Executive Director Notes

Field of Dreams Career Expo

 
 
Shannon Harman, our College and Career Liaison through the 3E Grant and LaGrange County Chamber of Commerce, proudly hosted the 2nd Annual Field of Dreams Career Expo, a groundbreaking event aimed at connecting local students with various employers from across the county. Held on April 18th at the Michiana Event Center, this immersive expo provided a unique opportunity for students to explore and engage with the diverse career opportunities available within LaGrange County.
 
The Field of Dreams Career Expo brought together 1,359 students from Lakeland, Prairie Heights, and Westview to interact directly with over 60 local vendors representing a wide array of industries, including manufacturing, agriculture, healthcare, technology, and more. The expo showcased the rich tapestry of career pathways within the county.

Throughout the day, students had the chance to participate in interactive demonstrations, informational sessions, and hands-on activities facilitated by participating employers. This experiential learning approach allowed students to gain invaluable insights into various professions, learn about the skills and qualifications required, and understand the day-to-day realities of different career paths.
 
In addition to employer showcases, the expo featured panel discussions from prominent figures in the local business community, highlighting the importance of career exploration, lifelong learning, and community involvement. Students also had the chance to network with industry professionals, ask questions, and seek advice on career planning and development.

Cooperative Purchasing

 

We are excited to contract with Amazon Business, free and available to all districts who are a member of any Educational Service Center in Indiana. Below are the benefits members can take advantage of through this contract.

  1. Districts can use Amazon Business Prime to satisfy procurement requirements for quotes since the award was done through a vetted RFP process.
  2. Members can switch over to our vetted contract in a couple of easy steps!
  3.  Districts have the option of using free Amazon Business or Paid Amazon Prime.   
    Contact us for pricing on the paid version.
  4. This contract reduces procurement complexity by eliminating the need for multiple bids and gives districts the ability to access business only pricing and bulk discounts as well as utilize one stop comparison shopping to simplify the purchasing process. Districts will also receive free shipping on orders that include at least $25 of eligible items.

Contact us today to sign up!

 
Amazon Business
 

If your district is in the market for a construction project, be sure to check out the TIPS Construction area of the website. TIPS Construction is a one-of-a-kind team dedicated to bridging the gap between supplier and end user by streamlining the procurement process.

With TIPS Construction you secure a team of seasoned individuals that collaborate with vendors and members at all levels ensuring a successful, efficient, and compliant process.

 
Click to find out more today!

Food Service

 

Technology Integration

Google Admin Certification
Level 1 Training
Tuesday, June 11th
 
 
Level 1 Details & Registration
Google Admin Certification 
Level 2 Training
Tuesday, June 18th
 
 
Level 2 Details & Registration...
Be sure to join us for our third annual 
Summer Tech Cookout
at 
Menominee Elementary,
Plymouth, IN

Thursday, June 20th
8:30 am - 2:30 pm 
 
A full day, free event for your district tech staff to celebrate another great year, participate in team-building activities, and network with area schools.
 
See Details & Register Today!

Professional Learning

 
Summer Bootcamps
NIESC & NWIESC members only
 
Dates & Locations
AM & PM Sessions
$125 per attendee
 
 
 
Register for any date here...
 

Browse our professional learning opportunities!

We strive to provide professional learning opportunities important to your district. If you don't see the topic you are looking for, reach out and let us organize on your behalf.  

Email pd@niesc.k12.in.us and let us do the work for you

 
Browse the PD Newsletter

Member Spotlight

 
Michael O'Donnell
Director of School Safety and Security
 

Michael O'Donnell is the Director of School Safety and Security at Hanover Community School Corporation. He retired from the Highland Police Department as a Sergeant with almost thirty years of experience. His last twelve years, he served as the School Resource Officer for the town.

Focusing on the safety of all students and staff has been the main goal for Michael during his time at Hanover. He has been working on upgrades to their camera systems and building security. He has also completed upgrades to their radio system over the last year. They are in the process of implementing Motorola Orchestrate in the district to allow their cameras, radios, and access control to communicate for increased security. 

When the law was passed about behavioral threat assessment teams having to be in place by July of 2025, he immediately met with their Superintendent and district safe schools team to get everything lined up for the implementation. Teams were formed with input from building administrators and training has occurred.  

Reunification (REx) boxes have been put together and placed in each building. A reunification drill was conducted on an e-learning day with the assistance of students that volunteered along with their parents. 

Staff and building level emergency teams have had training in a variety of topics to keep them updated on changing trends. 

Michael also recently formed a Community Partners group, after getting guidance from Crown Point SC to update all the stakeholders in the area about happenings within the district and asking for their input on matters. 

In 2022, he rewrote the district's emergency preparedness plan and have made updates each year. 

Hanover takes security very seriously and this year they placed an officer in each building on a full-time basis. In the past, they had part-time officers that sometimes could not stay the whole time the building was occupied. 

As the co-chair of the Lake County Safe Schools Commission, Michael has tried to assist other districts in the area with anything he can. He also spoke at the Northwest Indiana Law Enforcement Academy with the other co-chair of the LCSSC, Chief Vince Balbo (Lake County Police) to recruits in the most recent class about the Standard Response Protocol. They have worked with the academy staff to implement the SRP into future training and also encouraged members to speak with their local police departments about SRP.

He met with all students and staff in all buildings to go over the importance of the Standard Response Protocol. Posters of the SRP were put up in public locations in all buildings. 

An anonymous tip line was initiated within the district to report any incidents. He has also written and received grants for the district in excess of $800,000.  

Michael's future goal for Hanover is that the district would be at the forefront of technology for school safety.

We asked Michael what he finds the most rewarding about his job. He shared, "I enjoy walking through the school buildings and seeing the students and knowing they are being taken care of by a well trained, caring, and concerned staff and administration. When the little elementary students want to give you a hug for doing your job or the parents approach you and say thank you for keeping our kids safe."   

In his spare time, Michael is a father of four and grandfather of eight (soon to be nine) and they enjoy family time and getting everyone together.

Northwest Indiana Education Service Center
56535 Magnetic Drive
Mishawaka, IN 46545

219-926-5555 | nwiesc.k12.in.us

 

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