Skip to content

School Staff

Kari Albaugh

Social Worker

Rhea Bachman

4th Grade Teacher

Hello! I have been teaching at Windsor since 2022 and have loved getting to know the amazing students and families during my time here. I have taught 5th grade and now 3rd grade. I graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 2018 with a degree in psychology and mental health. Soon after, I returned to UNI to pursue a degree in elementary education and graduated in 2021. I grew up in Cedar Rapids with my older sister, Zoe. When I am not at school, I love to spend my time outdoors, with friends and family, and cooking and baking!

Sarah Best

Instructional Strategist

Melissa Bickel

Speech Therapist

Becky Bolte

4th Grade Teacher
Class Description

I graduated from Upper Iowa University and began teaching at Windsor in 2007.  I have taught both 3rd and 4th grade throughout my career, and my favorite parts of teaching are helping students learn new things and reading chapter books aloud!   I also attended Windsor as a student and graduated from Roosevelt High School.  Outside of school I love cheering on the Iowa State Cyclones and spending time with my husband and our 2 kids, Lucas and Olivia.

Sandy Byriel

Kindergarten Teacher

Mrs. Byriel has taught in DMPS for 30 years. She has called Windsor Elementary her ‘home away from home’ for more than 25 years. She has taught students in grades PreK – 2nd grade, the majority of that time has been in kindergarten.

I am married and have a grown daughter. Outside of school,  I enjoy spending time with family and friends, gardening, and reading.

The best part of my teaching career has been the joy of watching students as they grow and learn. I love it when past students come back to visit me when they are in middle or high school and share their accomplishments with me.  I have been blessed to be part of the Windsor community!

Brittany Smith

Associate

Curtis Chiles

Chief Custodian

Saudia Cowman

1st Grade Teacher

My name is Saudia Cowman and I have taught for over 20 years with DMPS!  I spent my first 10 years teaching preschool at Capitol View Elementary, I taught second grade at Willard Elementary, and currently I teach first grade at Windsor. 

I am married and we have two boys.  We spend our time traveling, reading, hiking, and getting together with grandparents, cousins, aunts & uncles. I grew up in the Des Moines area and my sisters and I attended DMPS.  

I love working with young children.  My favorite part of my job is building positive relationships with my students. Seeing my students get excited about learning or happy to be in school invigorates and excites me!  I look forward to building a team relationship with parents as well.  Positive connections with parents help encourage and motivate me as a teacher and are supportive to student success.  I look forward to working with you and your child this year.  Together we can achieve many great things!

Tricia Dyer

PE Teacher

Alyssa Eisler

ELL Teacher

Hello, my name is Alyssa Eisler and I am an ELL teacher at Windsor. I started teaching in DMPS in 2012 and have worked with Multilingual Learners at Central Campus, Hoyt Middle School, and Weeks Middle School. I have been at Windsor since 2022. I completed my undergrad at Drake University with endorsements in ESL and German, and I returned to Drake for my master’s in Culturally Responsive Leadership and Instruction with a focus on reading. Beyond the classrooms of Des Moines, I have connected with students and teachers in Germany, China, and Ghana. I am looking forward to another great school year!

Amy Erwin

Instructional Strategist

Hello! My name is Crystal Heddinger. I have been at Windsor since 2016. I graduated with my BA from the University of Northern Iowa and my Masters at Drake University. I have a degree in early childhood and elementary education with an emphasis in special education and a K-8 Reading endorsement. I have my masters in Culturally Responsive Leadership & Instruction. This year I am starting classes through the Purple Pathway with UNI and DMPS to further my leadership career and gain my advanced studies certificate in principalship. I have worked as a resource teacher with multiple grade levels each year. I absolutely love my job, the staff, and students here at Windsor! Go Wildcats!

Madisen Gaskin

Community Schools Coordinator

This is my 2nd year at Windsor as the Community School Coordinator! My role is vast and means a lot to a lot of people,  but the main thing to take away is that I’m here for students and families to ensure everyone has equitable access to successful outcomes.
I serve as an agent for positive change through collaborative leadership and inclusive culture & belonging at school; assist students and families in accessing food, clothing, and other basic needs; engage students and families in activities and events; and provide opportunities for the community to be involved at our school.

When I’m not at school you will find me in the community with my husband and kids! We love exploring parks, going to community events, attending library story times, and, our favorite, eating at all the amazing restaurants Des Moines has to offer! I love cooking, reading, creating, DIYing, and having fun with whatever I’m doing.

Jessica Grier

Metro Kids Coordinator

Hanna Groepper

1st Grade Teacher
P: 515-242-8440 | F: 515-323-8648 | E: hanna.groepper@dmschools.org

Heather Hernandez

Head Cafeteria Cook

Miranda Hubner

School Counselor

Carrie Johnson

Principal

This year is my 31st year as an educator; my first as principal.  I have taught all grades Kindergarten through 3rd before adding roles of instructional coach, educational consultant, and Associate Principal.  I am excited to serve the Windsor Community!  In my free time I enjoy biking, running, reading, and spending time with my pets, friends, and family.  My goal as an educator is to welcome, affirm, and empower all staff and students to learn, grow, and succeed, and to embrace families and community as essential partners in this.  We’re all in this together!

Sheryl Johnson

K-1 Associate

Diane Kair

Kindergarten Teacher

Mrs. Kair has worked at Windsor for 17 years. She has taught third grade, second grade, and worked in the Windsor library, in addition to teaching kindergarten.

She is married and has two grown children who attended Windsor as students. Mrs. Kair enjoys helping students build a positive attitude about  school and learning here at Windsor.

Marcia Kelly

Special Education Consultant

Kevin Lam

Custodian

Janelle Leahy

3rd Grade Teacher

I have been with the Des Moines Public Schools since 1994, I have taught pre-k through 3rd grade. I came to Windsor in 2000. I am proud to say I spent 12 years as a student in Des Moines Public Schools and am a Roosevelt alum!  Go Riders!  I graduated from Grand View University with a degree in elementary education and later earned my early childhood endorsement. In my free time I like spending time with family and friends, reading, knitting and watching the Chiefs play. I love that I get the opportunity every day to watch our students learn and grow. I love our Windsor community!

Jordan Leckband

Music Teacher
P: 515-2425-8440 | F: 515-323-8648 | E: jordan.leckband@dmschools.org

Hello, Wildcats!

My name is Jordan Leckband. I have been teaching general music at Windsor since 2020. Before my time here in DMPS, I taught 6-12 Vocal Music at Nodaway Valley and K-12 Vocal and General Music at Guthrie Center in western Iowa. In ten years I’ve taught concert choirs, jazz choirs, show choirs, Solo/Ensemble contests, chamber ensembles, and three musicals. I’ve also been a guest conductor for the South Central Iowa Honor Choir and for the DMPS All-City Honor Choir.

At Windsor, we focus heavily on giving students opportunities to learn different styles of music from different parts of the world using different instruments. You can expect from me:

Kindergarten and 1st Grade: beginning instruments such as rhythm sticks and egg shakers

2nd Grade: Unpitched percussion and glockenspiels

3rd Grade: Pitched percussion and tubanos (classroom drums)

4th Grade: Recorders

5th Grade: Guitars, music composition and Honor Choir opportunities (Opus, All City, etc)

In addition, we have an after school choir at Windsor called Castle Singers. This is a non-auditioned group open to all students in grades 3-5. We sing at Fine Arts Night in the Spring and have performed the National Anthem at various sporting events in Des Moines. We would love to have your child join us!

I received my Bachelor’s in Music Education from the University of Northern Iowa, my Master’s in Music Education from the University of South Dakota, and I will finish my Ed.S in Educational Leadership from Drake University in December. I live in Waveland Park with my wife Meghan, my son Aidan, and our two cats and two dogs.

Claudia Lorentzen

Associate Principal

I am very excited to begin my 22nd year as an educator in the role of Associate Principal at Windsor Elementary! My teaching career began in Los Angeles before moving to Des Moines where I’ve worked the past 17 years. I have taught 1st through 4th grades as a classroom teacher, worked as a reading and math interventionist, and most recently served as an instructional coach prior to coming to Windsor. I am passionate about working with students and adults to cultivate a sense of belonging and love of learning in this beautiful school of ours. I have four children who also attend Des Moines Public Schools, and I also love to travel, read, and watch baseball (Go Dodgers!).  I am thrilled to join Windsor and know you will feel the commitment to our students the minute you walk in our doors.  Please reach out with any questions/needs you may have.  I’m happy to help!

Laura Manroe

Instructional Coach

Jean Maurer

SUCESS Case Manager
P: 515-242-8440 | F: 515-323-8648 | E: jean.maurer@dmschools.org

Christina Mcfarland

Instructional Strategist

I have been teaching at Windsor since 2012. I grew up in Hudson, IA and later received my BA in Elementary Education with endorsements in special education, reading, and coaching from Drake University, where I also played volleyball. I love spending time with family and friends and being active.

Abel Mekonnen

Cafeteria

Traci Merical

5th Grade Teacher

Amy Nichol

5th Grade Teacher

I have been teaching in Des Moines for 20 years. I graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 1999 and earned my master’s degree from Grand Canyon University in 2013. This will be my ninth year at Windsor Elementary. Before teaching at Windsor, I taught special education and 2nd grade at Capitol View Elementary, and 3rd grade at Edmunds Elementary.
My husband and I live in Clive with our 3 children Adison, Grace, and Brady, and our dog Dash.

Saydie Peter

Psychologist

Kathy Posekany

Associate

Kate Rodriguez

4th Grade Teacher

Mrs. Rodriguez graduated from Iowa State University with a teaching degree. After college she joined the Peace Corps in Costa Rica.  In Costa Rica, Mrs. Rodriguez taught environmental education and English in public elementary schools. She has been a teacher in Des Moines since 1999 and at Windsor since 2007.  In Des Moines she has taught Spanish, 4th grade, and 5th grade.  Mrs. Rodriguez also earned her Master’s degree in Education from Viterbo University in 2010.

Juli Smith

Interventionist
P: 515-242-8440 | F: 515-323-8648 | E: juli.smith@dmschools.org

Welcome to kindergarten! My name is Juli Smith, and I have been teaching with Des Moines Public Schools since 2005. I graduated from The University of Iowa with a degree in elementary education. I have a reading endorsement, as well as, early childhood education and early childhood special education endorsements. Before coming to Windsor, I taught a wide range of grade levels including preschool, kindergarten, first, second, fourth, and fifth grade students.

April Taylor-Matthews

Library and Tech Specialist

Kevin Teno

ALP

Kim Veigulis

Interventionist

Hi! My name is Kim Veigulis.  I began my career at DMPS in 2013 teaching 3rd grade at Capitol View Elementary.  The past seven years I have spent my time at CV as a 1st grade teacher and thoroughly enjoyed every minute.  I am so excited to begin another chapter of my career as one of the instructional coaches at Windsor Elementary.  I am looking forward to working with all the talented teachers and staff members to maximize student success and celebrate learning and growth.  I went to Iowa State University (much to my husband’s dismay who is a huge Hawkeye fan) for undergrad and got my master’s from Drake University through the DMPS Blue Contract program.  My favorite things are my family, friends, walking, biking, traveling, and reading.  I am looking forward to a wonderful school year at Windsor!

Connie Walker

Cafeteria

Beth Wallukait

Office Manager

Kathleen Warren

Art Teacher

I started teaching art for DMPS in 1996. After six years of teaching, I decided to stay at home with my three children and watch them grow.  Teaching has always been in my heart, as my children got older, I went back to the classroom to teach preschool. 2014 I was hired once again by DMPS to be the Library Associate at Windsor, such a wonderful job, but not quite messy enough.  2018 DMPS hired me one more time, and it was back to the Art Room for me, I could not be happier.  I have been a part of the Windsor family since 2005, starting as a parent and PTA co-president, all three of my children attended Windsor.   Here at Windsor, I run a Choice Based art program, where the child is the artist. We make messes, solve problems, collaborate, make discoveries, and enjoy creating.

Christy Williams

Instructional Strategist

Colby Williams

School Nurse

This is my 1st year as a school nurse, and I could not be more excited! I spent the last year and a half in post anesthesia care, waking up infants to elderly from surgery. I subbed in DMPS as a nurse last year and found that school nursing may be my niche. I am excited to serve the Windsor Community. In my free time, I can be found playing pickleball, doing yoga, spending time with my cat and husband, and advocating for the local food system. My goal as a school nurse is to promote health and well-being, serve as an advocate, and be a resource of health education for the Windsor community.  

Jen Wilson

2nd Grade Teacher

Rachel Zimmerman

3rd Grade Teacher
P: 515-242-8440 | F: 515-323-8648 | E: rachel.zimmerman@dmschools.org

Hello! This will be my 6th year of teaching at Windsor. I absolutely love teaching and building relationships with students, and I’m so excited for another school year. I taught 5th grade for two years, and this will be my fourth year teaching 3rd grade. I graduated from Iowa State University in December of 2017, and I received my master’s degree from Drake University in December of 2022. I’m originally from Harlan, IA where I grew up on my family’s dairy farm alongside my twin sister, Emily, and my younger brother, Josh. In my free time, I enjoy reading, playing guitar and piano, being active, and spending time with my friends and family.