meet the teachers

Our  teachers bring over 80 years of experience in early childhood education!

Suzanne Schneider

Preschool Director

Suzanne Schneider has been the Director of Westminster Preschool since January 2010. Suzanne has Bachelor’s Degree in Education and brings over 20 years of experience directing preschool programs, as well as a strong knowledge of N.A.E.Y.C. accreditation and quality early childhood education. Originally from San Jose, California, Suzanne relocated to Lincoln in 2000. Suzanne and her husband Mark have three children–Megan, Nick, and Drake. Suzanne enjoys boating and spending time with her family, gardening and photography. Suzanne is a member of N.A.E.Y.C., Ne.A.E.Y.C., L.A.E.Y.C., President of Nebraska Directors Association (N.C.C.D.A.), as well as being an Program Development Specialist for the Child Development Associate (CDA) program through the Council for Professional Recognition. Suzanne’s passion and dedication to her work and the children are what make our program experience for children extraordinary.

Ashley Drysdale

Ashley joined the Westminster family in February of 2012. She has lived in Lincoln since 2004 and has three daughters: Lily, Poppy, and Sweet Pea. Ashley has a Child Development Associate’s Degree and is working on a degree in Early Childhood Education. She enjoys sports and spending time with her family. Ashley’s dedication to children and families as well as her bubbly personality are what make her a valuable member of the team.

Mary Richardson

Originally born in Omaha, Mary moved to Lincoln at the age of 8.  She was homeschooled from kindergarten through high school before moving on to the University of Nebraska at Omaha and earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Library Science.  Wanting to learn more about the Early Childhood field, Mary soon started at Southeast Community College where she received her Associate’s Degree in Early childhood Education.  Not long after graduating with her Associate’s Degree, Mary started teaching at Westminster Preschool where she has been since May 2013.

 

 

Allison Heins

Allison Heins joined our program in 2012.  Allie is from the small Nebraska town of Osceola.  She married her high school sweetheart.  Allie and Justin have three children; Avery, Breckin, and Harlow.  Allie has an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and over 10 years of working in an NAEYC Accredited program.  Allie’s hobbies include running and spending time with her family at the lake. Allie’s spiritual strength and kind heart make her an instant attraction to the children.

Melissa Killingsworth

Melissa began teaching at Westminster Preschool in June 2010. She has fifteen plus years of past teaching experience and holds a CDA degree in Early Childhood Education, as well as a degree in Culinary Arts. Melissa has been married to Kory for over 20 years and they have 3 boys: Justice, and twins Noah and Titus. Melissa’s 3 children attend Mickle Middle School.   Melissa enjoys baking, and spending time with her family. Melissa brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our program.

 

 

 

Christy Brugh

Christy Brugh joined Westminster in the fall of 2015. She grew up in nearby York, Nebraska and has a Bachelor Degree in Psychology from UNL. Christy and her daughter Manat recently moved back to Lincoln after spending many years in San Francisco. Her sense of humor and fun loving personality draw children to her. Christy encourages young children to be young children. She refers to the “twos” not as terrible, but as terrific which makes her a great teacher for our upstairs classroom.

 

Rachel Hinze

Rachel joined Westminster in the fall of 2016.  Her expertise in early childhood and her strong leadership abilities make her the perfect addition to our staff.  As an Assistant Director Rachel provides oversight on our curriculum and teacher education.  Rachel has an extensive background in Early  Childhood including experience as a preschool teacher, special education, and preschool director.  Rachel has an Associate of Arts degree and numerous hours of training.  Rachel is married to Trevor and they have 4 children; Jazmine, Madison, Braden, and Lily.

 

IMG_8934Jen Burkey

Jen joined Westminster Preschool as a Prekindergarten teacher in the fall of 2016.  She is a graduate of Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education.  Jen’s teaching background spans over 20 years and includes; preschool, kindergarten, first, and third grades.  Jen has been married to her husband Tom for over 20 years and they have 4 children.  Kylie, Kelsey, Kieran, and Aurie.  In her spare time, Jen can be found on the soccer field watching her own children play or coaching with Elite Girls Academy (EGA).

 

 

Kiera Bengtson

Kiera joined our staff in the fall of 2016.  She is our Art Teacher as well as Extended Care and Preschool teacher.  Kiera is currently enrolled at Concordia University where she is studying Education and Nursing.  Kiera has been a standout soccer player in our community and received a scholarship to play Concordia. After an injury ended her playing career  Kiera has continued to stay involved with soccer by coaching several your teams through Magellan Soccer Club.  Kiera is planning her August 2017 wedding with her fiancé  Axel.   She is a natural with young children and we are delighted to have her as part of our team.IMG_8929