The primary purpose of the English department is to help all students develop their proficiency in reading, writing, speaking and critical thinking. Making students better communicators is a top priority. The department also values exposing students to a variety of ideas, cultures, and voices, allowing them to have a fuller understanding of the world around them and the experiences of those in it. 

Jill Dawson

English Teacher


(309) 698-7582

Jill Dawson is lead teacher of the English department and has 26 years of teaching experience, 16 of those being at EPCHS. Jill primarily teaches Enriched Sophomore English, Co-taught Regular Sophomore English with Mrs. Theleritis, Yearbook, and Intro to Communications. She is also the advisor for the Yearbook and for Inside the Tribe: EPCHS Student Led Newscast. Inside the Tribe was started by her Communications class in 2017 so that all the positive things the kids at EPCHS were doing in and around the school could be highlighted for the community. Originally from Peoria, she attended Peoria Central High School before earning her Bachelor’s degree in English at Eastern Illinois University and her Master’s in Literacy at Illinois State University. She is currently working on her Master’s in Communications at Eastern Illinois University. Jill shared, “The best thing about EPCHS is the students.  There is never a dull moment with the students and everyday is a different day with them.  Watching them morph and develop into young adults is an awesome treat and knowing that I can play a little part of that is simply amazing.” Outside of work, she enjoys reading and watching all different genres of movies. Her and her husband also love to spend time on any beach! Spending time with her husband and kiddos is one of her most favorite pastimes.

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Casey Pfeifer

English Teacher


(309) 698-7531

Casey Pfeifer is a part of the English department and has 13 years of teaching experience, all at EPCHS. She primarily teaches Sophomore English, Dual Credit English 110 and 111, and Critical Film Study. Casey also is an advisor of the Revive club, Creative Writing Club, the Literary Arts Magazine Club and EPCHS Fine Arts Night. Originally from Washington, Illinois, she attended Washington Community High School before attending ICC and Illinois State University to earn her Bachelor’s degree. She continued on to get a Master’s degree in English Studies from Illinois State University as well as a Master’s in Educational Studies with a focus on culture and language (as well as a TESOL certificate) from Western Illinois University. Casey shares, “High school students have my heart. They are in a part of their childhood where they begin to really take ownership of their character and who they want to be. Being a stable adult in their life to joke around with and give them advice here and there while also teaching how to read, write, and think critically is truly a joy for me. EPCHS is truly a special place. Our students are polite and grateful, and I always enjoy my time here at school.” Outside of work, she enjoys reading, cooking really good food, and spending time with her family.

Monica Falk

English Teacher


(309) 698-7532

Monica Falk is a part of our English department and has been in education for 13 years, 12 of those at EPCHS. Monica teaches Enriched Freshman, Academic Junior, and Regular Senior English courses. A product of Limestone Community High School, Monica holds a Bachelor's in Secondary English Education from Illinois State University and a Master's in Curriculum & Instruction from Western Illinois University. When not in the classroom, Monica enjoys quality time with family, nurturing her love for literature, and cherishing the close-knit EPCHS community. Monica shared, “I was a student teacher at EP many years ago and knew it was the place I wanted to be immediately. The staff truly cares about helping all students succeed.”

Kayla Bone

English Teacher


(309) 698-7543

Kayla Bone is a part of the English department and has been teaching for 11 years. She primarily teaches Enriched Juniors and Academic Juniors and Seniors. Originally from Pekin, she attended Pekin High School before earning her Bachelor’s Degree in English Education from Western Illinois University, as well as her Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction and Master’s in Educational Studies (ELL/TESOL endorsement) from Western Illinois University. Mrs. Bone shares, “I have wanted to be a teacher my whole life. I am so happy to have found a home at EP because my coworkers are the greatest people I could ever hope to work with and have become my best friends. The staff truly cares about the students and their education and their passion and dedication is inspiring.” Outside of work, she is an avid reader. She spends most of her time taking her three kids to their various sports and activities and watching their games. She loves to travel and hopes to do much more of it as her kids grow.

Belinda Anderson

English Teacher


(309) 698-7579

Belinda Anderson is a member of the English department and has been a teacher for 8 years, 5 of those being at EPCHS. She primarily teaches Freshman Reading and Writing Strategies, Junior Co-taught English, and Senior Co-taught English. Originally from Peoria, she graduated from Woodruff High School in 2000 before getting her undergraduate degree in English from Northern Illinois University and her teaching certification from Illinois State University. She is currently working on her Reading Specialist Master’s degree from Illinois State University. Belinda shared, “My why is a love of learning and sharing knowledge. I love to see that spark of interest in students or the growth of confidence that comes with improving skills. I also love learning from my students. Language arts lends itself to discussion and interpretation, and it is always rewarding to hear student's insights. I love that EPCHS has a true sense of community. I know that I can turn to colleagues and staff for support. I can confidently say that EPCHS is a team and we are all working together to improve the lives of students in so many different ways. The passion and care exhibited here is contagious.” Outside of work, she enjoys gardening, listening to podcasts and audiobooks, and spending time with family and friends. She is #ProudtobeEP. 

Jordan Heinz

English Teacher


(309) 698-7552

Jordan Heinz is a member of the English department and has been a teacher for two and a half years, two of those being at EPCHS. Ms. Heinz loves making an impact outside of the classroom; she is the Head JV Softball Coach and she Co-Advises Student Council. She will primarily be teaching Co-taught Junior English, Academic Sophomore English, and Reading & Writing Strategies. Originally from Washington, Illinois, Jordan graduated from Washington Community High School before earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education and English from Eureka College, as well as her Middle School English endorsement. Jordan shared, “EPCHS is a close knit family. The staff, kids, and community here are so welcoming and uplifting. Watching these students grow in four years is the most rewarding aspect of the job. I love what I do & I am looking forward to creating a legacy of life long learners here at EP. #ProudtobeEP.” Outside of work, Jordan enjoys coaching softball, reading, and being a dog momma.

Reading and Writing Strategies Syllabus English 5-6 Syllabus

Sierra Kent

English Teacher


(309) 698-7578

Sierra Kent is a part of the English department and has 7 years of teaching experience, one of those being at EPCHS. She primarily teaches Regular English I and II and Academic English I and II. Originally from Decatur, Illinois, she earned her Bachelor’s degree in English Education (Grades 6-12) from Eastern Illinois University. Ms. Kent shares, “I love that EPCHS students come from so many different backgrounds. We appreciate and celebrate each other's differences here.” Outside of work, Sierra enjoys yoga and being outdoors! She is a lover of all animals, big and small.