On Thursday, May 23, Southeast Polk Associate Superintendent, Joseph Horton, received the 2019 TEAM (Together, Educators and Administrators Make it Happen) Award from Iowa State Education Association. The Southeast Polk Education Association (SEPEA) nominated Mr. Horton for his work in creating a collaborative and collegial working environment for all staff in the district.

Members of the Southeast Polk Education Association wrote the following nomination letter for the TEAM award.  Congratulations to Mr. Horton on this honor.

Joseph Horton ensures that every new employee of Southeast Polk has the opportunity to hear about our organization by allowing us to host a breakfast during that first In-Service week. SEPEA is given a seat at the table of many of the district-wide committees including the Calendar Committee, the Insurance Committee, the Staff Development Steering Committee, and the Wellness Committee. 

Each month, Mr. Horton meets with three members of our executive board (president/vice president/contract maintenance) along with our ISEA UniServ Director for a Labor Relations Committee (LRC) meeting. During these LRC meetings, we address difficult topics and try our best to problem solve. While we may need to discuss difficult topics, we also have the opportunity to celebrate the successes of our students and teachers. Mr. Horton shares our vision of putting students at the center of everything we do while we advocate for educational professionals.

Due to our relationship with our administration and the school board, we continue to have our full contract in place and have not had to recertify. Mr. Horton has helped facilitate the conversations between ourselves, the administration, and the school board in regards to our contract extensions.

We appreciate the hard work that has been put into establishing a positive relationship that has allowed us the ability to work collaboratively to problem solve the issues and concerns as well as secure a contract extension.