Champion Learning: Develop, Educate, and INSPIRE!

Shining Star Kalli Nowitzke

Mara Greatorex and Kallie Nowitzke


Special education teacher Kalli Nowitzke has accomplished a great deal in her two years as head of the high needs resource room at Dexter High School. 

Kalli has championed a thriving peer-to-peer program called SNAP (Students Need Accepting Peers) that began modestly with seven learners and now has over 70 partner peers. At homecoming weekend festivities this year, SNAP had a float and bus join the parade, and students participated in Homecoming by attending the regular dance or the Silent Disco. Every single student had a chance to be a part of these watershed high school experiences.

Another achievement is bringing Unified sports to Dexter High School. DHS earned the Unified Champion School designation from Special Olympics Michigan in February 2023. This initiative is a strategy for schools to become more inclusive through the power of Sport, inclusive youth leadership, and school-wide awareness. Unified Champion Schools bring students with and without intellectual disabilities together and empower youth and educators to create a place of acceptance and understanding for all students. 

According to one of her peers: Kalli just makes ALL of us feel special about who we ALL are…she has broken down old attitudes toward these special needs learners. I see lots and lots of our students in the district view Kalli’s learners like any other student. That to me is the greatest success of all. 

Ms. Nowitzke is a Dexter Community Schools Alumna. The District is always proud to see our graduates go on to distinguish themselves as adults and it is a special treat to welcome them back home to share their talents with Dexter students.

One more note: Last week, we learned that Kalli has been named the Michigan Council for Exceptional Children's 2024 Dr. William C. Morse Teacher of the Year Award honoree. She will also be presenting to her peers at the MCEC conference at the end of February, 2024.

  • Shining Star