Specials Staff

Music/Technology

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Music/K-3 Technology Teacher

Steve Chalupnik

Biography

Steve Chalupnik is a born and raised Chicagoan, growing up on the northwest side and therefore swearing allegiance to the greatest team of all time, the Chicago Cubs!  Always adventurous, time was spent in St. Philomena School, Our Lady of Grace School and finally an 8th grade graduation from St. Wenceslaus School.  After graduating from Lane Technical High School, he attended Western Illinois University with a double major in Music Education and History Education.
Although his very first musical instrument was the accordion, Mr. Chalupnik gravitated to the not so petite Double Bass and has performed with the Monmouth, Galesburg, Quincy, Wheaton, Southwest, and West Suburban Symphony Orchestras including performance tours in the United States and in Europe.
Thirtysomething years in the classroom really is his true calling though.  Straight Outta College found Mr. C. at St. Michael School in Wheaton, before moving to the Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus School in Joliet for 20 years.  Saints Peter and Paul School has been his home away from home for the last 9 years.

Favorite Bible Quote

Instead of a Bible Quote I am selecting the refrain from one of my favorite hymns.  This refrain draws from multiple verses from the Bible:
Surely the presence of the Lord is in this place,
I can feel His mighty power and His grace.
I can hear the brush of angel's wings
I see glory on each face;
Surely the presence of the Lord is in this place

Teaching Philosophy

The world would be a much different place without Music.  It would be a much sadder place indeed.  I want my classroom to be that space where we all learn something new  that we may or may not draw upon later in life.  I want it to be that space where each time we walk out it is with something that we may not have known when we walked in.  Most importantly I want it to be that space that ignites the passion and love for music in anyone that may not know they have that spark within them, and gives them reason to nurture it when they leave Saints Peter and Paul School.

Art

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Art Teacher

Jamie Casey

Biography

This is Mrs. Casey’s first year at SSPP and fourth year teaching Art. She previously worked as a Graphic Designer and Yearbook teacher at an independent private school in Chicago. For the past 3 years she lived in Austin, Texas teaching Art & P.E. at a K-8 Catholic School. When she is not teaching, Mrs. Casey enjoys her work as an Artist, Photographer and Basketball Coach. She also enjoys spending time with her husband and with her very large extended family.
Mrs. Casey grew up in Lisle and attended St. Joan of Arc Grade School and St. Francis High School. She continued her catholic education by graduating from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota with a B.A. in Graphic Design and a M.A. in Visual Art Instruction. At St. Mary’s she played four years of Collegiate Women’s Basketball and was a part of the Liturgical Choir.

Favorite Bible Quotes

"Be strong and courageous, for the Lord is with you wherever you go!"
Joshua 1:9
“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”
St. Catherine of Siena

Teaching Philosophy

I strive to create a classroom environment where children can challenge themselves and express themselves comfortably. It is my goal to teach my students to recognize the beauty of the world around us and how to use that spark to find their own unique sense of creativity. I feel blessed to guide students in discovering a passion for Art.

Spanish

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Spanish Gr. 2-8

Susana Alonso

Biography

My name is Susana Alonso, and I have the pleasure to be since October last year the Spanish teacher of Saint Peter and Paul Catholic School.  I am from the north of Spain; from a small but beautiful city called San Sebastian. When I was 20, I moved to England, where I lived and studied for several years and obtained my bachelor degree in Nutrition and Science. Then for a few years, I moved to south of Spain where I worked in a private school as a Science teacher. I came back to England in 2009, where I lived dedicating my time to my family until we all moved to Naperville in Christmas of 2017 as my husband was transferred by his company. In the US, just a month after arriving to this country, I began doing voluntary work, teaching “US Citizenship” in Waubonsee Community College in Aurora. A few months later, I joined Ann Reid Early Childhood Center, as teacher assistant in the Dual Program and occasionally doing substitute teaching for the same school. In September of 2019, I started working as substitute teacher for district 203 and then in October of 2019, I joined St.Peter and Paul Catholic School.

Favorite Bible Quote

My favorite bible quote is “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6

Teaching Philosophy

I believe that everybody can learn a second language with the proper combination of appropriate instructions, personal motivation, low stress, and the opportunity to talk in the classroom. My goal is to make Spanish fun and enjoyable, so students can engage and captivate their interests in language, for the beginning of the course.

Physical Education

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Physical Education Teacher

Dave Schmecht

Biography

Coach Schmecht is a graduate of Saint Joseph High School in Westchester where he played basketball for the legendary and Hall of Fame coach Gene Pingatore. He then moved on to Illinois Benedictine College which is now Benedictine University. At Benedictine, he lettered in basketball and captained the NIIC championship team his senior year. Coach obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree as well as completing fifteen hours of post graduate study. After graduation, he continued at Illinois Benedictine as an assistant men’s basketball coach. While teaching at Saints Peter and Paul School, he coached the eighth grade boy’s basketball team as well as the CYO football team. Additionally, Mr. Schmecht coached the freshman’s boy’s basketball team at Benet Academy and was an assistant boy’s basketball coach at Downers Grove North High School. Some of his fondest memories revolve around teaching at the Trojan Cage Clinic basketball camp here at Saints Peter and Paul. Coach is very proud to be a part of the Saints Peter and Paul tradition.

Favorite Bible Quote

Psalm 62:3
“God alone is my rock and salvation, my fortress; I shall never fall”

Teaching Philosophy

Every day in my classroom I strive to provide a learning environment that is safe, beneficial, and fun for all.