Anne has been teaching the kindergarten program at Anser for over 8 years and holds an undergraduate degree in elementary education with an emphasis in Early Childhood. She also teaches performing arts to Kindergartners in the afternoon for the Anser Arts for Young Children (AAYC) program. She enjoys singing, dancing, playing piano and guitar, and getting her hands into any type of visual art process. Anne loves to experience live music and go to the theater. She spends time outside of Anser with her four year old son camping, hiking, snowboarding, horseback riding, and bird watching.
Sarah Wilcox is currently teaching Kindergarten and Technology 1-6 grades. She graduated with her BA in Elementary Education in December of 2010. She is working on her Master’s in Literacy and Reading, and plans to be done in the Spring of 2013. Outside of school she enjoys hiking, biking, spending time with family, and has just discovered a love of yoga! She would also like to mention her love of cats. She currently has three, and aspires to become a bonafide cat lady in her old age.
Kelly is a 2008 crewmember addition at Anser. Kelly is on the Early Childhood team (multi-ages 6 and 7 years). Her B.A. degree was earned from Boise State University in Elementary Education. Kelly worked as a Title I Teacher in elementary schools for more than five years. Kelly enjoys a busy life outside of teaching by keeping pace with three children, a fishing husband and the family dog. Kelly’s interests include reading and cooking and discovering new hobbies.
Sara joined the Early Childhood team in the fall of 2009. Prior to teaching at Anser, Sara taught for six years in a Montessori classroom in Boise and three years at therapeutic wilderness program for teens in North Carolina. She graduated from Cornell University with a BA in Psychology. While at Cornell, Sara developed her passion for experiential education and expeditionary learning through teaching Outdoor Leadership for Cornell Outdoor Education and tutoring in a 2nd and 3rd grade classroom. When she’s not in the classroom, Sara enjoys exploring Idaho’s great outdoors and teaching whitewater kayaking and guiding rafts for her husband’s outfitting business, Riverroots, Ltd.
Jennifer Trople joined the EC team at Anser during the 2009-2010 school year. She previously taught for nine years in Washington state, and two in Munich, Germany. While in Germany, she and her husband, Dallas managed to visit 18 countries. They decided to move back to Boise, where Jennifer grew up, to be closer to family. When she is not inhabiting school, Jennifer can be found riding her bike, hiking, creating art, or on her couch reading or plotting her next adventures with Dallas and crazy cat, Lucy. Jennifer currently holds a Masters in Education, as well as National Board Certification in Early-Childhood Literacy
Nicole joined the MC crew in the fall of 2012 after working part-time as a UC teacher for four years. Before coming to Anser, Nicole taught literacy and other education classes at Boise State University; supervised student teachers in areas schools; and taught elementary and high school for six years. She earned a B.A. both in English and in Elementary Education, and an M.A. in Education/Reading from Boise State University. During her leisure time Nicole enjoys running in the foothills, reading, drinking coffee, eating chocolate and spending time with her husband and two daughters, Emily and Laura.
Belinda joined the Anser crew in the fall of 2008. She had been teaching 2ndand 3rdgrade at Star Elementary where in 2007 she was named teacher of the year by her colleagues. She holds two degrees from Boise State, an Interdisciplinary Degree in Psychology, Linguistics and Communication and an Education degree with a reading endorsement. She will be paying off her student loan for the rest of her life. The change to Anser and Expeditionary Learning has been both challenging and gratifying and appeals to her interest in lifelong learning for herself and her students. Previously to teaching Belinda was a professional musician, making literally hundreds of dollars a year. She integrates music into the Middle Childhood Expeditions as well as sharing music with her crew for the joy it brings. She enjoys swimming, sleeping, nature and Andy.
Michelle has been connected to Anser Charter School since 2005 by student teaching in the Anser Jr. High, then serving as the Community Based Curriculum Director for two years. At that time, she went on an adventure with her family to the southwest and taught 4thand 5thgrade children from the Ute and Navajo Reservation. Fall 2010 brought her back to Anser to teach on the Middle Childhood team. She has a B.A. from Boise State University with a full reading endorsement and plans on getting her masters in literacy. She has a passion for reading and inspiring readers! Michelle enjoys her family, reading, having coffee with friends and riding her bike in Boise.
After several years of teaching arts-based electives and CBC’s at Anser, Dolly Higgins joined the Upper Childhood teaching team in 2009. She feels like she won the golden ticket! Dolly brings a background in counseling and research psychology to our school. She earned her BA from Harvard University, but feels she’s learned the most from the loves of her life—her husband Brian and their four children. When she’s not busy at Anser, Dolly enjoys traveling, creating art and needlework, watching old movies, and getting dirty at the Boise Urban Garden School.
Giselle Isbell joined Anser in the fall of 2000 as the Upper Childhood teacher. She has a B.A. from Tulane University and a Master in Public Administration from Boise State University. She has previous teaching experience in New Orleans and at St. Mary’s School in Boise. She enjoys reading, skiing, cooking, gardening, spending time with her husband, and laughing with her two boys.
Jia is excited for the opportunity to join the Anser Upper Childhood crew this year. Jia received her Bachelor’s in Elementary Education from Boise State University, as well as an endorsement in Literacy. Jia will be team-teaching with Brianna Gask-Wilson this year. Outside of Anser Jia enjoys spending time with her three year old son Shae. Together they like to hang at the park, go swimming, and do lots of art.
Brianna Gask-Wilson started with Anser at the beginning of the 2004-2005 school year as an Upper Childhood Crew Leader. She shares a classroom with Jia Acree. Brianna graduated Cum Laude in December of 2003 from Central Michigan University where she obtained her Elementary Education degree with a major in General Science and minor in History. Prior to beginning her teaching career, Brianna spent summers during college working for Michigan State Parks, the Department of Ecology in Washington State and Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Outside of work, Brianna enjoys hiking, hunting for new and unusual wildflowers, biking, winter sports, and spending time with her husband, Jeremy and son, Griffin.
Allyson Maynard – Science:
Allyson joined the Anser crew in 2012. After teaching 7th grade science in southern Vermont and Maine, she made a big move to Boise, and she is looking forward to learning more about Idaho and the mountain west region. Allyson received her undergraduate degree at Bates College, ME, and after a few years of traveling and teaching from the east coast to Oregon to Costa Rica and back, she completed her Master’s Degree in Environmental Studies and certification in Middle Grades Science at Antioch University New England, Keene, NH. Allyson loves to hike, Nordic ski, and kayak – all perfect ways to get to know a new place and new landscape. She is happy to be a member of the Anser community and proud to call herself a crew leader in the junior high.
Fawn Caveney – Language Arts:
I join the Anser Junior High Crew after many years out in the business world exploring diverse job opportunities and enjoying the academic journey of four universities where I studied multiple subjects. I am the proud mom of my twelve year old son, Walker, and my nine year old daughter, Raven, who continue to teach me about the wonders of the world. This summer we added two new family members with floppy ears and wiggly tails; they keep us in giggles and smiles.
Kelly Mcleod – Math:
Kelly joined the teaching team at Anser in 2004, after having been a parent from the first years. Previously, Kelly worked for the Discovery Center of Idaho, running a variety of educational programs. Kelly graduated with honors from the College of Idaho with a Bachelor of Science in Biology; she also has her Masters in Educational Technology from Boise State. She is the proud mom of three Anser graduates: Connor, Ethan and Lauren. She and her husband Mike love to be outdoors with their kids, where they pursue skiing, camping, hiking, fishing and white-water rafting. She feels so very fortunate to be part of Anser and admires the passion and excellence her colleagues bring to their profession
Diane Williams – Social Studies:
Diane Williams is starting her 9th year at Anser Jr. High teaching Social Studies class and writing. She has her Masters of Reading from BSU, is a member of the Boise State Writing Project, the Holocaust Educators Network, a Fulbright Fellow and the Idaho Human Rights Educator of the Year. Diane has been married to the same incredibly patient man for the past 32 years, and together they have raised two wonderful “children/adults”, Ashleigh and Jonathan. When she gets a chance to be out of the classroom Diane is usually traveling the globe or sailing the mountain lakes of Idaho. She is inspired daily by the partners she teaches with and the students who come to school every day and share their lives, dreams, and wisdom.
Dani Owen – Spanish:
Dani is joining the Anser crew as a first year teacher in 2012 where she will be teaching Spanish to students in kindergarten through grade eight. She is a Wisconsin native and recent graduate of Marquette University, WI where she holds B.A. degrees in Elementary Education, Spanish and a certificate in Bilingual/Bicultural Education. When not in the classroom, Dani can be found exploring the outdoors by bike, skis, kayak or on foot. She is proud to be part of the Anser community.
Alyssa Goade-Munch – Physical Education:
Alyssa has taught P.E. at Anser for six years. She loves watching her kids play sports, running, teaching aerobics, and being with kids. She is married and has three lovely children: Ollie, Edie, and Emme. Alyssa taught P.E. and health in Twin Falls, Idaho, Lolo, Montana, and in Boise. She teaches classes at the YMCA as well.
Sherry Olsen – EC and MC Math:
Sherry moved here from Pocatello this summer with her husband who took a new position at ISP in Meridian. She brought along her three spoiled shih-tzu pups. She left her two beautiful daughters in Pocatello to finish up their higher education studies. So, she spends many weekends making a trip back to watch the band and the cheerleaders (her girls) as they perform at a variety of games at Idaho State University. Sherry started her teaching experience by accident when a friend had a family tragedy and needed some help in the Kindergarten classroom. She fell in love with watching the light bulb moments as the children learned new and exciting things. She had a Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre, so she took additional classes to obtain her certification in California. Upon moving to Idaho, she sought an alternative route to her Idaho Teacher Certification while receiving her Master’s Degree in Theatre from Idaho State University. She continued to take education classes and realized she wanted to become more involved in the Education Reform Movement and Charter Schools. She has been involved with Charter Schools in Idaho since 2000. She is now near completion of a second Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership with an Emphasis in Charter Schools from Central Michigan University. Her goal is to take on a leadership role in Charter School Education, in particular with Expeditionary Learning. She feels very blessed to be a part of Anser Charter School as she continues her own education.
Karelia is the Visual Arts Teacher for the Anser Arts for Young Children (AAYC) program. In addition to helping students tap into their creative energy through artistic exploration, she teaches art methods courses as an adjunct professor at Boise State University. She has been an artist in the community for a number of years and brings a passion for learning about the world through a multicultural lens. Karelia holds an undergraduate degree in Illustration and Art Education. Karelia’s love for travel and learning about other cultures has led her on many adventures around the world. During her graduate studies in Art Education, she backpacked throughout Southeast Asia and conducted research for her thesis on the contemporary and traditional arts of Thailand. She looks forward to introducing students to a multifaceted approach to learning about different cultures through visual means. When she is not doing art, you can find her rock climbing, hiking and exploring in the great outdoors.
Lisa Cates, Exceptional Child Services Director (UC & JH):
Proud mother of daughters Nicole & Kristen & son Challis & grandmother of Justin, Megan, Taylor and . Blessed wife of Roger, a patient and supportive best friend. Moved westward from Pennsylvania to be a “YOTE” and graduated from the College of Idaho with a degree in political science and pre-law. Subsequently completed a Masters of Public Administration degree from Boise State University. Had a rewarding 20 year career in juvenile and adult corrections that included parole officer, administrative hearing officer, deputy warden and deputy administrator of prisons. Retired to have more time with family and return to a career that would enable her to return to working in a meaningful capacity directly with children. Received a second Bachelor’s degree from Boise State University as a K thru 12 Special Education generalist. Long term board member of the Ada County Human Rights Task Force with a passion for human rights, service and social justice action. Loves to travel with family in their Eurovan camper so they can see the world one small town at a time!
Becky Delana, Paraprofessional (primarily EC & MC):
Becky’s 24 year old daughter, Lauren, is a 2010 graduate of the College of Idaho and is currently applying to medical school. Her 18 year old son, Austin, graduated in 2012 from Timberline High School. He is taking a year off to work before attending college. Her husband of 26 years, Pat, teaches in the College of Business at Boise State University. Becky’s training and experience as a counselor, with 13 years in the mental health field, offer a unique perspective when interacting with Anser students. An avid distance walker, Becky has completed 3 marathons and 25 half-marathons since her mid-40’s. She earned her B.S in Psychology from the University of Utah in 1978 and completed her Master’s in Community/Clinical Psychology at California State University, Fullerton in 1985.
Bekkie Ritchie, AIMS Assessment Administration & Data Management and Literacy Interventions Pullout:
Bekkie Ritchie is the mother of two beautiful boys. She has graduated from Boise State with her degree in elementary education with an endorsement in early childhood special education. She has had experience in teaching first grade classrooms, highly gifted children and reading interventions, which she is currently doing here at Anser. She enjoys anything outdoors and spending time with her family
Kari Kerfoot, Exceptional Child Services Teacher (Kindergarten-Upper Childhood):
Kari has joined the ANSER Crew again after teaching out of the district for a year and a half. She began her ANSER experience as a student in the College of Education at Boise State University and did her student teaching in Middle Childhood and ECS. Kari is a 2010 graduate from BSU and is certified in Elementary Education and Special Education. Her son, Marcus, has joined the ANSER community this year as a Kindergartener. Kari and Marcus enjoy a variety of outdoor activities such as camping, skiing and hiking. This year Kari will also be assisting with the ANSER Junior High girls basketball team and has had several years of coaching girls of all ages.
Julie Blaugher, Math Explorations Teacher & Paraprofessional:
Julie’s three children have graduated from Anser Junior High and are enjoying North Junior High, Boise High and the University of Puget Sound. Julie completed her B.A. degree in Economics from St. Cloud State University (Minnesota) and her M.A. in Mass Communications from University of Denver. Julie’s passion for her children and her generosity as a volunteer has really made an impact on the Anser community. With over fifteen years of volunteer experience in educational settings Julie has taught small math groups in elementary school, tutored adults in reading and writing, and assisted children in learning to read and improving their reading and math skills, as well as worked with English Language Learners (adult and children). Julie has completed her special education, elementary education and high school mathematics teaching certification.
Sidra Rane, Student Support Specialist & Homework Club:
Sidra joined Anser last year as a Student Support Specialist for the Exceptional Child Services crew. She has been working with students with emotional disabilities for ten years. Sidra is in her second year at Northwest Nazarene University working on her Master’s degree in the school counselor program. She enjoys the systematic approach to helping serve students using all resources available, as well as parents and community members. Her primary focus is behavior and is completely intrigued with why people behave the way do and what factors influence human behavior overall. Aside from being an advocate for students full time and attending school, she enjoys being a mother to her three young children. When she does find some down time, she enjoys anything outdoors, reading a good mystery novel, and doing home improvement projects
Julie Solberg, School Psychologist:
Sherrie Armstrong, Occupational Therapist:
Sherrie Armstrong is happy to be the occupational therapist assigned to Anser Charter School. She has a Bachelors degree in special education and a Masters degree in Occupational Therapy. Sherrie taught special education for 8 years and has worked as an Occupational Therapist for 10 years. Sherrie was born and raised in Oklahoma, but absolutely loves Idaho and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else! Sherrie has a miniature schnauzer that she adores. She loves to travel to the Oregon coast and hunt for agates. In her spare time, she enjoys working on stained glass art. Sherrie is looking forward to a wonderful school year with the students, staff and families at Anser!
Amy Zuroff, Speech & Language Pathologist:
Abby McLean joined Anser in December 2010 to help with state reporting, and to manage existing grants, new grant applications and the fundraising database. In June 2011, she took on the role of Organization Coordinator, adding Anser’s registration system, the lunch program and assisting with some of Anser’s accounting functions to her list of duties. Abby has a BFA in Printmaking from the California College of the Arts and an MBA from Boise State University. Over the course of her career, she has worked in many capacities and a variety of settings, both nonprofit and for profit, but her heart is in the nonprofit world. Abby loves children and enjoys being at Anser, now that her two children are adults. She is an avid skier, enjoys camping, knitting, gardening and still does a bit of printmaking, although these days she uses a computer instead of a printing press.
Angie Temple was born and raised in Boise, ID. She has three beautiful children and has spent the last 8 years raising her children and volunteering on many levels at Anser Charter School. She loves gardening, camping and most of all spending time with her kids.
Susan Mejia – CBC/Electives/SOS Assistant:
Susan is an administrative assistant working with Community Based Curriculum and Junior High Electives. She received her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration with an emphasis in Courts/Law at Boise State University. Outside of school she enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, a son who is a sophomore at University of San Diego and a daughter who is a sophomore at Boise High. She also enjoys cooking, hiking, knitting, reading, gardening and playing with her dog, Winnie.
Teresa Schmalz – Fiscal Manager:
Teresa joined the Anser staff as the Fiscal Manager in 2003. She came to Boise from Seattle, and graduated from the University of Washington. She and her family, which includes husband Tom, & sons Joe & Daniel, enjoy outdoor activities and travel.
Suzanne Gregg – Principal/Education Director:
Education Director/Principal Suzanne Gregg is a founding member of Anser Charter School. She began her career at Anser as an Early Childhood Crew Leader. Her role then transformed into one of Instructional Guide. She currently serves as the Education Director/Principal. Suzanne has her BA both in Speech Pathology from Southern Colorado State University and Elementary Education from Mary College. She received her master’s degree in School Administration from Western New Mexico University and her doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in school renewal from Boise State University. She is a National Board Certified Teacher. Suzanne has taught pre-school through college level, conducted workshops locally and statewide and has been a presenter at several national conferences. Hobbies include interior decorating, painting, reading, and spending time with her husband of 39 years; their three adult children and four grandchildren.
Heather Dennis – Organization Director:
After ten years as an Anser parent, three years serving on the Anser Community Board and four years on Family Council Heather joined the Anser staff in August 2010. She graduated from the University of Kansas with a B.S. in Developmental Psychology. Her career has spanned the non-profit sector at organizations such as the Early Childhood Autism Project, Community Living Opportunities where she served children and adults disabilities to the Center for Community Change, a national non-profit dedicated to social justice issues. She feels very fortunate to have joined the Anser staff where she can continue to dedicate her time to creating positive change for families and her community. Born and raised in Idaho she enjoys camping, snowboarding and spending time with her husband and three children.
Heather Banuelos – Community Based Curriculum Director/Junior High Electives Coordinator:
Heather received her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education Certified Kindergarten through 8th grade from Boise State University. Her teaching experience includes preschool as well as elementary and middle school students. Heather began her teaching career in her home running a preschool and broadened her experience working with preschool and school-age students at the YMCA, writing and implementing curriculum for various programs there. Her biggest accomplishment is her family, husband Sal and two beautiful daughters Sydney and Olivia, who inspired and supported her in her return to college to finish her teaching degree. She enjoys a busy life outside of CBC and Junior High Electives by keeping pace with her girls, a busy husband, a dog, a bunny and two fish. Heather’s interests include camping, reading, cooking, sewing, and spending time with friends and family.