About

Providing help, hope, and opportunity to students of all abilities.

About LASE

Every child is unique. We believe educational services should reflect that.

Lutheran Association for Special Education (LASE) partners with St. Louis Metro Area schools to provide Christian special education and related services to children with mild special learning needs in the context of a caring environment.

LASE currently provides special needs education and related services to nearly 200 students, and we are continuing to grow. Hundreds of other students each year benefit from special education consultation, observations, screenings, and classroom support.

We represent a cause, not just a program. LASE is dedicated to reaching and teaching all children, valuing all abilities.

Mission

If you are not yet familiar with Lutheran Association for Special Education, you might be wondering what exactly we do.

LASE assists and supports schools to address the cognitive, social and spiritual development of children with special needs so they may fully enjoy their God­given potential.

We believe helping children with disabilities and special learning needs is a vital part of a Christian education environment.

It is our privilege to help these children thrive.

Board of Directors

  • Bette J. Schlie, Chair
  • Don G. Hugo, Vice-Chair
  • Bill Hauk, Treasurer
  • Michele P. Berra
  • Dr. Joseph A. Bordeaux
  • Diana Meers
  • Stephen B. Siepman
  • Susan J. Torbeck

 

Advisory Board

    • Paul G. Crisler
    • David A. Drewes
    • Warren E. Fick
    • Dennis E. Gehrke
    • Boone F. Jackson
    • Christy S. James
    • Sandra L. Meyer
    • Ted E. Schuessler
    • Kermit M. Starnes, Jr.
    • Robert D. Wold

 

  • Jackie W. Smith, Executive Director
  • Karen A. Wittmayer, Assistant
  • Diane L. Stout, Administrative Assistant and Secretary for the LASE Board

JACKIE SMITH,
Executive Director

KAREN WITTMAYER, BS
Assistant Director

Faculty

NANCY BOCK, MA
Resource Teacher
Salem Affton School, St. Louis, MO

TARA COPELAND, MA
Educational Resource Consultant
Salem Lutheran School, Blackjack, MO

ERIN DIANI-O’DAY, BS
Learning Center Teacher
Lutheran High School St. Charles, St. Peters, MO

CODY EITZMANN, BS
Resource Teacher
Immanuel Lutheran School, Wentzville, MO

BRANDI HALLEMEIER, BS Ed
Resource Teacher
Child of God Lutheran School, St. Peters, MO

GERI KIDD, MEd
Resource Specialist
Lutheran High School St. Charles, St. Peters, MO

SUE KLOBNAK, MA
LASE Learning Center Specialist
Lutheran High School St. Charles, St. Peters, MO

CAROL LIMA, MS, CCC-­SLP
Speech Language Therapist and Speech Team Leader
Atonement Lutheran School, Florissant, MO
Immanuel Lutheran School, Olivette MO                                                                                                      Salem Lutheran School, Blackjack, MO

ANNA LIND, BA
Teacher Assistant
Lutheran High School St Charles, St. Peters, mo

SANDI LODUCA, BA Ed
Resource Teacher
Green Park Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

KELLEY MALADY, BS
Resource Teacher
Immanuel Lutheran School, St. Charles, MO

JANEY MENNER, MEd
English Language Learners (ESOL) Consultant
Word of Life Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

CINDY MUELLER, MA
Resource Teacher
Word of Life Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

KIM PAQUETTE, BS
Resource Teacher
Atonement Lutheran School, Florissant, MO

DAVIANN PHYE, BS
Resource Teacher
St. Mark’s Lutheran School, Eureka, MO

DAWN PRAECHTER, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech Language Therapist
Salem Lutheran School, Affton, MO

CARLYN REED, MA
Resource Teacher
Abiding Savior, St. Louis, MO
Educational Resource Consultant
Our Savior Lutheran School, Fenton, MO

MARA SPRINGER, BS
Resource Teacher
St. John’s, Arnold, MO
Educational Resource Consultant
Messiah Lutheran School, Weldon Springs, MO

LAURA STOLIN, MA
Educational Resource Consultant
Immanuel Lutheran School Wentzville, MO

CHRIS TOMLINSON, MA
Resource Teacher
Zion Lutheran School, St. Charles, MO

KAREN WITTMAYER, BS
Educational Resource Consultant
Immanuel Lutheran School, Olivette, MO

LASE Office Staff

KAREN SCUITO
Director of Fundraising and Events
karen.scuito@lutheranspecialed.org

JACKIE SMITH
Executive Director
jackie.smith@lutheranspecialed.org

DIANE STOUT
Administrative Assistant
diane.stout@lutheranspecialed.org

MAUREEN THOMAS-MURPHY
Staff Accountant
maureen.thomas-murphy@lutheranspecialed.org

School Health Services Staff

DEBRA FARRELL
School Nurse
Immanuel Lutheran School, Olivette, MO
St. Paul’s Lutheran School, Des Peres, MO

MICHELLE FRARRACIO
School Nurse
Christ Community Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

STEPHANIE FIELDS
School Nurse
Christ Community Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

RUTH GOETZ
School Nurse
St. John’s Lutheran School, Ellisville, MO

BARBARA HARMS
School Nurse
Christ Community Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO

JUDY KUPFERLE, RN, MSN
School Health Services Consultant School Nurse
Our Savior Lutheran School, Fenton MO

BRYNN ROLPH
School Nurse
Zion Lutheran School, St. Charles, MO

CONNIE TAN
School Nurse
Grace Chapel Lutheran School, Bellefontaine Neighbors, MO

LASE History

Lutheran Association for Special Education began with the dream and vision of parents who longed for their children with disabilities to be in a Christian education setting.

LASE was started with a class of just five students in 1956 at Hope Lutheran Church in St. Louis, Missouri. By 1969, the program had grown to six classrooms serving 68 students.

1974 brought a special milestone: the establishment of the first Resource Room at St. John’s Lutheran School. This event meant children with special needs were mainstreamed in general education classes with their typically developing peers.

Today, LASE has grown to be a Christian community agency serving 14 Lutheran Schools in the Greater St. Louis, Missouri area, including St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County.

LASE also provides resources for many other Lutheran schools and preschools in the area.

In 2009, LASE expanded the ministry to include School Health Services as part of its vision to minister to the “whole child.” School nurses work in Lutheran schools to advance the well being, academic success, and lifelong achievement of students.

For over 60 years, LASE has been an instrument for bringing the love of Jesus to students with disabilities and special needs.

LASE is a Recognized Service Organization (RSO) of the Lutheran Church—­Missouri Synod and a member of the Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA). LASE is a 501(c)(3) non­profit corporation.

LASE is accredited by the National Lutheran Schools Association (NLSA).

LASE Grants

LASE is grateful for the generous support from all of the following granters. Grants make it possible for LASE to purchase equipment, technology and curriculum needed to help our children grow and flourish. Grants also provide services for specific educational projects and scholarships for special education tuition. Our kids say “Thanks.”

Cardinals Care

Project: “Curriculum Enhancements for Special Needs Students”

032

Employees Community Fund of Boeing St. Louis

Notebook Computers for Special Education

photo2

St. Louis Christmas Carols Association

Project: Learning A-Z

Atonement