Here at IU 17, the Division of Educational Planning provides quality cost effective staff development for our component school districts, our staff, as well as non-public schools within our geographical region. These programs are developed and implemented through the leadership of the Director of Educational Planning and the Coordinator of Professional Development.

Director of Educational Planning

Cori Cotner - Director of Educational Planning 


Dr. Christina Steinbacher-Reed - Coordinator of Professional Learning and Curriculum Development

Dr. Lisa Feil – School Improvement Coordinator –

Nancy Regopoulos - Administrative Assistant


Act 48

Cori Cotner - Director 

Division of Educational Planning

As an approved provider, BLaST IU 17 provides Act 48 data to the individual school districts and the Pennsylvania Department of Education for those attending Act 48 approved courses and workshops. These opportunities are based on the results of an ongoing needs assessment among Intermediate Units, school districts and the Pennsylvania Department of Education personnel.


Grant Writing Services

Sara McNett - Educational Funding Coordinator 

The Educational Funding Coordinator prepares grants for BLaST Intermediate Unit 17, plus consortia of and individual school districts. Writing, editing, and assistance services provided are on a variety of applications.


Grant Writing Workshops

Sara McNett - Educational Funding Coordinator 

The Grant Writing Workshops provide an overview of the grant development process and identification of resources to help educators fund classroom projects. They are available for small groups and in-service programs, as well as interested individuals.


Professional Development and Technical Assistance

Dr. Christina Steinbacher-Reed – Coordinator of Professional Learning and Curriculum Development

BLaST Intermediate Unit #17 provides professional development services to school districts and their staff in partnership with the Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN) and the Pennsylvania Department of Education and Bureau of Special Education. An IU educational consultant has been identified in specific areas to serve as a contact point for districts.

Professional development activities are designed to support all students in the inclusive environment. They can address needs at the district, building, and team level. Consultants work with districts to provide professional development that meets individual districts staff development needs. Consultants can work with school districts to develop a district-specific plan to address professional development needs.

For additional information please see the Professional Development section of our website.


Educational Consultants

Amy Breon – Reading Consultant

Holli Caine – Behavior Support Consultant

Todd Moyer  – RTII/Reading Consultant

Mark Nevill – Inclusionary Practices 

Meg Ralston – Autism Support Consultant 

Brenda Roberts – Transition/Behavior Support/SWPBS Consultant 

Stacy Stabryla – Autism Support Consultant

Kelly Swartwood – Behavior Support/SWPBS Consultant


Examples of Professional Development

Topics Which Are Provided To School Districts

  • Cooperative Learning
  • Differentiating Instruction thru Multiple Intelligences and Learning Styles
  • Paraprofessional Training
  • Developmentally Appropriate Practices
  • Crisis Management
  • Social Skills
  • IDEA 2004
  • Special Education Law
  • Pennsylvania Alternative Assessment
  • Adaptations of Curriculum
  • Assessment Techniques
  • Assistive Devices
  • Secondary Transition Planning
  • Early Literacy – Essential Elements for Successful Readers
  • Cooperative Learning Techniques
  • Safety Care Techniques
  • Additional topics can be developed upon request.


Safe and Drug Free Schools and Communities Act

Nancy Regopoulos - Administrative Assistant

This program works with participating nonpublic schools to support efforts through community partnerships to build comprehensive programs aimed at preventing drug use and violence among students. It also facilitates occasional Student Assistance Program (SAP) trainings for nonpublic and public school team members.


Strategic Planning for School Districts

Cori Cotner - Director 

Each public school district in the Commonwealth must complete a strategic plan identified as Phase 1, 2, 3 by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Through this service, local districts request assistance ranging from conducting community meetings to providing staff development in order to implement school/district goals. This may be done onsite or at BLaST IU 17. Personnel are available to meet with faculty, administration and the school board.


Title II – Non-Public

Cori Cotner - Director 

BLaST IU 17 coordinates the professional educational activities of a non-public Title II – Math-Science Consortium. These activities are planned to enhance the teaching of math and science, K-12.


Title V

Sara McNett - Educational Funding Coordinator 

This is the coordination of funding for participating nonpublic schools and for the purchase of supplemental instructional and educational materials to improve student learning.



eQUIP eLearning and Professional Services enables participating school districts to provide local online learning programs through the delivery of quality courses, a robust Student Information System, consultation services, curriculum counseling and an optional technology loan program. For more information please visit

Cori Cotner - Project Manager 

Diane Guiser - Administrative Assistant

Deb Wescott - Administrative Assistant

Wade Spencer – Equipment Management