Get to know the individuals that make Peterson Elementary great!
Nick Spychalski - Physical Education Teacher - 2010 - Norridge, IL - firstname.lastname@example.org
University of Illinois at Urbana - Bachelor of Arts in English
National Louis University - Masters in Teaching
Illinois Army National Guard Veteran (1996-2004)
Before Peterson, I was a Financial Planner and in Technology Sales.
"The diverse community," is my favorite thing about Peterson
When I'm not at Peterson I love to travel!
Anthony Tournis - STEM Teacher- Antioch, IL - 2019 - email@example.com
Antioch Community High School
Western Illinois University - Bachelor Of Arts
National Louis University - Masters In Teaching
I came to teaching as a second career. I have been a member of the Chicago theater community since the early 2000's and have been an actor, playwright, and casting director. I came to teaching due to a passion for science and critical thinking. I would like to mix my passion for science education with my entertainment background to create a class that is educational and entertaining at the same time.
“My favorite thing about Peterson is the strong sense of community and the very welcoming environment.”
I still perform from time to time. I also enjoy spending time with my wife and daughter, getting caught up on new video games, and watching movies.
Erik Juhl - Music Teacher and Band Director - 2019 - Highwood, IL - firstname.lastname@example.org
Oak Terrace Elementary
Northwood Junior High
Highland Park High School
Bradley University - Bachelor of Arts in Instrumental Music Education and Music Composition
I've always loved music and I knew from an early age that sharing that love and helping others grow as musicians was something that seemed hard-coded into me.
Upon leaving college, I took a position as an adaptive music teacher music and teacher aide at a school for diverse learners in the northern suburbs of Chicago. It was a great experience and I was fortunate to learn how to work with students with a great variety of needs. I started my career in CPS at Greeley Elementary School and began working with CPS' Department of Arts Education a few years later as a director, composer, and arranger for their All-City Performing Arts program. When I saw an opening at Peterson, I jumped at the opportunity after hearing through colleagues the amazing things that Peterson's music program was doing.
“Aside from its incredible diversity, the Peterson community has blown me away with its incredibly supportive staff, students, and parents. It was during Peterson's Back To School picnic that I knew I was going to be working at some place special; the students and parents were just so welcoming.”
Away from my time at Peterson, I enjoy long bicycle trips, building computers and playing computer games, composing original works for wind band, and performing around town as a jazz, classical, and rock musician.
Kathleen Hurley - STEM Teacher - 2014 - Thornville, Ohio - email@example.com
University of Cincinnati - Bachelor of Science in Food & Nutrition
Dominican University - Master of Arts in Teaching
I came to Peterson straight from being an undergraduate student at the University of Cincinnati.
"The diversity of our students and staff; the willingness from teachers, families, community member, and students to pitch in to do whatever is needed!"
I love to explore Chicago, cook, and read!
Gina LeTempt - Physical Education Dance Teacher - 2016 - Wheaton, Illinois - firstname.lastname@example.org
Madison Elementary School
Edison Middle School
Wheaton Warrenville South High School
City Colleges of Chicago
Northeastern Illinois University
I truly believe that nothing is impossible and that everything happens for a reason. No matter where I was in life I always made sure to stay close to what I felt was important-school and involvement. After graduating high school In 2003 I attended community college, coached various sports, and cheered competitively. I have 10 years of experience coaching summer camps, JV and Varsity High School, and club. Through commitment, sacrifice, hard-work, and perseverance it is my educational journey and coaching experiences that have led me to finding myself a proud teacher at Peterson. Go Panthers!
"My favorite things about Peterson are the diversity and sense of home it carries with it. I am truly honored and feel blessed to be part of the Peterson community and its rich culture. From the parents and students to those at work there is a constant support from everyone that in turn maintains the Peterson community."
My favorite things to do outside of Peterson is spending time with my large family, baking, cleaning, and helping others in need.
Jeffrey Oliveira - Choir and General Music Teacher - 2018 - Fremont, CA - email@example.com
Hopkins Junior High
Mission San Jose High School
University of the Pacific - Bachelors of Music in Vocal Performance
Northeastern Illinois University - Teacher Licensure Program
I taught a year of high school music at my alma mater right out of college. After layoffs due to budget cuts, I found myself without a position and a bit lost in the world. I took a break from music, moved to Chicago and started working in the dot com industry. After 4 years I realized how much I missed music and working with youth, so I quit my job and went back to school at NEIU to get my Illinois teaching license. It was the best decision I ever made - I'm back on my path, following my passion and thrilled to be working at Peterson!
“The long standing tradition of musical excellence and the strong sense of community that Peterson students, families and friends foster in and out of school.”
I love to play video games, usually from in the RPG/JRPG genre, while our cats cuddle up and snooze next to me. I also enjoy watching live theatre and music whenever possible!
Estevan Rosales - Physical Education Teacher - 2018 - Summit, IL - firstname.lastname@example.org
Heritage Middle School
Argo Community High School
Moraine Valley Chicago State University
I was actually interviewing for another school but lost the position due to time infraction. I was referred to Peterson by the principal that I first interviewed with and have fallen in love with the school.
“I love the atmosphere at Peterson. The school is very rich in diversity in religion, and ethnicities. I love learning and being able to work with students who have a background in being a first generation immigrant just as myself.”
My favorite thing to do outside of Peterson is hang out with friends and family.
Bethany Crino - Visual Arts Teacher - 2018 - Chicago, IL - email@example.com
North Park University - Major in Fine Arts and K-12 Art Education Certification
While working at another school in the city, I realized I needed to be teaching in an environment that valued and celebrated the arts as well as be a part of an engaging community committed to student learning and positive growth. I have lived in the area for years and working at Peterson has always been a dream of mine. I couldn't be happier to finally be a part of this wonderful community!
“My favorite thing about Peterson is the celebration and support of the Arts as well as the community of teachers who are constantly collaborating and working together to give our students the best education possible.”
I love to spend time with my family, hiking in nature, doing yoga, cooking up new recipes, and painting and drawing whenever possible.