FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Muscatine Community School District was selected to receive four Mental Health Training Paraeducator Fellowship.
(Muscatine, Iowa) Thursday, August 31, 2023- The Muscatine Community School District has been awarded four Mental Health Training Paraeducator Fellowships via the University of Iowa’s Scanlan Center for School Mental Health. Each fellowship will provide $15,000 per paraeducator to districts to support the development and advancement of their paraeducators.
“Muscatine Schools is fortunate to have been selected for four fellowships. The work that will be accomplished by the four individuals chosen will greatly impact all schools as they will prepare and deliver meaningful professional development on the skills, tools, and information learned through participating in this amazing opportunity,” says Jaime Kroeger, Human Resources Director with MCSD. “The funding is intended to provide financial support and incentives for school districts to invest in and advance school mental health training for paraeducators. We believe some of the best adult learning happens peer-to-peer, and this award will empower the four fellowship recipients to grow as leaders.”
MCSD selected the four paraeducators who will take part in the fellowship training. They will complete three in-person Imagine Iowa training blocks and enroll in a digital platform for additional content/activities/coaching. Imagine Iowa is an evidence-informed curriculum designed to support educators and K-12 stakeholders to improve their knowledge, skills, and attitudes about mental health. This curriculum will provide the opportunity to engage with topics such as mental health literacy, immediate crisis response, and advocacy, which will create an atmosphere of inclusion and wellness in classrooms and schools.
The district will receive $7,000 per fellowship recipient on November 1, 2023. These funds must support all expenses associated with paraeducators attending the three Saturday in-person training in Des Moines. The remaining $8,000 will be dispersed as paraeducators successfully complete each of the four parts of the program. Each of these $2,000 payments will be distributed to the school district, and the district will, in turn, be responsible for transferring the $2,000 to the paraeducator who completed that part of the program.