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The Columbus School District hired several new staff members this summer, set to welcome students back when they return for the first day of school on Sept. 4.

New staff members include:

  • Lydia Schultz, kindergarten teacher. She earned a degree in elementary education from Edgewood College in Madison.
  • Sara Sample, third grade teacher. She graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota with a degree in elementary education. Her education experience includes teaching first grade in California, work as a before/after school program director, working at a center for in-home childcare and as a long-term substitute teacher at St. Jerome School in Columbus and the DeForest School District.
  • Allison Crook, first grade teacher. She graduated with a degree in Elementary Education from Edgewood College. Crook taught third grade for one year in the Monroe School District before coming to Columbus.
  • Jordin Tyler, first grade teacher. Tyler earned a degree in elementary education (with a minor in early childhood education) from UW-Platteville. His experience includes teaching head start, kindergarten and early childhood classes with infants and toddlers.
  • Hannah Davis, seventh grade math and science teacher. Davis has experience teaching first grade in Beaver Dam and middle school in Horicon. Davis holds a degree in elementary education.
  • Sam Premo Panetti, sixth grade literacy and social studies teacher. Premo Panetti is a Columbus High School graduate. She earned her undergraduate degree in elementary education from UW-Stevens Point and a graduate degree in special education, reading and literacy leadership from UW-Oshkosh. “I taught nine years at Beaver Dam Middle School as a reading teacher and coached volleyball, basketball and softball in many capacities.”
  • Anne Carpenter, third grade teacher. Carpenter will be one of the new third grade teachers at CMS. She holds a degree from UW-Whitewater in early childhood/early child special education. “This will be my ninth year of teaching,” Carpenter said. “I have taught Kindergarten in Belleville, Baraboo, Our Lady Queen of Peace and the Bangor School Districts. Last school year I taught third grade in Belleville.”
  • Karisa Weske, school psychologist at CMS/DCS, CES and Columbus High School. Weske previously worked at schools in Fort Atkinson, Jefferson, and most recently, Sun Prairie for the past three years. She earned her undergraduate degree from UW-Madison and graduate degree from UW-La Crosse, both in education fields.
  • Kristine Westphal, Columbus High School math teacher. Westphal, a Beaver Dam High School graduate, earned a bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education and Math from Marian University in Fond du Lac. She is currently finishing up a master’s degree in Educational Technology and will graduate in December. “During college, my field experiences were in the Fond du Lac School District. I student taught last fall at Beaver Dam High School,” Westphal said. “When I graduated in December, I was offered a job to continue there for the remainder of the school year. This spring, I received the offer from Columbus School District and I’m very excited to be teaching math at the high school. I’ll be teaching Algebra, Advanced Algebra and Statistics.”
  • Ashley Hemp, sixth grade literacy and science teacher. Hemp earned a degree from UW-Platteville in early adolescence. “My first five years of teaching started at St. Mary’s Catholic School in Platteville. I taught language arts for grades 5-8,” Hemp said. “I then taught at Northside Intermediate School in Milton for five years. I taught sixth grade math and science for a year, and then taught sixth grade literacy and social studies for four years.”
  • Sara Brunlieb, physical education teacher, CMS. Brunlieb earned a degree in education from UW-Oshkosh. She is a first-year teacher. Brunlieb did her student and summer school teaching at Neenah School District.
  • Morgan Phelps, fourth grade teacher. Phelps earned degrees from UW-Superior and Florida Atlantic University in elementary education and early adolescence education with a minor in Language Arts. She is a first-year teacher. Phelps worked as a special education assistant in Baraboo throughout college. She also worked as a substitute teacher in the spring of 2018 following her graduation.
  • Anna Justman, special education teacher at CMS. Justman earned degrees from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio and the University of Dayton in elementary education, special education and guidance counseling. “I have taught middle school special education for 24 years, six in Ohio and 18 in Sun Prairie,” Justman said. “I have coached volleyball, cross country, and track. I am currently coaching my daughter’s volleyball team.”
  • Brenda Ekern, seventh grade special education teacher. Ekern earned a bachelor’s degree in medical technology from UW-La Crosse. She is currently enrolled in a certification program through CESA 6. “I have worked as a special education assistant at CMS for the past two years. Prior to that, I worked in the Blood Bank at Meriter.”
  • Abbi Briggs, first grade teacher, CES and DCS. Briggs holds a degree in elementary education from UW-Eau Claire.
  • Chelsie Hiles, 4K teacher at CES and DCS. Hiles earned a degree in elementary education and Early Childhood from Winona State University in Minnesota. “I have been teaching 4K at the Dodgeland School District for the past eight years and taught 4K in Sun Prairie for a year before that.”
  • Angela Wiemer, Instructional Literacy Coach, CES, DCS, CMS and CHS. Wiemer attended UW-Platteville and UW-Oshkosh and has a reading specialist degree. She began her teaching career at Cambria-Friesland. “While there I taught kindergarten, second grade and Title I. After teaching in Cambria, I joined the School Improvement Services team at CESA 5 as a Curriculum Specialist,” Wiemer said. “The opportunities I had and the knowledge I gained has led me to my current position with Columbus School District as an Instructional Literacy Coach.”
  • Tim Emery, choral teacher, CMS and CHS. Emery has a degree in music education and was part of UW Opera and the UW Marching Band during his time in college. “He also has teaching experience in Madison and Sun Prairie Choirs. This will be his first full-time teaching position and he is so excited to meet and work with all his students.”

Follow Kevin Damask on Twitter @kdamask or contact him at 608-963-7323.