• JGESA is a teacher-powered school. Here, our staff are empowered to make decisions that promote student and whole school success. A "Team Professional Practice" (TPP) approach is rooted in the belief in the teacher as a professional capable of making decisions that impact the student, school culture and operations. It also means that staff take responsibility for the successes and failures of the school. Staff collectively share in all of the duties for the day-to-day and long term operation of the school. Ensuring this cooperative voice among the staff assures that dedicated professionals commit to both the learning program for the students and the professional development and organizational management of the school. 

    Not sure who to contact? Start with info@jgesa.org or 952-852-0129.


    Special Education - Katie


    Communications Jackie


    Assessment - Katie


    Operations - Jackie


    Curriculum - Craig

     

    Staff Development - Jess H


    Finance - George


    Personnel - Jess

     

    Org Chart

 Chris Bot - Advisor

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Chris Bot - Advisor

I am so thrilled and honored to be a part of the JGESA team. The experiences I've had at our school have been unique and unforgettable. It is astonishing to think we are only heading into our third year. The school and myself have grown so much in that short time and it is exciting to look to the 17/18 school year ahead. 

For those that don't know me, I grew up in the country in rural central Minnesota and it has instilled in me a love of the outdoors and nature. The setting we have at JGESA reminds me everyday of the beauty and serenity of nature. I've always had natural curiosity and a desire to expand my knowledge in every category. This is why I love being at JGESA and love the PBL model. Cultivating my student's desires to learn and expand their knowledge is what motivates and inspires me and there is no better setting the JGESA to do that.

 Anne Brakob - Special Education

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Anne Brakob - Special Education

I'm excited to begin my third year here at JGESA! I really enjoy everything about my job here. I'm a long time member of my community, living near Monticello. I find this area has so much to offer. As an outdoor enthusiast my family and I have spent countless hours on the area's many lakes or the Mississippi fishing and kayaking. I love to hike and cross country ski at Lake Maria State Park and Harry Larson County Park throughout the year when the Black Flies are at bay. 

I have really enjoyed meeting the students of our school. They remind me daily of all the fun I've had with my own grown children. Watching them solve the problems they create in their projects is inspiring to me. The creativity, persistence, and interest the students possess as they engage learning gives me hope and true satisfaction as a part of this community. The staff here are one of a kind and really help to drive that. I feel very privileged to be one of them.
 Jessica Haag - Special Education

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Jessica Haag - Special Education

We have such a great team working at JGESA and I am so proud to be a part of that team. Our team is a reason for our continued success and growth.

I will be working as a Special Education Advisor this year. This will be my second year in this role. Many students will tell you that I have lots of ideas. Sometimes students like them and will create projects out of them, and other times I think my ideas sound like too much work.

Outside of work, I dabble in several hobbies including several forms of art, fiber arts, sewing, gardening, hiking, canoeing, camping, and watching my kids play sports. I am a voracious reader and love to read all genres of books, with the exception of poetry and a few nonfiction subjects. One of my passions is US History, particularly the Civil War and the impact it had on the citizen soldier, the every day person. I am currently completing my Master's degree in Special Education through St. Mary's University of Minnesota.

Thank you, families of JGESA, for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of your child's life. I truly enjoy getting to know each individual child for who they are and what they are interested in.

 Gina Haukoos - Advisor

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Gina Haukoos - Advisor

I am excited to be joining the JGESA team as an Advisor for the 18/19 school year. Having grown up in Southern Minnesota on a small hobby farm, I spent a lot of my free time out doors. I was an active member in 4-H and FFA and enjoyed being part of an agricultural community. I attended Grand View University is Des Moines, Iowa where I earned my degree in Education. I moved back to Minnesota where I started my teaching career working at an Alternative Learning Center in Wadena, this experience drove my passion for alternative learning. At JGESA the Project Based Model is a way that all students can find the tools that help them learn best. I am excited for the new year with many new projects and learning experiences with the students.

 Deb Hyk - Special Education

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Deb Hyk - Special Education

I’m so excited to be returning to Jane Goodall this fall. Being in the woods, listening to the songs of the birds, the calls of the raptors and owls, and watching all of the wildlife are among my favorite things to do. I love this spot, and I love our students. This is my eleventh year as a teacher and my tenth as a special education teacher. I am excited to explore new projects and learning and growing with students.

 Jackie Longhenry - Office Manager

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Jackie Longhenry - Office Manager

I play a dual role at JGESA. Parent and Office Manager. As a parent it is fascinating to watch not only my child open up to this new educational experience, but the others as well.  Professionally I have experience working in a both public and charter schools. I also have an extensive background in Marketing and Communications that I put to use connecting JGESA with our families and community. When not at work I enjoy spending time with my family on our farm or reading a good book.

 Jess Paulson - Advisor

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Jess Paulson - Advisor

Growing up in northern Minnesota, I was never far from a lakeshore or stand of trees (just like our campus). Spending several summers at a wilderness camp on an remote island on the Lake of the Woods sparked my love of outdoor education. I graduated from a charter high school and have found innovative learning models like Project-Based Learning to pave the pathway for students to integrate their interests into their education. With my graduate studies focus in Environmental Education, I believe in connecting students to our natural world through experiential education. I hope to provide our students with opportunities to help them become natural resource stewards and environmentally aware citizens.

"Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life." ~ John Muir

 George Walker - Advisor

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George Walker - Advisor

At this point I feel as if I'm coming home. My first career was in agriculture, but for the past 15 years I have been a teacher. I spent eleven of them developing and teaching, along with a wonderful staff, at Northwest Passage High School. NWPHS is a charter school in Coon Rapids, MN. Project-based learning was a key component of the school. Then In 2012 I had the opportunity to teach overseas in Qatar where my wife and I spent two years teaching English. I have a Masters in Education and am licensed for Elementary Education and Secondary Communication/Language Arts. I've spent the last two years working in the "big" schools, no PBL. I'm looking forward to this new adventure working with students and staff at JGESA doing project-based learning once again. .

 Tammie Walker - Advisor

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Tammie Walker - Advisor

Tammie Walker is excited to “Come out of the Classroom and Into the World.” She has taught English as a second career for the past 10 years spending two of them in Qatar. She has a degree in Communications Arts and Literature and a Masters in Experiential Education. She looks forward to working with her students to become passionate learners and contributing citizens in a world that is yet to be invented. When she isn’t teaching she loves to spend time with her three grandchildren and family, gardening, reading, fishing, swimming, singing and creating new ways for her husband to make their home more cozy
 Craig Wignes - Advisor

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Craig Wignes - Advisor

I grew up in central MN where I spent my time outside fishing, camping, hikng and playing sports of any kind. I attended MN State University- Moorhead where I earned my degree in Secondary Education (Social Studies). While in Fargo/Moorhead, I spent over 4 years working with at-risk youth in group home and residential treatment settings at the Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. After moving to Buffalo in 2005, I attended graduate school at St. Catherine University and obtained my Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction. I spent 11 years teaching at an alternative learning high school before joining the amazing team at JGESA. I have served on the (MAAP) MN Association of Alternative Program's Board for the last 7 years to "lead, promote and support innovative learning experiences" for all students in MN. I have always been passionate about educational innovation and am an avid supporter of educational reform. Having the unique opportunity to combine my passion for the social sciences with my love of the natural world and serving others is not something I take for granted. I'm still humbled to drive on to our beautiful campus every day to work with incredible students, staff and families. While working tirelessly for the last 5 years to ensure the sustained success of the school, my enthusiasm has never waned. The opportunity to build a world-class school right here in Wright County is a dream come true. It has always felt like exactly where I’m supposed to be.

 

 Katie Zehowski - Special Education

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Katie Zehowski - Special Education

Growing up in Minnesota, I spent a significant amount of time outdoors, traveling, and participating in a variety of sports and activities. I attended North Dakota State University and Bethel University where I earned degrees in Communication Arts and Literature (Secondary Education) and Special Education (Academic Behavioral Strategist) along with an Autism Spectrum Disorders License. I have recently decided to continue my education at Minnesota State University-Moorhead and I’m currently completing a degree in Educational Leadership to ultimately pursue a Director of Special Education License. I have spent a majority of my career working with diverse populations in alternative learning settings ranging from juvenile diversion programs to residential programs. Ultimately, these experiences have deepened my passion for educational reform and awakened a fascination for education law and organizational structures of education.

Having this unique opportunity of being a member of a quality team composed of innovative, educational leaders along with witnessing the power of Project-based Learning has not only been a humbling experience it has been a liberating journey and ultimately a dream come true.