School Staff

Mr. Josh Baumann

School Administrator

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Josh is the School Administrator for Zion Lutheran School. He grew up in Carver County and attended Mayer Lutheran High School. He received his bachelor's degree from Concordia University in River Forest, IL and his master's degree from the University of Missouri - St. Louis. Josh previously served as a teacher and administrator at Lutheran North in St. Louis. Josh and his wife Katie live in Lester Prairie with their four children: Jack, Lucas, Reid, and Annalyse.

Email: jbaumann.zion@gmail.com

Mrs. Robin Carlson

 
 
 
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Robin is the Pre-School Teacher at Zion in 2018. She grew up in Mayer and went to school at Zion and Mayer Lutheran High School. She received her Bacheleor's degree in Elementary Education from Concordia University in St. Paul, MN. Robin and her husband have 4 children and live outside of Mayer. She is creative, loving, and excited to share the love of Jesus with these young children. 
 

Mrs. Becky Aurich

Kindergarten

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Becky teaches Kindergarten at Zion. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Concordia Teachers College, Seward, NE. She majored in Elementary Education with an Early Childhood Concentration and she minored in music. Becky and her husband, Dean, live in the woods on a lake wouthwest of Waverly. Dean teaches industrial arts and is the head football coach at Mayer Lutheran High School. He also coaches the pole vault at the University of St. Thomas. Becky and Dean have five children (with five awesome spouses), nine grandsons and five granddaughters. Becky feels very blessed to be teaching these young children at Zion. :) 

Email: aurich7@hotmail.com

 

Mrs. Tracy Shipler

1st Grade

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Tracy teaches 1st grade, directs K-4 Choir, and plays keyboards for the contemporary worship service at Zion. She graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education with a Music minor from Concordia University, St. Paul. She and her husband, Kirk, live in Lester Praire with their children Katelyn, Caleb, Sam, and Ellie. 

Email: kshipler@embarqmail.com

Mrs. Emily LaPlant

2nd Grade

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Emily is Zion's 2nd grade teacher.  Emily attended Concordia University, St. Paul, where she received both her Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in Education.  She has a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education with a specialization in Language Arts and a Master of Arts in Education degree with a concentration in early childhood and emphasis on the primary grades.  She lives in New Germany with her husband and three sons.

Email: emily.laplant@yahoo.com 

Mrs. Mary McManus

3rd Grade

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Mary is Zion's 3rd grade teacher and works with the library. Before coming to Zion, she taught at St. Mark in New Germany where she is a member. She lives on a farm outside of New Germany.

Mrs. Nancy Schwanke

4th Grade

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Nancy teaches 4th grade at Zion. She and her husband live in Mayer and have three grown children. She really enjoys the students at Zion and seeing their progress from the beginning of the year to the end.

Email: schwanke5@yahoo.com

 

Mrs. Shannon Aurich

5th and 6th Grade

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Mrs. Shannon Aurich has taught 5th and 6th Grade at Zion Lutheran School since 2005. She graduated from Concordia University St. Paul in 2003. Her degree is in Elementary Education with a Middle School Language Arts emphasis and a minor in Lutheran Confession.

Email: saurich4@gmail.com

Mrs. Katie Baumann

7th & 8th Grade 

Mrs. Katie Baumann joins the Zion staff this year as the 7th grade homeroom teacher. She teaches English, Literature, and writing to the 7th and 8th grade classes. Katie attended Concordia University, Chicago, where she earned her BA in secondary education in English with a minor in coaching. She and her husband live in Lester Prairie with their four children: Jack, Lucas, Reid, and Annalyse. 

 

 

 

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Mr. Kirk Shipler

7th and 8th Grade

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Mr. Kirk Shipler has taught 7th and 8th grade at Zion since 2001. Kirk also directs the 5th-8th grade choir, adult choir, and vocal men's group at Zion. He grew up in Burt, IA and attended Concordia University, St. Paul, where he received his K-12 vocal and classroom music teaching degree in 1996. He and his wife Tracy live in Lester Prairie with their children Katelyn, Caleb, Samuel, and Ellie.

Email: kshipler@embarqmail.com

 

Mrs. Deann Chmielewski

Teacher Aide

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Mrs. Carolyn Toenies

Teacher Aide

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Mrs. Donna Hoese 

Email: donna.hoese@gmail.com

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Mrs. Joanne Hartwig

Cook

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Joanne is our full-time cook for Zion Lutheran School. She has been working in that position since 1986, except for two years. She enjoys her position because she truly enjoys being around children. She and her husband Lyle reside in Mayer.

Mr. Lyle Hartwig

Custodian

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Mrs. Koreen Harpel

School Nurse

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Pastor LeRoy LaPlant

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Baptized into the Name of Jesus on July 30th, 1978 Pastor LaPlant lives in the mercy and grace of God, in Jesus. Rev. LaPlant grew up in Jordan, MN where he attended St. JOhn the Baptist Catholic grade school, and Jordan High School, graduating in 1996. Following graduation, Pastor LaPlant attended Luther College in Decorah, IA, earning a BA in social work in 2000. In 2001 Pastor LaPlant joined the U.S. Army reserves as a quarter master, and was assigned to the 407th CA battalion out of Arden Hills, MN. He was deployed to Afghanistan from 2003-2004. Returning home from deployment, Pastor LaPlant began his studies at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN. He served a vicarage at Trinity Lutheran Church, in Janesville, MN and graduated in 2008, receiving a call to serve St. Mark Lutherna Church, in New Germany. Pastor LaPlant teaches 7th & 8th grade catechesis at Zion Lutheran School. 

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