Parent-Educator Connection - Great Prairie Area Education Agency

Parent-Educator Connection

The Parent & Educator Connection works to develop and sustain effective partnerships between families, educators, and community providers to promote the success for all children and youth with disabilities.

PEC coordinators work with parents, educators, and local school districts to provide PEC programs, services, and activities; they are also parents of children or young adults with special needs. Please call your PEC coordinator for more information about what the PEC can do for you.

Training Opportunities

Jan-March 2015: RESPECT Training at Bridgeview Center in Ottumwa, IA, Jan 14, Jan 28, Feb 28 & March 4, 2015. Training is a FREE four-day curriculum designed to teach IEP team members, including parents, special educators, general educators, service providers, and administrators a number of skills to prevent conflict that can typically arise in IEP team meetings.  Participant meals and all materials will be provided, and stipends are available: Parent stipends ($50 a day) for those who have children in GPAEA & Educator stipends to defray the cost of substitute teachers (up to $100 per day) in GPAEA.  Credits are available: Teacher re-licensure for $50, 30 hours of social worker CEUs for $50 & 2 credits of graduate credit for $240. 

Jan 2015: FAMILY TO FAMILY IOWA TO ROLL OUT PARENT MENTORING INITIATIVE,  Parents as Partners in Mentoring.  Family to Family Iowa, a project of ASK Resource Center, is launching a parent to parent mentoring initiative called Parents as Partners in Mentoring-a statewide network of parents providing support to other parents of children with a disability or special health need. The goal of Parents as Partners in Mentoring is to empower parents by giving them the skills and supports needed to help their child reach their full potential. Parents are matched with trained, volunteer parent mentors who offer their knowledge and experience, provide guidance and emotional support, and serve as a valuable "been there before" resource to parents of children with a disability or special health need. The first parent mentor training workshop will be held in January 2015 in Davenport.  For detailed information about this initiative, or to schedule a free parent mentor training workshop in your area, contact Paula Connolly, Family to Family Iowa Project Coordinator at ASK Resource Center, or (515) 243-1713.

March 3, 2015: Sharing Strategies, a free Behavior Workshop for Parents and Caregivers will be held March 3, 2015 6:00-9:00 pm, at the Keokuk High School, Media Center, 2285 Middle Rd, Keokuk IA. Participants will have the opportunity to learn a framework for ways to identify problem behaviors, strategies for how to respond to those behaviors and ideas about how to share knowledge with others who are working with your children.  Each participant will receive a workbook from the Nonviolent Crisis Intervention training program that will be used in the workshop.  Presented by, Mike Peters, Great Prairie AEA School Social Worker,Certified Nonviolent Crisis Intervention Trainer Registration is limited, to register please call Kelly Wallace at 800-382-8970 ext. 3034 or email

April 8 & 9, 2015:  Secondary Transition Family Planning for Educators and Parents in Burlington at Great Prairie AEA, Burlington, IA.  This FREE two day workshop is intended to help teachers and parents learn how to assist families in their understanding of the special education transition process in Iowa and how to participate effectively. Participant meals and all materials will be provided.  Graduate and recertification credit is available.  To Enroll got to

Every Tuesday: Parent Circle Groups meet at ISU Extension: 127 N. Main Mount Pleasant IA



Parent & Educator Connection brochure

Materials or Information available from PEC staff:
Parent Support Groups:

The PEC Library contains many resource materials on special education and disabilities that parents and educators served by GPAEA may check out free of charge. GPAEA has two main offices one in Burlington and one in Ottumwa. Materials may be checked out from either office. Resource materials include: Videotapes, Books, Children's books, and IBI/Success 4 Kits.



Annette Clarahan
Parent Educator Coordinator
641-682-8591 or 800-622-0027 Ext. 5517

Districts Covered:  Albia, Cardinal, Centerville , Chariton, Davis County, Eddyville-Blakesburg , Fairfield, Fremont, Keota, Maharishi, Moravia, Moulton - Udel, North Mahaska, Oskaloosa Christian, Oskaloosa, Ottumwa, Ottumwa Juvenile Shelter, Ottumwa Seton Catholic School, Pekin, Seymour, Sigourney, Tri County, Van Buren, Wayne.


Kelly Wallace                                                                                                                                                     
Parent Educator Coordinator                                                                                                                              
319-385-9005 or 800-382-8970 Ext. 3034    

Districts Covered: Burlington, Central Lee, Danville, Ft. Madison, Harmony, Keokuk, Mediapolis, Morning Sun, Mt. Pleasant, New London, Waco, Wapello, West Burlington, Winfield/Mt. Union.


Kim Kirchner
Regional Special Education Director
319-753-6561 Ext. 2115 Burlington Office


Related Links & Documents


Each and Every Child, Iowa Department of Education

Iowa COMPASS Newletter


Procedural Safeguards for Parents

Parents have rights, known as procedural safeguards, which apply to every aspect of the special education process. State and federal laws and regulations outline what needs to happen to ensure that children with identified disabilities and on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) receive a free appropriate public education (FAPE).
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