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Special Education

Highland Primary Special Education teachers: 
Carrie Belford, Erin Bloemer, Danette Daiber, Jen Koenig, Jackie Mollet, and Staci Twardowski.

Hi, my name is Carrie Belford. I taught PreK for twelve years and I have been at Highland Primary since 2006. I have an Early Childhood degree with a Masters in Special Education. I love what I do and feel very blessed to be a part of so many children's lives. My family and I live in Highland and stay busy with numerous activities. 

Email Carrie Belford: cbelford@highlandcusd5.org 
E Bloemer

Hello! My name is Erin Bloemer and I am so excited to be joining the Highland
Primary Special Education team! I have been part of the Primary family for four
years now as an assistant, an Early Childhood teacher, and an Rti Interventionist. I
have a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and in Psychology with a
minor in Sociology. In addition, I have a Learning Behavior Specialist certification to
teach Kindergarten through 3 rd grade Special Education. As you can see I love to
learn! I also love to read! It is one of my favorite things to do so I will read with my
students as much as I can! I love to see my students grow!

Email Erin Bloemer: ebloemer@highlandcusd5.org

Hello my name is Danette Daiber. I began my career at Highland Community Schools in 1991. For the first nine years I taught seventh and eighth grade special education at our middle school. I have been teaching kindergarten and first grade special education at the primary building since 2000 and I love it! I have undergraduate degrees in both elementary education and special education. I have also completed my Master’s Degree in special education at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. Additionally, I went back to school for early childhood certification. Teaching at this level is so rewarding. I love seeing a child’s face light up with pride as he/she learns new things. Watching children who didn’t know their letters of the alphabet in kindergarten grow to children who can read books independently in first grade is so motivating!

Email Danette Daiber: ddaiber@highlandcusd5.org

Jen Koenig

Hi, My name is Jen Koenig. I began my teaching career in Missouri after graduating from Lindenwood University in 2003. The first 10 years of my career was spent working with students with on the autism spectrum through ABA and teaching 4th and 5th grade. In 2013 our family moved to Highland. After taking a year off to stay home with my children, I started back in the classroom as a program assistant while working on my Illinois teaching certification. I’m thrilled to be part of the Special Education team here at Highland Primary and to be using ABA as a mode of learning in my classroom. I love teaching and helping students learn new skills. Watching my student grow academically, socially, and emotionally brings me joy everyday. 

Email Jen Koenig: jkoenig@highlandcusd5.org
J Mollet
Hi, my name is Jackie Mollet.  I am a 2nd grade special education teacher at Highland Primary.  
I was raised in Newton,Illinois.  I attended Olney Central College and Eastern Illinois University.  I received a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Education and Elementary Education in 1983.  I was a substitute teacher for one year before returning to Eastern, to work on a Master’s Degree in Special Education.  I graduated with that degree in 1985.I began teaching special education, in Highland, in August, 1985.  I taught kindergarten through 3rd grade students.  I have continued taking classes since starting at Highland Primary.  I have 42 additional semester hours in reading and special education.  In 2003, I became one of the first teachers in the Highland school district to receive National Board Certification for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.  I am certified in the area of Early Childhood Through Young Adulthood/Exceptional Needs Specialist.  During the 2008-09 school year, I received a certificate of achievement for completing the Down Syndrome Specialist training from the Down Syndrome Association of Greater St. Louis.  In 2009-10, I received the “Those Who Excel”  award.

Email Jack Mollet: 

Hello! I am Mrs. Staci Twardowski, I am a Special Education Teacher here at Highland Primary. I have taught all grades and love them all! 

I graduated in 2006 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Pathology. In May 2010 I graduated with a Master’s Degree in teaching from Greenville College.  This is my fifth year at Highland Primary.


My favorite thing about teaching is watching students succeed and take pride in their work. My job is to help students and encourage them to work hard to reach their goals. I love all of the rewards and challenges that come along with the joys of teaching. Each of my students are a special part of my life and make my job the best job in the world!

Email Staci Twardowski: stwardowski@highlandcusd5.org