Dr. Ashley O’Meara
Dr. Ashley (Ehrhardt) O’Meara is a board certified School Psychologist and American Board School Neuropsychologist Diplomate. She received her Doctoral degree in Educational Psychology from National-Louis University after completing her Master’s work in Social Science Research at the University of Chicago. Dr. O’Meara furthered her educational experience by completing a Post-Doctoral training program in School Neuropsychology through Texas Woman’s University. With a strong foundation in research, Dr. O’Meara worked as the Project Director for a National Institute of Mental Health funded research project validating the criteria used to diagnose Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Dr. O’Meara worked as a School Psychologist for the Wilmette Public Schools in both the Early Childhood and Elementary programs. Currently, Dr. O’Meara conducts developmental evaluations for the Latin School of Chicago and she volunteers for “Adventure Camp”, a one-week intensive treatment program for children diagnosed with Selective Mutism. Her work in private practice focuses on the diagnostic assessments of students from early childhood through college. Dr. O’Meara has specialized training in trans-disciplinary play based assessments as well as the assessment and diagnosis of early childhood disorders, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and the treatment of Selective Mutism.
Debbie Cooper, MS, LCPC
Debbie Cooper is a special education consultant and licensed clinical professional counselor who guides families to make decisions about learning settings to meet their child’s needs. She has 30+ years of experience in the public schools in the north shore area. Working with many students and their families over the years, Debbie has played a vital role in assisting students and family members with their educational decisions. In her role as counselor she has worked through local hospitals and privately with children, at risk adolescents, adults, parents and families. After establishing an understanding of learning needs of the individual, Debbie is dedicated to a collaborative process of well-informed decision-making to select a setting with a structure of support that will allow the individual to feel safe, to learn, and to grow. Her knowledge of programs and settings is extensive. Debbie understands the importance of each individual’s characteristics, as well as the priorities and concerns of each family. With a true child-centered focus, she establishes a relationship between families and new learning settings to create the best opportunity for success.
Mina Caputo holds her bachelor’s degree in psychology and communications from Butler University. She received her M.Ed. with a Learning Behavior Specialist endorsement from DePaul University. She has over seven years of experience in education working with students ranging from kindergarten through high school and is trained in multisensory language programs. Mina has provided instruction and remediation in various subjects, including math, reading, writing and executive functioning. Additionally, Mina assists with the evaluations and coordination efforts associated with the evaluation and educational therapy processes. She has worked with PRS colleagues since 2011.
Courtney Radde graduated from Grand Valley State University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology/Special Education and earned a Masters degree in Reading from Concordia University. Prior to joining PRS, she worked as a Learning Behavior Specialist in Wilmette providing support to students with learning disabilities in the general education classroom. Courtney specializes in providing support to students struggling with literacy and executive functioning skills such as organization, self-regulation, planning and study skills. In addition to providing educational therapy, Courtney works collaboratively with PRS colleagues in the evaluation process, assessing cognitive and academic abilities of students and using that information to develop educational plans. Courtney is largely involved with PRS learning specialists and clients. When she is not working, Courtney enjoys baking and spending time with her three daughters.
Laura Resis received a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Special Education and Elementary Education at Michigan State University. Laura worked in the Wilmette School District as a Learning Behavior Specialist for 8 years prior to joining LEARN. She currently works solely in the private sector with students with learning disabilities who require support in literacy, executive functioning and strategy development. When not working with students, she enjoys spending time with her sons and cooking.
Nicki Cavanagh earned her Elementary Education degree from Indiana University at Bloomington, is Nationally Board Certified, and is rated highly qualified in Illinois. She completed part of her student teaching in Australia. Since then, she has been a regular education classroom teacher in a variety of schools and grades. She has taught students ranging in ability from K – 5th grade and has worked with many students with and without disabilities. Nicki has implemented a wide variety of interventions while working extensively with reading specialists and speech therapists to identify and teach students with learning difficulties. Nicki recently left the classroom to stay at home with her new daughter and continues to work with children as a Learning Specialist.
Sara is a certified Reading Specialist and secondary English teacher. She is currently a teacher at Stevenson High School working with academically and behaviorally at risk students. In addition, she has previously taught both middle school English and various high school English classes.
Meagan Harlow graduated from Manchester College (now Manchester University) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education and Special Education and has a Masters degree in Technology in Education from National Louis University. Meagan taught for 8 years as a Learning Behavioral Specialist and has been working full-time as a Learning Specialist at PRS since 2014. Meagan specializes in working with students with learning disabilities, emotional disabilities and helping students learn emotional regulation and executive functioning skills.
Stephanie Jakimczyk received her Bachelor of Science and Masters Degree in Special Education from Loyola University Chicago. Stephanie has been teaching for a total of 8 years, with a strong skill set for teaching 1st-5th grades. She worked as a Learning Behavior Specialist in District 102 for 4 years, and taught a year in District 65. Currently, she works in District 96 in Buffalo Grove where she provides support for students at different instructional levels. She has worked with a variety of students, including students with learning disabilities, speech and language disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and ADHD. Stephanie provides best practices and interventions for students who struggle in all areas of literacy, math and strategy skill instruction to help foster independent functioning and greater levels of self-confidence.
Jenna Pahnke received her Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Secondary Education from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and her Master of Arts in Special Education from Northeastern Illinois University. Prior to joining PRS, she worked in the Wilmette School District for 7 years as a Learning Behavior Specialist. She works with a variety of students from 1st grade through high school but specializes in middle school-aged students. When not working with students, Jenna enjoys spending time with her 5 month old son, playing basketball, and reading.
Ashley Krupski graduated from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology & Dance and has a Masters of Science degree in Elementary Education and Social Policy from Northwestern University. She has over 8 years of classroom teaching experience in grades K-4 as well as instructing and supporting teachers as a literacy coach. Her passion for developmental psychology and interest in the way learning takes place within each individual led to her enthusiasm for teaching and finding ways to connect with every student and their unique learning challenges. When she is not with students, she enjoys her time cooking, watching sports, and keeping up with her four children.
Courtney worked as a Special Education teacher for 12 years prior to working privately with students. She received her degree as an Intervention Specialist from the University of Dayton and is LBS 1 Certified. She has been formally trained in many multi-sensory reading interventions. Courtney provides individualized instruction to students and gets to know the families that she works with. Her professional interests include working with students that have reading and writing disabilities and students that have executive functioning needs. Her passion is helping children reach their full academic and social potential!
Lynn Weingardt earned a Bachelors degree in Special Education at the University of Northern Colorado and a Masters Degree as a Reading Specialist at Northern Illinois University. She worked as a Learning Behavior Specialist and a Reading Specialist at Fremont District 79 for twenty-two years. She has experience working with students with learning disabilities, cognitive disabilities, autism spectrum disorder and ADHD from sindergarten through seventh grade. Lynn enjoys watching her students progress to a point where they are confident and able learners.
Lucas graduated from Indiana University in with a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education Social Science after student teaching in Chicago. He has taught Freshman World Studies and AP Psychology for four years at the Air Force Academy High School in Chicago. Before teaching, Lucas worked as a research analyst at the University of Chicago in the National Opinion Research Center doing education research. He also works for UNITE (Urban Needs In Teacher Education), a non-profit that creates immersion experiences for pre-service teachers interested in working in Chicago Public Schools. Currently, Lucas is pursuing his Master’s degree at the University of Illinois at Chicago in Instructional Leadership: Public Policy with a focus on teacher leadership and administration. He is interested in working with students at all levels and content areas to provide successful interventions.
Sara attended the University of Wisconsin – Madison and received her undergraduate degree in Special Education. She then continued on to receive two Master’s degrees from Northeastern Illinois University in the areas of Reading (certified Reading Specialist) and Gifted Education. She has been a Learning Behavior Specialist in the Wilmette Public School District 39 for the past 13 years and continues to teach students with special needs ranging from kindergarten through sixth grade. She has experience working with students who have learning disabilities, speech and language disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, emotional/behavioral needs, and ADHD. When not working, Sara is kept busy by her two young sons.
Shantella Yates earned a Bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management with a minor in Business Administration at Illinois State University and a Master’s of Arts degree in Teaching at National Louis University. Shantella has over 8 years of classroom teaching experience with a specialty in middle school math for 5 years. When she is not with students, she enjoys her time cooking, reading and watching sports.
Jessica Kornblatt earned her Elementary Education degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Jessica also received her Masters in Reading from Concordia University. She has taught fourth and fifth grade for the past nine years at Edison Elementary School in Skokie. Her teaching experience has allowed her to instruct students of different academic and cultural backgrounds. She is most knowledgeable of the writing, reading, and math curriculum in the upper elementary grades. When not teaching, Jessica enjoys spending time with her son.
Chrissy Adams received her B.S. in Integrated English Education from Miami University in Ohio and her M.A. in Literature from Northwestern University. Before joining PRS, she taught high school English in Arlington Heights and San Diego for eight years, and she was also a teaching assistant in New Trier’s English department for two years. While her classroom experience is mostly at the secondary level, she has worked with students of all ages. She enjoys enriching the reading and writing experience for students and helping them feel more connected and interested in their schoolwork. Chrissy has a 3 year-old son and an infant daughter and is in the slow process of updating her family’s fixer-upper home.
Madolyn Gorney graduated from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communications. She then received a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from Saint Xavier and then a second Master’s Degree in Special Education from Saint Xavier as well. She has recently obtained her English as a Second Language endorsement from Benedictine University. Madolyn has been working as a special education teacher grades K-8 in both the resource and self-contained settings for 9 years. Prior to that, she worked as a 4th grade general education teacher. Madolyn specializes in providing early literacy and numeracy support as well as executive functioning skills, organization and self-regulation support. When she is not working, Madolyn enjoys staying active and spending time with her nieces and nephews.
Seamus graduated from the University of Illinois with a degree in economics before receiving his master’s in education from National Louis University. He holds both high school and middle school math endorsements. Currently, he teaches high school math at the Chicago High School for the Arts. Seamus believes that problem solving, critical thinking, and use of logic make training in mathematics a vital piece of a young person’s education. He takes pride in encouraging students to put forth effort to train the brain, and to view all demonstrations of understanding as positive signs of growth.