Middle School

Ann Rai

Head of Middle School


I have had a broad career in education over the past 28 years working with students of all ages and backgrounds in a variety of settings. Many of those years I served as a school counselor.  I have an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University, a Master’s Degree from the University of North Florida, and a Doctorate from the University of Florida in Counselor Education.

Serving in the role of Head of Middle School for the past 8 years has been a privilege. I count it a blessing to work with such dedicated and talented faculty, curious and intelligent students and supportive and caring parents. This is the winning combination for preparing students for success in college and beyond.

I am also delighted that my two children and husband can participate in the life of Collegiate. WCS has enriched our family’s life in many ways. I know that my girls are receiving a quality education and are being nurtured to become all that they can be.

Tel: (316) 771-2214

Amy Dokken

Dean of Students


After graduating from Texas A&M University and teaching in the public schools for two years, I joined the Collegiate family in 2000.  For 14 years, I enjoyed teaching 7th grade biology, but after finishing my Master’s Degree in School Leadership, I had the opportunity to move into the Middle School Dean position, and I love it!  Through daily interaction with my students, I get to know each and every one of them in grades 5th-8th.  I kind of feel like their “school mom”.   While in the middle school, my hope is that I can help all students appreciate the core values of integrity, hard work, compassion, wisdom, and respect through role modeling.  I understand adolescents and know how rough middle school can be for children.  I want to help guide every one of them get through this, sometimes, challenging part of growing up with confidence.

I consider Collegiate my second home and have watched my own two children grow up here under the guidance of many wonderful teachers and faculty.  I feel blessed to work in this loving environment.  Go Spartans!

Tel: (316) 771-2213

Carol Pavetto



Students are our future. This sounds like such a cliché, but it is so true. It is my goal to be a support to each student (and parent) in middle school. Any concern, problem or accomplishment is crucial to their being a confident and contributing citizen of character. WCS is a family of diversity and support. I am proud to be a part of this family. I have a Bachelors of Science in Special Education from Central Michigan University and a Masters in counseling/psychology from Michigan State University (As you can see, Once a Spartan, Always a Spartan!

Tel: (316) 771-2216
Mrs. Pavetto's Blog

Sirana Abi-Mikhael

Seventh and eighth Grade French



"One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way." – Frank Smith

Coming from a multilingual background and a multicultural experience, (where speaking many languages at a time was very common), gave me the passion to work as hard as I can to pass this “moto” to the new generation at this time of globalization and cultural openness. After I graduated in Journalism and Mass Media in Lebanon, I worked as a reporter for the Lebanese Presidential Palace and I wrote for various political newspapers and magazines. Upon my arrival to the U.S.A., I hosted a TV show in Wichita for three years in which I discussed women, diversity and cultural issues.

My passion for languages, led me in 2010, to teach French at Wichita State University. In 2011, I developed the Arabic program for the Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures Department at WSU, where I am also currently developing the Online French courses.

I am so proud to join the Wichita Collegiate School family this year and to be part of its wonderful professional environment. I look forward to share my passion of teaching languages with its students and to contribute in opening many doors along their way. 


Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 421

Irving Aguirre

Seventh and Eighth Grade Spanish




I was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, of Mexican parents who taught me to be a hard worker and value the educational opportunity I had. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Mathematics and Statistics from the University of California, Berkeley (Go Bears!). There I also minored in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research and Music. My undergraduate studies at Berkeley culminated with an Intensive Spanish Language program abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, at the Universidad de Belgrano. While abroad, I also had the opportunity to visit the countries of Chile, Perú, and Uruguay - where I met great people, enjoyed delicious food, and performed with local musicians. My studies took me to the state of Maryland, where I attained my Master of Arts in Audio Sciences from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University. There I had the opportunity to work as a recording engineer for phenomenal musicians, recording concerts, recitals, and professional releases. During my graduate studies, I met my beautiful wife at church. To this day, I still lead worship and she sings with me at the Spanish church we attend. Circumstances brought me to lovely Wichita, Kansas. In the area, I have worked at Butler Community College, Mathnasium, Cowley College, and National American University, as a Mathematics Instructor. A middle school Geometry class brought me to Collegiate in 2014; the community kept me here. I worked in Learning Lab and tutored many students here, and soon I learned that blue and gold represent the brilliance and excellence that each Collegiate faculty, staff member, parent, and student carries within. I am ecstatic to be a part of the Collegiate community as the Spanish teacher for the seventh and eighth grades. I can’t wait to see how my students will amaze me this year and for them to learn que

“¡Sí se puede!”


Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 422
Señor Aguirre's Blog

Niamh Black

Seventh Grade Biology


I joined WCS as a Lower School assistant teacher in January 2017 following a move to Wichita. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science from University of Dundee, Scotland in 1997. Initially, working in the pharmaceutical industry. After my sons began school, I completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Science Education at the University of West of England. I taught science in Bristol, England from grades five through thirteen. I have taught all three sciences up to year nine and chemistry and biology to upper years. I taught over a range of abilities but found assisting those students with learning differences closest to my heart. After a move to the United States five years ago, I worked for a tutoring company in North Carolina providing one-to-one elementary age science and social studies lessons to students with learning differences.  I feel so privileged to work in the Middle School teaching Seventh Grade Biology. I enjoy every day spent with these energetic young people. I am the proud mom of two boys, a 2018 WCS graduate and a Junior.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 416
Niamh Black's Blog

Troy Black

Middle School Athletic Director and Physical Education Department Chair


I am a graduate of Bethel College with my undergrad in Physical Education and I received my Master’s from Wichita State University in Sports Management. I am the Speed & Strength Coordinator, teach strength training classes in the upper school, and teach 7th & 8th grade PE in the middle school. I am the defensive coordinator for the upper school football team and I am the sprint coach for the upper school track team. I also serve as the middle school athletic director. My step-son is a 2014 graduate of Wichita Collegiate and my youngest attends school here as well. I love sharing my passion for the weight room with my students and student - athletes. The commitment by the students to the programs I am involved in is second to none. I have had the opportunity to teach at other schools and there is not a better school in the state or country in my opinion.

Tel: (316) 771-2209
Coach Black's Blog

Ashley Bowers

Sixth Grade English


Before joining the Collegiate family in 2018, I had five years of experience as a high school English and journalism teacher. I also had the pleasure of teaching English as a foreign language in Barcelona, Spain, and served as an assistant language teacher in a Japanese public high school. My Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education was earned at K-State, and my Master of Liberal Arts is from Baker University. When I’m not teaching sixth graders the fine art of writing, I am chasing my two young children, Isaac and Sophie. When I’m not chasing my children, you’ll find me playing with my photography lenses or planning my next big trip abroad. I am proud to be one of the newest members of the Collegiate team, and look forward to many years at this wonderful institution! 

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 467

Doug Bradley

Eighth Grade Mathematics



Doug has 17 years of experience teaching middle school and high school mathematics, 13 of those in the British Virgin Islands where he taught at a private IB school and in public schools.  Before his teaching career he was an IT executive and has been able to utilize those technology skills in the integration of technology in his classroom.  He has a wealth of knowledge, energy and enthusiasm.  He and his wife Kathy are originally from Kansas and are happy to be back near family.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 418
Mr. Bradley's Blog

Joyann Brake

Values in Action, Entrepreneurship, Old & New Testament


“Develop a passion for learning.  If you do, you will never cease to grow and be amazed.” Collegiate helps develop the whole child, and Enhancement classes are a major component of this.  I have the privilege of being an Enhancement teacher including classes such as Problem-solving, Entrepreneurship, Music Explorations, Values in Action, and Old and New Testament.  I started my career as an English Literature teacher in Chicago, and I also have a degree in music.  Through the course of working in several private schools, I have loved every opportunity to get to know middle-school students and use creativity to discover new subjects.  I consider WCS one of the biggest blessings in my own life, and that of my children!

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 479
Mrs. Brake's Blog

Laura Cusick '88

Design Challenge, Genius hour, and robotics teacher


As a Class of 1988 WCS graduate, it seems my whole life has been spent on this campus. I entered on my first day of Kindergarten and forty-two years later, I'm still here! WCS has been a cornerstone not only of my life as a student, but also as a parent and a professional. I began teaching 4th-5th grade and Gifted & Talented in USD 259, before getting the call from Bunny Hill to interview for the 6th grade Literature position at WCS in 2001. Reading was my gift as a student and teacher, so I couldn't imagine a better fit for me. I taught in that position for 9 years. I then became the Instructional Technology Facilitator for the school, conducting professional development in support of teachers as WCS began to integrate computers into the classroom. In 2015, I presented a wild idea to Mr. Davis regarding a thing called an Innovation Lab, where kids could chase ideas and explore passions through Stanford University's Design Thinking model. In 2016, we built the Lammers Innovation Lab, where I teach today, in addition to my technology support role. In the iLab, we teach Design Challenge, Genius Hour, and several Project Lead the Way courses in robotics and computer science. It is absolutely the most fun I have ever had teaching! Every day is different, and I love being able to work with kids in such a free and creative environment!  The 2018 school year will be my 18th WCS school year, and I couldn't be more excited to see what these students will come up with next!

Tel: (316) 771-2307
Mrs. Cusick's Blog

Christine Dunleavy

Eighth Grade English



I  was born in England and hold dual citizenship from both the United Kingdom and the United States. I obtained an undergraduate degree in English, History and French from the University of London as well as both undergraduate and graduate degrees in English/Education from the University of Maryland.  I have taught English language and literature from sixth grade through college and French courses from kindergarten through twelfth grade in a number of states including Maryland, Texas, North and South Carolina as well as Missouri and Kansas. At present, I am the eighth grade English teacher and Eighth Grade Team Leader.  My passion is working with students, especially those inquisitive minds  at Collegiate, and  I am thrilled to see the progress they make throughout the eighth grade year at that critical juncture between middle school and high school.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 524
Mrs. Dunleavy's Blog

Allison Fiegel

Fifth Grade Literature



I have been teaching at Collegiate since 1998. Teaching was not my first career choice, however, now I cannot imagine doing anything else. I graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies. Married, jobless and living in Harrisonville, MO, I took on a substitute teaching job and loved it, which ultimately led me to where I am today.  I earned my Elementary Education degree from Wichita State University while raising two young boys who are now Collegiate graduates. Children are my true passion and what I love most about my job. I am constantly grateful for the opportunity to help precious children navigate and feel comfortable in what can sometimes be an anxious first year of middle school.


Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 448
Mrs. Fiegel's Blog

Brian Finan

Sixth GradE Science Explorations


I began teaching in Litchfield, Connecticut at Forman School in 1998.  I worked alongside a French teacher there who happened to be a graduate of Collegiate.  Several years later we were married and moved to Lawrence to earn graduate degrees from the University of Kansas.  We eventually came to teach at Collegiate in 2007.  Since then, I have taught sixth grade science at Collegiate and my wife, Brooke Finan, has taught English and French here.  My mother-in-law teaches English at Collegiate and both of my children attend Collegiate.  To me, the most important part of teaching is helping children build self-confidence.  This starts by making my classroom a safe place where students can trust that I, as well as their peers, will appreciate their ideas and work.  My students are then responsible for doing their best and I am responsible for giving each student what they need to succeed. View my blog to learn more!  

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 419
Mr. Finan's Blog

Troy Fischer

Band Director



I am a graduate of Wichita State University, where I completed both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Instrumental Music Education. I strive for passion and excitement in the instrumental music classroom, and hope the musical experiences of the Collegiate student lead them to a lifetime of Fine Arts Appreciation! When not in the classroom, I am active as a professional musician, performing on upright and electric bass in area jazz groups, musical productions, and with the pop/rock cover band, Lucky People.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 401
Mr. Fischer's Blog

Rolesta Forrest





My dad served in the US Army for 30 years which landed our family being assigned to more than seven U.S. Army military posts including international assignments living in France and Germany! Upon returning from Germany, dad was assigned to a post in Moses Lake, Washington where I attended my senior year. Post-graduation, I attended Airline School in Kansas City, Missouri for a Flight Attendant. While still a student, I took the opportunity to interview with the FBI who “would be in touch". I completed Airline School and now was waiting to “receive my wings” so I could fly!  Meanwhile, my dad would have another assignment; this time leaving his family behind at a “waiting wives” base while he fought in Vietnam. The base was Schilling Manor in Salina, Kansas where I attended Brown Mackie College for a Paralegal degree. The FBI pursued me twice while in school. The second time, I left Brown Mackie to work at Headquarters for the Bureau in Washington, D.C. but not before becoming the finalist of 50 court contestants where I was crowned Miss Brown Mackie Personality Queen by the Mayor of Salina! While with The Bureau, I was assigned to the Posting Section of the Identification Division for about two years then transferred to the Legal Counsel Division in FOIPA (Freedom of Information & Privacy Act). A major airline reached out to me during my employment with the FBI but I declined their offer. I later relocated to Myrtle Beach, SC working as a Para-legal at a local law firm. Some years later, I moved to my native State; Hampton, Virginia where I found employment working in HR with Northrop Grumman, employing over 23,000 personnel, all employed at one single site in Newport News, Virginia! I moved from the Tri-City area of Virginia to Omaha, Nebraska (go Big Red!) where I had a job offer to re-connect with the FBI but declined to join a world-wide manufacturing and hydraulic company, working in Administration. I was asked and accepted to volunteer working a Mayoral campaign for winning Mayor P.J. Morgan and was appointed to his Advisory Board. Met and married my husband, John; Senator Brad Ashford was our best man. After marrying, I relocated with my husband to Birmingham (Detroit), MI and found employment with Kelly Services having many assignments in Dearborn’s automotive world and other Fortune 500 companies! Being an executive with his company, another move was inevitable.  The company's headquarters relocated from Troy, MI to Maumee, Ohio.  With this move, my husband gifted me in taking a sabbatical from working! About 1.5 years later, after hanging the last picture in our recently purchased Perrysburg, Ohio home, finding two great churches, doctors, having made more new friends, etc., John was transferred to Los Angeles, CA. I joined up again with Kelly Services working all over downtown LA, Glendale and Pasadena. Do you know the true meaning of “traffic is a parking lot”? It didn’t matter! I LOVED LOVED LOVED living in Cali!! I still have two bottles of Fess Parker’s wine he autographed to us on our 3rd wedding anniversary when we visited his winery!  In 1996, my husband was transferred to Wichita. WHAT!?!?  I joined him in Wichita, February 1998.  Our son Matthew, currently a Senior, was born in July 2001 and has been a Spartan lifer since August 2004 when I started volunteering in EC!  I commenced my current position subbing in September 2005, advanced to part-time in August 2006 and transitioned into a full-time role in August 2013. While in a part-time role, I was also employed at the Kansas Health Foundation.  I have been so blessed to have lived in Europe twice and work in many regions of our Country, meeting many incredible people, learning and embracing many diversified backgrounds and making some life-long friendships. I have never met a stranger! Probably why Collegiate saw me as a good fit to be the voice of Collegiate as your Receptionist and MS Office Assistant! 


Tel: (316) 634-0433

Joe Gehrer '02

Sixth Grade Literature, Upper School Baseball Coach



As an alum of the class of 2002, I have spent most of my life on the campus of WCS. I cannot think of a better school community to be a part of.  I graduated from Emporia State University with a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education.  After teaching 3rd grade for Andover Public Schools, I have been teaching 6th grade Literature at WCS since the fall of 2010.  I am extremely privileged to help provide the education I myself received from this wonderful school.  I also serve as the Varsity Baseball coach in the spring.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 415
Mr. Gehrer's Blog

Rebecca Gehrer

Fifth Grade Mathematics



Rebecca joined us from Meadowlark Elementary in Andover where she taught 4th grade.  Prior to that she was an instructional coach and classroom teacher at USD 259 for 10 years.  While at USD 259 she was the winner of a Golden Apple Award and served on her building leadership team for 9 years.  Rebecca brings a warmth and professionalism that both our students and parents love!  Rebecca is also the wife of 6th grade teacher Joe Gehrer and mother to Lucy, Olivia, and Crosby.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 465
Mrs. Gehrer's Blog

Emily Goodpasture




Emily came to WCS from The Independent School where she served as the Director of Fine Arts, the Upper School Fine Arts Department Chair and the Upper School Drama Teacher for the past 13 years.  She has a Bachelor's Degree in Theatre Acting and Design and two Master's Degrees, one in Elementary Education and the other in Theater Studies in Production and Design.  She has been an active leader both in her previous school and in the community.  Her numerous awards for producting, directing, costumes, graphic design, sets, costumes, and lighting are too many to list!  Our students are learning so much from this knowledgeable and passionate teacher.



Tel: (316) 771-2283
Mrs. Goodpasture's Blog

Sam Hake

Drumline Director, Assistant Band Director, Music Technology



I graduated from Friends University with a Music Business Degree in 2008 where I was highly involved in the percussion department and jazz program. I have now been teaching instrumental music at WCS ever since and I love it! I strive to help each student find their own voice on their instrument, and with that find an outlet to be creative. Outside of work I perform professionally on percussion and drumset for local jazz concerts, musicals, and many other live music productions. I also enjoy going to concerts, composing, running, golf, roasting/drinking coffee, and most of all my family.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 576
Mr. Hake's Blog

Dave Hawley

Seventh Grade History, Middle and Upper School Tennis Coach



History is the most amazing thing to examine of all our classes…because we are creating it every day! I have been at WCS since 1977 (there’s that History thing again!), and I have been privileged to watch our school blossom into THE best school in the Midwest. My wife Sally and I have three grown children, all of whom attended WCS and graduated from here. I grew up in New York and Nebraska (preacher’s kid!) and attended York College and Harding University, as well as accumulating Masters hours at WSU.  I LOVE exploring the twists and turns of our nations’ past with our students, and the chance to impress upon them their thread in the quilt of our society! Proba Te Dignum!



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 409
Mr. Hawley's Blog

Scott Hawley

Eighth Grade Science, Science Explorations



I have always believed that one of the best ways to influence our world is by being a teacher. I love to see the gleam in a young person’s eye when they reach that moment of understanding. Finally, I love to learn too! So I enjoy learning new things about science and teaching as I work in the classroom.  I began teaching at Collegiate in 1991 and have taught 8th grade physical science and Upper School physics and AP Physics. I have also coached MS football, US baseball, US Robotics and both US and MS Science Olympiad. During the years I have been so impressed with our tremendous faculty, excited students and supportive parents. Collegiate really is a community that is focused on the goal of an outstanding education. I am proud to have been a part of this community.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 410
Mr. Hawley's Blog

Dylan Heath

physical education


I am a Wellington graduate. I started my college career at Hutchinson Community College, which I attended on a baseball scholarship. After I graduated, I continued my education at Wichita State University, where I earned my Bachelor's Degree in Sport Management. I am currently working towards my Master's Degree in Sport Management. I help coach Upper school baseball and Lower school football/basketball. My goals are to someday be an Athletic Director.

Tel: (316) 771-2606

Cynthia Koepsel

Seventh Grade English


As a native of West Des Moines, Iowa, I have passionately pursued life-long learning experiences in the U.S. Southwest, Spain, Greece, and Africa! My degrees= Monmouth (Associate of Arts); Drake U. (BA English/Secondary ED/Spanish and Speech); Iowa Law Enforcement Academy (Special Agent #644, General Criminal Investigation: Homicide & Undercover); Wichita State U. (BS Legal Assistant & Science K-9). Work History= Jr. English, Valley High School, W.D.M., IA; Iowa Bureau of Criminal Investigation; Senior English Composition & College Reading & World Literature, Southeast High, Wichita, KS; 7th Grade English, Poetic Justice Magazine Class, and Duke Tip Instructor, WCS.  A certified teacher awarded Professional License in Business, English, & Science, I have a plethora of experiences enriching my effectiveness and fun as an English teacher! Ron and I are parents of alumni, Dr. David Koepsel, (DDS), 2000, and Jacquie Koepsel, (MED), 2003, and cherish our exceptional Wichita Collegiate family!

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 408
Mrs. Koepsel's Blog

Martha Leaf

Fifth Grade History


“History, after all, is the memory of a nation.” Part of appreciating the memory that John F. Kennedy refers to is more than just knowing static events and dates. My role as a middle school history teacher is to make history matter to young scholars. History becomes personal and relevant to students when they use historical thinking strategies to interpret primary sources, guided by their own inquiry and analysis. Learning to “think historically” is the key. After reflecting on 29 years in the classroom, I see my life’s work as transforming educational experiences with children. With a degree from Valparaiso University, teaching experience near Austin and in Chicago, and eighteen years at Wichita Collegiate, I am proud to continue this pursuit as a Spartan. For a closer look, visit History Hotspot at

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 462
Mrs. Leaf's Blog

John Leddy

seventh and eighth grade latin, rock band, kids fun night director



I have a wonderful wife Tanya and two children, Katrina and Tristan, at Wichita Collegiate and I have taught here since 1995.  Every year while at Collegiate I have taught Okiniawan Goju Ryu Karate, in the spring of 2009 I started a Rock Band class for 7th and 8th graders, I coached tennis for nine years and I was assistant coach for MS girls basketball for two years.  I received a bachelor's degree in Latin and English with a minor in Greek and graduated Cum Laude from Wichita State University.  I grew up in Conway Springs, KS a small town about 30 miles south west of Wichita.  I enjoy playing music, reading, playing video games, physical fitness training, and movies. 



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 449
Mr. Leddy's Blog

Tiffany Lippoldt

Physical Education



I graduated from Emporia State University with my Bachelors of Science in Education and Masters of Science in Health, Physical Education and Recreation. Teaching physical education has become a passion of mine. I started my teaching career in college while I was working on my masters. I was able to teach college courses and help future physical educators in their methods courses. I then taught in El Dorado for 3 years and also coached volleyball and track and field. In 2016, I was honored to receive the Kansas Horizon Award for excellence in my first year of teaching. Because I am passionate about physical education I am very involved with the state organization KAHPERD by being a board member and by attending as many conferences and workshops as I am able to. I have also had great opportunities to present at the state and national conferences. I love continually learning and growing as an educator and I feel that it is very important. I am also a Presidential Youth Fitness Program Trainer for the state of Kansas where I get to help educate other physical educators across the state about fitness education. I thoroughly enjoy my career and I hope I am able to spread knowledge, skills and confidence to my students to be able to enjoy a healthy and active lifestyle. I enjoy being active myself through running – I have ran 5 half marathons and 1 marathon. I also love crossfit as I participate in a class every morning. Growing up, I was a competitive gymnast, competing at my highest level of 10. In college, I decided to walk on to the track team my sophomore year and try out pole-vaulting, where I spent the next 4 years learning that and running a bit for the team. I am married to my husband, Casey Lippoldt, and we have a one year old Kyler Ryan Lippoldt.  I look forward to having him become part of the Collegiate family, too, when he becomes old enough.



Tel: (316) 771-2208
Coach Lippoldt's Blog

Jessica Mallard

Seventh Grade Mathematics and Department Chair



I have two children who attend Collegiate in the Upper and Middle Schools, and one who graduated from WCS and is a junior at Boston University.  I'm originally from Boulder, CO, but I've lived in Wichita for 20 years.  One of my degrees is in Computer Science, and the other is in Secondary Education, and I've taught 5th grade math through algebra at Collegiate.  I love to travel and do taekwondo, and I enjoy watching my kids at their sports and activities. 


Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 417
Mrs. Mallard's Blog

Jan Nicodemus



I was raised in Summit, New Jersey, where, at a young age, I developed a love for art and for working with children. After graduating from high school, I attended The University of Kansas, where I studied Fine Arts and Education, minored in Sculpture and Ceramics, and earned my BA in Art Education. It was there that I found my passion for clay sculpture and wheel-throwing. I began my teaching career in 1975, teaching Art to 1st through 5th graders in the Argentine district of Kansas City, Kansas. After 5 years, I left teaching and moved to Wichita to raise my two young daughters, Katie and Briana. I devoted 10 years to being “mom-at-home” before returning to teaching again. Prior to being hired at Wichita Collegiate School, I was awarded the Graduate Teacher position in the Art Education department at Wichita State University for the 1988-1999 school year. In 1990, I was hired by Wichita Collegiate School to be the assistant to the head of the Middle School. After 2 years in the office I was offered a position to teach Art to 3rd through 8th grade students.  In 2003, I was asked to also teach the Middle School “Transitions” class, a healthy life-skills and drug and alcohol prevention course, which I taught for 10 years.  My love is working with children, my joy teaching Art, and my blessing is being here, at my beloved Wichita Collegiate School. 

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 445

Diana Nixon

Eighth Grade Ancient History


In 1989 my family became a part of Wichita Collegiate School. Our sons came as students, and my husband and I as teachers. We learned very quickly what a unique and very special place this is. Both of our sons graduated from WCS, and my husband and I are privileged to continue teaching here. I taught in public schools and gifted programs for ten years before coming to WCS. At WCS I have taught fifth grade and eighth grade ancient history. It has been the most rewarding experience. Eighth graders don’t know that most of their peers don’t read Plato or debate Hammurabi’s Law Code. They don’t know they “can’t do it,“ so they do, with joy, confidence, curiosity and enthusiasm.  My work with the National Endowment for Humanities, including a six week study tour in Italy, workshops, university course work, and international travel have all helped to give me the background to make the ancient world come alive for my students. For more information, please visit my blog.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 414
Mrs. Nixon's Blog

Alejandra Pizarro-Rommann

1St- 6Th Spanish


I have had the privilege of teaching at Wichita Collegiate since 2012. I currently teach the Spanish Language to the amazing 1st-6th graders. Being part of this wonderful school  makes me feel like the most blessed person on earth. Everyone here is just great and caring I am looking forward to learning more from this family and sharing what I know as well. Glad I have learned about the past, extremely happy to be part of the present and excited for the future of all of our students!

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 411
Señora Pizarro-Rommann's Blog

Ruth Powell

Fine Arts Department Chair, Music Theory, Vocal Music, Encore Director



My husband and I moved to Wichita from the United Kingdom in 1997 for a three year job opportunity and I am pleased to say we loved Wichita so much that we decided to stay. I graduated from the University of North Wales, Bangor with a B.Mus(Hons.) and also completed my Post Graduate Cerificate of Education. Prior to WCS I worked at Clifton College and Redmaids in Bristol and Wycombe Abbey School just west of London. We have two boys who have both attended Collegiate and who thrived on the ethos that ‘at Collegiate you can do it all’. Currently I teach the AP Music theory class, vocal music in the Middle School and I am the Fine Arts Department Chair.  I enjoy sharing my love for music with my students both in the classroom, on the stage and in the community. Music should be fun!



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 590
Mrs. Powell's Blog

Leslie Prechtel

Head Librarian



The Prechtel family’s relationship with Collegiate began over fifty years ago. My father-in-law was a member of the original board and my husband was a member of the second graduating class. My relationship with Collegiate began when we brought our daughter, Abbie ’97, to preschool in 1982. For the next 10 years I was an at home mom who became very involved with Collegiate life. I helped with classroom projects, was a member of CAP, and a volunteer in the library. In 1993, Bunny Hill gave me the chance of a lifetime and I became the Upper School librarian. I worked under a Head Librarian who encouraged me to return to school to earn my Masters in Library Science. In 2001, I completed my MLS at Emporia State. I feel blessed every day that I have the opportunity to work at Collegiate. My dream is for Collegiate to grow stronger with each passing year and to one day celebrate its one hundredth anniversary.



Tel: (316) 771-2217
Mrs. Prechtel's Blog

Lori Primm

Fifth Grade English


My teaching career began in the fifth grade classroom of a small country school. In 2000 I came to Collegiate and taught first grade for 14 years. It is exciting to be back in the fifth grade classroom where I now teach English. I have a BA in education from WSU and am currently pursuing an MA in English. I have been passionate about reading and writing for as long as I can remember. My husband Jerry and I have three grown children and four grandchildren. Our youngest son Grant is a 2007 WCS alum. Reading and journaling are two of my favorite hobbies. I also enjoy traveling, cooking, gardening, and spending time with family and friends. One of my favorite quotes is by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow - “The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, and all the sweet serenity of books.”

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 446
Mrs. Primm's Blog

Corene Ramser



I have been a part of the Collegiate community since 1994. From the moment I stepped foot on the campus, everyone made me feel welcome. It quickly became a second home for me and my family. Both of my children have been blessed with a strong WCS education.  My first seven years were spent as the middle school administrative assistant. I moved from that position to the middle school computer lab where I still have the privilege to work with 5th through 8th grade students as I try to keep them on top of the every changing world of technology. They also teach me a thing or two! When the one-to-one laptop program launched in 2012 for middle school and upper school, I took on the additional role of monitoring the middle school help desk. This position has given me the opportunity to help students trouble shoot and fix their computer issues as well as keep me on my toes learning new things daily. 

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 433
Mrs. Ramser's Blog

Suzanne Schwarz

Sixth Grade Mathematics, MATHCOUNTS coach



After teaching middle school math for twenty-three years in public school, I joined the amazing staff at Collegiate in 2005. What a blessing this has been! I hold a B.A.T. with an emphasis in math from Sam Houston State University and an M.B.A. in finance from the University of Houston. It is a joy to help students build confidence in their math ability and challenge them to become strong problem solvers. For over twenty years, I have also enjoyed my role as a MATHCOUNTS coach. This program is designed for sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students who have a high interest in math. For more information, please visit my blog.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 466
Mrs. Schwarz's Blog

Meghan Smith

Sixth Grade Global Studies


To borrow from Forest Gump, teaching is like a box of chocolates! Every year I'm excited to discover the different strengths and personalities of my students. I want every student to leave my classroom more confident academically and socially, as well as knowing that they are an important part of the world! I began my college experience at Texas Christian University studying Deaf Education and finished with my Elementary Education degree from Friends University. I started teaching in 1992 and joined the amazingly talented WCS family in 2006.  I grew up on the east coast and traded the ocean for the sky during the summer of 1990.  How does a Connecticut girl find her way to Kansas? Love of course!  My wonderful husband Jim and I have three amazing children, Jake, Madeline and Hope. To check out the happenings in my Global Studies class, check out our class blog: World Of Marvels.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 460
Mrs. Smith's Blog

Joel Walker

Fifth Grade Science


Science is life! I have been blessed to have the opportunity to explore science in many different forms over the years and the passion that I have for science has led me here to Collegiate. My journey within the field of science has taken me from the Kansas Wetlands (Baker University) to Gulf Coast microbial ecosystems (University of South Alabama) to the exploration of outer space (Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center). It has been an amazing ride. Along the way I have taught high school at McGill-Toolen High School (Mobile, AL) , the Cosmosphere Academy and Wichita Heights High School. Now I have the opportunity to teach in a special place with incredible students and I could not be happier. My family (beautiful wife and five amazing children) and I are excited to be a part of this community here at Collegiate and look forward to many more explorations in the future. I am excited about the opportunity to open up the world of science to my students and watch them begin their own journey of exploration. Start the journey in Walker's Sciencesphere today.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 447
Mr. Walker's Blog

Jim Wetta

Intramural Director



I am a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a degree in Communications.  I attended UK on a football scholarship and graduated in 1989.  I worked for the Burlington Northern Santa Fe until our youngest was born in 2005.  In 2006 I began coaching at Collegiate and working with the middle school aged kids.  I've coached at the middle school level since and have also taken on 5th and 6th grade physical education.  Our youngest is now in middle school and we would not want him any where else.  All of our kids have or are attending Collegiate and my wife and I couldn't be happier.  This is/has been a wonderful place to raise our children.



Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 594
Coach Wetta's Blog

Judy Zuercher

Administrative Assistant


I have been fortunate to work in a variety of supportive roles throughout my career; as an airline attendant, dental assistant, coordinator in the district attorney’s office, executive staff for non-profit organizations, scheduler for a Kansas congressman, partner in our family business and an executive assistant in a private corporation.   My mother worked for Robert Love for many years and was actively involved with the beginning years of WCS.  My brother graduated WCS in 1978, my daughters attended WCS through the 8thgrade, and my grandson is currently a 6th grader.  Suffice it to say, I have very strong ties to this wonderful institution and I am extremely proud to be a part of the staff….it’s my extended family!

Tel: (316) 771-2215