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Goessel teaching staff has three fresh faces

Goessel schools open Thursday, and three teachers will be among the new faces: John Bergin, Derrick Birdsell, and Renae Peters.

John Bergin

John Bergin is the new agriculture teacher for Goessel. He graduated from Kansas State University in May after completing his student teaching at Southeast of Saline. He also will be FFA adviser and junior class sponsor.

He and his wife, Gina Bergin, reside in Newton, where she teaches family and consumer sciences. Bergin said people in Goessel have made him feel welcome.

“Students are just as eager as I am to restore some old FFA traditions, while establishing some of our own,” he said.

Derrick Birdsell

Derrick Birdsell is the new junior high language arts teacher, as well as cross country coach. He also will direct the production of the fall musical, “Brigadoon.” He graduated from the University of Kansas in 2004 and taught special education English at Derby High School during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 school years.

He then taught English, psychology, and sociology at Conway Springs High School in 2007-08 and 2008-09.

He is married to Amy Birdsell and has a 1-year-old son, Glen.

“We both grew up in the area and have respect for the education that students receive at Goessel,” he said. “We were looking for a small community to be a part of, and Goessel seemed like a perfect fit.”

Renae Peters

Renae Schmidt Peters will teach vocal music in grades 6 through 12.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in music from Bethel College and a master’s degree in music education from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

She taught vocal music at Santa Fe Middle School in Newton for five years and at Newton High School for one year.

“Goessel has established a reputation for academic and musical excellence,” Peters said. “I am excited to teach such talented and hard-working students.”

She is married to Jason Peters.

Last modified Aug. 26, 2009

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