Staff Directory


Kindergarten
  • Rosemarie Biocarles-Rydeen
    
    Rosemarie Biocarles-Rydeen
    Rosemarie Biocarles-Rydeen
    Kindergarten Teacher


    When Rosemarie came home from her first day of Kindergarten, she exclaimed to her father, “I want to be a teacher when I grow up!”  Her first teaching experiences were during her own summer breaks, where as an elementary student herself, she set up her own “classroom” and taught her preschool aged cousins their letters, sounds, colors, and shapes. Her love of teaching has never left.  She went on to attend San Diego State University where she graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Studies (Theatre Specialization), a Multiple Subject CLAD Credential, and a Master’s Degree in Policy Studies in Language and Cross-Cultural Education.  She spent nine years in the Chula Vista Elementary School District as a Primary Grade Teacher, Mentor Teacher, and Instructional Leader.  She became part of HTeCV's founding faculty as a Kindergarten teacher in 2011.

    As a South Bay San Diego native, she is passionate about teaching and learning in multicultural and multilingual settings.  Growing up in a bilingual home nurtured her love of words and language.  She is constantly thinking of fun and innovative ways to develop the language and literacy of her young students.  She is a fierce advocate of play based learning and is inspired by the schools of Reggio Emilia, social constructivist teaching practices, and the Forest Kindergarten movement.

    In addition to teaching, the great loves of Rosemarie’s life include her husband, Eric and their children Taylor and Ben .  She also enjoys coffee and dessert dates, nature walks, and searching for rocks and minerals with her son.
  • Jeanine Blum
    
    Jeanine Blum
    Jeanine Blum
    Kindergarten Teacher


    Hi Friends! My name is Ms. Jeanine and I was born and raised right here in lovely San Diego! I attend the University of California, San Diego where I earned a B.S. in Biology. After college, my desire to travel took me abroad to teach English in Thailand. That experience helped solidify my decision to become an educator so I enrolled at San Diego State University, and in 2009 I earned my Multiple Subject Credential. After finishing school I began my career as a K-5 substitute teacher, working all over with the San Diego Unified School District. During that time I also was a tutor for Sylvan Learning Center, a Mad Science Instructor and then a preschool teacher! But I was still looking for something, that extra special something, a school to call my own...

    As soon as I stepped foot inside High Tech Elementary in January 2013, I knew this was were I was meant to be! Never had I experienced such a positive learning environment, the energy was tangible! I noticed right away how the students, families, and staff here at HTe have created the most amazing atmosphere of collaboration, respect, and meaningful learning - it truly is an amazing place and it continues to inspire me every day! Teaching Kindergarten is my dream. It is by far my favorite grade and the best part is watching all the amazing growth and development our students go through during this single, but hugely important year!

    I have always loved our vibrant city, full of culture and so many things to do, and I especially love the amazing natural spaces San Diego has to offer. I try to get outdoors to take advantage of that as much as possible - and I encourage my students and families to do the same! I grew up next to the ocean and have never been able to drift too far from it. Not surprisingly, teaching ocean science - or any science topics really - continues to be my passion. I also have a great appreciation for music and love attending live concerts. When I am not at school, you might catch me and my family enjoying San Diego's nice weather on a hike through Mission Trails, people watching at a local street fair, traveling around our big blue beautiful planet, or hanging out with our dogs down by the water!
  • Angelica Kenny
    
    Angelica Kenny
    Angelica Kenny
    Kindergarten Teacher


    Hello! My name is Angelica Kenny and I am thrilled to be joining the High Tech Elementary Chula Vista kindergarten team this school year! I knew I wanted to be an educator at a young age- taking after my aunt (who is still a teacher in Long Beach today). When I was hired as a teacher right after college I knew I had found my calling. For the last 8 years I have been a kindergarten teacher to so many wonderful and unique children in Washington, D.C. Every day I make sure to bring joy to my classroom by prioritizing learning through play. I am inspired by High Tech’s dedication to project-based learning and I cannot wait to learn and grow with my new students!

    I was born and raised in Queens, NY so I will always be a city girl at heart. After attending college in Massachusetts, I moved to D.C. to become a teacher. I have called the District my home since 2010 and I have loved every minute of it. Now I am moving cross-country to sunny San Diego with my partner Alex and our new kitten Max. I couldn’t be more excited to start this new chapter in my life.
1st Grade
  • Raquel Alcalá
    
    Raquel Alcalá
    Raquel Alcalá
    3rd Grade Teacher


    Hello friends! My name is Raquel Alcala and I am a Kindergarten Teacher at High Tech Elementary. I was born in Caracas, Venezuela and moved to San Diego with my family when I was five years old. Ever since I could remember, I’ve always wanted to be a teacher; I love learning, I love school and I want to share that love with others. I took a detour in my path to becoming a teacher and received my degree in Business Administration from the University of San Diego, always knowing that I would go back to school to get my teaching credential. While in school, I started my professional journey in working with children at the YMCA as a Youth Leader and as a Teaching Artist for CYT@school. After graduating I explored my business degree in corporate America, but quickly realized I had to go back to working and inspiring children.

    In January of 2015, I was hired at HTeCV as an Academic Coach in Kindergarten, then went on to receive my Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at High Tech High's Graduate School of Education while working at HTeCV as an Apprentice Teacher. I started my career as a classroom teacher in the Point Loma campus as a Kindergarten teacher, and had the opportunity to transfer back last year to the Chula Vista campus as a 1st grade teacher.

    An inspirational quote that resonates with my teaching philosophy is, “I want to inspire people. I want someone to look at me and say, ‘Because of you I didn't give up’". I hope to inspire students to love learning, to explore, to wonder, to work together, to see the priceless value of education and to be excited to walk into our classroom everyday! Every student deserves the opportunity to learn, grow and make progress; I hope to provide an engaging, hands-on learning experiencing in a nurturing, organized and peaceful environment. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my loved ones, exploring the many delicious restaurants San Diego has to offer and relaxing by practicing yoga, listening to music and dancing.
  • Ruby Rodrigues
    
    Ruby Rodrigues
    Ruby Rodrigues
    1st Grade Teacher


    Ruby Rodrigues attended the University of San Diego and was fortunate to experience studying abroad in Viña del Mar, Chile and Guadalajara, Mexico. She graduated from USD with a B.A. in Liberal Studies and a concentration in the Spanish Language and Latin American cultures, as well as a BCLAD teaching credential.

    Ruby's first years teaching took place in the Bay Area as a founding teacher at a dual-immersion charter school. After teaching there for three years, the opening of High Tech Elementary Chula Vista in 2011 drew her back to San Diego. In 2015, Ruby was also a founding teacher at High Tech Elementary in Point Loma and then returned to her beloved Chula Vista campus in 2016. All three of those experiences, helping to open schools and build the culture and community were so rich and valuable! Ruby loves being a part of the High Tech community and being surrounded by extremely passionate and inspiring colleagues.

    As an educator, Ruby is passionate and thoughtful about building a happy, strong, and supportive classroom culture in which students feel safe to take risks, learn from mistakes, explore their wonderings, seek critique, and create beautiful and meaningful work together. Ruby also strongly values collaboration with teachers and parents as well as experts in and around the community who can help enrich project experiences for her students.

    Outside of school Ruby enjoys adventuring and exploring with her husband and two young daughters. Seeing the world through their eyes brings her such joy and gratitude. Some of their favorite places to play and learn are, The New Children's Museum, The San Diego Zoo, the beach, and the San Diego Botanic Gardens.
  • Jami Saville
    
    Jami Saville
    Jami Saville
    1st Grade Teacher


    Jami Saville is a Southern California native who was born and raised in Hermosa Beach.  Raised by two Deaf parents, Jami learned how to sign before she could speak! She graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s degree in Education.  A beach girl at heart, she returned to California to get her teaching credential and Masters in Education from UCLA.  Jami began her career as an educator in South Los Angeles as a kindergarten teacher.

    In 2006, she found herself traveling to San Diego to visit friends so often that she decided to just move on down!  Before coming to the High Tech High organization, Jami taught kindergarten and 2nd grade in the San Diego Unified School District.  In 2011, she was one of the founding teachers at High Tech Elementary, Chula Vista and in 2015, she was a founding teacher at High Tech Elementary in Point Loma.  It has been an amazing and rewarding experience to open two schools, collaborate with such positive teachers and build exceptional relationships with students and their families.

    Jami is excited to be a first grade teacher here at HTeCV!  She loves the transformation that happens during this year of school. The students grow so much in all areas and it is wonderful to witness.

    When Jami is not teaching and learning with her students, she loves spending quality time with her husband, Eric and her two boys, Evan and Levi. Jami's happy places are Target, the beach and Starbucks. ;-)
2nd Grade
  • Simone Banks
    
    Simone Banks
    Simone Banks
    2nd Grade Teacher


    Hello! My name is Simone Banks and I am so excited for another amazing year in  2nd grade at HTeCV. I grew up in beautiful San Diego, California and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Child Development from San Jose State University in 2015 and a Master of Education in Teaching from Alliant International University.

    Through my time at SJSU, I developed a passion for working with students in both an educational and outdoor setting. I began my career working as a Swim Instructor for 3 years. After graduating from SJSU, I moved back to SD and decided to pursue an education career. I taught an wonderdul Pre-school classroom for 2 years, and also worked as Physical Education teacher for 1 year. In 2016, I began my wonderful journey at HteCV as an Academic Coach in 1st grade. Since then, I have worked throughout the K-5 classrooms, and I have loved every minute of it.

    When I am not teaching, I enjoy spending time with my 3 sisters and relaxing at home. I am a huge Netflix & Hulu fan! I also love to swim, go to the beach, cook, shopping, and napping. I am so excited to continue my journey teaching with the amazing High Tech community.
  • Joyce Park
    
    This is a placeholder image of Joyce Park
    Joyce Park
    2nd Grade Teacher


    The most fun and rewarding aspect of teaching is getting to really know your students and building meaningful relationships that help them feel successful in and outside of school. The special bond I had with my own 3rd grade teacher is one that I will always cherish and also use to drive how I interact with children everyday. As an educator, I am so fortunate to have the opportunity to do what I love as my job everyday.

    I spent nearly my entire childhood growing up in Walnut, a city located in Southern California. When it was time to go to college, I decided to attend UC Berkeley for my undergraduate studies with a focus on Psychology and Education.

    Immediately after graduating, I joined Teach For America to fight for education equity in underserved communities. This brought me to Brownsville Ascend Charter School, in Brooklyn, New York. During this time, I also earned my Masters from Relay Graduate School of Education. For 4 years I worked in partnership with my colleagues, families, and unforgettable students.

    Although I grew so much as an educator in New York, I felt in my heart that it was time to go back home --to California. For the past 3 years, I have called Chula Vista home and cannot wait to start my fourth year at High Tech Elementary Chula Vista as the Math Coach.
  • Maria Schaffer
    
    Maria Schaffer
    Maria Schaffer
    2nd Grade Teacher


    Maria Schaffer is an experienced classroom teacher who will be transitioning into the role of Education Specialist Intern next school year.  She has been a part of the High Tech High community for 9 years.  She began as a 6th grade Humanities teacher at High Tech Middle in Point Loma before joining the Chula Vista campus 4 years ago where she has taught both 5th and 2nd grade.

    Maria grew up in New York where she attended the University at Albany, State University of New York where she studied Journalism and English. While in college, she volunteered at a local high school where she discovered her love for teaching. After deciding to go back to school to purse this career, Maria moved to San Diego, California to attend the University of San Diego (USD).  At USD, Maria earned her teaching certifications and Master of Arts Degree in Curriculum and Teaching.

    Outside of teaching, Maria enjoys spending time with her daughter, family, friends, and adorable pets, as well as, cooking, being active, reading and watching movies.

    Teaching is more than a career to Maria, it is her passion. She is thrilled that she gets to spend her days sharing her love of learning with her students. She can't wait for another inspiring, challenging and fantastic school year!
  • Matt Sheelen
    
    Matt Sheelen
    Matt Sheelen
    2nd Grade Teacher


    Originally from the East Coast, I slowly began my trek westward with my first stop in Illinois where I attended Northwestern University. While there, I studied Theatre and spent significant time in the field of Creative Drama using the arts to integrate into schools to provide a more holistic learning experience for children.

    After college, I headed out to Los Angeles where I worked with non-profits the Story Pirates and Young Storytellers focusing on providing arts education to underserved populations in LA. With the Young Storytellers, I led a group of 10 writers in mentoring fifth graders in the writing of original screenplays. My love for theatre and education took me to Italy for 3 summers to work for an organization called ACLE that providing English education using Theatre techniques to Italian children. Eventually, I felt the pull to San Diego and worked as the Education Program Manager as the San Diego Junior Theatre in Balboa Park. I taught classes and directed camp programming for the organization. I attended graduate school at Stanford in their Teacher Education Program (STEP).

    I am thrilled to be teaching second grade for a second year after three years teaching first grade at High Tech Elementary Chula Vista! When I am not teaching, I can be found hiking, performing & teaching improv comedy, having game nights with friends, and sailing. I love food except foods with gluten and dairy (so everything) who are my enemies! Looking forward to a tremendous year!

    "Matt is the most hilarious and charming eldest son I have." - my Mother
3rd Grade
  • Candice Arancibia
    
    Candice Arancibia
    Candice Arancibia
    3rd Grade Teacher


  • Paul North
    
    Paul North
    Paul North
    3rd Grade Teacher


    A native of the United Kingdom, Paul moved to North Carolina as a teenager and has lived in the United States ever since. After earning a B.A. in Dramatic Art from UNC-Chapel Hill, Paul joined Teach for America and taught fifth grade for two years in Camden, NJ. After fulfilling a lifelong ambition to travel around the world, Paul returned to Chapel Hill, where he worked with a special education team and co-directed an interactive theater troupe at UNC. In 2013, Paul moved to San Diego to work at High Tech Elementary and study with High Tech High's Graduate School of Education. A graduate of the Teacher Leadership M.Ed. Program, Paul loves teaching and learning with the students, families, and educators at High Tech Elementary. As a third grade teacher, he is eager to help children build a strong learning community, pursue their fierce wonderings, and create beautiful work. Paul enjoys soccer, comedy, and reading, especially children’s books.
  • Lisa Saldias
    
    Lisa Saldias
    Lisa Saldias
    3rd Grade Teacher


    Lisa is overjoyed to be teaching Third Grade at HTeCV this year! She is passionate about co-creating a community of learners within the classroom and inspiring students to realize the best versions of themselves. This will be Lisa's third year on the 3rd Grade Team at HTeCV. Lisa has also taught Kindergarten and Second Grade in Miami, Florida with Teach For America.

    Raised in San Diego County, Lisa is the first in her family to graduate from college. She earned a B.A. in Sociology with minors in Spanish and Leadership from the University of San Diego. Lisa loves continually learning. In fact, she is a recent graduate of High Tech High's Graduate School of Education Master of Educational Leadership program.

    Lisa loves traveling the world to experience different cultures. While in school she was able to study in Spain, Mexico, and Chile. While not teaching, Lisa enjoys reading, spending time in nature, and practicing yoga.
4th Grade
  • Amanda Borow
    
    Amanda Borow
    Amanda Borow
    4th Grade Teacher


    Hello! My name is Amanda Borow and I am excited to be continuing with the 4th grade team at HTeCV. I have greatly enjoyed working with 4th grade students over the last few years at HTeCV and look forward to making connections with my future fourth grade students and their families.

    I believe that education can empower students to critically engage with the world around them as life long learners. I view the classroom as a space in which students not only work to develop their skills as readers, writers, mathematicians and scientists but also as members of a community and society. I am excited to share my love of questions with my students - I believe that questions are the foundation of learning in all disciplines and will encourage curiosity and exploration in my classroom.

    I believe that each child deserves to feel a sense of belonging in their community and should be confident in their own identity. In our classroom we celebrate and explore diversity to cultivate students’ empathy and compassion for everyone and their ability to respect how others might be different from themselves! Social justice focused projects allows our students to deepen their understanding of themselves, ideas of justice and and how they can make changes in the world around them.

    I am looking forward to the learning adventures we will have together!

    Amanda
  • Katie Meyers
    
    Katie Meyers
    Katie Meyers
    4th Grade Teacher


    Hello! My name is Katie and I'm so thrilled to continue working with 4th graders at HTeCV.  I first joined the High Tech High community in March 2014 working in inclusion as an Academic Coach at High Tech Middle before pursuing her passion of working with elementary students. I graduated with a degree in World History from UC Riverside, so if you’re looking for conversation about the Roman Empire, look no further.  As an educator, I am passionate about building a classroom community that is supportive, engaging, and fun. I love connecting with my students and I strive to create a space where students feel safe taking risks to help them grow as learners.  When I am not in the classroom, you can find me playing or coaching volleyball, traveling, cooking, and spending times with friends and family. I love the community here and look forward to another wonderful year with amazing students and families!
5th Grade
  • Avery Barnes
    
    Avery Barnes
    Avery Barnes
    5th Grade Teacher


    Avery Barnes joins High Tech High Chula Vista this fall as a fifth grade teacher. After five years of teaching in New York City, Avery moves back to the west coast to be closer to her family in San Diego and Baja California, México. 
     
    Before coming to HTH, Avery taught fifth grade at private schools in New York City. Her time at LREI (Little Red School House and Elisabeth Irwin High School), a progressive, activism-driven school, and Avenues: The World School, a language immersion school, only furthered her passion for teaching in student-centered environments. Avery is keenly interested in project-based learning that pushes students to learn through exploration. She works to foster a positive community in her classroom that is conducive to risk-taking.  
     
    Before discovering her love for working with fifth graders, Avery was a high school English Literature teacher at Bronx High School of Science in New York City. She also taught high school English classes in Berkeley and worked to create ACT and SAT Essentials courses for The People’s Test Preparation Services, an organization committed to providing free standardized test preparation to underserved communities across the East Bay.
     
    Outside of the classroom, Avery spends a lot of time writing short stories and poetry. She has journalistic experience with magazines and school newspapers. Doodling, spending time with her family and friends, having long meals, the beach, and going to Target are a few of her favorite activities. She’s a fan of Haruki Murakami and reads surrealism any chance she gets. 
     
    Avery has a B.A. in English from the University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley, CA) and an M.A. in English Education from Teachers College, Columbia University (New York, NY) and is a native Spanish speaker.
  • Ciara Plackett
    
    Ciara Plackett
    Ciara Plackett
    5th Grade Teacher


Exploratory Team
  • Shar Garcia
    
    Shar Garcia
    Shar Garcia
    Engineering Teacher


    I grew up in Tijuana, Mexico with a loving family always surrounded by animals. After finishing middle school, I started volunteering for a non-profit organization painting with children of all ages. There I knew I wanted to spend as much time as possible working with children. Since then, I’ve always tried to find ways to get involved in workshops, orphanages and underserved communities with the mission of giving children access to the joys of Art.

    After graduating from UCSD with a B.A. in Studio Art I began working at HTeCV’s after school program right when the school first opened.  After a couple of years as an after school instructor I had the awesome opportunity to support students in first grade as an Academic Coach. From there I began working towards earning my Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at High Tech High’s Graduate School of Education.  

    From 2015-18 In HTeCV I’ve worked as an intern for kindergarten, as a long-term substitute teacher for second grade and as an art teacher in the exploratory block. It has been an amazing journey in which I’ve been able to work and collaborate with a community that has given me the chance to support and encourage our students to be the best they can be.

    I am super excited to come back this year as a First Grade Teacher joining the amazing Ms. Ruby and Ms.Jami! As always, my hope is to get to know each child as a learner, collaborator,   explorer and dreamer. I feel passionate about creating a safe and rich environment where the learning is visible and where it is safe for students to take risks, innovate, feel that their contributions matter and not only get excited but stay excited about learning.
  • Amber George
    
    Amber George
    Amber George
    Fine Arts Teacher


    I am so excited to begin my ninth year of teaching art at HTeCV! I love our community and consider it an honor to watch your children grow up over the years in my classroom. I enjoy watching their creativity blossom as I design projects and art experiences for them that develop critical thinking skills, growth mindset, and grit.

     
  • Latanya Lockett
    
    Latanya Lockett
    Latanya Lockett
    Performing Arts Teacher


    Latanya has been teaching dance, choir, and musical theatre for most of her life. She comes from a strong musical background; performing and touring both locally and internationally. Throughout her professional career she has taught many forms of dance, show choir, and voice to children from Kindergarten through 12th grade.  Latanya is also the founder of the San Diego Jr. Glee Club, a performing show choir full of young singers and dancers.   Her motto is "Building Self Esteem through Self Expression!"

    Latanya is really big on building community and loves being a High Tech Village mom as well! Latanya is starting her 8th year as a founding member of HTeCV and her daughter will be a HTHCV freshman!
Academic Support
  • Yesenia Aguayo
    
    Yesenia Aguayo
    Yesenia Aguayo


  • Michelle Alcoba
    
    Michelle Alcoba
    Michelle Alcoba


  • Janna Anderson
    
    Janna Anderson
    Janna Anderson
    Instructional Support


    Janna joined the High Tech High organization in 2011 as a second grade teacher the founding year of HTe Chula Vista. She is beyond excited to be rejoining the HTeCV team as a Literacy Specialist after spending three years at HTePL.  Janna enjoys trying to build projects that strive to satisfy children's innate curiosity and desire to explore the world around them.
     
    Janna attended Bowling Green State University in Ohio and studied abroad in France, Canada, and on a Semester at Sea program while earning a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with minors in French and Psychology. Upon graduation, Janna taught English in Japan and moved to San Diego for the beautiful weather and beaches and fell in love with the city. She's taught several elementary grades at San Diego’s Language Academy in French immersion classrooms for seven years. During this time, Janna also earned a master’s degree in Teacher Leadership from High Tech High Graduate School of Education in 2010.
     
    In Janna’s free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and playing with her baby girl. She loves traveling to new and exciting destinations, running, swimming at the beach, or curling up with a good book.
  • Judy Asiong
    
    Judy Asiong
    Judy Asiong


    The path that led me to Education came to me in a very roundabout way. As a little girl, I knew I wanted to be a teacher. By the time I finished high school, I decided to take a completely different route and after many grueling years of studying numbers, codes and formulas, I graduated with my Electrical Engineering degree from San Diego State University.

    For seven years, I programmed hardware and absolutely loved it! And after having 2 kids, experiencing being a SAHM (code for stay-at-home-mom), and having my own wedding biz, I finally decided that I wanted to pursue what I knew was always in my heart... working with children.

    My journey into education started when I had the honor and privilege to be part of HTe/HTMCV's founding staff when they opened in 2011-2012. I completed the HTH Credentialing Program as an Education Specialist and I've continued to support our students academically, socially, and behaviorally. I've developed a true passion for our "littles" and am extremely excited to be part of HTeCV 7.0 as the kindergarten team's Ed Specialist for the 2018-2019 school year!
  • Martiza Betancourt
    
    Martiza Betancourt
    Martiza Betancourt
    Literacy Interventionist


    Maritza Betancourt has a passion for helping children reach their full potential and build confidence.She believes that every child is capable of reaching any goal that they set their mind to. She is from San Diego, but her past experiences working in education has taken her to exciting places. Before joining High Tech Elementary Chula Vista team as an Academic Coach for 2nd grade, Maritza worked for Selma Unified School District at Fresno County. She was a Bilingual Instructional Aide for Kindergarten for five years and later she had the opportunity to work for the Hawaii Department of Education in the Island of Oahu for almost 5 years as a Special Education Instructional Aide. This was a great experience for her! Not only did she enjoyed the beauty of the Island but also their culture and customs.

    Since life is really a journey, nine years after residing in Hawaii, she went back to San Diego. It was not an easy transition. She had mixed emotions since she had left people that she had bonded with, especially children that she watched grow, physically and academically, in those nine years.

    Her passion for children continue to grow and decided to teach enrichment classes for children from ages 2 through 6 years old. These classes were, art, ballet and gym.

    On her free time, Maritza enjoys dancing, cake decorating, home interior decorating and most of all, spending time with her two sons and husband.
  • Kiaonno Bradley
    
    Kiaonno Bradley
    Kiaonno Bradley


    Kiaonno is a San Diego native and will be an Education Specialist supporting first and second grade next year. She attended all women’s college in the Bay Area, where she majored in Pre-Law. After graduating college in 2013, she joined Teach for America in Sacramento, California. She has experience teaching students in all grades K-12. Kiaonno received her credential and Masters in Special Education from Loyola Marymount University in 2015. This upcoming year will be her seventh year teaching special education and third year at HTeCV.

    Kiaonno is passionate about showing all students the joy of reading and is currently working with the SPED admin to become a certified WRS trainer. She looks forward to helping students learn what type of readers they are, what types of things they enjoy reading about as well as how they can challenge themselves to become even stronger readers.

    Outside of HTeCV Kiaonno enjoys listening to audiobooks, podcast, working out and exploring San Diego with her toddler.
  • Brian Burr
    
    Brian Burr
    Brian Burr
    Inclusion Specialist Intern


    Brian Burr believes that education is an opportunity for growth and development. He creates an environment that supports children as they explore and “fail forward”- those moments where learning happens, just not on the first try. Brian believes that success in learning happens through multiple attempts and structured guided experiences.
    Brian has worked in the High Tech system for the last five years. He started off his career path at High Tech in inclusion as an academic coach. Brian has also taught fifth and third grade during those five years. In this role, Brian has continued to focus on students that needed extra supports.
    This year, he will take on a new role as an inclusion specialist intern. After teaching for the last two years, he is excited to get back to his inclusion roots. He loves supporting students as they guide their ways through their educational paths.
    Originally from Connecticut, Brian has called San Diego home for the last 20 years. He enjoys the outdoors and spending time with his wife, his young child, and his puppy. He also enjoys traveling and learning about other cultures.
  • Molly Gabbard
    
    This is a placeholder image of Molly Gabbard
    Molly Gabbard


  • Benjamin Juarez
    
    Benjamin Juarez
    Benjamin Juarez


  • Toi Littlejohn
    
    This is a placeholder image of Toi Littlejohn
    Toi Littlejohn


  • Meagan Makapugay
    
    Meagan Makapugay
    Meagan Makapugay


    Hello! My name is Meagan Makapugay & this is my second school year working here at High Tech Elementary in Chula Vista. I am excited for what this year has to offer! Being a part of the Inclusion Team has not only allowed me to work one-on-one with students, but to work closely amongst all students and staff with their needs.

    Here's a little bit about myself...

    I was born and raised in Palm Springs, CA. In 2011, I moved to San Diego when I attended college at San Diego State University. In 2015, I received my BS in Child and Family Development & I am currently working towards my Mild/Moderate Credentials and MS in Special Education. I have had 5 years of experience working as an early childhood teacher before working in the elementary setting. Currently, I am an Academic Coach & a Behavioral Interventionist. I have had such wonderful opportunities to provide ABA therapy to my kiddos & watch each unique individual improve in their overall developmental skills. My ability to work with students with special needs is so rewarding!

    Some fun facts would be that I love singing, playing the piano, and dancing. I am a very family oriented person, and with that being said, I love to spend most of my free time with family & friends.
  • Elizabeth Mora
    
    This is a placeholder image of Elizabeth Mora
    Elizabeth Mora


  • Trevor VanOrden
    
    This is a placeholder image of Trevor VanOrden
    Trevor VanOrden


  • Raquel Vasquez
    
    This is a placeholder image of Raquel Vasquez
    Raquel Vasquez


Administration
  • Marquita Griffith Director
    
    Marquita Griffith
    Marquita Griffith
    Director


    Marquita believes that all students, no matter their background or circumstance should be given access to high-quality education that prepares them for the world outside our classroom doors. When students are prepared academically, socially and emotionally to be active members of their community, we help to dismantle systemic educational inequities.

    Marquita was born in Detroit, Michigan and completed her degree in Elementary Education at Michigan State University. As an educator, she has 12 years of teaching experience in grades K-4 as well as experience as a literacy coach, mentor teacher, and classroom management coach. She has been with HTeCV for the last three years teaching 1st grade and kindergarten.

    As director Marquita is looking forward to using all that shes learned from her experience and training to help facilitate learning opportunities for teachers and students this school year. In her spare time, she enjoys listening to music and dancing with her family and friends.
  • Chelsea Benson Dean of Student Affairs
    
    Chelsea Benson
    Chelsea Benson
    Dean of Student Affairs


    One of my favorite quotes that captures the essence of working with children is by Lilla Watson. She said, "If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together." I believe in creating safe communities and learning environments with children through building and repairing relationships.

    I am from Southwest Louisiana and taught in Tacna, Perú for three years with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. I received a Bachelor of Arts from Spring Hill College in Mobile, AL and hold 3 teaching credentials: a Multiple Subject and BCLAD from SDSU and a Special Education teaching credential from HTH. I am also a certified translator/interpreter. This year, I will continue learning in the HTH Graduate School Program where I will pursue a Master's in Educational Leadership.

    I love Cajun food, speaking Spanish and spending time with my husband and two babies, Amélie and Liam. This will be my eleventh year in education and my sixth year at HTeCV. I look forward to collaborating.

     
  • Dulce Encinas Site Manager
    
    Dulce Encinas
    Dulce Encinas
    Site Manager


    Dulce Encinas graciously meets the needs of the High Tech Elementary Chula Vista students and parents. On any given day she may she may be called to take care of a scraped knee or just provide a loving hug. She has over five years experience with elementary-aged children and is the mother of a five year old daughter. Dulce loves to cook delicious dishes and enjoys spending time with her family. She also loves the having the opportunity to interact with the High Tech Elementary Chula Vista family.
  • Sherrie Cabarles Assistant Site Manager
    
    This is a placeholder image of Sherrie Cabarles
    Sherrie Cabarles
    Assistant Site Manager


  • Vincent Phathanak IT Director
    
    Vincent Phathanak
    Vincent Phathanak
    IT Director