Staff Spotlight: Jen Lesoing-Literacy Interventionist at Dawes Middle School

Every week, we’ll shine a spotlight on one Lincoln Public Schools staff member! Get to know the wonderful people making a positive impact across various areas within LPS. This week, meet Jen Lesoing, literacy interventionist at Dawes Middle School. 

“Jen joined the Dawes community this school year as our literacy interventionist, specifically working with the sixth grade humanities team. In the short time Jen has joined our team, we’ve seen her passion for reading and advocacy for students. We look forward to seeing our Dawes students increase their literacy skills under Jen's leadership.” - Dawes Middle School Associate Principal Nancy Salsman 

In a few sentences, briefly describe your role at LPS.
My job is to provide data-driven interventions to help students increase their reading and writing proficiency and to support other staff in doing the same.

How long have you worked for LPS?
I started my career with LPS in 1993. However, I took ten years off to stay home and raise my children, so I’ve been teaching for 20 years.

What inspired you to become part of the education field at LPS?
I love learning. In fact, it’s my first strength on my CliftonStrengths profile. Teachers were my role models growing up, and I wanted to have a similar impact on students through teaching.

What has been your favorite part of working here? What aspect of your job do you find most rewarding?
The staff at Dawes have been extremely welcoming and helpful. I’m enjoying building new relationships and learning the culture and systems of yet another middle school. My favorite part of teaching reading is building relationships with students and helping them view themselves as capable readers and writers.

Did you attend LPS as a student? If so, which school(s)? If not, where are you from?
I grew up in Lincoln and attended Hartley Elementary School and Culler Middle School. I graduated from Lincoln Northeast High School.

What path did you take after completing your formal education?
I attended the University of Nebraska–Lincoln upon graduation and earned a Bachelor of Science in secondary education. I’m certified to teach English, reading, writing and English language learners. I also hold a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction.

What do you enjoy most about the Lincoln community?
Lincoln is a great place to raise a family. It’s a small city with the amenities of a much larger one. There is something for everyone to enjoy, no matter their age or interests.

What is your favorite childhood book or a book that has influenced you positively?
A book that had a lasting impression on me is “Black Beauty” by Anna Sewell. I can still remember the big emotions I felt reading that book. It taught me about empathy. It also taught me that I can learn a lot about people from the way they treat animals.

Share a shout out to a former teacher who impacted your life.
Ms. Downey is an all-time favorite! She taught physical education at Culler Middle School. She related so well with middle school girls and always encouraged us to try new things and take opportunities that she didn’t always have as a young girl.

Do you know a LPS staff member we should feature for Staff Spotlight? Fill out this form to nominate them!

Published: January 26, 2024, Updated: January 26, 2024

Jen Lesoing-Literacy Interventionist at Dawes Middle School