Special Programs

The Special Programs Department is located on the ground floor of the Downtown Library Building at 925 Felix Street. Contact us by phone at 816-671-4004.

This office supervises the following areas: Early Childhood Programs, ESOL Services, Homebound Instruction, Families in Transition, Parents as Teachers, Special Education Services, and Volunteer Services.

Early Childhood Services
ESOL Services
Homebound Services
Foster Care Liaison
Local Plan for Compliance
MAP-A Assessment
Parent Bill of Rights
Procedural Safeguards
Process Consultants
Public Notice
Special Education Documents
Special Education Services available to Eligible Non-public students
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Debriefing, Restraint & Isolation Forms

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Dr. Michele Thomason

Dr. Michele Thomason
Director of Special Programs

Dr. Thomason received her Ed.D. in Organizational Leadership and Communication from Northeastern University. She earned her M.A. in Educational Administration from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and her B.S. in Elementary Education from Texas A&M University-Commerce. Dr. Thomason's prior administrative experience includes appointments as an alternative school principal, high school assistant principal, and district at-risk coordinator.

Dr. Thomason served as an instructional coach at the secondary level and taught middle school math and kindergarten. She has extensive experience with Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and led the implementation of PBIS in the alternative school setting, twice earning the Bronze Level Award from DESE. She was honored as the Northwest Region MASSP Assistant Principal of the Year in 2016.

Dr. Thomason transformed the climate and culture of Webster Learning Center into a positive "graduation school" and led the development of an innovative competency-based educational program for high school students. In addition to her expertise with alternative education, she has extensive experience with Pre-school, Title I Reading, and ELL programming.

Mary Fleming

Mary Fleming
Coordinator of Early Childhood Services

Mary Fleming received her Ed.S. in Elementary Educational Administration and her M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She earned her B.A. in Elementary Education from Rockhurst University.

Mrs. Fleming has extensive experience with early childhood education in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Prior to joining the St. Joseph School District, she served as an early childhood teacher and special education teacher in the Lee's Summit R-7 School District. Additionally, she has taught kindergarten and facilitated home visits through the Parents as Teachers program.

Mrs. Fleming participated in the Engaging Children's Minds Institute at University of Illinois, the Project Construct Early Childhood Institute, and the Lee's Summit R-7 Leadership Academy. She has extensive experience implementing project based learning in the pre-school setting, serving as a coach for early childhood staff and invited presenter at the Missouri Conference for the Young Years.

Gena Villegas

Dr. Gena Villegas
Supervisor of ESOL Services

Dr. Villegas received her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Saint Louis University and her M.A. in Teaching English as a Second or Foreign Language/ESL Language Instructor from Southeast Missouri State University. She received her secondary teaching certification from Northwest Missouri State University and her B.S. in Spanish Language and Literature from Missouri Western State University.

Dr. Villegas has served as ESOL Program Supervisor K-12 in the St. Joseph School District since 2004. As ESOL Supervisor, she collaborates with district educators, parents, students, and community members to provide educational opportunities for our diverse English Learner population. Dr. Villegas began her teaching career in the Adult Education and Literacy program, teaching ESOL, Spanish GED, TOEFL, and Citizenship classes. She has taught ESOL classes on the middle school and high school levels, and has also taught high school Spanish.

Terry Cadwallader
Office Manager

Roxanne McCulloch-Perry
Early Childhood Administrative Assistant

Genia McClendon
Administrative Assistant

Cara Campbell
Administrative Assistant

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