Meet our team
Special Education Staff
Wisconsin Virtual Academy's (WIVA's) special education teachers are dedicated to meeting the unique needs of each student we serve and helping them overcome challenges to fulfill their potential.
K–8 Special Education Teachers
Kathryn Delano | Special Education Teacher (Grades 6–8)
Kathryn DeLano is excited to teach at WIVA. She previously taught for five years at a traditional school. Before that, she worked as a program aide at an alternative school as well as serving as an online tutor. In her free time, Ms. Delano loves to read and visit national parks. An odd fact about her is that she is allergic to mint—so she gets to use all the children's flavors when she visits the dentist!
Rochelle Halstead | Special Education Teacher (Grades 3–4)
Rochelle Halstead joined WIVA in 2015 as a special education teacher for the middle school. Mrs. Halstead grew up in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. She attended college in Milwaukee where she received her bachelor's degree in secondary English education and broad field language arts with a minor in English. After teaching in those areas for a few years, Mrs. Halstead became certified as a cross-categorical special education teacher and taught for a few more years in traditional schools to students of a variety of ages and abilities. She is thrilled to be working with the students, families, and staff members of WIVA and looks forward to a fantastic school year.
Mrs. Halstead loves to read fiction, hike, make lasagna, ride her bike, make kombucha, do yoga, walk her dog around the city, and spend time with her friends and family. She also loves watching TV! She has been married for five years to her husband Justin, and they have a little boy named Wesley. They also have furry friends, their dog Cody and cat Asia, both of whom have it pretty good! She lives in West Allis.
Brooke Iorio | Special Education Teacher (Grades K–2)
Brooke Iorio graduated with a dual license in early childhood education and early childhood special education from Concordia University Wisconsin in January 2018 and worked as a special education teacher for just over a year in the Racine Unified School District. Her favorite things to do include being in nature, cooking, spending time with family, and crafting. The virtual learning environment made a positive impact throughout her education and she is excited to be a part of WIVA to meet student's individual needs and set them up for success in all areas of their development!
Kim Klann | Special Education Teacher (Grades 4–5)
Kim Klann is excited to join WIVA as a special education teacher! Mrs. Klann grew up in Madison and is a proud alum of Verona High School and University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire. She began her career as a learning disabilities teacher in Janesville, Wisconsin, at Lincoln Elementary for five years. After moving to Madison with her husband, Mrs. Klann began working for the Madison School District and spent six years as a cross-categorical teacher at Lake View Elementary. She has worked with students across grades K–5 in a general education setting both assisting and co-teaching with a classroom teacher as well as small pull-out groups. Mrs. Klann currently lives on the far west side with her husband and two children. They enjoy time exploring parks, the zoo, beaches, going bowling, going for walks, and finding all the Bucky statues around town! Mrs. Klann feels she has been very fortunate to spend the past two years home with her kids but is very much looking forward to getting back into teaching!
Saundra Lynn | Special Education Teacher (Grades 6–8)
Saundra Lynn-Swanson is a graduate of University of Illinois – Urbana with a BS in secondary education. She also has a BS and an MS in special education from University of Wisconsin – Madison. With more than 20 years of experience in education, she has taught students in every grade level with a wide spectrum of learning needs. In Madison, she taught middle and high school students at East High School, Dane County Juvenile Shelter Program, and Spring Harbor Middle School. Saundra facilitated the K–6 gifted and talented programs at Belleville including math teams and Destination Imagination teams. She has used online programming with her students and has also taken online classes. She looks forward to helping all students be successful in their online education endeavors.
Jessica Meike | Special Education Teacher (Grades 6–8)
Jessica Meike received a Master of Science in education from Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Illinois in 1998 and a Bachelor of Arts in English from University of Iowa in 1997. She has worked for more than 19 years as a special education teacher. She began her career in Illinois where she worked in K–1 and middle school classrooms for special needs students for seven years. After moving to Wisconsin, Ms. Meike taught for 13 years at Lakeland School of Walworth County. She began her career at Lakeland teaching in the high school. Her reading specialty was eventually needed in the elementary department where she remained until accepting this job with WIVA. Ms. Meike has taught students with a variety of disabilities across K–12 grade levels. She shares that it has been her pleasure to teach all content areas over the years. She loves teaching reading but has a soft spot for science and social studies as well. She looks forward to working with students, parents, Learning Coaches, and teachers. Mrs. Meike is excited to learn your vision for your student and looks forward to conversing with you about your child's learning requirements and developing a long term holistic development in correlation to the curriculum.
High School Special Education Teachers
Amanda Maedke | Special Education Lead Teacher
Teacher bio coming soon!
Meredith Altmann | High School Special Education Teacher
Meredith Altmann, is the newest member of our team! After teaching kindergarten in Japan and then three years of high school special education in Janesville, she decided to make the move to an online environment, which would allow her to be closer to her family in Dane County. Ms. Altmann loves science, space, Japanese culture, and theater and tries to find meaningful ways of incorporating all four into her lessons with students.
Jessica Betts | High School Special Education Teacher
Jessica Betts started her special education career working with intellectually disabled (ID) high school students. She then moved to working cross categorical with elementary students. She worked with students within the classroom and really enjoyed her time working collaboratively with teachers. Ms. Betts then transferred to an EBD self-contained classroom where she worked with students of all abilities who were unable to function in a general education classroom. These students were either way above their grade level or way below grade level, which led them to have behavioral issues in the classroom. She found that she really enjoyed working with them over the years at all different grade levels from 1–9. Ms. Betts has two cats and a service dog (who is doing well with training, even picking up on things she wasn't trained to do). In her spare time, Jessica enjoys reading and crafting.
A. J. Dahl | High School Special Education Teacher
The 2019–2020 school year was A.J. Dahl's first year as an online teacher and his seventh year overall as a special education teacher. He was born and raised in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, which is where he received his undergraduate degree in special education at University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire in 2012. After a few years of teaching, Mr. Dahl went back to his studies and completed a master's degree in special education from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 2017. He said that one cool thing he did during his time there was to publish a paper in an educational journal. Some of his side passions include playing with numerous pets, watching his favorite team (the Milwaukee Bucks), and listening to hip-hop music. He is thrilled to be embarking on this educational journey with WIVA.
Shawn Daniels | High School Special Education Teacher
Shawn Daniels joined WIVA as a special education teacher in the 2013–2014 school year. He lives outside of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin with his wife, children, and foster child. He earned his BS in computer science and information technologies from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. He is licensed for teaching through CESA 6 for K–12 cross-categorical special education. His previous experience includes teaching in a specialized alternative school for students with severe behavioral disorders (SEBD). Before becoming a teacher, he used his education and skill in the service industry, installing large computer networks, electronic security, surveillance systems, fire alarms, fiber optics, and other geeky electrical systems in prisons, schools, hospitals, and large office complexes. In addition to his love for teaching, Mr Daniels fills his time being with his family, performing as a live sound and lighting producer for two Midwest traveling rock bands (and playing a little bass and guitar, too) and enjoying the outdoors (fishing, hunting, etc.).
Vonda Johnson | High School Special Education Teacher
Vonda Johnson lives near Phillips, in the Northwoods of Wisconsin. She joined our team in the 2019–2020 school year. She is a special education teacher and has also taught ELL and alternative education. Ms. Johnson has lived and taught in Mexico and enjoys traveling there every year! She has also taught in Minneapolis and Western Wisconsin. She likes to kayak, 4-wheel, ride her moped, read, do crafts, and travel! She is very excited to be a virtual teacher at WIVA.
Abi Lena | High School Special Education Teacher
Teacher bio coming soon!
Kristen Stilling | High School Special Education Teacher
Teacher bio coming soon!
Rhenna Widerski | High School Special Education Teacher
Teacher bio coming soon!
Jodie Wolff | High School Special Education Teacher
Jodie Wolff lives in Watertown, Wisconsin with her husband and two children. She obtained her bachelor's degree in communications from University of Wisconsin – Whitewater. After several years in the business industry, Mrs. Wolff went back to school to obtain her special education teaching license. She is currently in the process of earning her Master of Education through St. Mary's University of Minnesota. When she's not attending her children's sporting events, she can be found with a book in her hand! After teaching in the brick-and-mortar environment for several years, Mrs. Wolff is excited to join the amazing group of educators at WIVA.
Kate Zuleger | High School Special Education Teacher
Kate Zuleger earned her BA in communications and English from DePaul University. She worked in business in Chicago and volunteered for four years in an after-school program for students with special needs. She made a career change to special education when she joined the New York City Teaching Fellowship in 2009. After teaching elementary special education in Brooklyn, New York, Mrs. Zuleger moved back to Wisconsin and worked for Goodwill Industries Vocational Support Services where she gained experience working with high school students and young adults transitioning from school to work. During this time, Mrs. Zuleger completed her MSE through University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh, studying effective transition practices in Northeast Wisconsin. She went back to teaching elementary special education in New Orleans before returning to Wisconsin in 2013. Mrs. Zuleger joined the WIVA middle school special education team in 2013. This school year, she joins the high school where she supports students in social studies and is a case manager for juniors. Mrs. Zuleger lives in Neenah with her husband and two golden retrievers.