Students cuddle with therapy dog

Therapy Dog Program

The BCSD Therapy Dogs are professionally trained and certified to work with our students, counselors and teachers.

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The Bettendorf Community School District has a team of professional therapy/certified assistance dogs working with counseling staff in the Bettendorf Community School District to support student learning. The therapy dog program has been funded in part through the Bettendorf Community School Foundation and Scott County Regional Authority (SCRA).

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AKIN

Neil Armstrong Elementary
Handler: Jodi Hanson
johanson@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Fletcher

Mark Twain Elementary
Handler: Erin Waldron Smith
ewaldronsmith@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Delta

Bettendorf Middle School
Handler: Jessica Blaum
jblaum@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Garvey

Paul Norton Elementary
Handler: Kelly Cypher
kcypher@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Kenobi

Bettendorf High School
Handler: Heather Wiley
hwiley@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Leia

Bettendorf High School
Handler: Danielle Brier
dbrier@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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McGarrett

Herbert Hoover Elementary
Handler: Courtney Torie
ctorie@bettendorf.k12.ia.us

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Ranger

Grant Wood Elementary School
Handler: Tisha Clark Smith
tclark@bettendorf.k12.ia.us


Student nose to nose with therapy dog

Professional Therapy Dogs

  • Provide emotional and physical support
  • Model good behavior, tolerance, acceptance
  • Assist with counseling lessons and character education
  • Teach responsibility including responsible human-animal interaction
  • Support learning and academic success
  • Provide stress relief and help to relieve anxiety and depression
  • Encourage and inspire a love for reading
  • Improve the ability to trust
  • Improve socialization and communication
  • Model and teach kindness and compassion

BCSD therapy dogs and handlers