Education & Schools
Iowa Teacher and Principal Leadership Symposium is sold out PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Office of the Governor of Iowa, Terry Branstad   
Friday, 20 July 2012 14:02

(DES MOINES) – The governor’s office today announced that the Iowa Teacher and Principal Leadership Symposium next month is sold out.

In May, Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds joined Education Director Jason Glass to announce they would host the Iowa Teacher and Principal Leadership Symposium on Friday, Aug. 3, at Drake University in Des Moines.

Branstad said he and Reynolds are holding the symposium to focus on how to organize schools to treat teachers as instructional leaders, with clearly defined roles and responsibilities.

Symposium speakers and panelists will share their thinking about shared principal and teacher leadership.  We’ll hear about why this matters, how it’s being done in this state and country, and how top-performing school systems around the globe approach this issue.

Symposium registration was open to the public, including educators, school board members, business leaders, parents and legislators. More than 700 Iowans are expected to attend the all-day conference.

“Teacher leadership will be at the heart of our 2013 legislative package because it is critical to give students the knowledge and skills they need to be well prepared,” said Branstad.

“We also recognize that growing expectations for students place even more demands upon teachers, without always providing teachers the support needed to meet those demands,” said Reynolds. “Stronger, shared principal and teacher leadership can help schools do that more effectively.”

Branstad and Reynolds stressed that the symposium is about ending the outdated practice of teachers working largely in isolation in their classrooms and moving toward greater collaboration to help students learn more. Some Iowa schools have already set off in this direction, and two of them will be on hand at the August 3 symposium: Des Moines and Cedar Rapids.

Branstad and Reynolds note that their October 2011 education blueprint included a four-tier teacher leadership and compensation structure, with master, mentor, career and apprentice teachers. When they took the blueprint out on the road to town-hall meetings across the state, Iowans raised good questions about it would be put into operation.

So the decision was made to study the issue further, and make recommendations to the 2013 Legislature.

In February, Iowa Department of Education Director Jason Glass announced the members of a new Iowa Teacher Leadership and Compensation Taskforce, which is meeting monthly. Its report is due Oct. 15.

“The status quo is not serving our children well. We have to set the bar higher,” said Reynolds.

Here are just a few statistics that drive that home:

  • Nearly 23 percent of Iowa third-graders don’t read proficiently on state tests.
  • Just 33 percent of Iowa fourth-graders read at proficient or advanced levels on the exam known as the nation’s report card.
  • In math, just 34 percent of Iowa eighth-graders are proficient or advanced on that exam.
  • Only 35 percent of Iowa eighth-graders are proficient or advanced in science.

“Our children deserve better,” said Reynolds. “A stronger, shared principal and teacher leadership model can help us make faster progress toward restoring Iowa schools to best in the nation, and giving all students a globally competitive education.”

To learn more about the symposium, go to:

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Summer Camp at Rivermont! PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Rivermont Collegiate   
Friday, 20 July 2012 13:24
There are still 2 more weeks of Summer Camp at Rivermont Collegiate!

4th-8th Grades:

Have some fun with your favorite gym teacher and his mom, Mrs. Pillow in Physical Adventures with Mr. Pillow.  Learn about different cultures and their unique art techniques in Cultural Art (this class will share their art with the 1st-3rd graders in Cultural Food)!  Sign up for Murals and create a beautiful mural to be donated to Juan Diez Rancheros,

a non-profit horse ranch in Davenport that provids programs for abused or tramatized kids. Or, go on a bug hunt with Mr. Knupp in Insect Collecting. (There are lots of openings in these 4 classes)

1st-3rd Grades:

Have some fun with your favorite gym teacher and  his mom, Mrs. Pillow in  Physical Adventures with Mr. Pillow.  Learn about different cultures and cook some of their food in Cultural Foods (this class will share their food with the

4th-8th graders in Cultural Art)!  Go on a bug hunt with  Mr. Knupp in Insect Collecting, or do some wild and crazy science experiments in Wacky Chemistry. (There are still several openings in these 4 classes)


Learn about growing tomatos, peppers, and more in Edible Plants.  Jump into fantastic science experiments with Soaking up Science or Science Superstars.  Learn about life under the sea in Commotion in the Ocean. (Space is very limited in these 4 classes)
Don't miss out on the best summer enrichment camp in the Quad Cities! Click the link above to download your brochure today!

Local residents named to Drake University's Honors Lists PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Alyssa Cashman   
Friday, 20 July 2012 13:19

DES MOINES, IA (07/19/2012)(readMedia)-- The following local residents received a grade point average of 4.0 and have been named to the Drake University President's List for the Spring 2012 semester:

Kathryn Hamilton of Blue Grass

Stephanie Merrick of Eldridge

Daniel Pelletier of Davenport

Jordan Porter of Eldridge

Hayley Thomson of Davenport

Matthew Van of Coal Valley

The following local residents achieved a GPA of 3.5 or above and were named to the Drake University Dean's List for the Spring 2012 semester:

Taylor Bender of Eldridge

Lindsey Garner of East Moline

Talor Gray of Port Byron

Tori Groves of Port Byron

Eric Hartmann of Davenport

Ryan Hendricks of Rock Island

Hailey Kitzmann of Blue Grass

Marlana Kulig of Coal Valley

Taylor Larson of Coal Valley

Steven Merrick of Eldridge

Holly Nelson of Eldridge

Chelsea Rink of Davenport

Claire Vandercar of East Moline

Drake is a private, independent university in Des Moines, Iowa, with an enrollment of approximately 3,300 full-time undergraduate students from 50 states and 50 countries. Drake University's mission is to provide an exceptional learning environment that prepares students for meaningful personal lives, professional accomplishments, and responsible global citizenship. The Drake experience is distinguished by collaborative learning among students, faculty, and staff and by the integration of the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation.

Simon sponsors education resolution at Lt. Governors’ conference PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Kara Beach   
Friday, 20 July 2012 13:15

Proposal encourages states to advance higher education attainment

CHICAGO – July 18, 2012. A champion of education, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon today urged fellow lieutenant governors to make high school graduation and college degree completion a higher priority in their states.

Simon’s resolution before the National Lieutenant Governors Association’s conference in Chicago asks member states to collaborate with school districts, employers, and institutions of higher education to ensure that high school graduation rates increase and students are better prepared to enroll in college or enter the workforce.

Simon, the NLGA’s Midwest Region Chair, serves as Governor Quinn’s point person on education reform and is leading the charge to increase the proportion of the Illinois’ working-age population holding a college degree or certificate to 60 percent by 2025. The 50th anniversary conference event includes 30 “seconds in command” from around the country and is expected to generate $600,000 in hotel, transportation, restaurant and tourism revenue.

“Nationwide, we see a trend of high school seniors either not graduating in four years with their class, or graduating unprepared for college- or career-level work,” Simon said. “This resolution aims to open a dialogue within and between states on how we can boost high school achievement, degree completion and competitiveness in the workforce.”

This resolution is an extension of Simon’s educational work in Illinois. This spring, Simon moved legislation through the General Assembly that will require the state Board of Education to create math curriculum models for middle and high school students. The optional statewide curricula aims to better prepare high school graduates for college or a career – by reducing the need for costly remedial classes, or making students more employable for in-demand manufacturing jobs.

According to Complete College America, in the next decade more than 60 percent of all new jobs will require an advanced degree or credential, though the higher education attainment rate of adults in the United States is currently 38 percent. In order to meet that gap, 22 million students nationwide need to earn a post-secondary degree or certificate over the coming decade.

“Our states and country can only remain competitive in the global marketplace if we anticipate its needs now,” Simon said. “By strengthening our middle and high school curriculums now, we will help put our students on a path of achievement and success.”

To bring a policy item before the NLGA, a resolution must be co-sponsored by two lieutenant governors, one from each political party. Six additional resolutions will be considered today, including one on Alzheimer’s treatment and prevention, and one on broadband internet development. The lieutenant governors will take a final vote on all resolutions on Friday. Today serves as a review period before the executive committee where lieutenant governors can ask questions of the sponsors and suggest changes to the resolution.

The NLGA is a bipartisan, nonprofit, professional organization for elected officials who are first in line of succession to the governors in the United States and five territorial jurisdictions. The NLGA’s inaugural meeting was held in Chicago in 1962 and has returned this summer to celebrate its 50th anniversary.



University of Kansas announces Spring 2012 honor roll PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Christy Little   
Wednesday, 18 July 2012 08:18

LAWRENCE, KS (07/17/2012)(readMedia)-- More than 4,200 undergraduate students at the University of Kansas earned honor roll distinction for the spring 2012 semester. The students, from KU's Lawrence campus and the schools of allied health and nursing in Kansas City, Kan., represent 92 of 105 Kansas counties, 42 other states and the District of Columbia, and 31 other countries.

The honor roll comprises undergraduates who meet requirements in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and in the schools of allied health; architecture, design and planning; business; education; engineering; journalism; music; nursing; pharmacy; and social welfare.

Area honorees are as follows:

Lindsay Formanek, of Victor. Formanek is a graduate of H.L.V. Jr-Sr High School and is a Prof 1 in pharmacy. She was named to the School of Pharmacy 2012 Spring Honor Roll.

Paula Samuelson, of Davenport. Samuelson is a graduate of (not specified) and is a senior in occupational studies and occupational therapy. She was named to the School of Allied Health 2012 Spring Honor Roll.

Honor roll criteria vary among the university's academic units. Some schools honor the top 10 percent of students enrolled, some establish a minimum grade-point average, and others raise the minimum GPA for each year students are in school. Students must complete a minimum number of credit hours to be considered for the honor roll.

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