New Staff Members join the PHS Community


Photo by: Francisco Castaneda

Spanish teacher Jessica Mildfelt starts to show instructions for chardes.

Story by Emma Mayhew

There are many new additions to the Pittsburg High School building. The staff includes new theatre teacher Caitlin Almond, spanish teacher Jessica Mildfelt, math teacher Michael Reith, social studies teacher Jaxon Roberts, physical science teacher Sage Wood, former PASS Academy teacher Jose’ Speer, and special education teacher Garrett Wilson. 

Old and new teachers alike, there are many compliments to the district so far from this collection of staff. 

“All of the administrators and principals have been very accommodating and are always making sure that things are going well. This is a great group of teachers that I’m learning so much from,” says Roberts. “And, of course, I’m having a great time with my students, who I am beyond impressed with this year.” 

Roberts, a native to Joplin, Missouri, graduated from Pittsburg State University in 2017 with a Bachelors in Science in Education and History/Government with a minor in English Speakers of Other Languages. This will be his 5th year teaching. 

Another member of the new staff, who is also in her 5th year of teaching, is Spanish teacher Jessica Mildfelt. Mildfelt was a Pittsburg State University graduate, and has been in the Southeast Kansas area for her entire childhood. She says one of her favorite things about this school is its diversity. 

“I love that [PHS] is rich in diversity and clubs so everyone can find their ‘people’ and something extra that interests them,” Midfelt said.

Physical science teacher Sage Wood is in her first year of teaching, replacing former teacher Karen Curran. Wood completed her student teaching at PHS last year with science teacher Sally Ricker. Wood is a Pittsburg native, completing her K-12 education through St. Mary’s Colgan and graduating in 2017, and moving on to Pittsburg State University to then, as previously mentioned, complete her student teaching through PHS.

“I was so excited to find out that a job was opening up here whenever I was a student teacher,” Wood said. “I was lucky to have gotten the job, so I feel very thankful for the opportunity to not only complete my student teaching here while in college but also begin my teaching career here officially as a teacher.” 

According to Wood, the amount of student support groups in this community compared to her previous experience at Colgan was a ‘culture shock’. 

“If a student has a need, chances are PHS can cover it which is incredible.”