Mrs. Pam Carlson
Ms. Halie McMains
Mrs. Nikki Leite
Mrs. Holly Ballis
All About Mrs. Carlson
I started teaching at Hillcrest in August of 2003. Before I taught at Hillcrest, I taught at Sioux Valley Elementary in Volga, SD for eight years. I have taught 6th grade for one year, 4th grade for 11 years, 3rd grade for 10 years and the other years I have been an MCL teacher. I graduated from SDSU with my Master's degree in Curriculum & Instruction in December 2012, my teaching degree from Kansas State University in December 1995 and Brookings High School in 1983. I love teaching at Hillcrest, because this is where I went to school from 1st to 5th grade. Hillcrest feels like my home away from home.
All About Ms. McMains
My name is Halie McMains and I am from Canton, South Dakota. I have degrees from South Dakota State University for Early Childhood Education, and Dakota State University for Elementary Education! While earning my degrees, I really enjoyed working at Hillcrest as a lunch and playground supervisor for three years. I started teaching in the Brookings School District after graduation in 2020. I can’t wait to meet all of you and learn new things this year!
All About Mrs. Leite
Hello, my name is Mrs. Leite! I have been teaching since 2008. I grew up in Freeman, SD. I went to college at SDSU (Go Jacks!) and also at DSU in Madison, SD. I have degrees in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. I received my master’s degree in Educational Leadership from USF in Sioux Falls, SD. I am married and have a son. I absolutely love school and can’t wait to pass my passion for learning on to you!
All About Mrs. Ballis
Hello, my name is Holly Ballis and I was born and raised in Wabasso, Minnesota. I came to Brookings after graduating High School to play for the Jacks Softball program and it has been by my second home ever since. I graduated from South Dakota State University in 2008 with a BA in Early Childhood Education and endorsements in Special Education and Kindergarten. This will be my eleventh year in the classroom and all eleven years have been here at Hillcrest Elementary. I am married and a mother of three beautiful girls. I love spending time with my family, watching movies and reading in my spare time and I'm SO excited about all the great things our learners are going to do this year!