WAUPUN — Wendi Dawson, director of student services for the Waupun Area School District, received the Administrator of the Year award from the Wisconsin Board of Special Services Administrators.
It is the group’s highest honor.
As part of the nomination process, she received letters of support from her superintendent, co-workers and a teacher from the Waupun School District.
“I’m very humbled,” Dawson said. “It’s overwhelming to be selected from over 400 directors in the state of Wisconsin. It is a wonderful honor and I am deeply grateful to the WCASS Board of Directors for selecting me and my colleagues to make the nomination.
Dawson has served the past 10 years as Director of Student Services, eight of those years for the Waupun Area School District.
“Wendi has skillfully led WASD related to improving special education and student services for our district,” WASD Superintendent Steve Hill wrote in his nearly two-page nomination. “These accomplishments have improved services for children in our district by providing access to on-site AODA assessments and treatment. She has expanded our mental health counseling services by securing four external providers who offer on-site mental health counseling to students. I am convinced that Wendi deserves the Director of the Year award for the reasons listed and for many more not listed. “
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“As Executive Director of the organization, I appreciated Wendi’s willingness to always volunteer for various projects to help our members and speak out on behalf of children with special needs,” said Gary Myrah. , Executive Director of WCASS.
The Wisconsin Council of Administrators of Special Services is an organization created by administrators responsible for overseeing the delivery of student services and/or special education. The organization was created in 1994 as a result of a merger between the Wisconsin Council of Administrators of Special Education and the Wisconsin Council of Administrators of Pupil Services. The organization’s mission is to provide the essential information needed to maintain compliance with state and federal regulations as well as innovative programs for students. It also advocates for enhanced programming to improve each student’s academic success.
“Our success is based on the volunteer efforts of our members,” said Myrah. “An example of these efforts is the service that Wendi Dawson has provided as a member of the Board of Directors. Wendi has served on the board since 2013, with the last four years having held the elected position of secretary. In this capacity, she has provided leadership on key legislative issues over the years within Wisconsin and participated in the Legislative Council of the Alliance of School Administrators. She also participated in the Wisconsin delegation meeting with our US Congressmen in July 2019.”
In addition to her leadership at the state level, she has been a leader at the regional and local level.
The WCASS Board of Directors voted unanimously to bestow this honor on Dawson and she was recognized at the WCASS Fall Conference. It will also be recognized at the joint WASB/WASDA/WASBO conference in January 2022.
WCASS will nominate Dawson to receive the CASE Award for Outstanding Special Education Administrator. This national award is designed to recognize individuals who make significant professional contributions to leadership behavior and field practice in the administration of programs for students with disabilities.