Faculty & Staff
2017 – 2018 Classroom Teachers and Faculty
|Directors||Mrs. Shannon Keigan; Mrs. Jami Montoya|
|Office Manager||Mrs. Jada Kankel|
|Registrar/Receptionist||Ms. Sarah Osgood|
|Special Education Coordinator/ELL Teacher||Ms. Stefanie Hutchinson|
|Special Education Staff||Mrs. Susan Beetch; Dr. Tony Bonanno; Mrs. Laura Felix|
|Kindergarten||Mrs. Caylee Amott; Mrs. Amy Jenes|
|1st Grade||Ms. Alison Sloan; Mr. Keaton Smith|
|2nd Grade||Mrs. Mary Lane Peterson; Mrs. Lauren Meyer|
|3rd Grade||Ms. Stephanie Richert; Mr. Matthew Mordecai|
|4th Grade||Mrs. Anna Hahn; Ms. Tatiana Rolf|
|5th Grade||Ms. Kristen Rubenthaler; Mrs. Debra Friesz|
|Visual Arts Teacher||Ms. Dianne Andrejasich|
|Music Teacher||Mrs. Lorna Floyd|
|Wellness||Ms. Megan Cruise|
|Facilities||Mr. Jon Bennett|
|Information Technology||Mr. Scott Wilson; Mr. Zekiel Barnes|
|Food Service Assistant||Ms. Barbara Lacerte|
MRS. SHANNON KEIGAN — DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS AND OPERATIONS
From the moment I stepped into TPAAK, I was blown away by the amazing things that teachers do every day with their students and the amount of passion and dedication they have for each and every child they work with. Over the last four years, I have seen immense growth in our students and witnessed them blossoming into confident and expressive students who have the ability to think critically about the world around them. I am honored to be able to support such an amazing community of staff, students, and parents.
MRS. JAMI MONTOYA — DIRECTOR OF TEACHING AND LEARNING
Entering into my seventh year at TPAAK, I am thrilled at all the new opportunities that lie ahead, and the chance to continue to enrich the creative teaching and learning that happens at our school. Our students amaze me everyday at what they’re able to accomplish, and our community is one that is building self-confident and accepting children. I am so proud to say I’m a part of it. There is never a dull moment at TPAAK, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
MRS. JADA KANKEL — OFFICE MANAGER
Both of my children are TPAAK alumni. I have been working here since 2009 and my heart strings are tied to the children and staff. TPAAK embraces students with differences and teaches them to be comfortable in their own skin. Students graduate from school with a confidence in who they are and acceptance for who others are. I greatly enjoy working with this community and I look forward to meeting new and returning students and staff in the fall.
MRS. SARAH OSGOOD — ADMIN. ASSISTANT/REGISTRAR
I have been connected with TPAAK for seven years now. It is truly a wonderful school with an amazing team of teachers. This coming school year is extra special to me, as my son will be starting Kindergarten at TPAAK. I look forward to the great diversity of learning he will experience by being a part of this wonderful community of teachers, students, parents, and staff. The teachers are truly committed to using their skills and craft to raise up children who are not only educated in the core academic subjects, but also in the important areas of music, art, wellness and world cultures. I am grateful to be a part of such an amazing team, and even more grateful my son gets to begin his academic years among such a wonderful community!
MRS. CAYLEE AMOTT – KINDERGARTEN TEACHER
I love to be in kindergarten! I believe that every child has the potential to bring something unique and special to the world. I want to help children develop their potential by believing in them as capable individuals. I love working closely with my teaching partner, Mrs. Jenes, and all the wonderful teachers and staff at the school. I love the great sense of family and community that the school encompasses. I am excited for the upcoming year and the wonderful things that are in store for the school. I am looking forward to a new school building where there possibilities are endless. In my spare time, I love to create. I enjoy sewing, crocheting and digital photography. I love to spend time with my family and am learning the dynamics of parenting teenagers.
MRS. AMY JENES — KINDERGARTEN TEACHER
I am thrilled to take part in shaping TPAAK into a close learning community with a family feel. I love connecting with my students and want each of them to know that they are cared for and respected at school. I am looking forward to my 5th year in kindergarten at TPAAK because the students are full of energy & enthusiasm and because Mrs. Amott amd I have so much fun as teaching partners. I especially enjoy the opportunity to be an integral part in teaching children how to read. In my spare time, I enjoy hiking, picnicking, travelling, baking, bird-watching, playing games and just being silly with my family.
Ms. Alison Sloan — 1st grade teacher
I’m so excited to begin my third year here at TPAAK. This is the most amazing school I have taught at yet. I love the freedom to be creative and to explore with the students. I’m beginning my second year in first grade with the best teammate in the history of teaching. We work hard to make everyday an adventure for our students.
MR. KEATON SMITH — 1ST GRADE TEACHER
After having such a wonderful, exciting, and vibrant first year at TPAAK, I am beyond thrilled to be back in First Grade teaching among my exuberant partner, Ms. Sloan, for the 2017-18 school year! Teaching the brilliant minds with creative outbursts and joyful expressions, has really pushed me to think outside of the box so that the students will learn through multiple outlets. I work at TPAAK to truly be myself through teaching, but to also create a pathway that allows students to envision that their dreams can be assembled and become a reality as well!
MRS. LAUREN MEYER — 2ND GRADE TEACHER
Hello TPAAK families! I am so excited to be returning next year as a second grade teacher at TPAAK. This year has been spectacular and I’m looking forward to seeing all the new possibilities next year with our new building and library. I love our school because of our great team, wonderful students and families, and all the creativity that is encouraged and developed here. TPAAK is a great place to learn and grow, not only as a child, but also as a teacher. See you in August!
MRS. MARY LANE PETERSON — 2ND GRADE TEACHER
I am excited to teach second grade again. TPAAK has been my home for many years and I have been fortunate to have taught so many talented and creative children. I believe that each child has a special gift and it is my job to nurture, discover, and explore opportunities to help develop that gift. I am looking forward to our move to a new location and being a part of such an innovative school.
MR. MATTHEW MORDECAI — 3RD GRADE TEACHER
Teaching at TPAAK is truly a dream come true. I am excited to continue to bring positivity and hard work to achieve great things for this school. I am very outgoing and love the outdoors, Fort Collins is the perfect place to explore and get outside. I just got married which was the best decision I have ever made. I feel that I am a comical human being and standing at 6 foot 7 inches it is really hard to miss me. I am sure that all of you will see me hit my head on doorways or other low objects multiple times. I have realized it is a very reoccurring event in my daily life! I am so excited to continue to be a part of the TPAAK community and can’t wait for the school year to get started to inspire all of our little Dragons!
MS. STEPHANIE RICHERT — 3RD GRADE TEACHER
I am super excited to be back at TPAAK next year for so many reasons! First, we have an amazing staff that is creative, caring, and fun! I really like the community that has been built at TPAAK between staff, students, and parents. I feel so lucky to be part of this special place that values creativity and student expression. It’s incredible to see students and staff alike share their passions for the arts. Teaching is a way in which I express my creativity. I love taking a concept or standard and turning it in to a lesson that actively engages students in a fun and interesting way. I am also beyond thrilled to teach 3rd grade next year alongside Mr. Mordecai. I know that we are going to have a fun and crazy year!
MRS. ANNA HAHN — 4TH GRADE TEACHER
GO POKES! I’m an alumni of the University of Wyoming and I have been teaching for over 20 years. I taught in Winter Park, and Summit County. We moved to the Front Range 15 years ago this fall. I have been teaching here since the school opened. Fortunately, I have had the opportunity to teach first through fourth grade. I am an avid skier, golfer, hiker, and I love to read and spend time with my family. My daughter attended TPAAK and is going to CEC High School this fall as an incoming freshman. I am excited to make the move to Wheaton and teach fourth grade again with my new teaching partner! It will be a great year!
MS. TATIANA ROLF — 4TH GRADE TEACHER
I am a double alumna from UNC, as I just earned my Master’s degree in teaching over the summer! My undergraduate background is in international relations and foreign language; these are interests I cannot wait to introduce to my 4th graders. My teaching philosophy is to foster global citizens in the classroom and for them to have an awareness of all the culture and diversity our wonderful world has to offer, which is why TPAAK and the Paragon curriculum are a great fit for me. I am a voracious reader, so I often encourage my students to read about their interests and love suggesting new books! My free time is spent reading or playing “not fetch” with my rescue dog, Sterling. My fiance and I are huge baseball fans and spend most of March-September going to or watching baseball games. Go Rockies!
MS. KRISTEN RUBENTHALER — 5TH GRADE TEACHER
TPAAK has been a wonderful school to be a part of. We have had the best teachers, and I am so happy to work with and learn from them. I have had the opportunity to use my creativity to find innovative ways to teach my students. From going on Viking raids, to learning and trying out Roman battle tactics. We have spent time creating mosaics, and writing about our “first hand experiences when Mount Vesuvius erupted.” We have worked with many different classes and grades to help our 5th graders become the teachers and leaders, and share what they have learned with the younger grades.
I have loved teaching at TPAAK for the past two years and I am looking forward to working with a new group of amazing students. I love combining my love of History and English together to really go deeper into both subjects. I am really looking forward to working with the students to create new things that are unique to our class!
MS. DEBRA FRIESZ — 5TH GRADE TEACHER
My name is Deb Friesz. I was raised outside Fort Collins on a farm and graduated from Highland High School in Ault. I attended college in Iowa, moved to Nebraska and later to Missouri before returning home in 2011.
I am an outdoors person who loves hiking, bicycling, and walking. I garden with my family and enjoy the fresh produce as well as the creative cooking my siblings share. I find great pleasure in reading especially Fantasy and Young Adult books. Traveling both in and out of the country continues to be a top item on my bucket list. There are so many delightful places to go. The loves of my life are my daughter, son and daughter-in-law and their children, my grandchildren, with whom I spends quality time as often as possible.
I am really looking forward to being a part of the TPAAK community. The excitement of experiencing new ideas and learning is so very empowering. The opportunity to work with 5th graders in both Science and Math in an environment which supports and focuses on the arts is inspiring. I can’t wait to meet your children!
MS. STEFANIE HUTCHINSON — SPED COORDINATOR/ELL TEACHER
After working as a teacher of Exceptional Students alongside Ms. Connie Logsdon for my first year at TPAAK, I am beyond thrilled to assume her role next year as Exceptional Student Coordinator, as she moves back to be near family in Kentucky. I feel lucky to get to work with members of our student population across all grades. My favorite aspect of working at TPAAK is that I get to see students experience success in so many subjects throughout the year. Getting to assist and accommodate students with different learning needs across both the general education curriculum, and an extensive arts curriculum, is a unique and treasured experience that only TPAAK can deliver. Next year, I look forward to meeting all of our new students, as well as continuing to foster relationships and a love for learning in my current students!
DR. TONY BONANNO— SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGIST
Bio coming soon!
MRS. LAURA FELIX— SPEECH PATHOLOGIST
Bio coming soon!
MRS. SUSAN BEETCH— OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST
Bio coming soon!
MRS. DIANNE ANDREJASICH – ART COORDINATOR AND TEACHER
My goal for our fine arts school is not only teaching visual arts, more teaching creative thinking. Our students have been my greatest inspiration in so many ways. Elementary school was difficult for me because I learn differently than most people. I want to be there to unlock frustration in students who need a different approach to many academic subjects through the visual arts.
MRS. LORNA FLOYD – MUSIC COORDINATOR AND TEACHER
I have been the music teacher since fall of 2010. I love how our school music program meets and exceeds the Colorado State Music Standards in a unique way–by offering an elementary instrumental program!
When I am not in my classroom I’m in my many gardens with my husband and three little dogs or making my own music! I play alto saxophone with the funk band Archie Funker, flute with Bole Bole Brazilian band, and clarinet and vocals in my own ensemble, Lorna’s Swingset.
MS. MEGAN CRUISE – WELLNESS COORDINATOR AND TEACHER
As a wellness teacher I get to teach important healthy life choices as well as get students to be physically active. I love my job because my students learn about a healthy lifestyle through fun and engaging activities. I am looking forward to next year because students will continue in their second year learning life skills, conflict resolution, safety and nutrition. We will make a lot of progress and have a lot of fun along the way!
MS. BARB LACERTE
— FOOD SERVICE ASSISTANT
Bio coming soon!
MR. SCOTT WILSON— INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
Bio coming soon!
MR. ZEKIEL BARNES— INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
Bio coming soon!
MR. JON BENNETT — CUSTODIAN
I am so excited to be moving into a new facility. I work with a great team and I love having fun with the kids! I can’t wait to figure out all the best ways to prank the teachers at the building next year!
MRS. BRITTANY MORDECAI— NURSE
As the school nurse at TPAAK, I am excited to educate and attend to the the students and staff regarding their health, including the mind, body and spirit. After all, a person’s health and well-being is a determining factor that contributes to academic success.