Nearly 5,000 people work to provide and support a quality education to more than 30,000 students in Des Moines. From school administrators and educators to bus drivers and technology professionals to food and nutrition providers to financial experts, these dedicated DMPS employees are committed to providing the best possible experience for students and families. Each month the Become Here Spotlight will shine on an administrator, an educator and a staff member to share a little more about the many people working to teach and support the children and students of our community, and in the words of those who nominated them for the recognition.

20240328 SnowJASON SNOW
McCombs Middle School

Jason Snow is serving in his fourth year as principal at McCombs Middle School. He brings his passion for education to life through his instructional leadership, commitment to inclusion, and problem-solving skills. With his background in middle school education, Mr. Snow fosters an environment where students and staff feel valued, supported, and inspired to succeed. Leading through the lens of the “McCombs Mentality,” Mr. Snow models what it means to be respectful, empathetic, and mindful at McCombs. Mr. Snow is not just a principal, but a beacon of hope, a catalyst for change, and a champion for the future.

20240328 MertzNICKI METZ
Edmunds Elementary School

Nicki Metz is currently a teacher at Edmunds Elementary School and has been for the past four years. She has had the opportunity to teach first grade, K-2 intervention, and is currently teaching second grade. Her attention to detail and dedication to her students demonstrates the commitment and passion which ensures students success.  Her willingness to grow and learn supports her students not only academically but socially and emotionally, providing benefits for the whole child. Nicki has taken advantage of several leadership opportunities through being a cooperative teacher for practicum and student teachers, a mentor, as well as a PLC lead.  She is making an impact on our students’ lives!

20240328 KoesterKAYLEIGH KOESTER
Assessment, Data, and Evaluation

Kayleigh Koester has been with DMPS since the summer of 2021, serving as a Program Evaluator on the Assessment, Data, and Evaluation team.  Over the past three years, Kayleigh has been instrumental in ensuring that the Board Goals and Guardrails monitoring system is maintained. She also serves on the Data Literacy team, helping to lead ESSA implementation and the Collaborative Problem-Solving Process. Every day, Kayleigh supports data health in the district and provides invaluable insights for decision makers. Additionally, she will be serving in the lead role for Assessment, Data, and Evaluation while the team’s director is out on maternity leave.

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