Stephanie Hansen graduated from UNI with a BA in Elem/Early Childhood Education and a Reading Endorsement. After graduating, Stephanie substitute taught in Cedar Falls and surrounding area schools in grades PK-12. She is married, has three children, and lives in Cedar Falls. Stephanie joined the Farmstead staff in 1998 and has taught in both the Farm Friends and Preschool programs. This year she will be teaching in the Preschool program, as well as the 5-day Pre-K program. Stephanie is also the Preschool Director.
Jocee Schuerman joined Farmstead in 2010. She attended Hawkeye Community College. Jocee has been an active leader over the years as Head Den Leader in Cub Scouts, Committee Chair for Scouts, Girl Scout Leader and a volunteer with 1-3 year olds in her church Nursery Room. She has also been a volunteer for several activities at Farmstead before joining our staff. Jocee is a life long resident of Cedar Falls, is married, and has a son and two daughters. All of her children attended Farmstead Preschool. This year she will be teaching in our Farm Friends program and our Preschool program.
Brooke Criswell joined us in 2013 in our Farm Friends program. She has taught in our Farm Friends and Preschool programs. This year she will teach Farm Friends. Brooke has spent the past ten years working with children. She has her AA in Radiological Sciences and is close to completing her BA in biology. Brooke spent her x-ray career working with children of all ages including special needs children. She has been actively volunteering her time in the preschool classroom at her church for the past three years and also helped teach the Awana program for the 2-3 year olds. Brooke is married and has three daughters. One daughter currently attends Farmstead and the oldest is a Farmstead graduate.
Deborah Ackerson joined the Farmstead staff in 2013 as a teacher on Tuesdays and Thursdays in our 5 Day program. She graduated from Iowa State in 2003. She is married and has three children, one of whom attended Farmstead. Deborah served as a substitute teacher during the 2012-2013 school year. She has worked extensively with children 18 months to 12 years of age overseeing her church Sunday school program in all of central Iowa. Her primary focus is children with special needs. Deborah also has several years’ experience working with children in a psychiatric treatment facility.
Susan Flack joined Farmstead in 2012 as a teacher in the Farm Friends program. She also serves as our Administrative Assistant. She served as a substitute teacher in our programs for three years. Susan has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa. In addition to teaching at Farmstead she has volunteered with several local organizations. All three of Susan’s children attended the Farm Friends and Preschool programs at Farmstead.
Nichole Wiese joined Farmstead in January of 2017 as a teacher in the Preschool program. She is a graduate of Buena Vista University with a BA in Elementary Education and a Reading Endorsement. During her time at Buena Vista she worked at an after school program, coordinated a mentoring program, worked at Calkins Nature Center day camp, and taught English for a week in the Dominican Republic. Nichole currently lives in Dike and is a life-long resident of the Cedar Valley.
Shannon Demkiw joined the Farmstead family in 2016. She began by volunteering when her son enrolled which led to the opportunity to substitute teach. She has worked with children since a young age from working as a nanny to raising four children of her own. Shannon stayed home to raise her children which gave her the opportunity to start her own in-home daycare. Her son has graduated from Farmstead and her daughter will be joining the Farmstead 5 Day program this year. Shannon graduated from Wayne State College with a BS degree. She will be teaching in the Farm Friends program this year and will occasionally substitute teach in the Preschool Program.
Harold Runkle is our farmer who provides for our animals and the grounds at Farmstead. He keeps the barn and barnyard neat and orderly, mows, shovels snow, hauls trash, and does general yard repairs. Harold is married and has two children. We have been fortunate to have Harold with us since 1989.