St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School Staff
Our exceptional faculty, committed to creating a caring atmosphere, believes in Christian values, academic excellence and high expectations. The majority of our teachers have attained graduate degrees in education and are are certified by the State of Michigan. The Diocese of Lansing certifies religion teachers. We encourage and support our faculty to maintain their own academic excellence by continuing their education, assuring they obtain the most advanced knowledge in teaching disciplines. We are proud to say several of our staff are graduates of St. Francis School! This is indicated below by an asterisk (*) before the staff member’s name.
*Mrs. Julie Pritzel: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2200
Education: BA Elementary Education, MA Reading and MS in Educational Leadership
I am the principal for St. Francis of Assisi School. I work with the faculty of the school to provide a learning environment where students learn, care, and lead. As an alumna of St. Francis of Assisi School, I feel privileged to continue my journey in education as part of the faculty. It is my goal to create an environment where students, parents, teachers, and administration work collaboratively to provide the best Catholic education for the students.
Mrs. Amy Smith: email@example.com and 734-821-2200
Education: BA History, MA Higher Education, JD
I am so lucky that for my second career I have found a home at St. Francis. I have been part of the community as a parent for many years and now I get to share my experiences with the school families and staff. I look forward to working with everyone in such a caring environment.
Mrs. Kelly Van Oirschot: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2200
I am the Office Administrator and I have worked in a business office setting for over 20 years. Time has flown by as I have been at St. Francis for over 10 years now! I really enjoy my position at St. Francis School and look forward to helping our families and students and anyone with questions about our School.
Mrs. Jackie Pearson: email@example.com and 734-821-2113
Education: BBA – Accounting
I made my profession of faith and married my husband Matthew here at St. Francis. We have been parishioners at St. Francis since 2016. As the school bookkeeper, I am able to work and help families in a Faith based environment. I also work with Development on different events throughout the year.
Extended School Program & Preschool Director
Mrs. Christina Busse: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2290
Education: BS Education
The greatest part of working at St. Francis of Assisi School is the relationships. Building mutually respectful relationships with children, partnerships with parents and friendships with co-workers make SFA the place I want to be every day. Formerly I was a director and preschool teacher at the Pfizer Family Center. I have children of my own and understand the challenges facing families today.
Kindergarten – KA
Mrs. Donna Lee: email@example.com and 734-821-2210
Kindergarten – KB
Mrs. Tricia Strassburg: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2213
Education: B.S. Concentration in Elementary Education
I have the honor to continue teaching at St. Francis School as I have moved from Preschool into Kindergarten. St. Francis School has been a part of my life for 17 years as my children attended school here and then I began to teach Preschool. I love working with my class and giving them the tools and knowledge they need to become confident and caring students. It is a pleasure to work with this community of teachers, administrators, parents and children. Together, we help make our school a wonderful place for children to grow in knowledge and faith.
Mrs. Rachel Johnson: email@example.com and 734-821-2211
Education: BA Elementary Education: Early Childhood & Science, MA: Educational Media and Technology
I started teaching at St. Francis in 2010. I am so grateful to work at such a wonderful school. First grade is an exciting time, and I look forward to helping and watching my students learn and grow everyday.
Ms. Sara Fifelski: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2212
Education: BA in Theology: Franciscan University of Steubenville, MS in Elementary Education
I am grateful to be teaching in First Grade this year at St. Francis. I have recently moved to Michigan from Cape Cod, Massachusetts where I taught Pre-School and Kindergarten for thirteen years. I graduated from FUS with a BA degree in Theology and completed several graduate courses in Education. Each day is a new opportunity to learn, love and enjoy the young lives I am entrusted with as they grow and progress on their own educational journey!
Mrs. Jennifer Cieciek: email@example.com and 734-821-2221
Education: BS in Elementary Education, Specialist Endorsement in Early Childhood, Minors in Fine Arts and Social Sciences
Joining the St. Francis team has definitely been one of the best choices in my life. After almost 25 years of teaching, I still find magic every day with the amazing children, families and staff here. God has blessed me beyond measure and my position here has brought me closer to my Catholic faith. I look forward to the future of SFA and can’t wait to be a part of the journey our students will have as they learn, not only the academics, but also watching them grow in their faith as they make the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Communion.
Mrs. Michelle Corrunker: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2222
Education: BS Elementary Education, Reading Specialist Endorsement
It has been a true joy working at a school that is filled with a caring and friendly staff. I was married at St. Francis and have two children. As one of the second grade teachers, we focus on preparation for the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Holy Communion. This is a special time for these young people and I am happy to be a part of this time in their lives.
Ms. Maria Jakimcius: email@example.com and 734-821-2231
Education: BS in Elementary Education
I could not have been more excited when I was asked to be a part of the St. Francis team. Working with such a supportive and friendly staff is a true joy and a blessing. I love the sense of community that is felt and demonstrated throughout the school, both among staff and among students. My heart is in 3rd grade, and I’m fortunate to be doing what I love in a such a special place.
*Ms. Carlye Malcolm: firstname.lastname@example.org or 734-821-2232
Education: BA Education, Masters in Reading
I was elated when I first found out I was hired into the 3rd grade position because St. Francis is where I spent my childhood and I knew I would be walking back into a supportive, tight-knit community. Seasoned staff members reach out to help acclimate teachers who are new to the school and school families and faculty come together to create a caring, loving community that encourages the students in their learning. I have taught here for over 10 years now and I am so grateful to be in a position where I can pass on the spark of academic curiosity and spiritual growth that teachers at St. Francis first ignited in me.
*Ms. Matilyn Sarosi: email@example.com or 734-821-2241
*Mrs. Maura Dalian: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2242
Education: BA Education, Art Education, Engish and MA Art Ed, Children’s Literature
What I enjoy about teaching at St. Francis School is working with the kids and their wonderfully supportive parents.They are the reason I show up everyday. God has blessed me with this fabulous opportunity for over 30 years. I am grateful and humbled by the privilege.
Mrs. Patricia O’Sullivan: email@example.com and 734-821-2251
Education: BS Biology, MA Reading
My husband and my three children attended St Francis School, so, as a family, we have a long history at this unique school. I enjoy working at St. Francis School because of the terrific students, the extremely supportive families and the faith-filled atmosphere.
Mrs. Kim Verhines: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2252
Education: BA Accounting, Social Science, and Elementary Education
I have been a 5th grade teacher at St. Francis since 2002. I teach religion, spelling, social studies, math and science. I love creating exciting science lessons and lab activities to make learning fun! I enjoy teaching at St. Francis because of the wonderful supportive families and staff.
Mrs. Catherine Anderson: email@example.com and 734-821-2261
Education: BS Elementary Education/Math, MA (Educational Media and Technology)
St. Francis became my second home when I started teaching in 2008. I cherish the time I have been able to get to know all the families and their children. Teaching is my passion and I strive to reach the students where they are at in life to best support them. I enjoy sharing with the students learning experience that ignite their curiosity, encouraging them to never give up, and helping them deepen their understanding of our Faith and their developing faith journey.
Mr. Patrick Laughlin: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2262
Education: B.A. Social Studies (RX): History and Political Science for Secondary Education, Communication and Theatre Arts Teaching for Secondary Education.
The opportunity to join the St. Francis’ team and to become a part of the community as a 6th grade teacher is a very exciting leap of faith. I have lived in the area for almost 10 years and have taught in a public school system for the last 15 years teaching various Social Studies subjects and Drama. In my time teaching and coaching it has become my passion to encourage children to build their basic skill levels, create their own understanding, and finally to find their confidence to share it with others.
Middle School/Homeroom 7A
Mrs. Gina Carney: email@example.com and 734-821-2271
Education: BA in English for Secondary Education, Master of Library and Information Science
I feel so blessed to be a part of the St. Francis staff! My family returned to Michigan after living in China for two and a half years, and we are all so happy to come home to St. Francis. I look forward to teaching in this community that is so filled with Christ’s love!
Middle School/Homeroom 7B/Science
Sister Rebecca Mierendorf: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2285
Education: BA Biology and MA Educational Studies
I am thrilled to be able to share my love of Scripture with 7th graders. They ask good questions and have great insights. In addition, as the Middle School Science Teacher, I have the privilege of teaching Project-Based Inquiry Science to 7th-8th graders daily in the science lab. I especially enjoy integrating our Catholic faith into the science curriculum. I am continually in awe of God’s works and how He invites us into a deeper knowledge of Him through the intricacies of His creation. I am a fully-professed member of the Servants of God’s Love, a religious order based in Ann Arbor.
Middle School/Homeroom 8A
Mrs. Megan DeVerna: email@example.com and 734-821-2281
Education: BS Secondary Education, MA Education
I have been teaching Middle School Social Studies and English for many years. I love being able to support students as they navigate their adolescence years. St. Francis is such a special school and I feel truly blessed to be part of it as both a teacher and a parent.
Middle School Principal
*Mrs. Kathryn Dhitirojana: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2286
Education:BS Education, MA Educational Leadership
One of the greatest blessings of my life was to join the supportive, caring community at St. Francis as a teacher in 2012. I attended this school from 1st-8th grade and am grateful each day that I have the privilege of providing my students with the same academic and spiritual opportunities that I experienced as a student here. As a teacher I love to see my students grown in kindness, responsibility, and maturity throughout their time in my classroom.
Middle School/Language Arts – 8th Grade
Mrs. Mitra Dunbar: email@example.com and 734-821-2272
Education: BA English and History, MA The Teaching of Writing
I feel blessed to join the St. Francis of Assisi staff as the eighth grade English Language Arts teacher. I hold a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and History from Michigan State University and a Master of Arts Degree in The Teaching of Writing from Eastern Michigan University. In addition to my work at St. Francis, I am a lecturer in the Department of English Language and Literature at Eastern Michigan University and a fellow of the National Writing Project.
Middle School/Math/ Homeroom 8B
*Mr. Christopher Stankovic: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2282
Education: BS Secondary Education/Math
I am very excited to have my first teaching experience be at St. Francis. I went to this school from 1st – 6th grade. My family had to move after my 6th grade year, so I was not able to finish out middle school at St. Francis. I attended Central Michigan University for my degree in Education. It is great to come back here now and see some familiar faces and see some new changes.
Middle School Math
Mr. Andrew Lammers: email@example.com
Education: B.A. Miami University, M.S. University of Michigan
Having recently relocated to Ann Arbor from Asheville, North Carolina where I taught middle and high school math and science for a number of years, I am excited to join the St. Francis community. I look forward to creating a classroom environment based on trust and personal relationships where curiosity and creativity are highly valued and where students have a growth mindset about their academic and personal potential.
Mrs. Jennifer Nowicki: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2297
Education: BFA, MA Reading
I am a parishioner at St. Andrew the Apostle. The most influential spiritual person in my life was my aunt, who was a Sister of Mercy in Farmington Hills. She was an artist, an art teacher, and did extensive public service around the world. I decided to put my artistic talents to use to serve God by becoming an art teacher. I find sharing my abilities very rewarding. When I am not at school, I enjoy spending time with my family.
Mrs. Janet Sommerfeld: email@example.com and 734-821-2298
Education: BM and MM
I am the band director responsible for instrumental music education at St. Francis. We have three bands in fifth through 8th grade. I have enjoyed teaching at St. Francis for over 20 years. I value the positive attitude of the students and their strong parental support of our programs. I enjoy working with the students each and every day to master their instrument and accompany them on their journey to musical success.
Ms. Beth Shaum: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2293
Education: BS Elementary Education/MA English Studies
As both a student and teacher in Catholic schools for many years, I am grateful that I can share my faith with others. In my ten years as an English teacher, I became known as the person to go see for a good book recommendation. That reputation led me to moving from the classroom to the library and I couldn’t be happier. Helping students (and adults!) find what lights their fire as readers and learners isn’t just a job for me — it is a calling.
Mrs. Robin Woodard: email@example.com and 734-821-2294
Athletic Director/Physical Education/MS Math
Mr. Jeff Moyer: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2206
Education: B.A. Physical Education
I am thrilled to be teaching at St. Francis! This is my first year at St. Francis, but I have taught physical education and math in a Catholic school for the past six years. I have only been here a short time but I am already loving it. The staff, students, and parents have been so supportive and caring it has made for a great start to my first year!
Señora Rossana Swartz: email@example.com and 734-821-2284
Education: BA in Liberal Arts, MA in Education/Curriculum and Instruction
I feel so blessed to be given the opportunity to be teaching K-5 Spanish at St. Francis. Overall, I have 21 years of teaching Spanish experience. I love to teach, spend quality time with my family and learning and appreciating different cultures through traveling. I’ve spent a great amount of time in Italy, Spain and Costa Rica. My goal is to teach Spanish language and culture by using fun and creative ways in order for students to have a true appreciation for Spanish.
Señorita Anna Damiani: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2284
Education: BA History and Spanish, MA Education
I was baptized at St. Francis and feel blessed to be coming home! Following graduation from the University of Michigan, I lived and worked in Mexico for 4 years. I have also studied abroad in Spain and done volunteer work in Ecuador. My goal is to increase student interest in Spanish language and culture, while developing speaking, listening, and reading skills.
Dr. Jane Gordon: email@example.com and 734-821-2209
Education: BA Economics, MA Elementary Education, PhD Reading and Learning Disabilities.
As the School Teacher Consultant, I work with parents and the Ann Arbor schools as a facilitator. I most enjoy the opportunity to work with the children, families and staff of St. Francis. It is a joy to watch the children learn and grow over the years.
Ms. Monica Francis: firstname.lastname@example.org and 734-821-2297
Education: BA Secondary Social Studies Education, Master of Library Science and Information
I am so blessed to have found St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School. This has truly been the best school community I have worked in. Before making my way to SFA I taught middle school in North Charleston, South Carolina for 5 years, first as a history teacher and then as a librarian. At SFA I have discovered the joy of teaching technology skills to all grade levels.