Kaitlin Seaver is thrilled to serve as the principal of Girls Prep LES Middle School. Ms. Seaver has dedicated the past ten years of her career to providing all students with the academic and interpersonal skills needed to thrive in the high school, college, and career of their choice. Having graduated from an all-girls middle and high school, Ms. Seaver believes deeply in Girls Prep’s mission to empower all students to become critical thinkers and strong leaders. After graduating from Georgetown University (magna cum laude), Ms. Seaver joined Teach for America and taught 7th and 8th grade English in Newark, New Jersey. Ms. Seaver later served as a KIPP 6th grade English teacher and dean of students and as a district middle school assistant principal and director of instruction. At the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Ms. Seaver completed her Master’s degree in School Leadership and led a graduate course and national institute about data-driven instruction for teachers, principals, and district superintendents. Ms. Seaver also won the Harvard University Leadership in Education Award. As the Department of Education’s Lead Senior Instructional Coach of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) Pilots, Ms. Seaver coached 21 New York City middle schools to create CCSS-aligned, curriculum-embedded performance assessments. Ms. Seaver guided school leaders to build capacity and collaborative team structures to create the instructional and curricular coherence needed for students to meet the demands of these more rigorous standards. All of Ms. Seaver’s experiences as an educational leader have inspired her to develop with her team the culture of high expectations, community, and continuous learning that will empower all students and educators to grow and achieve at the highest level.
Director of Operations
Emilee Christopher is the Director of Operations at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. She supports instruction from a logistical and operational stance. She also manages the school's finances, human resources, facilities maintenance, technology and compliance. She has been with Girls Prep since 2010. Emilee attended the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University and graduated with an Ed.M. in Education Policy and Management. She also holds a B.S. in Child Development and Family Studies from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Emilee worked a brief stint at the central office of Boston Public Schools supporting teacher recruitment and certification.
Director of Student and Family Affairs
Kevin Harris is the Director of Student and Family Affairs at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. He manages and oversees the support for student and family affairs. He works closely with the staff to support teacher-student and teacher-parent communication and relationship building. Kevin has been with Girls Prep since 2011. Kevin Harris attended Graduate School at Northeastern University with a degree in College Student Development and Counseling. He attended undergraduate school at Boston University with a degree in Mass Communications and Public Relations.Prior to joining Girls Prep Kevin worked as the Dean of Students for the KIPPNYC College Preparatory High School.
Director of High School Admissions & College Completion
Alex is excited to continue her work as the Director of High School Admissions & College Completion. Alex joined the Girls Prep Middle School team in 2012. In her role, Alex strategically designs and leads our College Knowledge curriculum, high school admissions advising work with students and families, and develops external partnerships to support our girls on the road to and through high school and college. Alex earned a BA in English from St. Michael's College before moving back to New York City to join the NYC Teaching Fellows. After earning a MA in Secondary English Education and teaching in public high schools for several years, she transitioned into counseling and admissions while attending NYU for a MA in School Counseling & Guidance.
Director of Curriculum and Assessment
Catherine is the Director of Curriculum and Assessment at Girls Prep Middle School. At the middle school, Catherine supports the school with curriculum planning, instruction, and assessment. She also manages the club's program to ensure the students have access to engaging and meaningful extracurricular activities. She has been with Girls Prep since 2011. Catherine attended James Madison University earning a Bachelor of Science in psychology and attended Columbia University earning a Master in Public Administration and a Master in Social Work. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Catherine worked as a teacher and clinician in both Boston and Washington D.C. public schools. After completing her master degrees, she worked at the NYC Department of Education for two years as a project manager on knowledge management, periodic assessment, and the Common Core Standards.
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Fifth Grade CTT Teacher
Emily Adams is the Fifth Grade CTT Teacher at Girls Prep Middle School LES. She co-teaches with multiple teachers over many different subject areas. She joined Girls Prep's staff in 2011. Emily attended Washington College with a degree in Human Development, and Loyola Marymount University for her masters degree in Special Education. Prior to joining Girls Prep Emily taught high school at Media Arts and Entertainment HS in Los Angeles, CA. Emily is also the supervisor for the Girls Prep Garden Club.
Fifth Grade Mathematics Lead Teacher, STEM Department Chair, Math Instructional Coach
Aggie Amaral is the Fifth Grade Math Teacher, STEM department chair and math instructional coach at Girls Prep Middle School. She has been with Girls Prep for one year. Aggie attended Mercy College earning a B.S. in psychology with a minor in childhood education and a M.S. in Literacy. Currently Aggie is working toward a M.S. in mathematics leadership. Prior to joining Girls Prep Aggie spent five years teaching 5th and 6th grade math in Washington Heights including one year as a school lead in the NYC Common Core State Standards (CCSS) pilot. Aggie is passionate about making mathematics accessible and inspiring to all learners.
Fifth and Eighth Grade Science Teacher
Kara Buckley is the Fifth and Eighth Grade Science Teacher at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. Kara joined Girls Prep in 2012, and has been teaching since 2009. She attended Suffolk University and graduated with a B.S in Environmental Science and Biology. After college, Kara joined the Boston Teacher Residency which gave her the opportunity to train in an ESL-Science class and in a self-contained Special Ed classroom. She graduated from the University of Massachusetts-Boston with an M.S in Secondary Education and Massachusetts licensure in Science, Special Education, and ESL. Kara moved here this summer from Boston excited to teach at Girls Prep and live in New York City.
Sixth Grade ELA Lead Teacher
Alex Cardasis is the Sixth Grade ELA Teacher at Girls Prep Middle School. She is responsible for instructing scholars in reading comprehension, writing and vocabulary. Alex joined Girls Prep in 2012. Alex attended the University of Vermont with a dual degree in Political Science and English Literature and then joined the New York City Teaching Fellows program. Prior to joining Girls Prep, she taught for the past 8 years in the Bronx and Brooklyn.
Seventh Grade CTT Teacher
Leigh is the Seventh Grade CTT Teacher at Girls Prep Middle School. Leigh is responsible for teaching and collaborating with seventh grade teachers in a variety of ways to ensure scholars are getting as much support as necessary. Leigh joined Girls Prep in 2012. Leigh earned a bachelor's degree from Northern Arizona University in Women's and Gender Studies and a master's degree in Special Education from Loyola Marymount University. Prior to joining Girls Prep Leigh was a teacher at Dorsey High School in South Los Angeles.
Sixth Grade Mathematics Teacher
Snehal Desai is the Sixth Grade Math Teacher at Girls Prep Middle School LES. She has been with Girls Prep since August of 2011. Snehal attended University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Political Science, Anthropolgy, Women's Studies and Global Studies. Later she joined the NYC Teaching Fellows and received a Master's in Secondary Mathematics from City College of New York. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Snehal worked at two different public schools in the Bronx for 4 years.
Spanish and ESL Teacher
Jennifer DeStefano is the Spanish and English as a Second Language teacher for Grades 5-8 at Girls Prep LES Middle School. Jennifer joined Girls Prep in 2012. Ms. DeStefano has previously taught Spanish at the high school level as well as ESL to children and professional adults. This has allowed her to truly appreciate the importance of students developing a better world understanding through language. Ms. DeStefano’s multicultural upbringing has fueled her passion for culture and language. She believes that it is important for us to have empathy for one another, especially culturally, and is eager to instill those moral values in her students while supporting them in their acquisition of a second language. It is her hope to create a classroom experience that becomes each student’s first step toward a richer life. Ms. DeStefano has studied at Universidad de Montevideo, Uruguay, has a B.A. in Spanish and Secondary Education from St. Joseph’s College, and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in the TESOL program at Hunter College.
Seventh Grade Mathematics Teacher
Alex Perl is the Seventh Grade Math Teacher at Girls Prep LES Middle School. Alex joined Girls Prep in 2012. In college, Alex had her own single-sex education experience as a student at Barnard, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in economics with a minor in psychology. Currently, she is working on her master’s degree in teaching. Alex has previously taught middle school math at Brooklyn Center Junior/Senior High School in Minnesota and at Achievement First East New York Middle School.
Eighth Grade English Language Arts, Humanities Department Chair
Mr. Farkosh is the Eighth Grade ELA Teacher and Humanities Department Chair. Mr. Farkosh left the scorching sun of the Phoenix desert for the greatest city in the world, where he has been teaching middle school ELA (and a little bit of French) since 2011. Mr. Farkosh is a proud graduate of Montgomery County Public Schools (Maryland), and earned his B.A. from Arizona State University magna cum laude before joining Teach For America in Phoenix. There he taught high school English and coached swimming and women’s tennis, while completing a master’s degree in secondary education.
Eighth Grade Mathematics and Algebra Regents Teacher
Rob is the Eight Grade Math Teacher,in addition to teaching an algebra regents course at Girls Prep LES Middle School and helps steer its Mathletes Club. He joined Girls Prep in 2011, teaching seventh grade mathematics, and earned his Master's Degree in Mathematics Education from City College New York, certified in grades 5 - 9. He also earned a Master's degree in Education from the University of Cincinnati and matriculated at Georgetown University, Xavier University, and Union Institute and University en route to his BA in Business. Rob has taught middle school mathematics in New York City since 2007 and before that managed programming in inner-city Cincinnati to support children by co-creating projects in which they could beautify and enrich their communities.
Seventh Grade ELA Teacher
Jessica Goldberg is the Seventh Grade ELA Teacher at Girls Prep LES Middle school. Ms. Goldberg joined Girls Prep in 2012, and will help navigate the sophisticated world of upper middle school literacy in a rigorous and entertaining manner. Ms. Goldberg attended The University of Arizona with a degree in Psychology and English and then joined Teach for America. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Jessica was a founding teacher at a middle school in Brooklyn and taught fifth grade, along with being her school’s Literacy Department Chair.
Fifth Grade ELA Teacher
Kate Johnson is the Fifth Grade ELA Teacher at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. This will be Kate's second year teaching 5th grade ELA at Girls Prep MS. Kate graduated with honors from the University of Missouri with a degree in Elementary Education (K-6). Prior to teaching at Girls Prep, Kate worked as a substitute elementary teacher in charter schools across New York City. She is excited to share her love of reading and writing to all of her 5th grade scholars this year!
Sixth and Seventh Grade Social Studies Teacher and Sixth Grade Team Leaser
Leslie Keller is the Sixth and Seventh Grade Social Studies Teacher and Sixth Grade Team Leader at Girls Prep LES Middle School. She joined the Girls Prep team in 2010. Leslie attended the University of Vermont where she earned a degree in Political Science with a minor in Speech and Debate. She also attended the University of Vermont Master's program for Middle Level Education. Prior to joining Girls Prep LES Middle School Leslie taught for two years in Milton, Vermont teaching 7th and 8th grade Humanities. She also coached debate at the high school level.
Eighth Grade CTT Teacher
Sarah Knotts is the Eighth Grade CTT Teacher at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. Sarah joined Public Prep in 2012 after three years of teaching special education and mathematics to bilingual students in Hunts Point, Bronx. Before moving to New York City, Sarah earned her Bachleor of Arts in Political Science and Spanish Language from New College of Florida, where she was awarded alternate for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Spain. During her time at New College, Sarah received funding to teach English to children in Cai Cay, Peru. This experience fostered a love for education, inspiring her to join the New York City Teaching Fellows in 2009. While teaching, Sarah completed her Masters of Science in Secondary Special Education and Bilingual Extension from City College of New York. Sarah is fluent in Spanish and is passionate about the English language learners with whom she works.
Sixth and Seventh Grade Science Teacher
Zach is the sixth and seventh grade science teacher. Zach brings extensive content knowledge of science, including a master’s degree in science education and teaching experience at high-performing schools. Mr.Margolis has already started work with our scholars on science experiments and looks forward to continuing to develop their interest in science over the second half of the year.
Fifth and Eighth Grade Social Studies Teacher
Jennie Reist is the Fifth and Eighth Grade Social Studies Teacher at Girls Prep LES Middle School. Jennie joined Girls Prep in 2012. She has a Master's Degree in teaching ESL from Lehman College and a Bachelor's Degree in Secondary Education with a focus in Social Studies from Penn State University. Prior to teaching at Girls Prep, Jennie taught Global History at Academy for Young Writers in Brooklyn, NY.
Sixth Grade Mathematics CTT Teacher
Alexis is the Sixth Grade CTT Teacher at Girls Prep Middle School. In this role, works closely with the girls, ensuring they're getting the most out of their academics and setting them up for success in middle school, hight school, college and beyond. Alexis joined Girls Prep in 2011. She graduated from Boston College with a degree in Communications, and received her Master's of Science in Special Education from Hunter College. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Alexis taught for two years in the South Bronx. Before teaching, Alexis spent nearly eight years as a television news producer with MSNBC at NBC News, covering all of the major news stories of the decade.
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Aubrey Hetznecker is the Visual Arts Instructor at Girls Prep Middle School. At the middle school, Aubrey engages students in a variety of mediums (awesome projects planned for this year!). Aubrey is dedicated to bringing art to life through cross curriculum content that focuses on process, creativity and communication, historical, social and cultural traditions, and critical analysis. Aubrey attended Cornell University earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in sculpture and is currently attending Columbia University Teachers College for her masters in Art and Art Education. Prior to teaching at Girls Prep, Aubrey taught visual arts in Denver, Colorado. Aubrey joined Girls Prep in 2011 and is excited to continue engaging students in the arts!
Physical Education and Health Instructor
Kristine Ferreira is happy to be a part of the Girls Prep Middle School team! Ms. Ferreira was a competitive cheerleader whose team placed 3rd in the nation and was shown on ESPN, The Travel Channel, and Good Morning America. Her athleticism grew when she became a certified group exercise instructor and personal trainer. She possesses certifications in CPR, First Aid, Zumba, Kickboxing, AFAA Group Exercise & Personal Training. Ms. Ferreira attended College at Oneonta graduating with a communications degree. It was when she began teaching various fitness classes, personal training, and coaching Varsity Cheerleading and gymnastics in Westchester when she decided this was what she wanted to embark her future in. She further pursued her studies in Physical Education from Queens College and is close to completion of her Health Certification.
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Raisa Capellan is the Office Manager at Girls Prep Middle School. At the middle school she supports with daily operations, facilities, ordering, and other staff, parent, and student related needs. She joined Girls Prep in 2010 shortly after graduating college. Raisa attended Utica College with a degree in Accounting and is currently working on her Master's from Long Island University-Brooklyn in Public Administration.
Emily George is the School Counselor at Girls Prep Middle School. Emily focuses on supporting the social and emotional needs of students and their families in order to enhance academic success. She graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a dual degree in Psychology and French. As a New York City Teaching Fellow, Emily received her Master of Science in Education from Hunter College. Following her years teaching at P.S. 101 in East Harlem, she returned to graduate school to complete her Master of Social Work at NYU. Emily then worked as School Social Worker at Ross Global Academy Charter School, and joined the Girls Prep LES Middle School team in 2011.
Technology and Innovation Coordinator
Amy Hobson is the Technology and Innovation Coordinator at Girls Prep Middle School. Amy is helping our students become global scholars by teaching them the 21st century technology skills needed to build critical thinking. Amy also assists faculty on integrating technology into their curriculum. Amy joined Girls Prep in 2011 with a background of over 15 years as an educator. She has been an elementary school classroom teacher, technology teacher, and taught conversational English in an academic high school in Sasebo, Japan. Amy has a Bachelor of Arts in Photography from St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas and a Master of Science in Education and Special Education from Touro College.
Learning Specialist Coordinator
Casey Lamb is the Learning Specialist Coordinator at Girls Prep Middle School. In this role, she manages the special education program for the school, supports teachers in differentiating instruction to meet all learners, and facilitates the Child Study Team. Casey joined Girls Prep in 2011. Casey attended Pomona College, where she studied Public Policy Analysis and Psychology. She also has a Masters degree in Special Education from Grand Canyon University. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Casey taught at Woodland Middle School in East Point, Georgia, and worked as the Director of Student Support Services at Ivy Prep Academy, the first all girls charter school in the state of Georgia.
Kinna LeBlanc works as a School Aid a part of the Operations team at Girls Prep Middle School where she provides student and operational support to the Girls Prep community, this will be her first year with Girls Prep. Kinna attended Kingsborough College and graduated with a degree in Graphic Design and illustration. Prior to Joining Girls Prep Kinna spent 5 years creating, operating and implementing successful after-school programs for teens and middle school youth, across Brooklyn. Kinna's vision is to always be the bridge that connects the social norms for young people helping to develop well rounded adults. Kinna also has experience working with Special Education populations as a para-professional for the New York Department of Education.
Cynthia joined Girls Prep LES Middle School in 2011. She is excited to be in the Administrative Assistant role and working with the girls and parents again. Cynthia recently graduated from Mercy College with her BA in Behavioral Science. Cynthia is now pursuing her Master of Science degree in School Counseling at New York Institute of Technology.
Tiffani is the School Aide at Girls Prep Middle School. As a School Aide, she provides additional support to both teachers, students, and the student support staff. Tiffani joined Girls Prep in 2012. Tiffani graduated with a bachelor's degree in Sociology at the College of Mount St. Vincent in May 2011. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Tiffani worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the Upper East Side. She has a variety of experiences in working with the youth through her volunteering within her community.
Lisselot Monegro is the Family Coordinator at Girls Prep Middle School. She is responsible of strenghthening the connection between home and school.Lisselot joined Public Prep in 2007. Prior to working at Girls Prep Lisselot worked at Edison School as an administrative staff for 6 years. Lisselot is bi-lingual in English and spanish and chose Girls Prep because, "Being able to see the faces of the children and families I serve makes a big difference."
Kaitlyn is the Learning Specialist at Girls Prep Middle School. In her role she provides academic intervention and counseling service to students in grades 5-8. As a learning specialist Kaitlyn also helps advocate, refer and acquire supports for students through collaboration with teachers and service providers. Kaitlyn joined Girls Prep in 2011. She attended Loyola University Chicago with a degree in Psychology and Human Service and Northwestern University with a Masters degree in Marital and Family Therapy. She also attended Hunter College earning a second Masters degree in Special Education. Prior to joining Girls Prep Kaitlyn taught in two different public schools in Astoria and the Bronx. She also worked as a clinical case manager for the Childrens Home and Aid Society providing early intervention services for at risk children outside of Chicago, IL.
Reading Specialist and Fifth Grade Level Leader
Lacy is the reading specialist and fifth grade level leader at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School. As the Reading Specialist Lacy helps create, maintain, and administer reading interventions for grades 5-8. She also coordinates the administration and data collection of numerous formal reading assessments. Lacy's job as Reading Specialist also give her the opportunity to work directly with teachers to ensure that the needs of all readers are being met. Lacy attended The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA with a BA in Women's and Gender Studies. She has been at Girls Prep since 2011. Prior to joining Girls Prep, Lacy was a teacher through Teach For America in Hartford, CT. After teaching in Hartford, Lacy moved to New York City to attend Columbia University where she graduated with an MA and Literacy Specialist Certificate. After graduating from Columbia, Lacy then went on to teach at a charter school in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Lacy is excited to continue to build a culture of reading throughout the school.
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