"Wherever I lay my hat, that's my home" ~Gaye, Strong & Whitfield
That's been me! Born in the United Kingdom a very long time ago, living on several continents, marrying a Brazilian wife, adopting children from different continents and finally ending up in San Diego.
I am grateful that, after 2 other distinct careers and staying at home to raise my young children, I have found a home at High Tech Middle North County. I have seen, through my own children (now in 10th, 9th and Kinder), that High Tech High mirrors my love for independent thought and teaching.
I am passionate about science and math. I believe that our society needs to be scientifically literate and have a grasp of math that enables us to be critical of the world. Not everyone needs to be a scientist or mathematician, however we all need to be able to cut through the dogmas that engulf our society; science and math knowledge can help us do that!
In my spare time I love to practice Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, play football (soccer), sail, travel with family and make things. I support Liverpool F.C. #YNWA and all the New England teams!
In September of the year 1986, in a hospital in Glendale, CA, Guy MacLaury (me) was born. A lot of people ask why my parents would name me Guy, and the truth of it is that they didn't have much of a choice. My grandpa is Guy, my dad is Guy, I'm Guy, and you can bet that when/if my wife and I have a son, his name will be Guy too. That's a lot of Guys.
Born and raised in Southern California, I have a strong bond with sand, water, mountains, dry winds and long drives. I've been teaching since my early twenties and I don't see any end in sight. While teaching guitar and woodshop in my early years, something latched ahold of me and I haven't been able to shake it since. I spent some time abroad teaching English as a Second Language, then moved back to California where I found other jobs teaching English. I received my Teaching Credential from San Diego State University in 2018. The teaching journey continues!
I am a curious, passionate, energetic, wondering, wandering, relaxed individual who takes all of these things and brings them into his classroom. Here is a list of passions/topics that will always get me talking and listening. Feel free to come on by with a cup of coffee and have a conversation.
-coffee (trees, roasting, drinking, etc.)
-having a daughter!
-hidden gems of SD County
-crock pot recipes
-stretches for back pain
-The Walking Dead TV show
6th Grade Education Specialist
Hi, my name is Julia Tarquinio and I am super excited to be entering my 14th year of teaching! Reading and writing are very big passions of mine and I cannot wait to share this with sixth graders. Some of my favorite books are: Counting by 7s, Courage for Beginners, Maniac Magee, and I Will Always Write Back. All of which I plan on sharing with my students in one form or another.
When I am not teaching, I enjoy running along the beach, paddle boarding, traveling, listening to live music and cooking a new recipe. I look forward to each school year as I am always presented with unique experiences and an opportunity to connect with children. My hope for this school year is that I instill a passion for reading and writing within my students as we all work together to become the best version of ourselves.
HTMNC- 6th Grade Math/Science
6th Grade Academic Coach
Through my work as an Academic Coach within the HTeNC, I am restoring my passion of connecting with children and encouraging their development. I view each day as a new opportunity to lend my array of skills, life experience, and infectious positive energy towards enriching the High Tech community.
My educational background includes a Bachelor’s degree in Health Marketing & Communication, including 14 Early Childhood Education (ECE) credits.
In my previous position as an Instructional Aide for San Elijo Elementary school, I had the opportunity to assist with Physical Education and also help students one-on-one in the classroom. As a result, it did not take long for the children, staff, and parents to realize my impact as a role model effecting positive change on campus.
Before entering the professional world I held various positions revolving around children including After-School Site Director, After-School Teacher, and Recreation Leader. Over the past seven years, I have been a regular volunteer youth sports coach for my son’s basketball and football teams. In my spare time I enjoy relaxing with my family: wife Vivi, son Jalen, daughter Kayla. In the summer you will likely find us poolside or at Moonlight Beach.
Who am I? Lover of caffeine, the great outdoors, small animals (and large ones), science, classic rock and of course educating kiddos! I am originally from the San Francisco Bay Area and have had the honor of living in San Diego for the past three years. What’s my education? I earned a Bachelor's of Science in Geology with an emphasis in Environmental Science from CSU, Chico, and a Single Subject Credential in Science from Brandman University. I consider myself a life-long learner and I continue to learn every day through professional development and the wonderful lessons your children bestow upon me. Why do I teach? I love being a science and math teacher because seeing students work hard to achieve their goals and grow as an individual is the most amazing thing to be a part of, and I am so happy I can help in any way! Over the past four years I have taught at the High School level teaching physics, biology, chemistry, environmental science, engineering and algebra and have loved every minute of it! I am so excited to take on the joy of middle school and could not be more thrilled about being on this steller 7th grade team!
7th Grade Humanities
Blaine is from Rincon Indian Reservation in Northern San Diego. He studied History with an emphasis on Native American Studies at UCLA. Blaine loves to spend time with his two daughters. His interests include playing music with his band and learning his culture. Blaine is of the Luiseño (Payomkawichum) people of Rincon and is very interested in bringing the relevance of Indigenous knowledge and tradition to local schools.
7th Grade Education Specialist
Passionate about supporting students of all learning abilities achieve their highest potential, Jasee has a deep personal commitment to supporting student success. She has worked at HTMNC for over 2 years and will continue her role as an Education Specialist. Jasee holds a BA in Liberal Arts from the University of California, Riverside. Jasee has many years of experience working as a behavioral interventionist, using sensory-cognitive approaches with students of all learning abilities.
Jasee enjoys coffee, attending music concerts, traveling, going to the beach, and being creative in arts and crafts.
7th Grade Academic Support Teacher
Lynne earned both her BA degree in Sociology and her MA in Education from the University of California San Diego. After receiving her teaching credential, she worked in the Oceanside School District. Prior to joining HTMNC, Lynne taught fourth grade in Encinitas. She loves working with middle school students and has been part of the HTMNC team for nine years!
Lynne is originally from Los Angeles and fell in love with San Diego while attending UCSD. She lives in Carlsbad with her husband and their two children. She loves spending time with her family camping, sailing, and traveling. Some of her favorite travel adventures include; hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, climbing the Great Wall in China, and visiting the Kremlin in Moscow. She loves hiking and exploring our beautiful national parks.
Emily Kyle earned her BA degree in Spanish and Minor in English from Westmont College and her Master of Education and teaching credentials in English and Spanish from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Prior to joining the HTH community, Emily taught 8th grade English in Santa Barbara.
Originally from Washington State, Emily has fallen in love with the southern California sun, surf, and sand life, although she did live in Mexico for a while and still dreams about the best tacos of her life. Emily is currently working towards a Bilingual Authorization and hopes to help promote bilingualism and biculturalism at the HTMNC campus.
Likes: Chick-fil-a lemonade, Thai Food, dark chocolate, green plants, the smell of rain, hiking, the beach, tennis, volleyball
Dislikes: Milk, cheese, sneezing, the smell of gasoline, olives
Matthew Leader is an 8th grade math and science teacher at a project based charter school, High Tech Middle North County, an Instructor at the High Tech High Graduate School of Education and a reader for UCSD admissions. Before teaching at High Tech, he traveled and volunteered in community development projects in Central and South America and worked in physical sciences and microbiology labs at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Matthew has been with High for 15 years and was a founding member of 2 schools. He is a native of San Diego and received a Bachelor of Science at the University of California at San Diego in General Biology and Teaching Credentials at San Diego State University. Matthew is an AmeriCorps alumnus and completed a Masters in Education in Teacher Leadership at the HTH Graduate School of Education and participated in internships with NASA and the J. Craig Venter Institute. He has also really enjoyed his time in recent fellowships including, the NSF funded Socrates Teacher Fellow at UCSD, SDSU’s CTCTC fellowship, and the NOAA Climate Stewards fellowship. In addition to teaching and research, he enjoys surfing, fishing, diving, and spending time with his beautiful wife, daughter and son in San Diego.
8th Grade Humanities
Hello, my name is Marla Malfavon and I am the 8th grade Education Specialist for HTMNC this year! I have been a part of the High Tech family for 5 years. I strongly believe that ALL students are capable of learning and making a difference in our world. I'm passionate about the work I do, and committed to instilling the love for learning in all of our students.
When I am not at school working, you can find me hanging out with my son, taking a weekend trip to Mexico, eating, taking power naps, hiking, or laying out at the beach.
I hope to learn more about your family this year. :)
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." -Nelson Mandela
Mr. Olivas grew up right here in San Diego. He loves traveling and has lived in many different places like Australia, Argentina, and recently in South Africa but always returns because San Diego truly is America's finest city! As a San Diego native, he loves the outdoors and especially the ocean. In high school he was on the swim team, water polo team, and surf team. He went to UCSD to study marine biology and has done some research on sharks at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography. He also spent all of his summers lifeguarding at Mission Beach and helping to run the San Diego Junior Lifeguard program.
Mr. Olivas has taught high school and middle school math and science at several High Tech High schools since 2008 (but HTM NC is obviously his favorite!) He loves designing projects that allow students to learn new skills and apply them to make authentic work. He is always planning projects around preserving our natural world and our place in it as human beings. He loves to get creative with art, photography, and video inside and outside of school. In a past life he thinks he was a lion and in this current life he thinks he is a Jedi.
Brittany Perro is a Massachusetts native who grew up in the small town of Northbridge, and made her way to the city of Boston to attend Emerson College. It was at Emerson that Brittany realized her greatest purpose in life: to make a positive impact on the world around her. She decided the best way she could do that was in the classroom. After graduating, Brittany began her teaching career as a 2011 Teach For America Corps Member in San Antonio, TX. She loved everything about teaching and working with her students, and even received the great honor of being named her school's Teacher of the Year, but felt the urge to move closer to her family and explore some additional artistic passions. In the fall of 2013, she moved back to the Boston area. Brittany spent three years working at software companies during the day and performing improv comedy at night. Brittany realized that she deeply missed her title of "Ms. Perro" and decided to seek teaching opportunities that allowed her to be creative and continue making a positive impact on the people around her. Combining her artistic abilities with her love for teaching, Brittany became an Art Teacher at Brooke Charter School in East Boston, MA in 2016. At Brooke, Ms. Perro taught Art to 540+ K-8 students for two wonderful years and loved every minute of it.
In 2018, Brittany's partner, Brenna, became a doctor and matched for her medical residency at UCSD in California! They moved to San Diego together and fell in love with the city. Brittany is absolutely THRILLED to be joining the High Tech Middle North County team as a "Maximizer" and can't wait to get to know the students, families, and staff that makes up the HTMNC family!
In her free time, Brittany loves to go to the pool or beach, go for (short) runs, read lots of books, draw pictures of her friends and family, watch silly comedy, make up ridiculous songs and videos and put them on YouTube, sing "Total Eclipse of the Heart" at Karaoke, make her way to the center of every dance circle with her impressive moves, make babies laugh, go to rallies and get involved in human rights causes, and find ways to be a strong female leader in the community.
8th Grade Education Specialist
Kelsey Seale grew up in Sutter, CA, a small town in northern California. She received a B.A. in Psychology and a B.S. in Human Development from UC Davis in 2016. After graduation, she worked as a preschool teacher until she moved to the San Diego area in August of 2017, where she took on the role of a behavior interventionist for children with Autism. In February of 2018, she joined the HTMNC family where she began her journey as an Academic Coach. Now, Kelsey is an Education Specialist supporting the 7th grade! She plans to take the elements she learned as a coach, transfer them to her new role, and build upon them to ensure students feel not only supported in his/her classroom, but also feels included in the classroom, the community, and amongst their peers. Kelsey is patient and understanding of students of all learning abilities, and believes building trust and rapport with students maximizes their learning and positive outlook in school. All students are capable of learning and making a difference in the world!
Kelly is a caffeine-based life form who has an unnatural obsession with tree sloths and pugs. It has been said that her laugh can be heard across campus. She graduated from the University of California, San Diego, where she competed on the inner-tube water polo team. However, she considers herself a bit of a rebel, as she has never waited the full 15 minutes after eating before getting in a pool.
She is deathly afraid of cheese sticks and driving behind small trucks filled with household goods. She does not like to eat potato chips that are folded over onto themselves because at that point, they are more like worthless taco shells. She is a member of the pro-Oxford comma faction, preferring to avoid ambiguity. She has never eaten a Big Mac (and doesn't intend to). Though she works on the skill daily, Kelly has not yet been able to master the art of negotiating with her 7 year old. She shares a passion for Disneyland with her 10 year old and bonds with her husband at Chipotle.
Kelly has a Master's degree in education, an administrative credential, and considers it a privilege to have been able to spend the last 15 years sharing in the crazy that is middle school.
Dean of Students
Renee graduated from Cal State San Bernardino in 2011 and earned her BA degree in Liberal Arts. With a passion for education, Renee pursued her graduate degree in Educational Counseling, along with a credential in Pupil Personnel Services. Before joining the High Tech High community, Renee gained experience working with youth in multiple settings as a lifeguard, in hospitals, and with foster youth. Renee moved from San Bernardino to work at High Tech in 2012 in the AfterCare program as a Youth Leader. During that time, she developed a deep passion for students with special needs and pursued work within the community as an academic coach. After spending 5 years in the classroom in this role, Renee is excited to use her growing knowledge base, educational background, and experience to support a greater amount of students as High Tech Middle North County’s Social Emotional Coordinator. Renee is devoted to positively impacting her students and enabling them to become successful, not only academically, but personally. When Renee is not at work, you can find her with her yorkie, Ariel, crocheting blankets for loved ones, swimming, or discovering her new home in San Diego.
Cindy has always lived the life of an educator - with a B.S. and M.A. in Education and more than 25 years of experience in informal science programming. Originally from Maine, Cindy has lived on both coasts and while she misses the fall foliage, she loves the California weather! Cindy fell in love with High Tech High when her daughter joined the San Marcos campus (and was a member of the school's first graduating class in 2011!) and knew this was the next stop in her career. As the Office Manager Cindy will spend her time helping keep parents, students, and teachers supported and organized. She looks forward to being a part of shaping this year at HTMNC!
I go by just “Acker” no “Mr” needed. I truly love the world of project based learning because we all get to learn together! In my daily journeys I find myself thinking about project ideas...all...the...time. Being a design/maker-educator I get to be inspired by my students and the community every day. Bringing together elements of humanities, science, math and engineering is what makes me so excited about about teaching in a project based school. I never want to stop learning and find myself trying new things even if it is outside my "comfort zone". My son Ryland has been a student at the School of Rock from the age of three. Seeing him perform over the past six years has inspired me to begin learning the electric guitar and bass. Just recently I joined a class on how to be in a band! Less boredom, more fun, deeper learning and lots of laughter on the way!
Academic Support Teacher
Speech Language Pathologist
Bret comes to us all the way from Detroit, Michigan. He has spent 5 years as a history teacher in Inglewood, CA and 4 years as a teacher for students with brain injuries in Boston, MA. Bret has a passion for sports that is borderline obsessive. He claims that he is better than everyone at every sport, including hockey, golf, baseball, softball, tennis, football, curling, shot put, synchronized swimming, and equestrian dressage (that's a real sport).
In his free time, he can be found watching any Michigan based sports team on television, spending time with his family, or writing hilarious bios for himself.
Community Outreach Coordinator
Jocelyn was born and raised in Mexico City. She came to the United States 20 years ago and has lived in North County since. She first came about High Tech High when she was looking for an innovative teaching style for her younger brother and sister to prosper from. 7 years later both of her younger siblings have graduated and are continuing with higher education. She holds a degree from the Universidad Autonoma de México and a certification from the University of San Diego. Jocelyn has extensive experience in community leadership, communications and parent engagement, serving in various volunteer roles at the Consulate of Mexico, San Diego Department of Education and Migrant Education. She has been with High Tech High since 2011 serving as the outreach coordinator. The main focus of her work involves assisting Spanish speaking families but sharing the unique teaching styles of HTH with the community. She advocates for diversity, primarily within the school, as it helps students create a valuable connection with the surrounding communities. She is passionate about the work she does and finds it rewarding to see that her help has made a difference in the lives of the individuals whom she has helped. When not at work she enjoys spending the day with her family at Disneyland or enjoys being part of the audience for Mexican Folkloric dancer, gymnast, cheerleader ten year old daughter and nine month old baby girl!
HTMNC IT Director
Vanessa received her undergrad in Psychology from Cal State San Marcos and is currently working towards her Masters of Education and teaching credential at the University of San Diego. She grew up in Indio California and loves to spend her free time there with her family. She enjoys going to concerts with her friends and family and traveling to new places. Her goal as an educator is to facilitate collaborative Math that is beneficial and provides access to all students.
In 2015 Mr. Vega was nominated for a best featured performance by the San Diego critics circle for his performance as the Lion in "Oz" at Lamb's Players Theatre. Mr. Vega was the 2013-2014 Artist in Residence and honor's lecturer at U.C.S.D's Thurgood Marshall College. He grew up in this very neighborhood. Mr. Vega got his start as a ford foundation scholar with the Old Globe Theatre’s Teatro Meta, a bilingual actor training program. He attended United States International University in San Diego and London receiving a Bachelor of fine art in Musical Theatre. Mr. Vega is now a vested member of the Actors Equity Association in Canada and the U.S. His singing and acting jobs have taken him to Canada, Mexico and nearly every state in the U.S. You may have also seen him in a few commercials as well. Mr. Vega has been a teaching artist for Playwrights Project, Lambs Players Theater, San Diego Junior Theatre and The Globe Theater’s Teatro Meta. San Diego audiences have seen him onstage in musicals, comedies and classical dramas. Shows include “Quincenera” by Broadway playwright and T.V. writer Rick Najera, Broadway and Hollywood legend Luis Valdez’s “Corridos Remix” and The Merchant of Venice at the San Diego Rep. Mr. Vega worked as a director and adjunct professor of theatre for California State University San Marcos while earning California teaching credentials in drama, social science and introductory mathematics. Mr. Vega is a founding charter member of the San Diego Shakespeare Society. He is married to his wonderful wife Sarah and has twin seven year olds daughters and a six year old daughter who all attend High Tech High.
I was born and raised in South Orange County, in the small beach town of San Clemente. I received a bachelors degree in psychology from Long Beach State University, and spent the following three years working as a behavioral therapist in home and school settings. From there, I realized my passion for helping others, and decided to go back to school to pursue my masters in counseling psychology. I have been working with the students at High Tech Middle and High Tech High North County ever since, and I absolutely love it.
I am now very happy to be living in San Diego, and feel fortunate to have an opportunity to do what I am truly passionate about for work! In my free time, I enjoy the beach, hiking, cooking, reading, and spending time with friends and family.