Lower School

Heather Eubank

Head of Lower School

heubank@wcsks.com

Dr. Heather Eubank has been in education since 1993.  She received her B.A. in Elementary Education, her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, and her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Wichita State University. She also holds a Building Level Administrative Certificate from Baker University.  Heather has taught students from Pre-K through high school as well as served as an elementary principal and district curriculum director in both Kansas and Missouri.  Heather’s husband, Jason, is an optometrist, and her daughters, Oliva and Tess, attend Collegiate as well.  During her free time, Heather enjoys singing, reading, and watching her girls play competitive softball.

Tel: (316) 771-2201

Kathy Rukes '99

Administrative Assistant, Middle School Volleyball Coach

krukes@wcsks.com

A class of 1999 graduate of Wichita Collegiate School, Kathy went on to graduate from Creighton University in 2003, where she earned a B.A. in English-Creative Writing.  Discovering a love of education during her time at Creighton, she earned a Master’s of Education degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Kansas in 2005.  After working at KU for several years and Wichita State University briefly, she decided to stay at home with her young family.  During that time, she developed her own graphic design business and began assisting Wichita Collegiate School with their publications.  She has been head coach of the Middle School volleyball team since 2009 and joined the Lower School staff full time in 2015.  As an alum, parent, and staff member, Kathy can uniquely understand and appreciate the value that a Collegiate education offers its students.

Tel: (316) 771-2251

Pam Armor

Fourth Grade

parmor@wcsks.com

Boomer Sooner!  I am a proud graduate of The University of Oklahoma where I received my Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education.  I was blessed to join the Collegiate family in 2008.  It is my hope that I empower children to think and inspire them to become lifelong learners.  I have a quote on my classroom wall that states, "Every Child Is A Story Yet To Be Told."  This quote reminds me daily that each one of my students is unique, special and is the author of their story.  It is my job to guide these students through fourth grade and help their story become a success.  I am the proud mom of Austin, a student at Baylor University, Allie WCS Class of 2016 and Cameron WCS Class of 2022.  My husband Clark and I enjoy family activities, OKC Thunder games, Sooner football and traveling.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 519
Mrs. Armor's Blog

Niamh Black

Assistant Teacher

nblack@wcsks.com

I joined WCS as a Lower School assistant teacher in January 2017 following a move to Wichita.  I feel so privileged to work with these creative, energetic young students every day. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science from University of Dundee, Scotland in 1997. Initially working in the pharmaceutical industry, I completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Science Education at the University of West of England following a break when my children were young. I taught science in Bristol, England from years five through thirteen. I taught all three sciences up to year nine and chemistry and biology to upper years. I have 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 four 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 welcome the opportunity to support the Lower School teachers in their provision for WCS students. I am the proud mom of two Upper School boys.

Tel: (316) 634-0433 ext. 459
 

Amani Braxton '13

Assistant Teacher

abraxton@wcsks.com

I first came to Collegiate as a freshman in 2009. The atmosphere and family feeling was so new to me because I came from a military household where moving around was the norm. I felt at home making new friends and eventually meeting the love of my life with whom I raise my four furry babies. My experiences as a teacher and para-educator have been wonderful, and I have worked with all ages from toddler to high school. I hope to help children prepare for the future as well as create a safe environment where they can find their true potential. It has always been my dream to work at Collegiate, and I am so happy to see it come true! I have made so many memories as a graduate from WCS, and now I am super excited to make new memories as staff!

Tel: (316) 634-0433 ext. 459
 

Elizabeth Buffolino

Art

ebuffolino@wcsks.com

 

I am very honored and excited to be teaching Art at Collegiate!  I love children and watching how their interests and skills develop over their elementary years.  Ever since I was about the age of our lower school students, I loved creating, designing, studying, and making all things beautiful, so I decided to continue my Art and Design studies in college!

I have a BFA in Art from Arizona State University and an MAEd in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix. I student-taught 2nd grade, but it only seemed natural for me to teach Art, so that is what I have mostly been doing the past 14 years!

The last 2 years, I have spent "at home" with my spunky little toddler daughter.  I also have an inquisitive son who is completing the Montessori classes in the Early Childhood program.

In our spare time, we try to get out and play!  My husband is very patient with my golf skills and I am recently taking beginner tennis and ballet classes.  I get my art fill during our travels while I sneak into a few amazing museums and galleries.  I always look forward to bringing back a heart full of art for my students!

 

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 404
Mrs. Buffolino's Blog

Erin DeSplinter

Second Grade

edesplinter@wcsks.com

I am excited to be joining the WCS family this year!  I have been a teacher for over 11 years.  Between staying home with my three children, I have taught second and third grade, lower school science, and developed curriculum at 6 different independent private schools around the country.  My family and I moved here from Des Moines, Iowa and are excited to call Wichita, Kansas home.  I received my Education degree from Saint Mary’s College of Notre Dame.  I was a University of Notre Dame cheerleader, and my family and I love to cheer on the Irish. Chicago was one of the places we have called home and are Blackhawk and Cub fans for life!   My favorite part of teaching is being able to show students their limitless potential and discover the true joy of a challenge.  In our classroom, we believe in the power of YET! 

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 541
Mrs. DeSplinter's Blog

Jennifer Hearne

Counselor, Positive Steps

jhearne@wcsks.com

Childhood is a journey, not a race. This is one of my favorite sayings that summarizes my teaching and parenting philosophy. Of course, that journey continues in all stages of life and I am blessed that WCS is a part of mine.  I have the good fortune to not only be a counselor for the Early Childhood and Lower divisions, but also teach a class to Lower School students called Positive Steps. I had many years of classroom teaching experience prior to getting my Masters of Education Counseling in 2003. As a parent of two children, I know that the parenting journey can feel more like a roller coaster at times. But I believe that every step of our journey is unique and an opportunity to learn and grow. I am here for parents or students that would like a little support or sounding board during the early years. Collegiate is such a supportive environment and I am thrilled that I can be a part of it. 

Tel: (316) 771-2238
Mrs. Hearne's Blog

Ashleigh Hennessy

Physical Education

ahennessy@wcsks.com

 

 

I have the best job in the world! My passion is teaching children how to be healthy, active individuals so they can be the best version of themselves. This is done through sport skill development, individual and group sport games, fitness activities and testing, health activities, and nutrition lessons. My goal for all of my students is that they will arrive in Middle School, having a physical activity or sport they truly enjoy participating in, and that they are able to make smart, healthful choices to proceed into a successful adult life.

My time after school is spent coaching the WCS Cheerleading program and Sparty the WCS Mascot. Coming from a long gymnastic and cheerleading background, coaching has been a very fun and rewarding experience for me. I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to build my own program, coaching both the high school squad and middle school squad. You can find us at every pep rally, football, and basketball game!

At home, I love to spend time with my supportive husband Sean, and our two dogs Axis and Maya. We enjoy exercising together, attending our church, and traveling.

Overall, I am so honored and proud to be a part of the WCS family. There is no better place to be!

 

Tel: (316) 771-2297
Mrs. Hennessy's Blog

Kristy Hoffman

Computer

khoffman@wcsks.com

I am a Wichita State Shocker, through and through! I earned both my Bachelor of Arts and Master in Business Administration from WSU. In 1999, I brought my daughter to Kindergarten at Collegiate, and I started teaching Lower School computer classes here in 2000. I love teaching the children at Collegiate because they are all eager to learn and are always ready to gain new skills. Even though lots of things have changed over the years, my passion for the students and their learning has only grown stronger. You can also find me at the Middle School Help Desk, helping students with computer problems.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 476
Mrs. Hoffman's Blog

Jaime Hutchinson

third grade

jhutchinson@wcsks.com

Hi! I am Jaime Hutchinson, and I am excited to be teaching third grade this year!  I have been a teacher, a staff developer, a curriculum director, and a principal over the 22 years I have been in education.  My favorite of all of these jobs is being a teacher, so I am more than overjoyed to be returning to doing what brings me the most joy: teaching.  Outside of work I have three wonderful children, each at a different level in the school system: elementary, middle, and high school.  Over the years I have enjoyed traveling and learning about many different cultures, including living for a short time in South America.  I love to run and spend time at my church and with my children. I consider myself a continual learner of life, academics, and of people.  

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 451
Mrs. Hutchinson's Blog

Alisa Lundstedt

First Grade

alundstedt@wcsks.com

I feel so fortunate to work with the outstanding staff and students at Collegiate. The high expectations, focus on student motivation and engagement, as well as excellent parent and community partnerships, truly distinguish Collegiate from other schools.  I believe that children need a strong foundation to build upon to achieve academic success. My passion is helping to create this foundation, while also instilling a love for learning in each child.  Building relationships and fostering a community of learners create a safe learning environment where every child can grow to his or her potential.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 508
Mrs. Lundstedt's Blog

Shirley Meissner

Second Grade

smeissner@wcsks.com

Oh the Places You’ll Go in second grade! I have taught in private schools in Wichita since 1978 and joined the exemplary staff at WCS in 2011. Teaching is my passion using a variety of technological formats in a unique classroom environment.  My husband and I sing in the Wichita Symphony Chorus, Ballet Wichita Chorus, Friends University Alumni Chorus, and cantor for our church.  My suitcase is always ready to be packed to travel to the next adventure. I love to cook, sew, take pictures of my family and find the next Dr. Seuss item for my classroom!

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 475
Mrs. Meissner's Blog

Sherri Newlin

Science

snewlin@wcsks.com

Our family came to Collegiate in the year 2000 when I began teaching second grade and our three children started their education here.  We have been fortunate enough to have two children graduate from WCS and one is a member of the Class of 2016.  The most wonderful aspect about Collegiate is the sense of community that surrounds it!  I have been teaching since 1985 and have never witnessed this in another setting!  I loved teaching second grade but after ten years I moved down the hall to the science room and have the joy of teaching all Lower School students!

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 464
Mrs. Newlin's Blog

Lindsey Noble

Third Grade

lnoble@wcsks.com

I am delighted to be joining the exceptional staff of WCS this year! I am originally from the St. Louis area (Go Cards!) and attended Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville where I earned a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration.  I taught third grade in Edwardsville for over six years and also earned my National Board Certification during that time. In early 2013, I moved to England with my husband who was reassigned to Mildenhall Royal Air Force Base.  While living in England, I had the privilege of teaching third and fourth grade students for three years at Moreton Hall Prep, an international British Preparatory School. During our time in England, we had two children, Henry and Meredith, and had many adventures all over Europe.  In late 2016, my husband was reassigned again to McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, KS.  We quickly fell in love with the friendly people of Wichita, including those we met through our son’s school, Wichita Collegiate.  I can think of no greater blessing than teaching at such an outstanding school with such a familial atmosphere.  I enjoy helping students realize their full potential as well as working out, cooking, reading, and a good pun!  

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 474
Mrs. Noble's Blog

Alejandra Pizarro-Rommann

Spanish

apizarrorommann@wcsks.com

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

Kari Plagmann

Music

kplagmann@wcsks.com

I am excited to be joining the WCS staff this year! Born and raised here in the Wichita area, I graduated from Wichita State University in 2013 with a bachelor’s in Vocal Music Education. I started my career teaching elementary general music in Newton, KS, where I taught for four years. During that time, I completed WSU’s Kodaly Certification courses, which has helped me to better teach, engage, and provide enriching musical experiences for my students. Outside of school, I enjoy singing in the Wichita Symphony Orchestra Chorus and attending yoga classes. Whenever I travel, I always try to add to my pressed penny collection, which currently numbers nearly 500 unique pennies. At home, I enjoy catching up on my favorite TV shows, reading the next book on my shelf, and watching the antics of my pet turtle swimming around her tank.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 591
Ms. Plagmann's Blog

Leslie Prechtel

Head Librarian

lprechtel@wcsks.com

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

Laura Reed

 

Third Grade

lreed@wcsks.com

Hello!  My name is Laura Reed and I teach first grade in the Lower School.  I grew up in Fulton, MO and received my Bachelor and Masters degrees from the University of Missouri-Columbia.  This is my 26th year of teaching.  Over the years I have taught kindergarten, first, and fifth grade.  Most recently I was a literacy coach and reading specialist for the Wentzville school district. I am married to Mike Reed, and we have a beautiful daughter named Sarah.  Sarah is a senior at the University of Missouri-Columbia majoring in journalism.  Mike has a son, Nick in Wentzville, MO, and a daughter, Jamie Blanchaert who lives in Wichita. Both NIck and Jamie are married and have two kids. We enjoy playing with the grandchildren!  Outside of work I love to read, shop, and try new restaurants with family and friends.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 461
Mrs. Reed's Blog

Renee Shofner

First Grade

rshofner@wcsks.com

I have been blessed to be a member of the Collegiate family since 2011 and have found it to be an amazing community that truly loves and cares for each member whether student, parent, or staff. I was born and raised in Kansas, beginning my teaching career in 1983, but took a few years off to be a stay at home mom and have found my niche working with first graders and their families. I enjoy music, cooking, reading, and art which guides me in understanding the importance of creating an atmosphere in which children are provided with diverse and varied learning opportunities to meet their individual learning style. I am passionate about teaching and learning striving to create an environment where children can feel safe to try new things, learn, grow, and gain confidence to accept new challenges.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 516
Mrs. Shofner's Blog

Jena Simms

First Grade

jsimms@wcsks.com

It has been my privilege to be a part of the WCS Lower School staff since 2013. I have a Business Management degree from Friends University and an Elementary Education degree from Fort Hays State University.  I have a passion for teaching young minds to read and explore numbers. I am a kinesthetic learner and try to incorporate movement in my classroom whenever possible. A goal I have each year for the students I teach is that they will come away from first grade better equipped to handle the challenges of life with a positive attitude.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 452
Mrs. Simms' Blog

Mamba Tibbals

fourth grade

mtibbals@wcsks.com

My simple roots of upbringing on a West Texas farm molded in me early on the value of family love and taking pride in what I do.  Those basic principles guide me every day.  I pour my heart and soul into my teaching, ever mindful I am helping to mold the future.  I strive to make learning fun and creative and encourage independent, excited learners to take pride in giving their best.  We are proud to feel a respectful, family bond in our room.  My Bachelor of Science degree was earned from Southwestern Oklahoma State University.  The majority of my teaching has been in fourth grade private schools.  My husband and I adore our grand grandchildren and KU basketball…Rock Chalk, yall!  I loved WCS long before I began teaching here, as my children are WCS alumni.  The rich traditions they experienced are thriving still today.  My simple roots are nourished with love of this school family and pride of being a WCS educator.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 562
Mrs. Tibbals' Blog

Cassandra Timko

Fourth Grade

ctimko@wcsks.com

Both of my parents were educators and as long as I can remember that's all I ever wanted to do.  One of my first experiences working with a student was when I was in college and had the opportunity to tutor a first grade boy. It was so rewarding watching his progress as he learned how to read. I completed my student teaching in London, England, which was an eye opening experience as it was the first time I had ever flown overseas. I was assigned to assist in a kindergarten classroom where there were 30 students. I can still recall how nervous I was trying to get all the kids on the subway before the doors closed. Having taught over 15 years I'm most passionate about helping all kinds of learners find success in the classroom and support teachers by facilitating workshops during the summer. My favorite time of the year is when school begins because there is so much excitement and positive energy. I feel very fortunate to be part of the Collegiate community and look forward to a great year.

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 453
Ms. Timko's Blog

Patti Yetter

second grade

pyetter@wcsks.com

Patti has worked in education since graduating from Wichita State University in 1986.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education with minors in Early Childhood and Speech Pathology.  Most recently, Patti has served in several long-term substitute positions here at Collegiate where she was quickly accepted by students, parents, and staff.  She has a quick laugh, a keen mind, and a genuine smile.  

Tel: (316) 634-0489 ext. 526
Mrs. Yetter's Blog