The Rockwood Reader

May 2022 | Issue 17

Current Events

Morning Mingle

At Eureka Elementary each month a different grade level/department puts together a Morning Mingle Activity. For the month of April the Eureka Special Education Team held a Morning Mingle where all staff were invited to come make sensory bottles for their classrooms. It was a HUGE hit! The building administrators supplied the bottles while the special education team donated the rest of the supplies. Turns out Behtany Laskowitz, SLP is a Master Sensory Bottle maker learning her skills from retired SSD OT, Laura Brozka. Bethany also participates in the Culture Committee at Eureka Elementary and is always coming up with fun activities to bring her building colleagues closer together. The amount of time and energy she commits to these activities is a reflection of how much she cares about the people she works with and it has definitely had a positive impact on building morale.

Big picture

Pictured above, from left to right...

Shauna Carney, special education administrator

Aileen Nagel, occupational therapist

Jessica Montgomery, speech-language pathologist

Kathy Rolofson, special education teacher

Adreneh Allen, school psychologist

Bethany Laskowitz, speech-language pathologist

Olivia Beutel, special education teacher

Meghan Diestlekmap, special education teacher

Special Olympics

During the month of April several of our students have enjoyed Special Olympics Track and Field events hosted by both Marquette and Lafayette High Schools. Congratulations to our amazing athletes and supportive buddies!

What's Happening in Rockwood?

Family and Community Engagement

The Family Resource Hub

Family Resource Hub Virtual Grand Opening Video

Family Resource Hub Flyer

Satellite Food Pantry Flyer

Summer Program Guides: Recreation Council Flyer

Mental Health Training for Staff: Kickup registration link -

Youth Mental Health Training for Families: Google link-

Assistance for families who may have challenges accessing the FREE Covid Tests

Parent Education and Diversity Awareness (PEDA)

The Summer Resource Packet is Here!

Are you still thinking about what to do this summer?

The PEDA Summer Resource Packet can help!

PEDA 2022 Summer Resource Packet

Other helpful resources:

St. Louis Recreation Council

Blueprint for Summer

St. Louis County Parks Activity Guide

Early Childhood Summer Resource Guide

Coming Soon!

Applications will be available soon for the Fall 2022 semester SSD Family Leadership Institute FLI (Formerly Parent Leadership Institute PLI).

The Institute which has over 275 graduates to date, was created for families in 2007 to offer information, training, and resources. Participants gain the knowledge and skills to effectively collaborate with other families, school personnel and develop leadership for SSD and their home districts.

Participants will:

  • Build understanding of future planning and problem-solving, utilizing Charting the LifeCourse tools;

  • Learn to effectively participate in their child’s education and improve the educational climate for all children;

  • Learn how to positively interact and collaborate with other families and school personnel; and

  • Discover new resources and network with other families.

FLI Graduates have:

  • Served on School boards

  • Been elected as Parent Advisory Council (PAC) President(s)

  • Actively participated in SSD and/or local school district PACs

  • And further increased their leadership training in policy development and mentorship.

Contact us at or call 314.989.8460 if you have any questions or concerns.

Some Quotes from graduates.

  • Thank you so much for everything! I feel very lucky to have found this opportunity.

  • It was helpful to learn how Charting LifeCourse Tools could play a part in every step of the way.

  • The topics and presenters made the program engaging and informative.

  • Learned a lot about planning for my child’s future and the IEP process.

  • I'm really glad I signed up for this program. I had no idea what to expect and learned so, so much about the available tools and all the SSD processes we will be experiencing during his life.

  • The deep dive on the IEP history/process was incredibly helpful to give a framework on my ability to participate since my family is very new to the IEP process.

  • The IEP information was incredibly helpful. It was a bit like pulling back the curtain on something that was previously a complete mystery.

  • I am so thankful for this workshop and for the information, and materials you’ve shared w/ me. Thanks for facilitating the training so well. It’s great to have a safe space to talk openly with experts and other parents about education, IEPs, 504, Inclusion, challenges, etc. The choice of speaker, topics, resources and lending library was all great.

  • Amazing group of people. Chance for honest conversations. Helps me be a better advocate & team member.

  • Amazing experience – tons of knowledge shared. Lots of great connections with families. Better understanding of IEP process. I feel empowered to do more – create positive change. Opened my eyes to some realities approaching with transition to adulthood.

  • We received a lot of great information in this class! I has made me change the way I look at the whole process, and how I approach things with my daughter. I am so grateful that I was given this opportunity!

  • I am no longer feeling so alone & confused. Feel I can be a better advocate.

  • Attending this institute was an awesome opportunity I turned out to be much more than I expected. It gave me a better understanding about the transition process & how I can best support my child through transition. It generated a lot of ideas for my child’s last IEP. I feel so much more equipped to navigate SSD=land, as well as help others navigate it too.

  • Amazing. Blessing. You’ve enabled me to think more positively and concretely about my son’s future. I have always said “there’s no outline for me to follow” – but you’ve given me the framework I desired, support & connections!

Information and Resources

Special School District Parent Advisory Council

The mission of the Special School District (SSD) Parent Advisory Council (PAC) is to effectively collaborate with and advise its stakeholders (including parents/guardians, the SSD Board of Education, Governing Council, SSD administration and staff, and partnering school district administrators and staff) in order to improve the educational, self-efficacy, and social outcomes of each student served by SSD.

Please click here to access the PAC website which contains specific information about meetings, agendas & minutes, as well as parent resources.

Important Dates

Last Day for Seniors

Friday, May 27th

No School | Memorial Day Holiday

Monday, May 30th

Early Dismissal / Grade Recording Day

Thursday, June 2nd

Upcoming Board of Education Meetings

Special School District

May 10th @ 5:45 PM - Work Study Session

May 24th @ 5:45 PM

More info here

Rockwood School District

May 5th @ 7:00 PM - Awards Night

May 19th @ 7:00 PM

More info here

Let's Talk!

Let’s Talk is an open invitation from Special School District (SSD) to tell us what’s on your mind.​Let’s Talk is an easy way to submit feedback at your convenience directly to the SSD staff member who can help.

Special School District of St. Louis County

Dr. Carmen Harris, Director of Special Education


Mandy Lloyd, Administrative Assistant