New Faculty & Staff 2018-2019

New Faculty & Staff 2018-2019

Pictured back row (L-R): Mick Scott, Elise Altschuler, Leela Chantrelle, Elizabeth Kysel, Sam Oshinsky '08, Tracy Baker Sims, Fani Avramopoulos, Segun Olagunju, Patrick Gerald '13, Brandon King. Front (L-R): Evan Velleman, Cheveé Taylor '01, Christina Cubera '10, Kristin Jean-Baptiste-Simonne, Alpana Chhibber, Emily Schuttenberg, Kelley Blum, Malika DeLancey, Rob Gamble, Betsy Gerding. Not pictured: Jenniffer Gray, Allison Tsai.

Elise Altschuler

Fifth Grade
Elise joins the fifth grade team as a homeroom teacher. Elise was most recently at Greenwich Academy in Conn. as an associate teacher in the Lower School. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Kenyon College and an M.S.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education.

Fani Avramopoulos

Middle School Language Arts
Prior to coming to Park, Fani taught creative writing at Margaret Brent Elementary/Middle through the Writers in Baltimore Schools program. She has worked at Playworks in Baltimore, designing and implementing lessons for Pre-K through 5th Graders based on building their social and emotional skills. Fani has served as an Americorps Service Member, an after school group leader, and a writing tutor. She earned her B.F.A. in Studio Art and Community Health at Tufts University in partnership with School of the Museum of Fine Arts. 

Tracy Baker Sims

First Grade
Tracy most recently taught first and second grade students in Anne Arundel County and Baltimore City Public Schools. During her tenure in Anne Arundel County, she served as an intervention specialist, a role in which she was able to implement research-based interventions to cultivate reading, writing, and math skills for Kindergarten, first, and second grade students. Tracy earned both her B.S. and M.S. in Education from Baylor University. 

Kelley Blum

Kindergarten
Kelley joins the K1 classroom as an assistant, and will be part of the Kindergarten Extended Day staff. A familiar face around the Lower School, Kelley has previously worked in the K1 classroom, in addition to being a substitute teacher. Kelley earned her M.A. in Teaching from Loyola University.

Leela Chantrelle

Upper School English
Leela joins us from Institut de La Tour in Paris, where she was an Anglophone section teacher working with bilingual students in Grades 9 through 11. She is also the Co-Assistant Poetry Editor for Sundog Lit Magazine. Originally from San Francisco, Calif., Leela earned her B.A. in English from Cornell University in Creative Writing with a specialization in Poetry.  

Alpana Chhibber

Middle School Dean of Students
Alpana joins Park from Garrison Forest, where she served as Residential Life Dorm Parent, Faculty Representative to the Diversity Leadership Council, Peer Ed Co-Advisor, 11th Grade Co-Advisor, History teacher, and Public Health teacher. Alpana earned a B.A. in History with a Minor in Biology from York College, an M.A. in Global and Comparative Studies from University at Albany, and her M.A.T. from Union Graduate College.

Christina Cubera ’10

Kindergarten
Christina will be returning to Park as a member of our Kindergarten team. She was most recently a second grade and Kindergarten associate teacher at Green Farms Academy in Westport, Conn., where she also worked with the Girls Varsity Lacrosse team and ran a number of after-school clubs in the Lower School. Christina earned a B.S. in Psychology and Human Development at Wheelock College and an M.S. in Early Childhood Education at University of Bridgeport. Christina is an alumna of Park School, graduating with the Class of 2010. 

Malika DeLancey

Lower School Principal
Malika joins us as our new Lower School Principal. Malika was the Associate Head of Lower School at McDonogh, supporting faculty, students, and families in that division. Prior to that role, she was McDonogh’s Director of Diversity, Associate Director of Admission, Director of Middle Grades Partnership, and a 3rd Grade teacher. Malika also worked at Garrison Forest as Director of Diversity, Assistant Director of Admission, and Reading Teacher. Malika has a B.A. in Psychology from University of Maryland, College Park and an M.S. in Education and Reading from Johns Hopkins University. Malika is a Board Member for MGP.

Rob Gamble

Upper School History
Rob Gamble joins the Upper School history department as a part-time faculty member. Rob most recently taught history and coached Lower School lacrosse at St. Albans School in Washington, D.C. He has worked as an instructor at the University of Kansas, Maryland Institute College of Art, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Pittsburgh. Rob earned his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in History at Johns Hopkins University.

Betsy Gerding

Interim Upper School Learning Resource Teacher
Betsy Gerding, M.S., CCC-SLP, will serve as Upper School Interim Learning Resource teacher this fall while Karyn Fisher steps into the role of Interim Upper School Principal. Betsy is a certified speech and language pathologist who has direct experience with the diagnosis and interpretation of psychoeducational testing. She has worked at The Lab School of Washington, Baltimore Lab School, and The Odyssey School. In addition to her expertise in the field of learning support, Betsy is also familiar with Park, having spent two years assisting Susan Eisner by providing learning support in Park’s Lower School, and as a tutor to students in both our Middle and Upper Schools. Betsy earned a B.A. and M.A. from Towson University.

Patrick Gerald ’13

Advancement Associate
Patrick joins Park as an Advancement Associate, dividing his time between the Admission and Development offices. He recently earned a B.A. in Economics from Williams College where he participated in the Ultimate Frisbee Organization, and wrote articles for the men’s lacrosse games. For the last two summers, Patrick was a Resident Assistant for The Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth programs. Patrick is a Park School alumnus, graduating with the Class of 2013. 

Jenniffer Gray

Upper School Spanish
Jenniffer will teach Spanish part-time for the Upper School. She most recently worked at Bryn Mawr School as a Spanish teacher and Chair of the World Languages and Cultures department. In her time at Bryn Mawr, Jenniffer taught classes from Level I through post-AP electives, and developed curriculum and assessments with her department colleagues. She advised a number of student clubs and led initiatives for students to learn more about the Latinx community in Baltimore and Washington, D.C. Jenniffer earned a B.A. in Spanish from the University of Michigan and an M.A. in Spanish Literature from Middlebury College. 

Kristin Jean-Baptiste-Simonne

Upper School French
Kristin will teach French in the Upper School, filling in for Sofia Park, who is on maternity leave. Kristin recently moved back to Maryland from France, where she taught English to middle and high school students. Prior to coming to Park, she taught English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) to adult learners at Howard Community College. Kristin earned her B.A. in French and International Studies from Northwestern University and a Master of Research in English Language from the University of Upper Alsace.

Brandon King

Upper School Administrative Assistant
Brandon joins us with many years of administrative experience as the new part-time administrative assistant at the Upper School front desk. As the front line person in the mornings, Brandon will take care of attendance, answer calls, greet late-arriving students, and respond to questions. She will share the role with Dorrie Bright-Whitson.

Elizabeth Kysel

Upper School Computer Science and Robotics
With an extensive background in robotics, Elizabeth joins our Upper School to teach computer science and robotics. She recently graduated from Wellesley College with a B.A. in Computer Science. While at Wellesley, Elizabeth was a student teacher and worked as an intern in the machine shop, teaching engineering and physics students how to use the machinery.

Segun Olagunju

Director of Civic Engagement and Service Learning
Prior to coming to Park, Segun was a consultant focusing on social innovation with various non-profits and schools. While living in Johannesburg, South Africa with his family, Segun was the Director of the Centre for Entrepreneurial Leadership at the African Leadership Academy, where he worked with young people to create student-run businesses and programs. He has also been a Program Manager at Operation Hope, Inc. in Washington, D.C. Segun earned his B.S. in Business Administration from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Sam Oshinsky ’08

Middle School Visual Arts
Sam returns to Park to teach Middle School visual arts. He most recently taught art at Middle River Middle School, working with 6th, 7th, and 8th Graders. Sam earned a B.F.A. in Interdisciplinary Sculpture and an M.A.T. from Maryland Institute College of Art. Sam is a Park School alumnus, graduating with the Class of 2008.

Emily Schuttenberg

Lower School Science
Emily will teach science in the Lower School. As an Energy and Marketing Analyst at Satori Energy, Emily identified renewable energy opportunities and benchmarked energy use in buildings.  She has taught science at Kids Science Labs in the Chicago area, and has also volunteered as a High School Energy Mentor at Illinois Green Alliance, helping students organize an energy audit of their high schools and implement energy efficiencies recommendations. Emily earned a B.A. in African Studies from Yale University and an M.S. in Environmental Engineering with a specialty in Sustainability from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

Mick Scott

Upper School Academic Tech Resource Coordinator and Upper School Computer Science and Robotics
Mick comes to Park from St. Paul’s School where he was most recently the K-12 STEM Director and a teacher. He was involved in a number of initiatives including the Green Committee, the Kinetic Sculpture Race, and the fabrication shop. Mick is also an instructor with Engineering Innovation at Johns Hopkins University. Prior to St. Paul’s, Mick worked at his alma mater, Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, as the Engineering Department Chair. Mick earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park and completed secondary teacher education coursework at Johns Hopkins University.

Cheveé Taylor ’01

Director of Upper Elementary and Middle School Admission
Prior to coming to Park, Cheveé was the Grade 3 Coordinator at McDonogh School where she supported her grade-level team members, and coordinated initiatives with the admission team and other divisional administrators. She was also a Diversity Liaison, helping to plan and implement professional development activities for Lower School faculty and the greater McDonogh community. Previously, Cheveé taught Language Arts to 6th-8th Grade students for Middle Grades Partnership. She began her teaching career as a participant in the intern program at Park. She earned a B.A. in Drama from the University of Virginia, and this fall, begins a Master of Education in Independent School Leadership at University of Pennsylvania. Cheveé is a Park School alumna, graduating with the Class of 2001. 

Allison Tsai

Lower School Music
As a piano instructor in our After School Music Program, Allison is familiar with Park and a number of our students. She also works with Peabody Preparatory, providing musical accompaniment and coaching for its cello department. Allison earned a B.A. in Music (Piano Performance) from University of California, Los Angeles and an M.M. in Piano from the Peabody Conservatory. 

Evan Velleman

Middle and Upper School Counselor
Evan earned a B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science from the University of Illinois at Chicago, an M.A.T. from National Louis University, and an M.S. in Counseling from Johns Hopkins University. He completed a counseling internship at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, where he analyzed student data to improve the counseling programming. Prior to Park, Evan was a service coordinator at Bard High School Early College in Baltimore. 

Changes in Role 2018-19

Jon Acheson takes over as part-time Upper School librarian. He’ll continue to teach three sections of history and advise Postscript

Kristin Baker returns to her previous position as a first grade homeroom teacher. 

Becky Bloom joins the second grade team as a homeroom teacher.

Gina Braden continues to teach drama in the Middle School in addition to her new role as Department Chair for Middle School Arts.

In the spring, Dorrie Bright-Whitson began managing all aspects of the Upper School scheduling and course registration process. She also took on the role of Test Coordinator and is overseeing all school-based SAT and ACT administrations. She’ll continue as administrative assistant at the Upper School front desk on a part-time basis, sharing the role with Brandon King. 

Matt Doyle assumes the role of Interim Director of Academic Technology in addition to his Lower School teaching responsibilities.

Krista Dhruv is now Director of Middle and Upper School Counseling and Wellness, where she will continue her work as counselor, but will also lead programming around social and emotional learning, and prevention and intervention services.

Karyn Fisher assumes the role of Interim Upper School Principal while Nancy Dickson is out on maternity leave. 

Lisa Helberg, Middle School Director of After Day and substitute teacher, takes on the additional responsibilities of Middle School administrative assistant and gym monitor.

Alissa Parker has moved to the Admission Office, where she continues to work as an administrative assistant, helping prospective families navigate the admission process.

Shri Puri transitions from a fifth grade homeroom teacher in Park’s Lower School to the Middle School, where she will teach social studies. 

Jillian Van Ells, who spent a year as our Middle and Upper School librarian, now shifts her focus to the K to 2 position, and continues as Middle School librarian.