Phone: (219) 983-3710

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

Mrs. Balon

Mrs. Balon earned her Bachelor's of Science degree in Microbiology from the University of Wisconsin LaCrosse and her transition to teaching license from Calumet College of St. Joseph.  In 2020, she started teaching sixth grade Science and Math. Prior to that role, she worked at Liberty Intermediate School in the library. 

Mrs. Balon was born and raised in Bloomer, Wisconsin.  She has been married since 1994 to a native Chesterton graduate. She is happy to have had her five children graduate from Duneland Schools. In her spare time she enjoys reading, walking, and spending time with family and friends.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

Mrs. Ellerthorpe

Mrs. Ellerthorpe earned her Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Indiana University.  She earned two Master's degrees in Educational Technology from Ball State University and Full Sail University. She started teaching sixth grade at WIS in 2004. 

She was born and raised in Chesterton,  and she is happy to be able to send her own children through Duneland Schools. In her spare time she enjoys cooking, hiking the local parks, and camping… all while spending time with friends and family.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mrs. Filipek

Mrs. Filipek earned a Bachelor's degree from Ball State University majoring in Biology and Chemistry. She also earned a Master's degree in Molecular Biology from Purdue University. She started teaching 6th grade Science at WIS in 2019.  Prior to that, she taught 7th and 8th grade Science and high school Biology at Whiting Jr./Sr. High School for six years. She was also a Biology lab graduate assistant at Purdue University.

She was born and raised in Valparaiso, but she moved to Chesterton after she married, where she raised her family within the Duneland School district. In her spare time she enjoys being with her family, working out at Orange Theory Fitness, hiking or camping in nature and at the beach, doing DIY projects, and gardening.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mrs. Hall

I have been a teacher for 34 years.  I received my elementary teaching degree and middle school Math endorsement from Manchester University.  I taught grades 2, 3, and 5 early in my career at Carlin Park Elementary in Angola, Indiana.  I began teaching in Duneland in 1998.  I earned my Master’s degree in 1999.  I spent fourteen years at Jackson Elementary, where I taught grades 1 and 4.  When I first started teaching at Westchester (2013), I taught 5th grade Math and Science.  Currently, I am a 6th grade mathematics teacher.     

I enjoy camping, reading, and walking my two rescue Chihuahuas.

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Phone: 219-983-3710

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Mr. Hernandez

Mr. Hernandez earned his Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Purdue Northwest, as well as his Master's degree in Building-Level Administration from Ball State University. He has taught grades 3rd-6th, and this is his seventh year teaching! He taught in Plymouth, Boone Grove, and Lowell before arriving here at WIS. 

 
Mr. Hernandez grew up in Hebron, Indiana. For most of his life he has lived in Northwest Indiana, and is very excited to be at WIS! In his spare time, he enjoys watching White Sox baseball, staying active, and spending time with his fiancé and his Boston Terrier named Alfred. 
 

Phone: (219) 983-3710

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

Mrs. Hiestand

Mrs. Hiestand earned her Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and her Master's degree in Educational Technology from Ball State University. She started teaching sixth grade English/Language Arts at WIS in 2015. She has experience teaching first, second, and third grade– mostly at Liberty Elementary School.

She was born and raised in Chesterton, and she also sends her own children to Duneland Schools. She enjoys reading, camping, knitting, and spending time with friends and family.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mrs. Kautz

Mrs. Kautz earned her Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Ball State University and her Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Phoenix. She started teaching sixth grade Math at WIS in 1995. She also has experience teaching Social Studies and Health. 

She was born and raised in LaPorte, Indiana.  She enjoys camping, cooking, animals, and spending time with friends and family.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mr. Levan

I am one of our sixth grade Social Studies teachers. I received both my Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Education from Purdue University. I have taught in the Duneland School Corporation for 23 years. 

In my free time I enjoy fishing, hiking, traveling, and going to movies and concerts.

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mrs. Masi

Mrs. Masi has worked for the Duneland School Corporation for the past fifteen years. She taught fourth grade at Bailly for eight years before moving to WIS.  She has been teaching Language Arts at WIS since 2016.

Mrs. Masi was born in Illinois and moved to Chesterton in high school.  She got her bachelor’s degree from Indiana University. When she’s not at school, she enjoys spending time with her husband and three kids.   They love to go on hikes at the Dunes and Coffee Creek Watershed.  Gardening and cooking are also hobbies of hers.  

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Phone: (219) 983-3710

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Mr. Scroggins

Mr. Scroggins earned his Bachelor's degree in Industrial Management with honors in Economics from Purdue University. After a career in management, he completed the transition to teaching program at Calumet College in 2012. Later that same year, he began teaching at WIS. He first taught fifth grade Math and Science for three years before becoming a sixth grade Math teacher in 2015. 

He was born and raised in Hobart, and he still resides there today. He enjoys spending time with his children and grandchildren, listening to music, and attending concerts. 

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