Special Education

Marissa Bennett

Special Education

P: 515-242-8409 | E: marissa.bennett@dmschools.org


This is my second year as a special education teacher at South Union Elementary.  I grew up in Tama, Iowa and graduated from Simpson College.  In my free time I enjoy dancing, cooking, watching movies, and playing trivia!  My favorite part about my job is working with outstanding teachers and watching children succeed.

Ben Black

Special Needs

E: ben.black@dmschools.org


Hey! I've been working with people in the educational setting for most of my life as a volunteer or a teacher. My mother is an educator as well as my sister.I guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I love to educate and be educated not just in the classroom but the outdoors. Some of my hobbies include fishing, archery, shooting, hiking, biking, and water sports. I love the midwest's four seasons. Each season gives me an opportunity for an outside adventure. Being a classroom teacher is ALWAYS an adventure!

Sara Brown

SPED Consultant Coordinator

P: 515.242.8409 | E: Sara.Brown@dmschools.org

Robert Fix

Special Education

P: 515-242-8409 | E: robert.fix@dmschools.org



Amanda Fonza

Special Education

P: 515-242-8409 | E: amanda.fonza@dmschools.org


I've been working with children of all ages in many different settings for the last 20 years. For the last 3 years I've enjoyed working in the self contained room here at South Union, I love my job and the people I work with!  I also love spending time with my 3 beautiful children and adorable grandson.

Mary Jo Harlan

SPED Interventionist

P: 515.242.8409 | E: MaryJ.Harlan@dmschools.org

Brian Phillips

Special Education Teacher

P: 515-242-8409 | E: brian.phillips@dmschools.org

Maren Raine


P: 515-242-8409 | E: maren.raine@dmschools.org

Nicole Rowe


P: 515.242.8409 | E: Nicole.Rowe@dmschools.org

Charissa Thornton

Special Education

P: 515-242-8409 | E: charissa.thornton@dmschools.org


Hello! Welcome to South Union Elementary. This is my second year at this school and my fourth year teaching. I graduated with a bachelor's in Elementary Education with an endorsement as an Instructional Strategist I from Northwestern College in Iowa. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, hiking, and visiting friends and family. I am looking forward to another great year!

Kelli Yarbrough

Special Education Associate

P: 515-242-8409 | E: kelli.yarbrough@dmschools.org