The Twin Sisters who have redefined Conant Coed Cheer

When students see a set of identical twin sisters walking around Conant, they know it is Amanda Schweinbraten, the Wellness teacher, and Christina Schweinbraten-Melone, the math teacher. But to the coed cheer team, they are Coach A and Coach C, the most dedicated cheer coaches they’ve ever had.

With a strong sense of creativity and a powerful team bond, they are also arguably the best Coed Cheer coaches in Conant history.

Coach A (left), and Coach C smile proudly with their 2nd place trophy at IHSA State.

Coach A and Coach C have been drawn to cheer since they were three years old, and they haven’t stopped since their days of the Schaumburg Athletic Association. “Cheerleading… is like in our DNA,” Coach A says, with a beaming smile.

During their time as Conant students from 2005 to 2008, they were flyers for the All-Girls Varsity Cheer Team all four years. They were even voted as the high school stereotype, “The Cheerleader,” in a past issue of the Crier.

Beyond Conant, they cheered at Illinois State University and ran cheer camps after graduating. Because of their love for cheer and teaching, it was clear to them that becoming high school teachers and cheer coaches was the way to go. Coach A said, “Knowing you can make a difference in someone’s life and have a positive impact is why I always wanted to be a teacher.”

The 2024 Co-ed Cheer Team at IHSA State

As a full circle moment, they returned to Conant to coach and teach straight out of college. For the past 11 years, they have seen hundreds of athletes come and go as a member of their cheer family. Coed cheer captain Olivia Wzorek, ‘24, described her coaches as her “second moms” and said, “You can see how much they do for the team.”

Assistant Coach and English teacher Kathryn Sall described a similar experience from a coaching perspective, explaining how the Schweinbraten sisters have become some of her closest friends at this school. “I feel so lucky that I get to be a part of what they have made here… it makes my job so much better,” Sall said.

The coaches show they care in a number of ways. For example, Coed Cheer athlete Kacper Paruniak, ‘25, said he was supported during his lower points. “It is a really amazing environment, like a family in a way. The coaches really supported me throughout my injuries as well.”

The team has earned its spot in the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) State Series every single year of the program’s existence. They also have 16 MSL Championships and 10 IHSA Sectional Championships under their record. Just this year, the 28 athletes have won the MSL Championship, IHSA Sectional Championship, and came 2nd in the State.

So, what is the coaches’ secret to their victory?


Pride for their team, pride for Conant, and most importantly, pride for each athlete. “You just love your kids so much,” Coach C says, tearing up. “You are putting your all into this job…” Selflessness and sacrifice from the entire team has created an unbreakable bond.

The coaches tried something new this season–their “Victory Era,” represented by two fingers with several meanings: A ‘V’ for victory, a ‘2’ for 2nd place at Sectionals last season, a peace sign, and 11 years of coaching.

The iconic “Victory Era” logo

“We are big Taylor Swift fans,” Coach C says, laughing, referring to the “Era” aspect of the name. The two went to the Eras tour in Las Vegas to see Taylor Swift in person.

The coaches are also gifted when it comes to planning routines. “The amount of mental effort it takes for your coach to envision this story and performance,” Sall said, “it’s really like an art. Every year, their routine is really creative–it’s actually incredible.”

While some schools may get by on playing it “safe” or recycling pieces of old routines, Conant provides new choreography for both their JV and Varsity teams every year. This isn’t an accident. It’s something that they fight to protect. “Not every school does that,” Sall said.

Having twin sisters who coach Coed Cheer is rare, making this team so unique. Coach A and Coach C’s compassion for their athletes stems from their compassion for each other, as more than just colleagues–but as sisters.

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1 Response

  1.' Barbara Schremser says:

    Thanks so much for showcasing two teachers who are modeling for the cheer team how to become better adults. They are allowing students to become leaders while still recognizing the importance of a team. They have a work ethic rarely ever seen and daily teach by example the strong values of supporting and caring with unimaginable determination to reach the ultimate cheer goal of making it to the cheer podium at state. I feel fortunate to have had two grandchildren participate in the Conant Cheer Program with Coach A C, & K.

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