The Dubuque Community School District is pleased to announce the appointment of Rozanne Warder as the district’s new director of special education. Warder will replace Lynn Helmke, who will retire from public education on August 31 after 15 years as the district’s director of special education. Warder will begin her new role with the district on August 27.

Most recently, Warder served as director of special services for the Iowa City Community School District and previously was director of special services in the South Sioux City Community School District. In these roles, she has worked in a role similar to that in Dubuque – to ensure the delivery of special education services for persons with disabilities.

“Rozanne will bring a seasoned approach to special education management,” said Stan Rheingans, interim superintendent of schools. “We know she will be an immediate contributor to our work in assisting the students and families who benefit from our special education services.”

In her experience, she has overseen the budget and supervision of students with disabilities ranging from ages 0-21. In Iowa City, she was also responsible for professional development and working with school/family teams to achieve resolution. In South Sioux City, she was responsible for the design, implementation and supervision of the District Response to Intervention resulting in increased access to prevention and maintaining a standard of intervention within 14 days of referral. She has significant federal grant writing experience, having written and implemented a Federal Dropout Prevention Grant and a Federal Readiness Emergency Management Grant.

Earlier in her career, Warder served as director of education at Boys and Girls Home where she was responsible for delivery of special education to students placed in residential treatment throughout the states of Iowa and Nebraska. She has also served as an assistant professor of education at Morningside College and was principal of an alternative high school in Westside Community School District in Omaha, Neb.

Warder holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary and special education from the University of Northern Iowa and a master’s degree in educational administration from Truman State University. She has served on state-level committees dealing with out-of-home placements, special education leadership and autism issues.

For more information, contact the DCSD School and Community Relations Office at (563)552-3020.