John Atella Special Education Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I am originally from the Chicago area, but after college, I moved to Japan and China where I lived for 17 years.  I also have played hockey since I was three and have been a ref for the last 6 years.  

What is your biggest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment, I believe, are my three kids.  They are kind, honest and have grit, empathy, and self-awareness.  It will be my second greatest accomplishment if I can see that they have inspired their kids to have these same qualities.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

What I love about Floodwood is the sense of community and teamwork.  It is something I've missed having lived in big cities like Tokyo, Beijing, Kunming, and Chicago


What is your favorite thing to learn about?

I like learning new ways of teaching things that make life easier for students.  Personally, I like learning about home repair, but I am terrible at it.

What is something you are really good at?

I know this sounds boring, but I am fairly good at explaining grammar, so if you have a question, please let me know.  If I don't know, I'll find an answer for you.  

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader?

I feel like a good leader has genuine concern for people, has a vision and plan, and sees themselves as a resource for others.

What is something you are looking forward to?

I am looking forward to getting to know the students and staff at the school. I'm new here, so if I forget your name, please forgive me!


FB

Frank Bartsch Athletic Director, PE & Health Teacher

Three things people should know about you?

I am honest, straight-forward, and dedicated.

Biggest accomplishment?

My biggest accomplishment is convincing my wife I was a good candidate for marriage and family.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love the passion and dedication that Floodwood community and school members show in their pursuit to make the Floodwood School a welcoming and inspiring environment for our students.

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

I love learning about students' lives outside of school.

What is something you are really good at?

I am really good at connecting with student-athletes.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader?

In order to be effective, a leader needs to: be honest; be self-aware, have a focus on developing others, encourage strategic thought, and be willing to share the success of endeavors with the team.

JB

Jennifer Bartsch Kindergarten Teacher

Three things people should know about you? 

Relationship-building with my students is a top priority; I give 100% to our students; I love teaching in Floodwood and cannot imagine working anywhere else.  

Biggest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment happens each time a child learns something new that I had a small part in illuminating in our classroom.  Teaching our little ones requires the efforts of not only the teacher, but our educational support staff, families, and administration.  Our children succeed when we work together!  

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

  I appreciate the investment our community and families make in our students.  The Floodwood community deeply cares for our children and fully supports their education.  

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

I love learning about the interests and experiences of my students and their families.    

What is something you are really good at?

  I'm good at supporting intentional learning through play and communicating their learning to families and the Floodwood community through social media.  

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Strong listening skills, honesty, and a growth mindset are the qualities of an effective leader.  


AC

Allyn Clark "Al" Head of Maintenance

What are three things people should know about you?

Perfectionist, soft spoken, if I can;t fix it its not broken.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Married for 37 years

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

small

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Farming and being with kids and grandkids

What is something you are really good at?

Thinking it throw

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

By working hard and patences, also not turning on the heat until Nov. Lol

Kelli

Kelli Ellingson High School Math Teacher

What are three things you should know about me?

I am hard-working, dedicated and have endless energy.

What is your biggest accomplishment?

Making the big move to northern Minnesota and building a new house. 

What is something I love about the Floodwood community?

I honestly don’t know right now because I am new to the school and community. I hope within a week I can answer that question and tell you that you are my “family” and families will do anything for each other. 

What is my favorite thing to learn about?

My favorite thing(s) to learn about are birds, flowers and all of nature. 


What is something that I am good at?

Baking/cooking and curling. 

What do I feel are the important characteristics of a leader?

The characteristics of a good leader are the ability to listen, the ability to learn new things, the ability to be honest with people, and the ability to be empathetic. 

What is something you are looking forward to?

I am looking forward to a small school that has a family environment where I can LOVE kids. 

AE

Ashley Engh Administrative Assistant

What are three things people should know about you?

I'm a hard worker, I love my family tremendously and am an animal lover.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Being a mom, it's the hardest job in the world.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love the tight knit community. I grew up attending large schools where you really only knew the kids in your class or grade. I love that my children have a sense of community with a wide range of other ages and with working here you can get to know all of the families, students and parents alike.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Crafts, cooking, creating new things

What is something you are really good at?

I'm very craft when I have the time to do so.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Someone who is able to see the strengths in those around them and utilize those strengths for the benefit of the group.

AF

Amanda Fjeld Instructional/ Behavioral Coach

What are three things people should know about you?

I love being a Polar Bear and a part of this community! Helping others is a passion of mine. 

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Living a healthy and happy life with people I love is my biggest accomplishment. 

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love that we rally around each other when someone is in need, that we are small enough I know all students, staff and most families, and I know and have been a part of Floodwood history.   

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I enjoy learning about a variety of topics - currently learning about being a more effective and positive leader has been a focus along with learning how to play the violin. 

What is something you are really good at?

 I believe I am good at relating to people (adults and kids).

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Characteristics of a good leader include someone who can build strong relationships with others, is positive, has an open mind, is approachable, a good listener, and supportive. 

KG

Kerri Gillespie English Teacher and Yearbook Advisor

What are three things people should know about you?

Nick Goligoski IT Personel

John

John Horgeshimer Band/Music Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

Music is my life, and teaching music is my passion. I have traveled the world playing saxophone with a variety of bands. I am a composer as well, and music I have written has been performed in Europe and the Americas. 

What is your biggest accomplishment?

Earning the Doctor of Arts in Music Composition and Performance from Ball State University, 

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love tight-knit communities, and I enjoy being part of them. I gather that Floodwood is a great community, and I can't wait to contribute!

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

I love to cook, and worked in restaurants while in undergrad at Bemidji State University. My wife and I frequently host dinners at our new home in Hermantown.

What is something you are really good at?

I'm good at a few things not music- or cooking-related. I love making people laugh, I'm a good storyteller, and I can relate almost anything to music. 

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader?

1. A great leader is someone who understands the people they are leading; 2. they have passion, conviction, and a willingness to listen; 3. they lead from the front; and, 4. they have empathy and grace.

 

What is something you are looking forward to?

I'm looking forward to working with the students and staff at Floodwood, making music and having a great school year! 


JE

Jeannette Johnsrud- Evavold 2nd Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I love to craft, have my own small business for my crafting, and I love watching movies!

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

My biggest accomplishment was being a first generation college graduate for my family and not only obtaining one but two bachelor degrees in five years.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love being a part of the Floodwood community and school! It reminds me so much of home and someone is always there to help out even if they don’t know me.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

My favorite thing to learn about is how I can increase success for my students and myself within my classroom. That being either classroom management, professional development, reading strategies, math strategies, etc. 

What is something you are really good at?

I am really good at working at being creative and bringing that side of me to the classroom.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Good characteristics of a leader are strong, dedicated, helpful, caring, understanding, compassionate, listener, and empathetic

JJ

Joy Jones Special Education Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I was born and raised on a dairy farm.  I became a grandma for the first time on July 2021.  I got engaged on August 2021.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Raising 2 wonderful children

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

Students and parents from Floodwood care about each other.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I enjoy learning about vegetable and flower gardening.

What is something you are really good at?

 I am a Jill of all trades, master of none.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Great leaders have courage and a vision of what is to be accomplished.  

KK

Kurt Kunnari 4th Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I was in the USMC, I graduated from the college of St. Scholastica, I’m married and have four children.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Serving my country

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

 I love how everyone is like family. We know everyone's names and hope everyone succeeds as a whole. 

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Our country's history.

What is something you are really good at?

Being somebody to talk to that needs it.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Honor, Courage , Commitment , Dedication , Patience


LL

Lisa Lacore TRIO Talent Search Advisor "ETS"

What are three things people should know about you?

I have 3 daughters, I love to mountain bike, I live in Cloquet

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Graduating from UMD

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

 I appreciate the tight knit community!

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Mushrooms 

What is something you are really good at?

 Mountain Biking

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

 Having a vision, the ability to communicate well, and being supportive


JL

Jessica Larson Transportation Director

What are three things people should know about you?

I am loud, I live in Kettle River, and I love chickens

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Getting my CDL. It was very intimidating but is definitely much easier than I thought it was going to be.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

The staff! So supportive of the community.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

History. Anything old-vintage antique!

What is something you are really good at?

 Communication

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Honest, open, can admit faults, leads by example.

SL

Sarah Lindstrom 6th Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

This is my 25th year at Floodwood School, I have 2 high school children, I love to grow a garden and be outdoors.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

One of my biggest accomplishments is teaching and coaching the Floodwood students for 25 years

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love that the Floodwood community and school will pull together in a time of need;  whether that be putting on a benefit for someone who is ill, helping out during Catfish Days, or attending an extracurricular activity here at the school.  We can do great things when we all work together.  

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

 I love to learn new ways to help students be critical thinkers, and I love to learn and try new recipes with my garden vegetables. 

What is something you are really good at?

 I feel I'm a good cook.  For example, the time I won the soup cook-off here at the school - lol.  

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

 I feel a good leader is someone who communicates well, is open minded, encourages and listens, is passionate about their job, and leads by example.  

ce

Celia Olesiak 3rd Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

Three things you should know about me are I have two nephews, I attended the College of Saint Scholastica to get my degree in elementary education, and this is my first full-year teaching.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

My greatest accomplishment was graduating college with the highest honors, summa cum laude.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

A few things I love about Floodwood are the small class sizes, and the community aspect Floodwood has.

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

Something I am really good at is being a great auntie to my two nephews.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I am looking forward to meeting the kids and having a great first-year at Floodwood!

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader?

A few character traits that demonstrate being a good leader include positivity, discipline, empathy, and courage.

Bruddy

Donald " Bruddy" Olesiak Social Studies Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

Love all kinds of music, especially the oldies......Love being in the woods grouse hunting with my dog, enjoy agate picking

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

getting my degree and marrying my wife

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

Their fierce loyalty for each other......no matter the situation, everyone has each other's back!!

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Health and fitness

What is something you are really good at?

I am a good listener. Connecting with people through music

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Honesty, Empathy, Respectful and Understanding 

Troy Otterson School Social Worker

Troy Otterson Social Worker

What are three things people should know about you?

Started and run Tavern on the Range in Bovey . Born and raised in Cloquet I have 4 children ages 9,11,19,25

What is your biggest accomplishment?

Wrote and published a book in 2019 called "Identity Crisis" it can be found on Barnes and Nobles and Amazon

What is something that you love about the Floodwood school and community?

The small census and class size is the best and I believe it should be this way everywhere

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

Personal growth and Spiritual Ascension

What is something you are really good at?

Finding and catching fish

What do you feel are good characteristic of a leader?

Ethical, Moral and Intellectual behavior and decision making

What is something you are looking forward to?

Getting to know all of the staff and students by name and in depth so I can be most effective

JP

Jonathan Payne Superintendent/ Principal

What are three things people should know about you?

 Grew up in Longcille, a small town 70 miles west of Floodwood. I lived in Alaska for 10 years. My family is my wife Jan, son, daughter and 5 grandkids

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Blessed to work in Education for over 40 years.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

 Polar Bear Pride, and deep roots of small town with interactions with several generations

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

How to do projects around my home instead of having "professionals" do the work.

What is something you are really good at?

I think I'm a good cook.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Fair, Aware, Loyal, Listener, Mediator

MP

Melanie Pliml ECSE & 4YO Preschool

What are three things people should know about you?

I love marvel, I am an auntie, and I love reading.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Biggest accomplishment is graduating with a teaching license.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love the small town feel!

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I love learning about how children develop! 

What is something you are really good at?

I am really good at working under pressure.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

 Someone who unites people but is not afraid to make tough decisions. 

SR

Siobain Riley Food Service Director

What are three things people should know about you?

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

What is something you are really good at?

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

FR

Faith Romanek Office Clerk

What are three things people should know about you?

I love my family, I love going to the lake in the summer, and I am a hard worker.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Graduating from Itasca Community College with three Associate Degrees. Working full time and going to school at Bemidji State University to complete my Bachelors of Science Degree in Business Administration emphasis in Management.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

We have that one on one connection with every student. We are all close and we care for one another.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I love to learn about WWII and Pearl Harbor.

What is something you are really good at?

Organizing, and making other happy.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

A leader is someone who listens to others questions, comments, concerns. Someone how is willing to go the extra mile to help someone.

LS

Lori Sertich 1st Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I love Michigan Football and hockey, I consider chocolate as a food group, and I have 3 girls.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

My 3 girls and their successes in life 

What is something that you love about the floodwood community and school?

The small town/community feel, everyone is welcoming. passion for a strong education for their children.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

New crochet patterns, learning new hands-on strategies to help struggling readers

What is something you are really good at?

Not liking the Gophers, reading, crocheting, eating Melanie Skripsky's cupcakes 

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Empathetic, good communication, understanding, leading by example

MS

Melanie Skripsky School Secretary & Accounts Payable

What are three things people should know about you?

 I love God, my husband, kids, and coffee. They are my pillars in life.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Being a mom and wife!

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

I love the small town feel and how easily connections are made!

4. What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

I love all things baking, I'm always trying something new.

What is something you are really good at?

Multitasking and baking!

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Someone who leads by example and challenges those around them to be successful within the team. 

joe

Joe Skripsky Industrial Arts Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I love God, I love my family and would do anything for them and I love snowmobiling.

What is your biggest accomplishment

My biggest accomplishment would be realizing I don't have to be perfect and I don't always have to please everyone around me, but instead do my best with the abilities God has given me and know that, that is enough.

What is something that you love about Floodwood's community and school?

What I love about Floodwood School is the small class sizes and the ability to make strong teacher student connections that can really help the learning and growing process. 

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

What is your favorite thing to learn about?

My favorite thing to learn about would be renovations, not only in home building terms, but also renovation in all areas(auto restoration, fixing old power sports vehicles etc.). Taking what was and making it better fits my work or lifestyle.

What is something that you are really good at?

I believe to be really good at working with my hands and my attention to detail helps me focus on constantly improving my abilities.

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

To me a good leader is someone who leads by example, not asking others to do what they wouldn't do themselves. As well as not demanding or commanding respect but getting it by being honorable.

What is something that you are looking forward to?

The thing I most look forward to would just be the daily watching of my kids growing up and us as a family growing together as we "do" life together. 

SS

Steve Svatos 5th Grade Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I'm married  (Jennifer), 2 children, Nolan and Bryn. 2. I live in Grand Rapids. 3. I graduated from Tower-Soudan, so purple and gold were also my school colors in high school

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

Being a teacher and working with students of many ages

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

The staff does a wonderful job of welcoming everyone and working together to come up with solutions to anything that may come up.  

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Anything to do with how to better help the students. History of all generations

What is something you are really good at?

Having a sense of humor and being able to see things from different perspectives

characteristics of a good leader

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

1. Fair 2. Good listener 3. Works well with others and is willing to delegate tasks 4. Consistent and honest

ST

Staci Taylor Art Teacher

What are three things people should know about you?

I care about kids. I like to encourage creativity.  If we don't get it right or make a mistake, we get to try again.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

This summer I painted four 8x6 panels to put on a building

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

People know and care about one another.

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

Fiber arts

What is something you are really good at?

 brainstorming for ideas

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Recognizing that everyone has strengths, encouragement and patience.

HW

Haley Walsh Business Manager & Payroll Clerk

What are three things people should know about you?

 I've lived in Floodwood my whole life, my husband and I raise Scottish Highlanders, I enjoy hunting/fishing.

What are your Biggest accomplishments?

 My two beautiful children.

What is something that you love about the Floodwood's community and school?

Everyone knows everyone. 

What is your favorite thing to learn about? 

 Cooking different recipes

What is something you are really good at?

Cooking

What do you feel are good characteristics of a leader? 

Being able to make the right decision that is best for everyone. Being able to think on your feet.