As soon as you have a conversation with me, you will know that I am not from Highland. I was born in Windsor, England, and I have been fortunate enough to have lived in numerous countries, such as Germany, Belgium and France. Upon coming to America, I obtained a BS, Elementary Education, McKendree University, followed by an MS, Elementary Education with an Emphasis in Reading, McKendree University, 2010. I am the proud parent of a son who attends the University of Illinois, studying Economics and Engineering.. I am an avid reader and I enjoy renovating my 90 year-old home. I am constantly trying to recreate the quintessential English garden with varying degrees of success. I am thrilled and excited to teach ELA at the Middle School.
Ms. Fiona Abbott
English Language Arts
As soon as you have a conversation with me, you will know that I am very proud to be a native Texan. I first earned a BFA, Music Education/History, Stephen F. Austin State University, 1978. Later, I earned my education degree from the University of Nebraska (Go Big Red!) BS, Elementary Education, University of Nebraska, 1993, becoming an avid Husker fan, and earned an MS, Elementary Education, Lindenwood University, 2005. I also enjoy visiting my son, Adam, and his wife, Alii, in Las Vegas. After spending 17 years in the elementary setting, I am looking forward to concentrating on Social Studies at Highland Middle School.
Ms. Susan Coode
I have been in education for a long time! I have over 30 years of teaching experience and a Masters degree in Elementary Education from SIUE. My husband, Bret, practices dentistry at Cedar Creek Dental, and we are both active in the Highland community. We have two lovely daughters, Stephanie & Allison, that graduated from the University of Illinois and are busy working on their careers. Teaching is my first love, but when I am not at school, I enjoy traveling, doing yard work, golfing, and singing with Highland Community Choir. I look forward to sharing my love of science with HMS.
Mrs. Sheila Gruender
I’ve lived in this area most of my life, and love everything Highland has to offer. My first career was as a computer graphic artist, creating product packaging. However, my passion was to become a teacher. I went back to school, earning the following degrees: BS, Elementary Education & Psychology, Southern Illinois University, 2006, MS, Educational Studies, McKendree University, 2010, and Type 75 Certification, McKendree University, 2013. I live with my husband, Joe, and my two sons, Seth and Kaleb in Grantfork. I'm really excited about working to build a love for math in each of my students..
Mrs. Stephanie Schwappach
Mrs. Linda Berg grew up in rural northwest Iowa. She and her family moved to the Highland area in 1998. She has been teaching in the Highland School District since 2000 in a variety of special education classrooms. She is very excited about coming to the middle school and helping her students succeed in the 6th grade. She and her husband have three children, Paige, Kristen, and Christopher. She and her husband enjoy traveling and outdoor activities. They are kept quite busy attending numerous sporting events that their son is involved in.
Mrs. Linda Berg