Three new teachers hired; three on staff submit resignations

Two new on staff will be first-year teachers; ­­­third has experience

    Three more new teachers will join the staff at Chase County Schools this fall, after action by the school board Tuesday night.
    In addition, the board also accepted a trio of resignations from Lisa Krutsinger, Torri Lechtenberg and Elisha Hinojosa effective the end of the 2020-21 school year.
    The newly-hired teachers hail from Benkelman, Holdrege and St. Francis, Kansas.
    Emily Jones, hired as a CCS elementary teacher, is a graduate of Dundy County-Stratton High School in Benkelman.
    She expects to graduate in May from Concordia University with a B.S. degree in elementary education with a special education endorsement.
    Jones completed student teaching at Lincoln’s Huntington Elementary’s third grade class, instructing students in math, reading, writing, grammar and science.
    Due to COVID-19, she also gained experience in hybrid teaching, instructing both in-person students and virtual students simultaneously.
    Jones attended Concordia on a women’s basketball scholarship, and has earned NAIA Scholar-Athlete honors.
    Also hired as an elementary teacher, Haley Hixson will graduate in May from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a B.S. degree in elementary education and early childhood development.
    Hixson did her student teaching in several Lincoln public schools, and the Ruth Staples Preschool there. She is a certified local substitute teacher in both Lincoln and Holdrege, the latter her hometown.
    She also has experience as a camp leader/video planner at the Lincoln Children’s Museum, and is certified in Project Wild, a conservation/environmental education program emphasizing wildlife.
    Amy Christensen of St. Francis, Kansas will be in the grade 9-12 special education department next year.
    Since 2013, she’s been with the St. Francis Elementary school and, currently, heads its K-5 special education department. She also taught grades three and six there.
    Christensen also has experience as a special education teacher at Northwest Kansas Educational Service Center.
    She attended high school in Arizona, and earned a general studies degree with an elementary education emphasis from Mesa Community College in 2005.
    Continuing her education, she studied elementary and special education at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, graduating in December 2012, then earned a Master’s in Autism Spectrum Disorder in October 2020.
    She’s also been a preschool teacher.
Teachers resign
    The three teachers whose resignations were accepted Tuesday join Carol Hess, who resigned earlier this school year.
    Krutsinger is teaching first grade this year but had been a long-time kindergarten teacher, too. Both Lechtenberg and Hinojosa are science and math teachers in grades 7-12. Hess is a special education teacher.
    By submitting resignations by the Jan. 31 deadline, all four staff members will receive the $1,000 stipend as part of the school’s early resignation program. Those four contracts were formally approved at the meeting Tuesday.    
    Supt. Adam Lambert expressed his thanks to all the teachers leaving CCS for their service over the years.

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