UNI growing state’s literacy education leadership with recent graduates
As part of their continuing mission to expand teachers’ knowledge and instructional expertise in literacy education, The Richard O. Jacobson Center for Comprehensive Literacy and the Reading Recovery Center of Iowa, both at the University of Northern Iowa College of Education, celebrated their most recent graduates on April 30.
Eighteen professional teachers completed the comprehensive literacy coach certification as part of the Jacobson Center’s second graduating class in the Partnership in Comprehensive Literacy coach preparation program. One graduate finished the Reading Recovery Teacher Leader certificate through the Reading Recovery Center of Iowa’s program which has been at UNI since 2009. Both programs are post-master’s degree programs culminating in an advanced studies certificate. This year’s graduates bring the total number of comprehensive literacy coaches in Iowa to 67. There are also now 15 reading recovery teacher leaders in the state.
“The coaches who have completed this preparation program have worked intensively at their coursework, even as they implement what they are learning with the teachers in their schools,” explained Dr. Rick Traw, co-director of the Jacobson Center. “They have shown that they know how to collaborate with teachers to improve their students’ literacy learning. We are very proud of them, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with them and their schools.”
Each of the graduates continued to work full time as educators in their home schools while completing the year-long program. Their efforts will increase districts’ abilities to meet the needs of students needing additional assistance in literacy education.
“The collaboration of these coaches with each other and with UNI faculty in the Jacobson Center will continue to be a dynamic opportunity for learning and development,” said Dr. Salli Forbes, director of the Reading Recovery Center of Iowa.
Graduates of the Partnerships in Comprehensive Literacy Coach program included:
Rebecca Ahern of West Burlington – West Burlington Elementary School, West Burlington Independent School District
Jennifer August of Marshalltown – Fisher Elementary School, Marshalltown Community School District
Patricia Briggs or Manchester – Starmont Elementary School, Starmont Community School District (Arlington)
Vicki Carr of Fairfield – Great Prairie Area Education Agency (Ottumwa)
Annette Duncan of Cedar Falls – Lowell Elementary School, Waterloo Community School District
Jodie Eidahl of Ottumwa – Ottumwa Community School District
Erica Finders of Marshalltown – Lenihan Intermediate School, Marshalltown Community School District
Daniele Hakeman of Buckingham – Lou Henry Elementary School, Waterloo Community School District
Kimberly Hurley of Marshalltown – Anson Elementary School, Marshalltown Community School District
Joanna Letz of Council Bluffs – Wilson Middle School, Council Bluffs Community School District
Jennifer McCollum of Erie, Ill. – Mississippi Bend Area Education Agency (Bettendorf)
Elizabeth Mashek of Eldridge – Virgil Grissom Elementary School, North Scott Community School District (Princeton)
Rebecca Runyan of Cedar Falls – Irving Elementary School, Waterloo Community School District
Sabrina Russell of Steamboat Rock – Rogers Elementary School, Marshalltown Community School District
Kelli Showalter of Sheffield – CAL Elementary School, CAL Community School District (Latimer)
Kathy Westergaard of Mapleton – Lark Elementary School, West Monona Community School District (Onawa)
Amy White of Cedar Falls – Waterloo Community School District
Becky Zesiger of Ottumwa – Great Prairie Area Education Agency (Ottumwa)
Graduate in the Reading Recovery Teacher Leader Program was:
Stacy Hackenburg of Burlington – Burlington Community School District