English

Andrea Berndt

English Teacher

P: x3843 | E: Andrea.Berndt@dmschools.org

Biography

I am an Iowa native who received my B.A. from UNI (go Panthers). The majority of my teaching career has been in Phoenix, Arizona where I also received my Master's degree in Administration and Leadership from Arizona State University. This is my first year at Lincoln (go RAILS!), and I teach English 3 and Power English. In my spare time, I enjoy reading a suspenseful novel, shopping, going on walks, watching football, and spending time with my family and small Yorkshire/Shih Tzu dog, Nigel.

Hannah Harmsen

English Teacher

P: 515-242-8452 | E: hannah.harmsen@dmschools.org

Biography

Mrs. Harmsen is a graduate of Drake University. She teaches English, Graphic Novels, and Modern Expression. She is an avid reader and loves watching fancy old movies. She spends most of her time with her husband and adorable toddler, Esme.

Jack Schuler

English Teacher

P: x3820 | E: Jack.Schuler@dmschools.org

Biography

Jack was born and raised in Streator, IL. After spending his senior year of high school in Japan, he attended Briar Cliff University, graduating in 2005 with a theater degree. He served in the Marine Corps as a linguist from 2006-2011, and he continues to serve in the Army Reserve. He graduated again from Briar Cliff University in 2014 with majors in Secondary Education, English, and History. Jack is also a published author and poet, and he enjoys running long distances races.

Jaime McTaggart

English Teacher/Drama Teacher

P: 515-242-8452 | E: jamie.mctaggart@dmschools.org

Biography

This will be my third year teaching English and Theatre at Rails Academy. I earned my undergraduate degree from Central College, in Vocal Performance and Theatre. Following undergrad, I moved to Chicago and enjoyed a career as a performer for nine years. Upon moving back to Des Moines, I earned my Master of Arts in Teaching degree from Drake University. I still love to dance, sing, and act, but my favorite thing to do is spend time with my four year old daughter, Daisey (who is already a little performer as well!).

James Jacobson

English Teacher

P: 515-242-8452 | E: james.jacobson@dmschools.org

Biography

I have lived in Des Moines my entire life. I have a bachelor's degree on English from Grand View University and a Master's degree in Education from Drake University. I have been at Lincoln since January 2007.

Jasmine Simpson

English Teacher

P: x3497 | E: jasmine.simpson@dmschools.org

Biography

Hello, my name is Jasmine Simpson. This is my second year at Lincoln teaching English. I graduated from The University of Iowa, with my B.A. in Secondary English Education, as well as minors in Human Relations, Psychology, and Reading. In addition to teaching, I currently volunteer as a Throws Coach with the Lincoln Girls' Track and Field team during the Spring.

Jeffrey Werth

English Teacher

P: x3494 | E: Jeffrey.Werth@dmschools.org

Julie Pace

SPED Teacher

P: 515-242-7500 | E: julie.pace@dmschools.org

Biography

I am originally from Marshalltown and graduated from UNI with my BA in 1996 and ISU with my MA in 2004. Lincoln has been my teaching home since 2001 where I have had the opportunity to teach special and general education English. Outside of school, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, being in the outdoors, and watching sports.

Krys Rankin

Teacher

P: 515-242-8452 | E: Krys.rankin@dmschools.org

Biography

Though I'm not a native of Iowa I'm glad to call Des Moines home. I graduate from Roosevelt High School and Grand View University. My husband and I are expecting our first baby in February of 2017. We both love to garden, own a zoo of animals, and enjoy backpacking in the mountains during the summer. I am also one of the two Poet Mentors for Movement 515, which is a slam poetry, break dancing, and graffiti program for students.

Matthew Kozlowski

English Teacher

P: x4437 | E: Matthew.Kozlowski@dmschools.org

Biography

Hello! I teach English 1 and Graphic Novels/Modern Expression. I am originally from Illinois, but I graduated from Iowa State University. I enjoy traveling, hiking, and reading.

Melissa Davidson

English Teacher

P: 515-242-7500 | E: melissa.davidson@dmschools.org

Biography

I graduated from Lincoln High School (and bleed maroon and gold). I attended Simpson College where I majored in English. Currently, I teach English III and IV. Outside of school, I enjoy baseball, photography, and spending time with family. GO YANKEES! GO HAWKS! GO RAILS!

Michael Masteller

English Teacher

P: 515-242-8452 | E: michael.masteller@dmschools.org

Biography

My name is Mike Masteller and I teach AP Language & Composition, AVID 11 & AVID 12. I graduated from The University of Iowa in 2008 and have been teaching ever since. I am married and have two small children. Go Hawks. Go Cubs. Go Rails.

Michael Williams

English Teacher, Performing Arts

P: x7366 | E: Michael.Williams@dmschools.org

Biography

Hello! My name is Michael Williams and I am incredibly happy to teach at Lincoln! I am a proud UNI Panther alum! I am not new to the area as I grew up in Des Moines and am a product of the Des Moines Public Schools! I have been involved in theatre since middle school and love the creativity that it fosters! Go Rails!

Nicole Ellis

ELL Teacher

P: x3809 | E: Nicole.Salazar@dmschools.org

Biography

After working with refugee families through a local non-profit organization while still in high school, I fell in love with ELL.

I attended Iowa State University and graduated with a BA in English Education, ELL endorsement and Spanish minor.

Currently, I teach ELLs who recently arrived to the U.S. as well as ELLs who have lived for 7+ years in the U.S.

Weekends in my house are spent curled up with a hot cup of coffee, my German Shepherd Tango, and my cat Cash while watching Netflix or listening to old vinyl records.

Rosalyn Harris

English Teacher

P: x4436 | E: Rosalyn.Johnson@dmschools.org

Taya Donovan

Special Education Teacher

P: x3876 | E: Taya.Donovan@dmschools.org

Biography

Hello! My name is Ms. Donovan. I graduated from Drake University with a degree in Special Education and Reading. This is my second year teaching at Lincoln High School but my third year teaching. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

Whitney Judas

SPED Teacher

P: 515-242-7500 | E: whitney.judas@dmschools.org

Biography

Hi, my name is Whitney Judas and this is my fifth year teaching at Lincoln. I graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in English and Special Education. I have always co-taught English classes and really enjoy the opportunity to work with another teacher in the classroom. I love the students and families we serve at Lincoln and am privileged to call Lincoln my home. Go RAILSPLITTERS!