We are experienced online educators.

MNOHS was founded by a core group of pioneering educators who began working in online education in 1997.  We opened our virtual doors in 2005 and most faculty members have been with MNOHS since then.  As technologies and students' needs change, MNOHS continues to draw on this wealth of experience--the best that we have learned and the best that we can imagine.  

Executive Director Elissa Raffa

Elissa Raffa has a B.S. in Secondary Science Education and an M.F.A. in Creative and Professional Writing, both from the University of Minnesota, and an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Bemidji State University. She is licensed as a school superintendent as well as a teacher of physics, chemistry and earth/space science. A founding director of MNOHS, Ms. Raffa has been active in arts education as well as science education. Before starting MNOHS, she developed and taught courses for seven years with the Mindquest Learning Network in Bloomington and for twelve years at Loring Nicollet Alternative School in Minneapolis. She served for three years on the Minnesota Online Learning Advisory Council and has been active state-wide in preparing pre-service and in-service teachers for the rigors of online education. During her first seven years at MNOHS, Ms. Raffa supervised the faculty and the learning program, and guided the development of high-quality, interactive online instruction and assessment in all content areas, using state-of-the-art technologies. She began serving as Executive Director in August, 2012.

Phone:
(800) 764-8166 Ext. 103          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Christie Allison

Christie Allison is a graduate of Kent State University in Ohio where she earned her Bachelor's degree in Special Education in 2005 and her Master's Degree in 2007 in Special Education with a Transition endorsement. Ms. Allison has worked as a Transition teacher since 2006--on the Kent State campus, at Stillwater Area High School, and at MNOHS since 2011. In 2006, she received a grant to develop a curriculum for students with autism to learn job skills. Ms. Allison is currently continuing her study at Kent State as an online PhD student in Educational Psychology researching learning within online gaming environments.

Phone:
 (800) 764-8166 Ext. 115          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Carianne Anderson

Carianne Anderson earned a degree in secondary education (7-12 social studies) from Concordia University in St. Paul, Minnesota and has been teaching since 2000. Carianne has worked in New Prague, Lakeville, and is currently teaching social studies at Metro South in Bloomington, Minnesota. She joined MNOHS in 2014 and is teaching American history and psychology.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 322          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Enrollment Manager Sarah Bayrd

Sarah Bayrd has worked as the Enrollment Specialist at MNOHS since 2012, assisting new and returning students in the enrollment and application processes. She holds B.A. in Psychology from Saint Olaf College in Northfield, MN. Sarah enjoys working in such a distinctive environment with so many unique and talented students. She loves the outdoors (especially biking and walking with her husband), reading, travel, and spending time with family and friends.

Phone:
(800) 764-8166 Ext. 137          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Kim Breeden

Kimberly Breeden has taught mathematics to students in grades 8 through 12 since 1997. She received her Bachelor of Applied Science degree from the University of Minnesota Duluth; in 2002 she completed her Masters in Educational Technology at St. Thomas. She began her teaching career at Chisago Lakes High School and before coming to MNOHS in 2006 taught at Rockford High School. In addition to teaching mathematics, Ms. Breeden has been active in other areas of education: teaching careers and study skills, coaching math league, and tutoring one-on-one. At MNOHS she currently teaches Sketchpad Geometry, Calculus, Essential Math, Math Skills & Topics and Computer Science.  She also served for six years as a volunteer member of the MNOHS Board.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 119          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Lori Breidenbach

Lori Breidenbach has taught English and language arts since 1988 and joined MNOHS in 2006.  She currently teaches Essential Language Arts, Myths and Legends, English Survey, Research Learning, World Literature and British Literature at MNOHS—and is the TAG Team (talented and gifted) Coordinator and a member of the Professional Development Committee.  At Hopkins High School, she is the lead teacher for the independent study/credit recovery program. She previously taught traditional classroom English at Kentridge High School in Kent, Washington for several years. Ms. Breidenbach received her bachelor’s degrees in English and Secondary Education from the University of North Dakota and earned graduate level credits at Seattle Pacific University. She also started her own tutoring business and has tutored students in English, reading, study skills, and math.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 121          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Heather Dehn-Brastad

Heather Dehn-Brastad has been teaching at MNOHS since 2005; her current assignments are Beginning Algebra, Algebra 1, Algebra 2, and Geometry--and she has also developed courses in Essential Math, Applied Statistics, and Precalculus. Previously she taught middle school and high school math in Hawaii and northern Minnesota, tutored students individually in math, and taught enrichment mathematics. She has also designed and taught a paraprofessional training course in central Minnesota that is a hybrid between an online course and an on-site course. Ms. Dehn-Brastad has her BS in mathematics from Bemidji State University and has taken graduate courses from St. Cloud State University. She is licensed to teach mathematics for grades 7-12 in Minnesota.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 139          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Debbie Ferm

Debbie Ferm is a licensed special education teacher in the areas of learning disabilities and emotional/behavior disorders. She has been working with students with disabilities since 2006, when she completed the licensure program at Augsburg College in Minneapolis. Prior to that, Ms. Ferm earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, and spent several years at home raising her children. Debbie is an avid reader and writer, and is passionate about sharing her love of books with her students.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 143         Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Scott Fodness

Scott Fodness teaches American Literature, Explorations in Literature and Effective Writing at MNOHS. After graduating from the University of Minnesota in 1973, Mr. Fodness started teaching at Jefferson High School in Alexandria, Minnesota, where he also coached debate and speech. He returned to the University to obtain Special Education certification, later receiving a M.A. in Education from The College of St. Scholastica. Mr. Fodness taught graduate students in English Education for the College of St. Scholastica from 2006-2011. In 2005, the same year that he joined MNOHS, a nomination from a student led to Mr. Fodness receiving a U.S. Department of Education Teacher Recognition Award. In 2010, he retired from teaching at Jefferson after 37 years.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 151          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Matt Hawk

Matt Hawk teaches the Essential Language Arts courses at MNOHS. Matt attended Minnesota State University, Mankato and received his license in K-12 Emotional Behavior Disorders. Prior to working at MNOHS, Matt worked for District 112 as a special educator. Matt also has a business degree from Augsburg College in Minneapolis and has assisted in outreach and fundraising efforts at MNOHS. Outside of the classroom, Matt enjoys traveling and playing with his two young sons.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 122          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Ashley Jensen

Ashley Jensen earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from the University of Minnesota, and is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Science Education from the U. She has taught Biology and STEM courses since 2013, and enjoys showing students the creative and questioning side of science. She has completed internships at both the Minnesota Zoo and Henry Doorly Zoo, and spent most of the summer in 2013 completing a teaching internship in Thailand. Ashley likes to spend her free time with her dog Zowie, and working on hobbies like painting and doodling.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 112          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Sara Keller

Melissa Lovely started working for MNOHS in 2015 as a Counseling Assistant. She loves being able to work from home and really helping the counselors be able to focus more on the students. She holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Capella University, an online university based in Minneapolis, MN. When not working she enjoys time with her two kids, husband and friends. She also enjoys sewing and other crafty endeavors.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext.           Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Sara Keller

Sara Keller is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She has earned a Master’s of Instruction degree from the University of St. Mary’s – Twin Cities, as well as completed graduate coursework in Special Education – Developmental Disabilities at Southwest State University of Minnesota. Sara earned her teaching license in Autism Spectrum Disorders in 2015 and has taught students on the Autism Spectrum in the Rosemount/Eagan area for 5 years and worked with the Ministry of Education in Djibouti, Africa for one year.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 132          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Shu-Mei Lai

Shu-Mei Lai has taught the Chinese language in the United States since 2007. She also taught English as a foreign language in Taiwan from 1995-2007. Ms. Lai earned her Master's in Second Language and Culture from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities in 2015. She also received a Master's degree in English from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1989. Ms. Lai has worked as a Chinese immersion teacher at Yinghua Academy in Minneapolis since 2008. She was the lead teacher for the third grade team from 2009-2013. Currently Ms. Lai serves as Mentor Lead for the school's teacher mentoring program. Ms. Lai is licensed to teach Chinese for grades K-12 in Minnesota. She joined MNOHS in 2016. Her teaching assignment is AP Chinese Language and Culture.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 144          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Amber Lamp

Amber Lamp is a graduate of Saint Cloud State University where she earned her Bachelor's degrees in Chemistry education and Life Science education in 2012. She is licensed to teach 9-12 Chemistry and Life Science and 5-8 General Science.  Before joining MNOHS in 2014, she taught and coached Knowledge Bowl at ROCORI High School. At MNOHS she teaches Chemistry, Physical Science, Physics and Earth Science--and enjoys sharing her passion for science with online students.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 114          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Julie Lindholm

Julie Lindholm has taught English Language Learners (ELL) and Study Skills at MNOHS since 2011.  She is a MNOHS Success Manager and Academic Support Program Developer--and previously served as a member of the Professional Development Committee.  In addition to her K-12 ELL teaching licensure from Hamline University, she is licensed in Adult Basic Education (ABE) and has a Masters in Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education from the University of Minnesota.  After college she taught American Culture and Work Experience to Southeast Asian refugees in a Thai refugee camp. For a total of nine years, she taught secondary ELL in Minneapolis Public Schools and the East Metro Integration District.  Her resume includes teaching ELL to adults, including four years as an ABE instructor with St. Paul Public Schools at the Hubbs Center for Lifelong Learning.  Currently she is a Supervisor to student teachers at Hamline University.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 130          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Anastasia Martin

Anastasia Martin is a licensed social studies educator (grades 6-12) who has taught since 1999 in Connecticut, North Dakota, and Minnesota.  Her teaching experiences include middle school and high school students in a wide variety of courses.  She has also taught in a college setting and worked with students earning their GEDs.  A North Dakota native, Anastasia loves to travel and has been to five continents.  Anastasia received her BA in Political Science and Education from North Dakota State University and her Master’s degree in Public Administration from Southern Connecticut State University. She joined MNOHS is 2005 and is currently teaching World Geography, American History, World History and Psychology.  She is also a member of the Professional Development Committee and a volunteer member of the MNOHS Board.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 118          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

School Manager Jennie Mulhern

Jennie Mulhern School Manager

Phone:
(800) 764-8166 Ext. 102 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Vanessa Petek

Vanessa Petek loves being a social studies teacher and has taught since 2009. She earned her degree in secondary education at the University of Minnesota Duluth, is certified for 5-12 grade social studies classes and has also earned a master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction. Vanessa has taught on the Mystic Lake Reservation and was excited to join MNOHS in 2011.  She currently teaches Popular Culture, Civics, U.S. Government, Economics and Advisory.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 136          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Monica Potter

 Monica Potter has worked as a counselor at MNOHS since 2009. She holds an MSE in School Counseling from the University of Wisconsin-Superior and a B.A. in Psychology from Emmanuel College. Monica is an avid knitter who loves spending time with family and friends. She also is passionate about traveling and discovering “hidden gems” in fine dining, throughout the state and country. Monica loves her job as a school counselor and is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with students as they move through this time in their lives. In particular, Mrs. Potter, enjoys working with students to explore their present and future possibilities and to discover and achieve their goals.  She helps students find direction in their courses currently, and to plan out a career or college path.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 110          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Terrance Reisch

Terrance Reisch has taught social studies and career exploration courses since 1986. He added online teaching to his resume in 1999. He continues to teach in a traditional public school setting as well as teaching here at MNOHS. Terrance has earned masters level status in education and has an undergraduate degree in Sociology.  His MNOHS courses include Career and Educational Planning and Work Skills.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 108          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Bonnie Rosenfield

 Bonnie Rosenfield has a B.S. with majors in Physical Education and Health from the University of Minnesota. She taught health education for Minneapolis Public Schools from 1999 to 2010. Ms. Rosenfield pioneered Minneapolis Public School’s Online Health Education program, taught Health Science I and II online starting in 2003, and modified and taught Health II for online ESL students in Minneapolis. She has also coached gymnastics, swimming, and track and field. She joined MNOHS in 2006 and is currently teaching Health, Physical Education and Advanced Physical Education.  She received the 2013 University of MN Women's Physical Education Alumnae Association Helen M. Slocum School of Health Education Honorary Award  in recognition of her leadership, dedication and service to school health education.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 127          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Teacher Sara Keller

Amanda Seelen has been a Licensed Social Worker since 2009. She has worked with adults, children, and families with mental health and addiction concerns in hospital, community, and in-home settings. Amanda has earned degrees in Social Work and Human Relations & Multicultural Education from St. Cloud State University. She was licensed as a School Social Worker in 2016.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 157         Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Stephanie Snidarich

Stephanie Snidarich is a veteran teacher with over 20 years experience working with K-12 students in various settings. She has a degree in art education and art history, and a Master's degree in special education.  Stephanie has taught Visual Arts and Arts Appreciation at MNOHS since 2005 and taught special education at MNOHS from 2011-2014. Stephanie is a practicing artist and writer with a focus on painting, drawing and poetry.  At MNOHS, Ms. Snidarich is also a volunteer member of the MNOHS Board.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 124          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Kylie Stanfield

Kylie Stanfield is a graduate of the College of Saint Benedict/Saint John’s University where she earned a B.A. in Spanish and Education. She spent fall semester of her junior year studying in Viña del Mar, Chile. She has taught high school Spanish since 2013 and has been fortunate to take students on trips each year; once to Costa Rica and once to Spain. She is also working on her Master’s Degree in Teaching and Learning through the University of Saint Mary’s. She is very passionate about the Spanish language and culture and she hopes to pass that along to her students. In her free time, she enjoys reading, being outside, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 154          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Nicole Steinsberger

Nicole Steinsberger is a graduate of St Cloud State University where she earned her B.S. in Community Psychology and her M.S. in School Counseling. She was a school counselor at Hayden High School near Steamboat Springs, CO for two years and North Bullitt High School in Shepherdsville, KY for three years. Nicole now lives in Duluth with her husband Jeff, daughters Emma and Kate, and their golden retriever, Dakodah. She loves being with her family enjoying the outdoors as much as possible!

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 105         Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Ashley Jensen

Virlen Tank completed her undergraduate K-12 Special Education degree at Moorhead State University in 1999, with licensure in Mild to Moderate Mental Impairment (MMMI).  She earned her Master’s Degree in Special Education with licensure in Emotional/Behavioral Disorders (E/BD) and Learning Disabilities (LD) from Bethel University in 2004, and added licensure in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in 2015. She most recently taught in Special Education in the Eagan/Rosemount area from 2003-2016 and brings a vast array of teaching experience with her.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 104 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Technology Coordinator Mike Tempel

Mike Tempel joined the staff at MNOHS in 2015 as the Technology Coordinator, supporting staff and students in their technological needs. Mike has previously supported and led staff up through senior management. He is a dynamic professional with demonstrated capacity to manage a variety of core business operations and IT projects. He holds a B.A. in Computer Science from St. John’s University in Minnesota.

Phone:
(800) 764-8166 Ext. 106 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Teacher Michael Wiechmann

Michael Wiechmann is a graduate of Minnesota State University in Mankato. He has a B.A. in Studio Art from Bethany Lutheran College and is licensed to teach K-12 Art. Michael started with MNOHS in 2014 and currently teaches Media Arts. Michael enjoys a variety of outdoor activities. He loves to travel with his family in order to experience new cultures and explore aesthetic beauty in the world around him. Michael loves to incorporate these experiences into the art studio and classroom. Michael is an active artist, working on commissions consistently for a variety of patrons. He has taken part in forty-six art shows, as well as three solo shows. His art can be seen at http://wiechmannart.com/. Michael enjoys working with students on creating works of art that mean something to them, as well as helping them grow as artists and individuals.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 324         Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Administrative Assistant

Ashley Voss joined the staff at MNOHS in 2015, bringing with her extensive experience in administrative support and data entry. As a new resident of Minnesota she has enjoyed spending time at the Minneapolis Central Library and swimming in Lake Nokomis.

Phone:
(800) 764-8166 Ext. 101 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Becky Wilfahrt

Becky Wilfahrt has been teaching English/Language Arts since 1997. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Mankato State University, a Master’s of Education from St. Mary’s University in 2004 and a Master’s in Child and Family Studies from the University of Minnesota in 2010. Becky has taught all levels of Language Arts classes to students in 5th grade to 12th grade and has been teaching in the online environment since 2008. She has also taught College in the Schools classes through the University of Minnesota as well as college research and writing courses and graduate courses in Education. In addition to teaching, she coaches varsity volleyball in New Ulm, MN. Becky has been teaching for Minnesota Online High School since 2015. She is currently teaching Journalism, Creative Writing, and American Literature Survey. 

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 323         Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Dave Wilfahrt

Dave Wilfahrt has been teaching mathematics since 1991; in the course of his career he has taught Algebra 2, Precalculus, Calculus, Astronomy, Physics, and Consumer Math. Dave also teaches mathematics in Mankato, Minnesota, where he has coached basketball. Dave has been involved in many technological aspects of instruction, including online teaching. In July 2005, he received his Master’s of Education degree with an emphasis in distance education. In June 2011, Dave also received a Master’s degree in Administration.  Dave has been teaching for Minnesota Online High School since 2005. He is currently teaching Discrete Math, Applied Statistics, and Algebra 2 with Statistics.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 142          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Teacher Erin Winchell

Erin Winchell has been teaching music since 2002 to band, general music and private students.  Erin earned her Bachelor of Arts in Music from Gustavus Adolphus College and her Master's of Arts in Teaching from Minnesota State University, Mankato.  She currently plays french horn with the South of the River Community Band and the Dakota Brass Quintet.  Erin is an avid knitter, loves to read, enjoys skiing when there is snow on the ground and working in her garden when the snow is gone.  Erin has been teaching at MNOHS since 2010.  Her current assignments are Elements of Music: From Bach to the Blues and Directed Study in Music.

Phone: (800) 764-8166 Ext. 126          Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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