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Local News 9.18.2017

South-Central Iowa is experiencing extreme drought, but relief may be on the way – that’s the word from the Jeff Johnson, meteorologist in charge  of the National Weather Service Des Moines office, who says  conditions may be favorable for more rainfall throughout most of central Iowa during the next two weeks.  While the weather may be warmer than normal, Johnson says in the next 8 to 14 days there will also be more chances for precipitation. However, he says long-term the drought may stay in place as fall and winter tend to be drier times of the year.

A fifth-grade teacher from Pella has been named the state’s History Teacher of the Year and Iowa Council for the Social Studies Elementary Teacher of the Year.  Rebecca Helland teaches at Jefferson Intermediate School and was nominated for both awards. She is also a mentor teacher for Pella Community Schools as part of Iowa’s teacher leadership system. Helland says she aims to engage students by asking questions  worth exploring and give them a broad social studies experience in the classroom.  Her favorite moments?  Helland says she loves when students are leading the discussion in her classroom.