As we round out another school year, it is a great time to reflect on all of the successes you have experienced in your educational role. It’s important to not lose sight of the little triumphs, as well as the big achievements. It is oftentimes the littlest accomplishments that make the greatest impact. Never underestimate those little victories!

The employees of Northwest AEA, in partnership with educators, like you, families and medical professionals, should be proud of the efforts to help children this year. Here is a sampling of successes:

  • a four-year-old boy with Down Syndrome, who also had severe intestinal issues, now feeds himself, participates in speech therapy and even attends preschool!
  • school districts are successfully integrating multi-tiered system of supports with guidance from AEA staff.
  • a boy in kindergarten, in the words of his mom, was “disruptive, uncooperative, had poor communication skills and episodes of violence.” Now, through school, family and AEA collaboration, the child is experiencing fewer and fewer negative incidents.
  • A girl, who in first grade had a reading text level of zero, went on to accumulate enough points in a Reading Counts competition to place sixth in the entire school when she was in sixth grade. This progress was made because of the child’s passion for reading, Reading Recovery interventions and tenacious teachers and AEA staff.

The stories continue day after day—some big, some small—all because of partnerships from dedicated educators, professionals and families who don’t give up on kids. Educators are gifted to see the potential in ALL children and have the commitment to stick by kids.

Yes, there are days when frustration and exhaustion creep in. Without this suffering, it is difficult to appreciate the joy of the work we do on a daily basis.

Please think of all the milestones you were part of this past school year and give yourself and those around you a pat on the back! Thanks for all you do and enjoy your summer season!

PLCs at Northwest AEA
On another note, I would like to thank all of the employees at Northwest AEA who share their knowledge through their own Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). This month, we explore "Trends in Special Education Law" by Jill Chalstrom, Craig Hoadley, Susan Leusink, Barb Lynch-Howser, Linda Porter, Missy Puhrmann and Greg Tjarks.

To learn more, see the Northwest AEA PLC work here: https://sites.google.com/a/nwaea.org/northwest-aea-plcs---2012-13---public/

We work to supplement our service delivery with informational blogs that we hope will inform, inspire and guide your daily work. Please check them out here:

For a complete listing of all blogs, please go to the Northwest AEA website. You can also sign up for an RSS feed to automatically receive blog updates (instructions provided on the Northwest AEA website).

Educationally yours,

Dr. Tim Grieves
Chief Administrator