Breakout Session 3


10:30 to 11:45 AM 


Presenter: Reuben Jacobson

Title: Community Schools: What are they and how do I get started?

Description: Learn what community schools are and why they have become the go-to education and neighborhood reform strategy. Hear from community school practitioners working in Des Moines and develop strategies to enhance partnerships with families and community organizations to create a thriving school. Work with your peers to create a results-focused community school strategy in your schools and school districts.

Room 302

Presenter: Tim Lewis

Title: Tier II Overview: Readiness, Data Decisions, & Practices

Description: This session will provide an overview of the essential components of Tier II systems and serve as the foundation for the Tier II strand. Team processes, data to identify at-risk students, and evidence-based practices will be discussed and mapped to the SW-PBIS Tiered Fidelity Inventory.

Resources: Tier II overview Lewis.v2      MU Classroom Problem Solving Manual copy

Room 303

Presenter: Lana Herteen

Title: Connections Matter:  Developing Brain – Relationships – Community

Description: To enable the learner to apply evidence based information that uses quality relationships as the foundation for supporting healthy brain development of individuals while strengthening the community for successful outcomes in physical and mental health, academic, social, and economic development. :  At the completion of this program, the participant should be able to:

  • Define plasticity as it pertains to lifelong brain development.
  • Discuss the impact of adversity and toxic stress on brain development.
  • Review how toxic stress disrupts the developing brain and negatively effects lifelong learning, behavior, and health.
  • Identify how human relationships serve as a mediator to toxic stress through resilience-building.
  • Describe how a two-generation approach to supporting children and caregivers has greatest impact for individual and community success.

Resources:        L.H. Connections Matter Powerpoint

Room 304

Presenter: Joelle Hood

Title: Social Emotional Learning

Description: This informative, interactive and highly-engaging workshop explores the research that supports the importance of SEL practices in educators’ personal and professional development. Participants will learn how to implement SEL strategies and build skills in classrooms and school sites to prepare students to be successful in school, college, career, and life. Tools such as Neuroscience, Mindfulness in Education, Restorative Practices, Growth Mindset & Grit, Character Development, and Cultivating Kindness, Empathy, and Compassion will be reviewed and emphasis placed on how they play a critical role in building SEL skills and enhancing school culture and climate. The facilitator will lead participants in discussion and activities that they can replicate in a district, school site, and classroom the next day to initiate positive change in the lives of all stakeholders.

Resources:    Updated Joelle Hood Powerpoint

Room 305

Presenter: Barb Mitchell

Title: Effective Classroom Management: Foundational Strategies for Supporting Student Behavior

Description: This session will provide a brief overview of essential instructional and classroom management strategies classroom teachers can use to encourage appropriate student behavior. Implementation examples and additional resources will be provided.

Resources: Barbara Mitchell – Session 1 & 3

Room 306

Presenter: Kay Augustine & Sheli Blazic

Title:  Check & Connect: A Tier 2 Intervention

Description: Through student engagement and resiliency research we know the importance of students connecting with at least one significant adult in the building. Join us to learn about Check & Connect, an evidence-based intervention that provides a structured school-based mentoring process to increase student engagement with school and learning. We’ll share an overview as well as specific examples from both Iowa and across the country. Check & Connect is identified on the What Works Clearinghouse Dropout Prevention site as demonstrating a positive impact for keeping students in schools. If you are creating a Multi-tiered System of Support,  Check & Connect is a great fit for an upper Tier 2 intervention.

Resources: Check and Connect Powerpoint     Check Connect Handout 1     Check and Connect Handout 2     Check Connect Iowa Contacts

Check and Connect Readiness Indicators

Room 307

Presenter: Gilmara Mitchell

Title: Understanding Cultural Proficiency and Reflecting on Our Own Practices

Description: This interactive session will examine the basic concepts related to Cultural Proficiency and provide participants with an opportunity to reflect on their own practices as educators.  Participants will be able to define important terms related to Cultural Proficiency, explore the Cultural Proficiency Continuum, examine myths related to Cultural Proficiency and identify practical ways to become a culturally responsive educator.

Room 308

Presenter: Randall Lindsey

Title: Culturally Proficient Leadership: The Journey Begins Within

Description: Randy has selected sections from his book of the same name, co-authored with Raymond D. Terrell, to guide participants through reflective and dialogic activities to be used in developing one’s cultural autobiography. Terrell and Lindsey use cultural autobiography as a mechanism for participants to understand from where and how their assumptions about cultural groups have evolved. Participants leave with insights that inform being increasingly successful in working with diverse populations of colleagues, students, and parents/community members.

Resources: Randall Lindsey – Breakout 3     Randall Lindsey – Focus on Assets     Randall Lindsey – Book Handout

Room 309

Presenter: Katy Swalwell

Title: The History of Iowans & Struggles Against Anti-Black Racism

Room 310

Presenter:  Judy Elliott

Title: School Based Leadership Team (SBLT) and District Based Leadership Team (DBLT) for MTSS Implementation

Description: This session will explore the importance and role of the SBLT and DBLT in school and District wide implementation of MTSS.  Team membership, roles and responsibilities will be discussed for both Secondary and Elementary levels.  Both District-wide and school based approaches to training teams (e.g., scope and sequence of professional development) will be shared.

Resources:   J.E. PowerPoint #3     J.E. Handout Session 3

Room 312/313

Presenter: Erin Gruwell

Title: Give a Voice to the Voiceless

Description: How the Freedom Writers have evolved from troubled teens and struggling students to authors and activists – passionately fighting intolerance and promoting social justice.

Room 314/315

Presenter: Brian Mendler

Title: Motivating and Managing Hard to Reach, Uninterested and Disruptive Students

Description: From the author of the international best-selling book Discipline with Dignity, this session is loaded with strategies, techniques, and ideas designed to prevent motivation and discipline problems in the most difficult classrooms. Discover strategies and techniques designed to change attitudes and ignite a passion for success.  This practical, informative session will transform the lives of your most disruptive students.

Resources: Brian Mendler Resource Handbook

Room 316

Presenter: Saida Abdi

Title: Refugee Children:  Trauma and Resiliency – Part 1 of 2

Description: The workshop will focus on skills and strategies that can enhance mental health access for refugee and immigrant children in a school-setting; The importance of addressing social environmental factors that might negatively affect learning and how cultural brokers can help overcome cultural and linguistic barriers will be discussed. Trauma Systems Therapy for Refugees (TST-R) will be used to illustrate how trauma intervention can be adapted to meet the needs of immigrant and refugee students and their families. (2 Part workshop)

Resources: Saida Abdi

Room 317

Presenter: Christian Moore

Title: The Resilience Breakthrough for Youth

Description: Discover 10 tools to help you foster resilience in even the most unmotivated students. Whether you work with students one on one, in small groups, or in a classroom, this breakthrough presentation will give you skills to deliver resilience to students of ANY background and learning style.

Room 318

Presenter: Larry Thompson

Title: Non-Exclusionary Discipline: Alternatives to the Referral/Suspension Quagmire

Description: The U.S. Departments of Education and Justice have advocated a shift in school discipline policies – due to concerns about inequities in the administration of “exclusionary discipline” practices among minorities and students with disabilities. While the causes of those inequities are the source of some debate, almost everyone can agree that educators have a far greater opportunity for success if they can keep students, especially at-risk students, in the classroom. Attendees will be guided through school-wide evidence-based discipline practices and proven de-escalation processes that are designed to create responsible students by harnessing the power of self-regulation. Implementing these key components has enabled schools to report reductions in office referrals of as much as 90 percent, while almost eliminating suspensions entirely.

Resources: Larry Thompson Give 5 Handout

Room 319

Presenter: Wes Hall

Title: Relationship Building and Success Strategies for Reengaging the Disengaged Young Man of Color

Description: In this interactive session, Wes Hall, will discuss research findings on best practices and innovative policies that are having a positive impact on Black male achievement Prek-20.  The session will also identify proven skills, strategies, and solutions that are contributing to our young men graduating from high school and college, as well as, helping them navigate from high school to their future career.  Drawing from 8-years of research, this session provides teacher friendly, classroom ready tools designed to assist participants identify, modify, and redirect challenging student behavior. Learn how to re-engage the disengaged young man of color student and how to inspire him to vigorously participate in his own educational process.

Resources: Wes Hall – Success Strategies Handout

Room 320

Presenter: Ami Chen Mills-Naim

Title: Innate Resiliency for Educators: a Session for YOU!

Description: Release more energy, inspiration and creativity… with less stress, everyday.

Nothing to memorize! Nothing to “do!” … Learn simple, foundational psychological principles that can help any educator, administrator, parent or staff member be more clear and present. Access creative teaching strategies and responses to students in the moment.

Where does insight and new energy come from, within us? What blocks these resources? What unleashes them? … In this profound, but lighthearted session, we look together at the true source of our “Best Selves” as educators—and reflect in a way that “hits home,” and touches our inner wisdom, so that we carry this wisdom into the classroom. No workbooks or manuals needed! … Note taking discouraged.

(Recommended to be taken together with “Tapping the Promise of Challenging Youth,” if possible.)

Resources: Ami Chen Mills-Naim Handout