My name is Jolene Wagner and I am the principal and part-time third grade teacher.
I received my degree in Elementary Education after attending Bethany Lutheran College and Concordia College, St. Paul. Throughout all my years of teaching I have been blessed to have had the opportunity to have been a preschool director/teacher, kindergarten teacher, and teach grades K - 8. I have also served as interim principal.
I am married to Pastor Don Wagner. We live in Deer Creek, where my husband serves at Trinity Lutheran Church. We are blessed with four children, two son-in-laws, one daughter-in-law, and five grandchildren!
In my free time I love to hang out with my family, travel, read, shop, and watch HGTV. I am blessed to be starting my fourth year at St. Paul’s Lutheran School and to be a part of a wonderful school ministry team.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
My name is Elizabeth Augustus and I am the Kindergarten teacher at St. Paul’s Lutheran School. I graduated from Henning High School and got my Bachelors Degree at the University of Mn, Morris. I graduated with my Elementary Teaching License and a Preprimary Teaching License, allowing me to teach 3 year olds through 6th grade. I have spent the last 5 years teaching Kindergarten here at St. Paul’s Lutheran School.
I currently live in Ottertail and enjoy spending time at the lakes. For fun, I also enjoy baking, photography, fishing, and spending time with my family. I am also a very avid MN Twins Fan!
Introduce your team!
My name is Shari Brown, and I am the 4th grade teacher at St. Paul's Lutheran School. I began my career journey in 1992 when I graduated from Frazee-Vergas High School. I then attended Concordia College in Moorhead where I received my B.A. in Elementary Education in 1996. I also am licensed to teach Spanish! I later attended Minnesota State University, Moorhead, to become licensed to teach Special Education to students with specific learning disabilities. In 2013 God led me to complete the Lutheran School Teacher certification through Concordia University, St. Paul.
My teaching career began twenty years ago as a Special Education teacher in Moose Lake, MN, and then Sebeka, MN. In 2011, after some time off to begin raising our family, I began teaching here at St. Paul's as the part-time 5th/6th grade teacher. I later became the part-time kindergarten and part-time 3rd/4th grade teacher here and now am the full-time 4th grade teacher.
I love spending time with my family, gardening, and going for walks. My husband, Christopher, is the Director of Christian Education here at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. We have four children; all four of our boys attended St. Paul's Lutheran School, so this school is especially dear to my heart.
This school is also dear to me because it is a Christian school where we can teach students about God's great love for us through Jesus Christ each and every day. This is truly life changing! Finally, in the hustle and bustle of our world today, my favorite Bible verse shares an important message: "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10).
Hello! I'm Angie Ratcliffe, and I serve as the music teacher at St Paul's. What a joy it is to teach children about our Savior Jesus through music! I am looking forward to developing relationships with the students and making music with them!
I grew up in Idaho on my family's dairy farm. After high school, I attended Concordia University Nebraska, receiving undergraduate degrees in K-12 Music Education with Lutheran Teacher's Diploma and Vocal Performance. I also met my husband Andrew at Concordia. I have taught general music, band, and choir for over ten years to a variety of ages from preschool to high school. In 2018, I earned a Masters of Music Education from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. In addition, I hold certification in the Kodaly philosophy, the early childhood curriculum First Steps in Music, and Conversational Solfedge. My husband and I live in Perham with my daughter Cora and son Eli. I enjoy playing the organ and piano, gardening, cooking, and sewing.
Introduce your team!
Hello! My name is Kerri Steinert and I am the Pre-K Teacher and Director at St. Paul's Lutheran School! I graduated from Fergus Falls High School and went on to obtain my Bachelors Degree from the University of Wisconsin Stout. After graduation, I had the opportunity to be the Children's Ministry Director at our church for 8 years. Because I have a passion for teaching and developing young minds, I decided to redirect my path to a more hands-on role as an Early Childhood teacher. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to teach young children, as well as share with them the love of our Lord and Savior.
I currently live in Detroit Lakes with my husband, my son, and daughter. For fun, I like to spend time at the lake, go for bike rides, read, crochet, and spend time with my family.
My name is ReNae Tangen and I am currently teaching in the first grade classroom at St. Paul’s Lutheran School. I grew up near Truman, MN. I received my degree after attending Bethany Lutheran College in Mankato for two years and then graduating from Concordia in St. Paul. My first teaching position was at St. Paul’s Lutheran School in Fulda, MN where I taught for 6 years before coming to Perham. Since then, I have spent time teaching in all 6 grades and substituting in the preschool. I feel blessed to be able to share my faith daily with my students and witness of His amazing love. Music is one of my passions, along with reading, gardening, scrapbooking, putting together puzzles, and recently kayaking.
My husband, Bob, is also a teacher in Perham. We have 3 teenage daughters who are a delight and keep us very busy with school and other activities.
3rd Grade/Preschool Aide
My name is Mary Spencer and I am currently teaching part-time in third grade and also cover fifth grade math here at St. Paul’s Lutheran School. I spend part of my day in the preschool classroom as well. I graduated from Esko High School, and received my Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Bemidji State University. I taught in the Twin Cities before moving to Perham.
I currently live in Perham with my husband, teenage son and daughter. When I’m not teaching, I love spending time with my family and friends, getting out on the lake, taking walks and working puzzles.
Psalm 46:10 reminds us “Be still and know that I am God.”
My name is Sarah Nies and I am 5th and 6th grade teacher at St. Paul’s. I grew up in Dearborn, Michigan and have attended Lutheran Schools for my entire education. I graduated from Concordia University Chicago in 2005 with a Bachelors in Music Education and taught in Kansas City, MO, Litchfield, IL, and St. Louis, MO before moving to Perham. I am currently working on a Masters of Arts in Teaching at Concordia University, St. Paul. In the classroom, I love to integrate the arts and technology across the curriculum, as well as provide project-based learning opportunities. Out of the classroom, I enjoy my time with my husband, Jared, and our two boys, both St. Paul’s Panthers, and playing in my garden, kitchen, and sewing room.
My name is Rachel McLemore. I'm 36 years old and I grew up in Perham. I graduated in 2002 then moved to the cities to attend culinary school. I had my first child there at the age of 24 and decided to stay home with my children for the next decade. During that time we moved around a bit, even landing in Alabama for five years. What an adventure! Inevitably I was blessed to be able to secure a job at St Paul's preschool in 2018 when I decided to re-enter the world of paid employment. It's been a BLAST working with the amazing young people at St Paul's in the preschool room and as lunch lady and secretary on Fridays. I sincerely enjoy every moment of work with these children and I am honored to be able to help them learn and grow as children of God and as loving and compassionate people.
Christopher Brown has been at St. Paul's since August of 1999 as director of Youth & Family Ministry.
Christopher grew up in Park Rapids Minnesota where he attended St. John's Lutheran Church and graduated from Park Rapids High School. He then attended Concordia College in Moorhead and graduated in 1996 with a degree in Child & Family Studies with an emphasis in Parent Education. In 2013, Christopher completed DCE certification through Concordia University St. Paul and is now called as Director of Christian Education (DCE) to St. Paul's in Perham.
Christopher and his wife Shari have been blessed with 4 boys: Isaac, Jackson, Peter, and Samuel and enjoy the busy life raising four boys can bring. Christopher personally enjoys hunting and fishing, sports card collecting, music, and reading.