendees at All in the Family

IAAE members attend the annual State Conference to share ideas about curriculum, teaching, learning and dropout prevention. But those aren't the only reasons we attend. We also value the opportunity to network, socialize and share stories with colleagues who understand us better than anyone else--other alternative educators!

This year IAAE members had two opportunities for networking: first, in the Hospitality Room, sponsored this year by IAAE Board Members who graciously contributed snacks and beverages for all; and second at the Conference Social held at the All in the Family Lounge. This year's entertainment was Iowa native, David Zollo.

David Zollo performs with drummer, Brian Cooper
David wowed the audience with his soulful, bluesy style and his barefoot dancing feet. His music drove alternative educators and other All in the Family patrons to the dance floor for a night of fun-filled, soul-boosting music. David asked IAAE audience members, "So are you alternative teachers? or teachers of alternative students?" He obviously knows us well!

Check out David's Facebook page, his website http://davezollo.com/ and his YouTube channel for more information about his music, albums, and upcoming performances.

Did you enjoy the entertainment at this year's conference? Share your memories and feedback below in the comment section.

New Department of Education Director, Jason Glass, Opens IAAE 2011 Conference

2011 IAAE State Conference Participants were honored to hear new Department of Education director, Jason Glass, speak about his vision for the future of our great state.

Jason Glass
Director Glass said that he's spent his first months in office visiting as many schools, programs, educators and administrators as possible to listen to what we feel is important for the future of Iowa's students. He says that he is impressed by the passion of Iowa Educators and appreciates the fact that all educators in Iowa seem to embrace the idea of continuous change to improve our schools. Many attendees were impressed by his statement that "We have to find ways to make schools fit kids, not make kids fit schools." This statement (and many others) fits well with alternative education's student-centered approach. 

Some key points to Director Glass' vision for the future of education in Iowa include: 
  • Shifting away from the industrial model of education--having less reliance on seat time and Carnegie Units as the structural basis for our schools
  • Making the "human capital system" in education more effective.  Director Glass would like to encourage districts to change the way they evaluate teachers. Evaluations should include a variety of data, including student growth, parent input, student input, observation. Standardized test scores should only be a small part of the data.
  • Creating a coalition of "Radical Moderates" to walk the middle ground in educational reform. He feels strongly that we need to walk the path between those who fight to keep the status quo and those want to abolish public education in favor of charter schools.
For more information about Jason Glass' history, visit his Iowa Department of Education page.
To read or comment on his thoughts about education, visit his blog, Education Elements. Follow Jason Glass on Twitter @jasonglassIA

How did the director's opening remarks strike you? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Deadra Stanton Makes IAAE Members Laugh (and Cry)

In her April 8 IAAE State Conference closing keynote address, Deadra Stanton told stories that made us laugh so hard we cried. She shared stories about her "alternative" child Nathan, and the impact his teachers had on his life. Through a series of personal stories about her life, her teaching, and her family, she asked alternative educators to:
  • Remember to take care of ourselves so that we have the strength to take care of others
  • Remember to take care of our profession.  In this climate of teacher-bashing, especially, we must invite people to see what it is we really do. We make a difference.
  • Don't shoot skinny rabbits! Pay attention to the meaty issues with our kids.  Let the small stuff--the skinny rabbits--go.
After sharing stories about her children, her students, and the impact teachers made on her life, all conference attendees felt recharged and rejuvenated. When Deadra closed with a heartfelt "thank you" for our work as educators, participants were extremely moved. We thank Deadra for making us feel valued and appreciated (like very fat rabbits, indeed!)

Share your thoughts about Deadra's presentation in the comment section below.
IAAE Board Member Lisa Hackman and Friday Keynoter Deadra Stanton   

David Warlick Helps Move #IAAE into the Third Millennium

The IAAE 2011 Spring Conference (April 7-8) Thursday keynoter, David Warlick, challenged alternative educators' ideas about literacy, learning, and how we are preparing our students to thrive in the third millennium.

David introduced many attendees to the concept Twitter by using knitterchat.com,  "a backchanneling tool designed for engaged learning" that allowed conference participants to discuss his presentation, ask each other questions, and comment on each others' thoughts--all while he was presenting! A transcript of the knitterchat event can be found on David's IAAE website page for the Conference along with links to all of his presentation handouts, slides, wikis, bibliographies and visuals.
Attendees were encouraged to tweet about the conference using the #IAAE hashtag and can continue to interact with David Warlick on Twitter by following @dwarlick.

Some highlights of the keynote presentation:
Visit David Warlick's blog "2¢ Worth Teaching & Learning in the new information landscape…" for a continuous stream of his thoughts and reflections, as well as links to what he's learning about. 

After the keynote, attendees had the opportunity to learn more in a series of three hour-long workshops. Did you attend one of the sessions? Do you have thoughts about what you learned from David Warlick at the conference? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below or email your thoughts, pictures, ideas to iaaenewsletter@gmail.com

April 05, 2011

The New IAAE Newsletter

The IAAE Board is thinking about trying something new for its newsletter: a blog!  IAAE members can contribute to the blog by commenting and by emailing your stories, news, pictures and links to  iaaenewsletter@gmail.com.

Please let us know what you think of the blog idea by leaving a comment below.

Thanks for your contribution to the IAAE and for your work in alternative education!

2011 IAAE Legislative Day

Story Cross-posted from Missouri Valley Schools website

ACE Students Attend Legislative Day

February 15, 2011
Five Missouri Valley ACE students attended the Iowa Association of Alternative Education (IAAE) Legislative Day at the Capitol in Des Moines on Monday, February 14, 2011.  They joined numerous alternative schools and programs from across Iowa in setting up table displays showcasing their programs and drawing attention to the importance of having alternative education options available to students.  The students were able to meet other students and teachers and learn about other alternative schools and programs from across the state.
The highlight of the day was having Governor Branstad address the students about the importance of education and the realization that "one size does not fit all" when it comes to education.  The students also took a guided tour of the Capitol building learning about it's rich history. Watch video of his speech below.

April 04, 2011

2011 Spring Conference Keynoters

Thursday morning keynoter, David Warlick
Thursday morning keynoter, David Warlick is a 34 year educator.  He has been a classroom teacher, district administrator, and staff consultant with the North Carolina State Department of Public Instruction. For the past ten years, Mr. Warlick has operated The Landmark Project, a consulting, and innovations firm in Raleigh, North Carolina.
David’s attribution web site, Citation Machine, serves nearly a million page views a day and his classroom blogging tool, has served more than a quarter of a million teachers and students.
David Warlick is also the author of four books on instructional technology and 21st century literacy, and has spoken to audiences throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, The Middle East, and South America.
What makes David Warlick a highly effective and sought-after speaker is that, at heart, he is a teacher with a contagious passion and enthusiasm for helping people discover a brand new world of teaching and learning. Visit his blog, "2¢ Worth"

Deadra Stanton

Deadra Stanton

Friday morning keynoter, Deadra Stanton, owner and presenter for her company Creative Communications, has been a teacher of English, Speech, and Theatre for over 31 years.  She is an honor graduate of Mankato State University in Mankato, Minnesota and recently earned her Masters in Education from St. Mary’s University.  With majors in Speech Communications, Theatre Arts, and Business Administration, she brings a diverse background to the podium.  
When not in the classroom, Deadra is a frequent presenter and motivational speaker for numerous audiences across the nation.  Her humorous style and up-beat presentations make her a versatile and sought after speaker.  Deadra’s husband Mark is a business owner and she has two children: Sarah is project Manger for Motorola and Nathan is a professional Hockey Official.

Board Meeting Minutes 1/28/2011

IAAE Board Meeting Agenda
January 28th, 2011     10:00-2:00
Learning Resource Center, West Des Moines

  1. Call to order
    1. In Attendance: Rachelle Brown, Pam Courtney, Josh Dean, Lisa Demuth, Jen Duncan, Brett Eubank, Brian Galusha, Todd Goodell, Lisa Hackman, Doug Harrold, Bob Howlett, Steve Iverson, Pat Johansen, Lori Kay, Ray Morley, Robyn Naberhaus, Steve Peters, Gina Scheffler (via Skype),  Marlena Schnell, Preston VanLoon, Dawn Young.

  1. Approval of December 3rd, 2010 Board Meeting Minutes
    1. Minutes approved

  1. Treasurers Report
    1. $17,000 in the bank
    2. Treasurer’s report approved

  1. Legislative Day
    1. Updates regarding:
      1. set up, lunch
        1. Time: 10:30 – 1:30
        2. Tables are ordered.  Pizzas will be available
      2. speaker for the group
        1. Governor Branstad will be speaking at 11:00 see below.
      3. declaration from Governor’s office
        1. Proclamation will be signed by the Governor on Feb. 14th at 11:00 in the rotunda during Legislative Day.
    2. Other issues
      1. Rachelle will send out general information about capitol visits
      2. Information about the day will be send out via listserv
      3. Individual programs/school should contact their legislators and media about the day.
      4. Suggested that programs have goodies/handouts for visitors to the tables

  1. Spring Conference
    1. Breakout sessions
      1. Lori has a draft of the breakout schedule.  She will send updates as the schedule progresses.
      2. Session  possibilities:
        1. core curriculum areas
        2. Small schools
        3. On line curriculum
        4. Blogs/Twitter
        5. 1 to 1 computing
        6. Workplace learning
        7. PE
        8. Doors to the Future – Steve Iverson
        9. Reader’s Theater/drama – Lisa Demuth
    2. Entertainment
      1. Dave Zollo will perform for entertainment – he will perform wherever we ask.
    3. Sponsors/vendors
      1. Josh talked to the Des Moines Convention Center, they do not have folders.  The convention center can provide some handouts/etc.
        1. Josh will contact Ray about Viterbo providing bags/folders.
      2. Pat is working on sponsors/vendors
        1. Send any ideas to Pat
    4. Social
      1. Possible Thursday evening event at a location separate from the hotel – “All in the Family”  Can have ½ of the bar area with stage.
        1. Still a few details to work out
    5. Other
      1. CEUs and graduate credit
        1. Ray will set up graduate credit through Viterbo
        2. Greg will handle license renewal and CEUs
      2. Board approved Lisa spending up to $300 for a door prize.
        1. Board members are each responsible for providing a door prize up to $10.
      3. Lunch set up - buffet
        1. Possible lunch speaker – short speech
          1. Jen will contact Jason Glass
      4. Dignitary to kick off the conference?
        1. Todd and Pat will contact the mayor of Des Moines to see if they will kick off the conference.
        2. Lori and Brett will handle any changes to the program, etc.
      5. Awards/president’s plaque
        1. Lisa D is taking nominations for awards
        2. Lisa D asked for new pictures for a display.  Mount pictures on 8.5x11 form board and get them to Lisa D
        3. President’s plaque – each president gets their own plaque
        4. Lisa reminded past grant recipients about their expectations to write an article for the newsletter.
        5. Board approved a motion to spend up to a total of $1500 for grants and up to $500 for awards/plaques.
      6. Elections   
        1. Brett has the information about elections and what positions are open.
          1. President Elect
          2. Central Lisa
          3. NE Todd
          4. NW Lori
          5. SW
          6. SE Robyn
          7. At Large Jen
      7. Lisa H has a contract for one of the keynote speakers.
      8. Jen has a link to get bags/folders stuffed if we need someone to do that.
      9. DMACC can do the printing for the conference.

  1. Old Business
    1. IAAE membership
      1. Iowa Residential Educators
      2. Community College representative
      3. DE representative
        1. Add DE representative to the agenda
          1. Our goal is updates and communication – how that happens is open
    2. At-Risk/Alternative Education Endorsement possibility update
      1. Ray and Linda are having conversations with a representative from UNI regarding offering a Master’s in Alternative Education.
    3. Risky Business
      1. Cost-effective options
        1. Looking for an alterative site to help keep costs down

  1. New Business
    1. At-Risk education discussions at our schools
      1. Jason Glass has a blog - Education Elements on Word Press
    2. Steve Iverson has been working on an on line training program and transition planning for students in the Heartland AEA area and potentially to other areas.  Doorstothefutureiowa.org.  
    3. Pat is asking for someone to take over the duties of putting out the newsletter.
    4. Board meeting in March for conference wrap up and legislative updates – March 25th – possibly at DMACC campus.

  1. Adjournment
    1. Board approved.

Respectfully Submitted,
Dawn Young

Board Meeting Minutes 3/25/11

IAAE Board Meeting Agenda
March 25th, 2011     10:00-2:00
FFA Building
DMACC Ankeny Campus

  1. Call to Order

    1. In Attendance: Rachelle Brown, Pam Courtney (via Skype), Josh Dean, Lisa Demuth, Jen Duncan, Brett Eubank, Lisa Hackman, Doug Harrold, Bob Howlett, Pat Johansen, Lori Kay, Steve Peters, Dawn Young
    2. Regrets: Brian Galusha, Todd Goodell, Gina Sheffler, Preston VanLoon, Susan Walkup

  1. Approval of January 28th 2011 Board Meeting Minutes
    1. Minutes approved.

  1. Treasurer’s Report
    1. Rachelle shared the latest report and the IAAE tax exempt number, which is 71-0972509.  Use the tax exempt number when making purchases for the IAAE.
    2. Treasurer’s report approved as submitted.

  1. Legislative Day Review
    1. Rachelle worked hard this year to cut the costs of the day – great job Rachelle!  19 schools attended.
    2. Little Ceaser’s in Des Moines was very supportive of the day by working with us to provide pizzas.
    3. The Governor made an appearance.  There is a video on YouTube that a student took during the event.  Jen will work on getting a link to this on the IAAE website.
    4. Rachelle is going to write up something for Legislative Day.  Send any pictures you have to her.
    5. The time in February (early in the month) worked well.  

  1. Spring Conference
    1. Updates
      1. Program is set and ready to print.
      2. There is one presenter on the waiting list if someone cancels.
      3. Lori got AV information to Steve.
      4. Lisa D. has signed contracts for food, schedule and some AV equipment from the hotel.  Lisa D. will order another table for Ray and Greg to use for CEUs and graduate credit information.
      5. Lisa D. and her students can stuff folders for the conference.  Get anything you want in the folders to Lisa D.  She also has a description of board members duties that someone will clean up and add to information we share.
      6. As of yesterday, we have 115 full pay registrants for the conference.
      7. There is someone for each of the four awards.  Trophies that are needed for these awards will be ordered
      8. Board members – remember to bring a door prize or two.  
      9. Grand prize will be a color Nook.
      10. Entertainment is set at “All in the Family”.  We have a Hospitality Room for free on Thursday.  An announcement will be made that a room is available for people to meet.  Lisa H and Pat are willing to “staff” the room 4:00-6:00.  Board members are asked to bring a snack to share in the Hospitality Room.   
      11. The Board meetings before and after the conferene will be in Rm 292.
      12. There will be a presenter’s room where they can put belongings, etc.
    2. Unfinished business
      1. Membership certificates – Doug will talk to Mary about printing the certificates.
      2. If people cannot attend the conference, but want to be IAAE members, they can pay $35.
      3. Rachelle will follow up with Brian Galusha about the President’s plaque.

  1. Old Business
    1. Newsletter
      1. New format – Blog instead of paper copy!
      2. We have people running for each open Board position

  1. New Business
    1. Northwest AEA will not be able to support the conference like it has in the past with administrative duties (billing, printing, etc, etc).  Would it be possible to pay someone, a school district or AEA to do this?  Discussion followed.   We may be able to write a contract as a conference expense to pay someone.
    2. There is an Events Planning major at ISU that may have students looking for interns.  We should tap this resource in the future.
    3. Lisa Hackman has volunteered to work with scheduling presenters for the 2012 conference.
    4. The Board would like to ask Jason Glass to an IAAE Board meeting either in May or in the fall.
    5. The Board meeting in May will be May 6th.
    6. Doug suggested starting now on getting a contract with a hotel for next year’s conference.
      1. Approved a motion for Lisa D, Jen and Bob to work together to negotiate a contract with the Airport Holiday Inn for an April 12-13, 2012 state conference.

  1. Adjournment

***Next meeting: Wednesday April 6th, Room 292 Airport Holiday Inn, Des Moines.  7:30pm – Meeting to choose Scavo Grant winners – anyone available may attend 8:00pm – Board meeting.  See you then!

Respectfully submitted,
Dawn Young