Anser Faculty & Staff
With its exceptional and dedicated teachers, Anser is able to create a world-class educational experience. Anser’s teachers and staff, supported by parents and community, are committed to creating a rich and well-rounded learning environment in which students:
- Exhibit autonomy, creativity and collaboration
- Embrace diversity
- Grow through discovery and reflection
- Use real-world experiences
- Create a better world
Sarah Gorringe has her BA in Elementary Education and holds an Endorsement in Early Childhood Education. She has followed Anser since its beginning and was thrilled when her twins names were drawn in the kindergarten lottery. All three of her children now attend Anser. Getting to work with kindergartners now is icing on the cake! Speaking of cake… before teaching at Anser, Sarah made custom cupcakes and cakes out of her kitchen. She loves all things creative and tackles any creative challenge that comes her way. Her favorite times with her husband and kids include camping, enjoying Boise’s parks and events, riding bikes, and making art.
Sarah Brownsten has her BA in Elementary education, and an MA in Literacy and Reading. She was “born and raised” at Anser completing her student teaching in the Anser Kindergarten program, and then accepting a position in 2011. Outside of the classroom Sarah enjoys doing hot yoga, hiking, and spending time with her corgi, cats, and husband (not necessarily in that particular order). After a long day her favorite thing to do is to “hermit” with a good book or, let’s be honest, a good TV series on Netflix.
Heidi Grant has a BA in Education from Alberston College, and an MA in Educational Technology from Lesley University. She has taught 1st through 3rd grade in the Treasure Valley for 12 years. After taking a few years off to stay home and raise her 4 children, she is excited to embark on a new teaching adventure of Kindergarten. Outside of school she loves to spend time with her husband and children camping, fishing, and hiking. She is an avid scrap booker and also enjoys books and catching up on the latest movies. She is excited to join the Anser community and is looking forward to a year of great adventures!
Jessica McGinnis graduated from Augsburg College in Minneapolis with a BA in Elementary Education and a minor in American Indian Studies in 1994. She taught dance and homeschooled her oldest son for many years before returning to the classroom. “I believe education can be a transformational experience and see myself as a life-long learner. I enjoy the intellectual and emotional challenges and rewards of being an educator. I am so thankful to have a job where I can be joyful and curious each and every day.” In her free time Jess enjoys reading, gardening, hiking, biking, experiencing live music, writing poetry, and playing the ukulele badly but with gusto.
Let me start by saying that I am thrilled to be a part of Anser and to have the opportunity to be an Anser Crew Leader. My educational background includes a degree in Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education. I teach from a Constructivist’s approach and understand the art of facilitating learning opportunities in ways that target, support, and challenge each learner’s needs. My teaching experience includes heading the K-1 program at Idaho State University’s Partnership Lab School in conjunction with Pocatello’s School District 25. I believe in educating the whole child in ways that inspire and support them as lifelong learners and productive, creative, compassionate citizens of the world.
Jennifer Trople joined 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. Jennifer currently holds a Master’s in Education, as well as National Board Certification in Early-Childhood Literacy.
Kelly has been an Anser crewmember since 2008. She is on the 2nd-3rd team. 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.
Jennica teaches second and third grade. She has a B.A. in Elementary Education from Boise State and has been teaching since 2013. Being a Colorado native Jennica has a true passion for outdoor activities and often enjoys hiking in the foothills. When she isn’t exploring the great out outdoors, Jennica enjoys getting lost in a book as well as experimenting in the kitchen. She is truly enjoys being a part of the Anser community.
Nicole joined the Anser crew in the fall of 2008, and currently teaches a 4th/5th grade crew. 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 in Idaho. 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, Jim, and two daughters.
After several years of teaching arts-based electives and CBC modules at our school, Dolly officially joined the Anser staff in 2009. Dolly brings a background in counseling and research psychology–and a love of American history–to the classroom. 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. Dolly is currently completing a Master of Education degree with an Endorsement in Mathematical Instruction. When she’s not busy at Anser, Dolly enjoys traveling, creating weird stuff, watching old movies, acting silly, and gardening.
Over the years, Nancy has known Anser through a variety of roles, including parent/volunteer, family council representative, and part-time math instructor. As a 4/5 crew leader, she is excited to contribute experience and passion for state and local history, inquiry, and curriculum design. Nancy earned her M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from Boise State University, where she later worked for the College of Social Sciences and Public Affairs in the Center for Idaho History and Politics. She loves being a thinking partner with other teachers through her affiliation with the National Writing Project. When Nancy is not teaching or thinking about teaching, her husband Chuck and four children remind her to relax and cook for them. She belongs to a book club, but only sometimes finishes the book on time.
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. She has been working at Anser since 2011 as the Community Based Curriculum Director and Junior High Electives Coordinator and 4th-5th grade teacher. She is excited to be part of the 6th grade teaching crew and to continue her teaching career here at Anser. 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 late in life. She enjoys a busy life outside of Anser by keeping pace with her girls, a busy husband, a dog, and three chickens. Heather’s interests include camping, reading, cooking, sewing, and spending time with friends and family.
Destin joined the Anser Crew in 2015. She did her student teaching at Anser before teaching for two years in Star. She has a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education from Boise State University. When not teaching Destin enjoys all of the fantastic outdoor activities Idaho offers, including camping, horse back riding and hiking. She enjoys these activities with her husband and two children.
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 Master’s 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.
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 to learn 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.
Dani Zepplin – Spanish and Electives
Dani joined the Anser crew in 2012. She teaches Spanish to students in sixth through eighth grade, is a Junior High crew leader and Electives coordinator. Dani is a Wisconsin native and holds B.A. degrees in Elementary Education, Spanish and a certificate in Bilingual/Bicultural Education from Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. When not in the classroom, she can be found exploring the outdoors by bike, skis, kayak or on foot. Dani is proud to be part of the Anser community.
Chandon Siman – Social Studies
Chandon is very excited to join Anser Charter School, and thrilled to be a part of its unique culture. Chandon was born and raised in Orange County, California, where he went to high school, and attended college at California State University of Fullerton (CSUF). From CSUF he obtained his B.A in History and minor in Religious Studies, as well as his Single Subject Teaching Credential in Social Science. After college Chandon spent a few years as a Behavior Tutor for students with autism before he accepted a fulltime teaching position at the UC Irvine Child Development School (UCICDS). Chandon then taught Social Studies, English, Video Production, P.E., and other electives, for three years at the UCICDS from grades 5th-8th. Chandon is happily married to Kiala Siman with whom he has two children. They are both excited about relocating to Idaho, and raising their family in the beautiful Treasure Valley.
Gina Hundt – Language Arts
Gina Hundt joined the Anser crew in 2016 as the junior high English Language Arts teacher. She has an undergraduate degree in English and a Masters in adolescent literacy and literature. After undergrad, Gina worked briefly in the nonprofit sector before traveling around the world for a year and teaching English in rural China. She discovered her love of teaching and hasn’t turned back since. Gina loves reading and talking about young adult literature as well as cooking, hiking, watching movies, and spending time with her husband and son.
Siler McCraw – Student Support Specialist
I obtained my Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Texas in 2006 and I have worked in Elementary and Junior High school settings ever since. I see the position of the Student Support Specialist as a bridge that connects student’s social and emotional needs with the school, the family, and the community. When not working, I like to spend my time with my husband and my kids. I also love to read, go running, and laughing as frequently as possible.
Anne Moore – CBC & Visual Arts Instructor
Anne is the Art Educator for for grades K-6 and teaches Visual Arts within the CBC program. She enjoys work creating a unique and powerful art program that connects with our local community, empowers students to take risks and better know themselves, and one that develops an appreciation for the value of all art forms in our world. Anne joined the Anser Crew in 2003, where she taught kindergarten for 11 years. She also spent time as a technology teacher and created a visual and performing arts program for our kindergartners called the AAYC (Anser Arts for Young Children), so the transition into Visual Arts Instructor was an exciting possibility and easy decision. Anne received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Boise State University. She has a son, Myron and is married to David. As a family they enjoy; music, art, hiking, camping, biking, gardening and reading.
Brianna Gask-Wilson – STEM / Innovation Lab
I am thankful to be joining the ANSER staff once again after 10 years of teaching Upper Childhood (5/6th grade) and two years of teaching STEM Lab half-time at Summerwind STEM Academy. Science Lab and STEM CBC begins a new adventure for me at Anser and I’m ecstatic to be planning hands-on, meaningful units with your kiddos. My love of science and nature developed when I was very young playing and learning in the forests, lakes and rivers of Michigan. Luckily, I was given the opportunity to adventure and discover at our family cottage on Lake Huron. My passion for the natural world led me to Central Michigan University, where I graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Teaching, and with a minor in history. After college graduation, my husband, Jeremy, and I left Michigan to begin our new life in Idaho. By fate I found ANSER, applied for a UC position and was hired the spring of 2004. To this day, I believe that my decision to teach in this community was one of the biggest and best choices that I could have made. I am beyond excited to take this science/STEM journey with your children and look forward to reconnecting with Anser’s awesome community!
Alyssa Goade-Munch – Physical Education
Alyssa has been teaching P.E. at Anser since 2002. Prior to that, she taught P.E. and health in Twin Falls, ID, Lolo, MT and Boise. 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. She teaches classes at the YMCA as well.
Tamara Reames – CBC Coordinator
Tamara has been an Anser parent since 2007, when the first of her four children “won the lottery!” After many years as an Anser volunteer and substitute teacher, Tamara feels like she won the lottery when she joined the staff as CBC/Electives Coordinator in 2016. With a BA in Social Science and a Minor in Business Administration from Washington State University, she brings over 20 years of event planning and volunteer management experience to the program. Tamara spends her free time cycling and playing music, as well as watching her children compete in swimming, diving, and running. She and her husband Steve have four Anser kids: Alumni Carter and Aliya, and current students Mercia and Eliana.
Nicole Geile – Exceptional Child Services Crew Leader
Nicole Geile has worked as a Special Education teacher since graduating from The University of Portland in 2006. She worked with elementary students for four years before beginning to work with middle school students in 2010. She joined the Anser crew in 2015. In her free time, she enjoys reading, playing soccer, and spending time with her husband and children.
Amanda Brooks – Exceptional Child Services Crew Leader
Amanda graduated in the spring of 2016 from Boise State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Education with certifications in Elementary Education and Special Education. She has worked with children with all levels of need, providing both academic and community support. Amanda has a passion for providing meaningful learning experiences and opportunities for all students.
When not at work, Amanda enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and stacking rocks on the shores of the Boise River. She lives at home with her cat-Majorca, and her chihuahua- Timmy.
Amanda is excited to be a part of the wonderful team at Anser, and she is looking forward to a great school year!
Beth Zuschlag – Reading Interventionist
Beth Zuschlag was happy to join the ECS crew as the Literacy Specialist in 2015. Prior to coming to Anser, Beth taught fifth grade in Hinsdale, Illinois. A “transplant” from the Midwest, Beth graduated from Augustana College with a psychology degree and earned her Masters in Literacy from Dominican University. The mother to four children, Beth enjoys spending time with her family and walking in the foothills with her dog, Stark. She loves being part of the Anser community!
Terry Wibbels – Junior High Special Education Math Teacher
Terry assists in Kelly’s 7th and 8th grade math classes. She is married to Mark Wibbels and they have two sons, Mac and Leo. She began her professional life as an applications engineer teaching workshops in the US and Europe until 1988 when she joined the Peace Corps where she taught secondary math and physics in Fiji. She started at Anser as a parent in 1999, when Mac was a second grader, and has thoroughly enjoyed watching both boys grow up and graduate from Anser. Volunteering here inspired her to go back to school, and she completed her Master’s of Education (NNU) in May 2014. She loves living in Idaho where we have so many opportunities for outdoor fun and adventure and is delighted to be working with this remarkable community of learners and looking forward to an exciting year of junior high math.
Boise School District Professional Crew
Boise School District Provides a cadre of professionals to support students at Anser including a Speech Therapist, Occupational Therapist and Psychologist.
Michelle Dunstan – Education Director/Principal
Michelle became Anser’s Education Director in 2015 after completing her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership at Boise State University. 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. in Elementary Education with a full reading endorsement and a M.A. in Education Leadership through Boise State University. She has a passion for reading and inspiring readers, plus a passion to support teachers in their craft! Michelle enjoys her family, reading, having coffee with friends and riding her bike in Boise.
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, gardening and spending time with her husband and three children.
Tiffany Keeley – Fiscal Manager
Tiffany joined Anser as Fiscal Manager in 2014. She has a Bachelors of Business Administration in Accounting from Boise State University. She grew up in Oregon, but loved Boise so much she never left. In her spare time, Tiffany enjoys watching her kids play soccer and basketball, running with her dogs in the foothills, and listening to Dave Matthews Band music.
Denice McPhillips – Organization Coordinator
Denice facilities many administrative process including registrar, data, financial software and other administrative tasks in support of the school. Denice enjoys crafts, spending time with her family and friends.
Jessie Deason – Office Manager & Lunch Program Coordinator
Jessie began as a parent volunteer at Anser in 2012 when her oldest son started kindergarten. Volunteering has evolved into a wide variety of staff positions. Jessie is currently the front office manager and the school lunch program coordinator. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons, and spoiling her two cats, Zito and Posey.
Stacie Knudsen – Office Manager
Stacie joined the Anser Admin Crew in 2015. She manages the very busy front office where she supports the work of the Education Director, Organization Director, Teachers, students and parents. Stacie came to Anser from the West YMCA where she managed the very busy Aquatics program. When not at work she enjoys spending time with her family and visiting her extended family in Oregon.
Nancie Swanke – Kitchen Manager
Nancie began working at Anser in September of 2011 as a School Support Staff person. She now prepares Anser’s lunches for our hot lunch program, assists with the facility and keeping our students safe at drop off and pick up time. She enjoys sewing, cooking, “puttering” around her house and long walks with her two children.