‘Who dares to teach should never cease to learn’
By Megan Hopps
Jessica Wippler knew she was destined for a career in education from an early age.
Born June 13, 1984, to parents Jan and Tom Moll, Wippler grew up watching her mom, a first grade teacher, influence the lives of young learners.
“I was exposed to the impact teachers can have as a young girl,” Wippler said. “I think that’s when I fell in love with teaching.”
Wippler grew up in Brooklyn Park and attended school in the Osseo School District. She graduated from Park Center High School in 2002 and credits her success as an educator to her “brilliant parents, teachers and mentors.”
“Having good mentors makes all the difference,” she said. “It’s been really inspiring to have such fantastic educators.”
After Wippler graduated from high school, she went on to pursue a degree in elementary education and middle school science from Winona State University.
“I’m licensed to teach kindergarten through eighth grade,” she said. “I started teaching in the Anoka-Hennepin School District right out of school.” She student taught for half a school year at L.O. Jacob in Coon Rapids and finished the school year at University Avenue Elementary School in Blaine. There, she taught third, fourth and fifth grades.
Wippler said she never had a favorite age she liked teaching.
“In every aspect of education I would think, ‘This is the best.’ And then I would try something new and think, ‘No, this is the best,’” she said smiling. “I’ve just really enjoyed every aspect of teaching.”
With a fire to learn more about education, Wippler wasted no time in finding new ways to teach young minds.
“I wanted to continue to learn so I became an instructional coach for the district,” she said. “And I went back to school and got my master’s degree from St. Kate’s in curriculum and instruction.” Eventually Wippler pursued an educational leadership principal license through Minnesota State University Mankato.
“I wasn’t sure at what point I would use my administrative license, but that’s what led me here,” she said. “Every experience I had I loved and it was propelling me to this role.”
After obtaining her administrative license, she completed an internship at Jefferson Elementary School in Blaine. From there, she worked at Ramsey and Rum River Elementary Schools as an assistant principal before coming to Dayton Elementary and serving as principal. Collectively, Wippler has served in the Anoka-Hennepin School District for 12 years.
In terms of her career, Wippler said one of the biggest things she’s learned from transitioning from teacher to administrator has been the “big picture.”
“Being in an administrative role has taught me the ‘why’ behind some of the decisions that are being made district-wide,” she said. “I even have a better understanding of the big picture in terms of the functioning of the school.”
Wippler said it’s been an honor to be a part of different administrative teams. “All have that common thread of doing what’s best for kids but doing that in different ways,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to just being there for my staff and students to not only answer day to day questions, but also foster personal growth, skill building and confidence in students. I really just want to be a positive role model for them — to give them the skills they need to be successful but also to build their confidence so they feel motivated to pursue their dreams.”