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Yosemite Valley Charter School

Our Staff

Adrielle Patten - Homeschool Teacher Adrielle Patten Homeschool Teacher
Adrielle Patten - Homeschool Teacher

Adrielle Patten

Homeschool Teacher

Adrielle Patten is a Homeschool Teacher who loves to support and empower individualized education. She has a Professional Clear Multi-Subject CLAD teaching credential from CSU Chico and a Master’s in Communication and Leadership from Gonzaga University. She decided at the ripe age of 3 to go into education. She believes at its heart, education is about facilitating lifelong learners and critical thinkers; encouraging the formation of students who love to learn and grow. She has taught 2nd, 4th and 5th grade classrooms, as well as English as a Second Language in Korea and 9th/10th grade English and Writing. She also has training and certification in grief support and early child development. Being a private tutor for several varied grades and areas of study was one of her favorite roles. She loves spending time with her young sons and she and her husband live a ranch lifestyle, and enjoy exploring the outdoors.

Allyson Strachan - Homeschool Teacher Allyson Strachan Homeschool Teacher
Allyson Strachan - Homeschool Teacher

Allyson Strachan

Homeschool Teacher

"Allyson Strachan thoroughly enjoys and embraces her role as a Homeschool Teacher for Yosemite Valley Charter School. Her journey into the educational ecosystem began with a love of learning for herself and the desire to pass that along to others. She attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo where she received a BA in Liberal Studies. She went on to acquire her CLAD Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from St. Mary's College. Allyson began her career in the Los Altos School District before returning to her native roots in Monterey County and starting a family of her own. At that point she exited the traditional work world and entered the most important job of being a full-time parent. As a parent, we are our children's first educators. She believes the role of a parent is critical in developing the whole child, as we lay the foundation for children to explore and learn within their own environment.

Allyson has three wonderful children ranging in ages 18 - 12. To her this was a perfect time to help families facilitate their children's individual educational path. Every child has their own learning style and timeline and who knows that better than their own parent! She feels it is important for children to take part in their own learning process so that they can become independent, critical thinkers, and problem solvers. This way they are actively involved in gaining knowledge for themselves and can apply that to real world situations. Allyson is looking forward to creatively supporting your curriculum needs while nurturing a positive relationship within your educational journey."

Amy DiBuduo - Homeschool Teacher Amy DiBuduo Homeschool Teacher
Amy DiBuduo - Homeschool Teacher

Amy DiBuduo

Homeschool Teacher

Amy DiBuduo commits herself wholeheartedly to her students and families. She believes that student success, not only in education, but also in life, stems from meaningful relationships where students have a team of loving adults surrounding them and cheering them on. Amy holds a bachelor’s degree from Saint Mary’s College of California and her multiple subject teaching credential from California State University, Fresno. After receiving her credential, she taught for Clovis Unified School District as a 2nd and 4th grade teacher at Dry Creek Elementary. She currently lives on a small pecan ranch where she and her husband are rearing their 3 children. Amy is humbled to be a part of the Yosemite Valley Charter School family.

Amy Friesen - Homeschool Teacher Amy Friesen Homeschool Teacher
Amy Friesen - Homeschool Teacher

Amy Friesen

Homeschool Teacher

Amy Friesen has been in education for 11 years. She has taught kindergarten and first grade in Selma Unified, kindergarten in Clovis Unified, junior high math, and bible at Fresno Christian as well as homeschooling two of her children from 2nd-8th grade. Mrs. Friesen earned a Multiple Subject Credential, a Master of Arts degree in Education and a Reading Specialist Credential from Fresno State University. She lives in Clovis and has been married to her husband, Anson, for 22 years. Mrs. Friesen has three children: Brittany, Kaden, and Keely. When she is not teaching, she enjoys riding dirtbikes, wake surfing, camping, relaxing at Hume Lake, reading and going to the beach. Mrs. Friesen is excited to work alongside your family and help you tailor an education that best suits your child’s individual learning style while maintaining a love for learning. She also looks forward to having the opportunity to build a relationship with your family while encouraging you on the hard days and celebrating with you on the good days. Welcome to Inspire!

Amy Heinrichs - Homeschool Teacher Amy Heinrichs Homeschool Teacher
Amy Heinrichs - Homeschool Teacher

Amy Heinrichs

Homeschool Teacher

Amy Heinrichs has always believed in the importance of education. She grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, but moved to Fresno, California immediately after high school to attend California State University, Fresno. It was there that she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies and also her multiple subject teaching credential. Mrs. Heinrichs taught 3rd grade for two years at Le Grand Elementary School in Le Grand, California, then decided to stay home after her first child was born. She now has three children and has been homeschooling them for eight years. She has a true passion for teaching and discovering the learning style of each student. This will be her fourth year with Inspire Charter Services. Mrs. Heinrichs enjoys spending time outdoors with her family either at the foothill ranch where she lives or in the mountains where she helps her husband run cattle.

Anna Wilkinson - Homeschool Teacher Anna Wilkinson Teacher Trainer
Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher
Anna Wilkinson - Homeschool Teacher

Anna Wilkinson

Teacher Trainer
Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

"Anna Wilkinson is a Homeschool Teacher and Teacher Trainer Coordinator for Yosemite Valley and Monarch River Academy.

Anna graduated from Fresno Pacific University with a BA in Liberal Studies in 2003. She completed her credential there immediately after and has been in education since then. She has taught almost every elementary grade (2, 3, 4, 5, and 6th!) and also adults. She is passionate about teaching and loves to continue learning herself! Anna believes that education should be accessible to all and that through schooling at home, students’ individual needs are met and their education can be personalized.

Anna has been married to Ken for 16 years and has 3 children. She grew up in Fresno and loves raising her family here as well."

Barbara Bolaños - Homeschool Teacher Barbara Bolaños Homeschool Teacher
Barbara Bolaños - Homeschool Teacher

Barbara Bolaños

Homeschool Teacher

Barbara Bolaños is a teacher and homeshooling parent who has always loved learning and helping others to see their unique gifts and to follow their passions. Barbara is dedicated to ensuring all students experience success and joy as they learn about themselves and their world. She has homeschooled her son since 2017 and her teenage niece since 2018. Barbara has been in the education field since 2003 and has a multiple subjects teaching credential, a special education teaching credential, a Gifted and Talented Education certificate, and a Masters of Education. She joined the Yosemite Valley team in 2018. Barbara lives in Coarsegold, California with her husband, son, and niece. She loves spending time with family and friends, reading, listening to podcasts, traveling, and exercising.

Barbara Cook - Homeschool Teacher Barbara Cook Homeschool Teacher
Barbara Cook - Homeschool Teacher

Barbara Cook

Homeschool Teacher

Barbara Cook loves the flexibility and individualized attention homeschooling allows. For the last 14 years, she has been homeschooling her own children. She has even graduated one who is thriving in college. After graduating from Fresno Pacific University with her Teaching Credential, she taught for five years in a brick and mortar school before staying home with her four wonderful children. Besides teaching and supporting homeschooling families, she enjoys crocheting, reading books, putting puzzles together, hiking, and cycling.

Becky Bennett - Homeschool Teacher Becky Bennett Homeschool Teacher
Becky Bennett - Homeschool Teacher

Becky Bennett

Homeschool Teacher

"Becky Bennett is a Homeschool Teacher for Yosemite Valley Charter School. She believes in preserving the dignity of childhood and has made it a priority to make students feel important, loved, and capable. This is her fifth year as a professional educator and second year with the Yosemite Valley team. She received her bachelor’s degree and teaching credential from Brigham Young University in 2016 where she also minored in Teaching English as a Second Language.

Becky believes that every student has the right to an individualized education. She has seen how homeschooling allows children to discover, learn and explore the world through the lenses of their own interests and questions. Becky encourages teaching to the whole child with a focus on movement, art, imagination and storytelling as key foundations in a child’s journey.

Becky lives with her husband and one-year-old daughter in Madera Ranchos. They love being outdoors and in their free time are developing a small homestead on their property."

Bell Farber - Homeschool Teacher Bell Farber Homeschool Teacher
Bell Farber - Homeschool Teacher

Bell Farber

Homeschool Teacher

"Bell Farber is delighted to be part of our growing Yosemite Valley homeschooling community. She has been a passionate educator for over 20 years. Her journey began as she sought out an educational experience that would organically mold and grow with her three unique children and their learning styles. Those 10 plus years of experience inspired her to share her talent beyond her home and seek a bachelors of Arts in Liberal Studies with a minor in Human Development as well as an emphasis in African American Studies from California State University of Monterey Bay. Bell has taught in multiple public school settings in grades K-5th as well as served at risk students in the Salinas Valley Juvenile System. When she is not reading a good book she loves to express her colorful artistic style on canvas and in her organic native garden. Bell views education like a garden, when nurtured and given special attention it has endless and brilliant possibilities. She looks forward to working with you to cultivate a unique learning experience with shared passion and educational philosophy that fosters critical thinking driven from a true love for learning."

Caitlin Racine - Home School Teacher Caitlin Racine Home School Teacher
Caitlin Racine - Home School Teacher

Caitlin Racine

Home School Teacher

Caitlin Racine believes engaged learning is lasting learning. She has spent her career developing an arsenal of strategies to engage all types of learners, because every student’s path to success is unique. Plus, she holds a special place in her heart for writing in all subject areas! The first 6 years of her career were devoted to teaching high school English in Kingsburg and Fresno. She is also a Teacher Leader with the San Joaquin Valley Writing Project, actively working with educators from across the Central Valley regarding best practices for student success. A Fresno State Bulldog at heart, she received her BA in English Education, teaching credential, and MA in Education - Reading/Language Arts all from her hometown university.

Chris Fuller - Homeschool Teacher Chris Fuller Homeschool Teacher
Chris Fuller - Homeschool Teacher

Chris Fuller

Homeschool Teacher

"Chris Fuller is pleased to be part of Yosemite Valley Charter School. She enjoys both teaching and finding resources for people to be successful. Working for Yosemite Valley Charter School allows her to serve families in both these capacities. Chris lives in Fresno with her husband of 25 years and two college age children. She has a degree in English Literature from U.C. Berkeley and a multiple subject credential. Chris comes to Inspire with experience teaching 1st, 5th, 7th and 9th grade students in a traditional school setting. She also has one to one tutoring experience at all grade levels. Chris homeschooled her own children through high school. When she is not teaching, she loves to read, sew, embroider, create handmade jewelry, garden, make jam, watch football and spend time with her family. Chris knows first hand that every homeschooling family is unique. She also knows that the greatest task of a homeschooling family is to draw out children's strengths and gifts while building their perseverance as they meet the challenges particular to them. Nothing excites her more than to support other families on their homeschooling journey! "

Courtney Hernandez - Homeschool Teacher Courtney Hernandez Homeschool Teacher
Courtney Hernandez - Homeschool Teacher

Courtney Hernandez

Homeschool Teacher

"Courtney Hernandez is passionate about teaching . This is her 12th year homeschooling her children and second year as an Homeschool Teacher. Prior to that she taught 3-5th grade in the classroom for 7 years and tutored students of all ages in reading and writing for 17 years. She graduated from the University of San Diego with a teaching credential and a BA in Diversified Liberal Arts, and earned her Masters in Reading Instruction from National University. She returned to Morgan Hill after college to raise a family. She enjoys swimming and running in her free time. She has been homeschooling for 12 years and has enjoyed the time together as a family. She has three boys ages 16, 14, and 12 and a 9 year old daughter. Homeschooling has given them the opportunity to try new things and has provided ample time for her children to discover the love of learning. She is excited to work with students and their families this year. She desires to help them find the learning path that is best suited for their students while encouraging them to be lifelong learners."

Cristy Tuck - Homeschool Teacher Cristy Tuck Homeschool Teacher
Cristy Tuck - Homeschool Teacher

Cristy Tuck

Homeschool Teacher

Cristy Tuck has a passion for helping parents be successful in their homeschooling adventure, building lasting memories with their children along the way. She has been teaching with Inspire since 2017 and has been homeschooling her own children for 11 years. She knows the challenges that a parent faces as they navigate their child's educational goals and is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to varying curriculum and learning options. Cristy earned her teaching credential with an emphasis in music at The Master's College in Southern California. She is looking forward to a wonderful school year!

Dayna Hopkins - Homeschool Teacher Dayna Hopkins Homeschool Teacher
Dayna Hopkins - Homeschool Teacher

Dayna Hopkins

Homeschool Teacher

"Dayna Hopkins is dedicated to working alongside homeschool families and believes that homeschooling offers choices, enrichment, and experiences to be found nowhere else. These advantages allow students to receive an education tailor-made for them to reach their full potential.

Dayna graduated from CSU Stanislaus with a BA, earned her preliminary multiple subject teaching credential, and worked as a substitute teacher for schools throughout Merced County. She then stayed home to raise her kids for the next 10 years. When her son was having trouble in school and it was found that he had a learning disability she decided to homeschool. Her family loved it! She was able to do homeschooling with her children for several years, but then her family needed her to go back to work full time. She went back to substitute teaching while she earned her clear credential, completed her CLAD credential, and nearly finished a reading specialist credential.

Dayna has worked as a first-grade teacher for private Christian schools for 19 years. Teaching beginning reading and phonics skills are her specialties. Her favorite thing to do as a teacher is ""storytime"". She also loves to do crafts, sewing, art, gardening, and of course reading. Her children are now all grown up (and to her ongoing frustration have not gotten married and given her grandchildren yet!) She and her husband like to host barbecues with friends and family. She feels truly blessed by the opportunity to work as a Homeschool Teacher for Yosemite Valley Charter School."

Elizabeth Harmelin - Homeschool Teacher Elizabeth Harmelin Homeschool Teacher
Elizabeth Harmelin - Homeschool Teacher

Elizabeth Harmelin

Homeschool Teacher

"Elizabeth Harmelin lives in Merced with her husband of 14 years, her two daughters (ages eight and five) and her two fur-babies. She graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 2005 with a Bachelor of Music and a minor in English. She received her credential from CSU Stanislaus in 2009 and taught in a traditional classroom setting for 9 years. She is so grateful to be a part of Yosemite Valley Charter and the Inspire family of schools. This is her second year and she truly looks forward to serving home school families again. In addition to raising her own children, Elizabeth loves theater, performing, reading, and learning. She can often be seen in productions at the local playhouse. She firmly believes that the arts are incredibly important to experience because they help foster creativity, inspire meaningful dialogue and build empathy. She also enjoys baking (especially cakes), getting outside in nature, and reading memoirs.

As for her educational philosophy, she strongly believes that every student has strengths they can draw upon to succeed in any aspect of his/her education and it is important to remember that each student has different academic needs. Every student is a super star in some facet of their life, whether it is mathematics, language, reading, visualization, art, music, engineering, science, etc. Elizabeth loves working with her families in order to figure out how to use those strengths to encourage learning and she looks forward to an amazing year!"

Elizabeth Sanchez - Homeschool Teacher Elizabeth Sanchez Homeschool Teacher
Elizabeth Sanchez - Homeschool Teacher

Elizabeth Sanchez

Homeschool Teacher

Elizabeth Sanchez is passionate about homeschooling and knows the triumphs and challenges that come with it. She has had the privilege of classically educating her four children for the past nine years and has participated in several local homeschooling communities. Liz graduated from Fresno Pacific University with a Liberal Studies degree, with an emphasis in Conflict Resolution. She then taught for four years in Fresno Unified before choosing to stay home and start her own family. Never did she think she would homeschool, however once her children were “school-age”, she realized she had been homeschooling all along. Liz has had the honor of supporting the littlest of children all the way through High School, and it would be an honor for her to come alongside your family on your homeschooling journey!

Erin Soares - Homeschool Teacher Erin Soares Homeschool Teacher
Erin Soares - Homeschool Teacher

Erin Soares

Homeschool Teacher

"Erin Soares is a homeschool teacher with Yosemite Valley Charter School. She knew from an early age (2nd grade) that she wanted to be a teacher. Erin is very excited about this opportunity to partner with families to educate their children. As their teacher, she can come alongside the families in supporting the needs and goals of each student to help reach their highest potential. Regardless of the learning environment, every child deserves the opportunity to reach their academic goals. Having the ability to pair credentialed teachers with engaged parents coincides with her favorite motto “teamwork makes the dream work.”

Erin went to Merced Junior College and played volleyball while earning her associates degree. Then she earned her degree in Social Studies and credential both from Fresno State University. After graduating she began teaching history at Chowchilla High School. She also coached girls varsity volleyball for 5 years. Erin took a break from teaching to raise her energetic, athletic and adventurous boys who are now 13, 11, 8 and 5. As a family we participate in local youth sports including little league, soccer, basketball and flag football. We enjoy traveling together and gathering with our families. Erin and her husband own and operate their own dairy in Chowchilla. Her hobbies include spending time with family and friends, exercising/running as well as traveling whenever possible. Erin is excited and honored to work at Yosemite Valley Charter School and looking forward to a fantastic school year. "

Fabio Linares - Homeschool Teacher Fabio Linares Homeschool Teacher
Fabio Linares - Homeschool Teacher

Fabio Linares

Homeschool Teacher

Fabio Linares is a 4th year teacher who believes that a student's curiosity is what can lead to rich and understanding education.  He received his teaching credential at Fresno state where he worked with younger grades 1st-3rd, before working at Figarden and Gibson Elementary where he led 5th grade classes. Bilingual in Spanish, he believes that involving a students culture can lead to a richer education. He has also done karate for over 20 years, has a passion for art, and loves teaching his daughter to skateboard. He has now been with Inspire for just over a year and plans to try and continue to share his passion for learning with families in the valley.

Glinda Love - Homeschool Teacher Glinda Love Homeschool Teacher
Glinda Love - Homeschool Teacher

Glinda Love

Homeschool Teacher

Glinda Love is excited to be a teacher with Yosemite Charter School. She has a heart for young people and helping them with their learning endeavors. Homeschooling is a wonderful nurturing environment and is a great way to educate our children. There is a multitude of ways to learn and teach children. She has over twenty years of experience, teaching preschool through 5th grade. Her greatest strengths as an educator are to focus on the positive attributes of her students. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Social Work, a Clear Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and a CLAD Certificate. Her goal is to find the best learning strategies possible and foster a positive environment. The main objective is to find an effective curriculum for each student and to provide educational experiences for your student that are unique to their individual needs. She has experienced what a great difference homeschooling has made in individual student's educational successes. As an Inspire teacher, her desire is to be a part of your families' educational journey and offer support and encouragement to your student and family.

Heather Hall - High School Counselor Heather Hall High School Counselor
Heather Hall - High School Counselor

Heather Hall

High School Teacher

"Heather Hall earned her Bachelor of Arts and her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Azusa Pacific University. She has taught in various educational settings including the traditional classroom, independent study, special education and intervention support. Mrs. Hall has also had the privilege to serve as the Elementary Children’s Coordinator at her church. She and her husband live in Fresno with their three teenage children: Zachary, Emilie and Luke. She has been surprised by the laughter and joy that comes along with having teenagers. Mrs. Hall thoroughly enjoys spending time at the pool, watching her children play water polo. Mrs. Hall loves to learn new things and spends a lot of time reading. She also enjoys time with her friends and family (especially if it involves a trip to the beach or mountains). Mrs. Hall enjoys the challenge of personalizing education through curriculum and real-life experiences. She desires to support parents as they tailor education to meet their children’s unique needs and learning styles."

Heidi Parkin - Homeschool Teacher Heidi Parkin Homeschool Teacher
Heidi Parkin - Homeschool Teacher

Heidi Parkin

Homeschool Teacher

" Heidi Parkin is thrilled to be a part of the Inspire Family! She has a passion for learning and helping others learn. She started teaching school to the neighborhood kids at the early age of 7. Heidi feels the world is her classroom. She believes Homeschooling is a beautiful, nurturing and holistic way to educate children in the way that is best for the individual. There are so many wonderful ways to learn! Heidi has been teaching for the past 25 years. She has taught every grade and subject during two wonderful and adventurous years as a substitute, four fabulous years in Intervention and Special Education and the best two years with Inspire Charter School. Heidi has a Physical Education Credential and a Special Education Credential. She also has a BA in Dance. Before Heidi started teaching in the public schools, she worked for 20+ years educating people of all ages in fitness and nutrition, dance, music, drama and Sunday School. Learning and sharing knowledge is a HUGE part of her life. Heidi truly believes that every student is brilliant, and that our job as educators is to help each student figure out their style of learning and motivation so they can be successful.

When Heidi is not teaching, you can find her performing with her women's barbershop quartet group, hiking, biking, reading, dancing, cooking, cleaning, hanging out with her best friend/husband and raising and playing with her 9 wonderful children. "

Jacky Bertz - Homeschool Teacher Jacky Bertz Homeschool Teacher
Jacky Bertz - Homeschool Teacher

Jacky Bertz

Homeschool Teacher

Jacky Bertz was born in the great state of Nebraska. She graduated from Hastings College in four years with a double degree in Elemtary Education and Art Education. She moved to California at the age of 22 to teach at a small country school. She then taught elementary and High School Art for many years at Selma Unified. She married Daniel and had 3 wonderful kiddos! Staying home to raise them was her greatest joy ever. Jacky has homeschooled her kids, they have been to Fresno Christian and Public school. Jacky loves coffee, cooking, and serving her families. She is looking forward to serving you and helping you with your adventure in homeschooling your most precious gifts!

Jamie Murdock - Homeschool Teacher Jamie Murdock Homeschool Teacher
Jamie Murdock - Homeschool Teacher

Jamie Murdock

Homeschool Teacher

"Jamie Murdock is grateful to be working for Yosemite Valley Charter School as a Homeschool Teacher. She has been homeschooling her own children for six years and enjoys being a part of a school that allows each family to homeschool in a way that is best for each individual child. She has always loved traveling and seeing the world. After graduating from Pepperdine with a Liberal Arts Degree and a minor in Spanish, she moved to Argentina where she taught English to adults for a year and worked on being fluent in Spanish. After that experience, she realized how fulfilling teaching was and went on to get her Masters in Education and Credential from Pepperdine. Before starting a family and teaching her own children, she taught 4th-grade dual immersion in English and Spanish and then went on to teach kindergarten for four years. Her classroom experience helped her to be better equipped with the challenges she would have with her own children. She has enjoyed coaching alongside homeschool families on their homeschool journey. Helping them find resources that will help enhance their child’s education has been rewarding."

Janell Christensen - Homeschool Teacher Janell Christensen Homeschool Teacher
Janell Christensen - Homeschool Teacher

Janell Christensen

Homeschool Teacher

"Hello, my name is Janell Christensen. I am excited to be part of Yosemite Valley family and be part of your Homeschool journey. I graduated from Fresno State with my BA and received my CLAD multiple subject credential from National University. I love teaching! I knew as a young girl I wanted to work with children. I have been in education for 21 years primarily teaching in Kindergarten and First. I began working as a homeschool teacher 4 years ago and have enjoyed supporting and building relationships with my families.

I was born and raised in Fresno and have been happily married to my husband Eric for 19 years. We have two wonderful children Camryn and Jacob that bring so much joy to our lives. When we are not busy with dance or soccer, we enjoy boating, skiing and many other outdoor activities as a family. The thing I enjoy most is watching my kids do what they love. My personal passion is playing soccer. I have played since I was a child and it's still one of my favorite things to do!

Teaching brings me so much joy! I love watching children find success and become confident learners. I think homeschooling provides quality learning and many opportunities for children to engage and become eager learners. I am excited to support your journey in educating your children. Welcome to homeschooling!"

Jeff Grunau - Homeschool Teacher Jeff Grunau Homeschool Teacher
Jeff Grunau - Homeschool Teacher

Jeff Grunau

Homeschool Teacher

Jeff Grunau has experience tailoring education to meet students where they are and can work with you to move them forward. 2020-2021 will be his 14th year in education, ranging from traditional Unified School District classrooms, brick and mortar charter, and 2020-21 will be Jeff's 3rd year in the homeschool charter environment. With ten years of experience teaching first grade and writing a curriculum for a charter school involving "180 Days Around the World", he learned how to engage students in learning using non-traditional methods. Jeff has lived in Fresno his entire life and graduated from Fresno State and National University. He currently homeschools 2 of his own four kids. The two oldest children are in a SPED program in FUSD that meets their needs; differently, so Jeff looks for what is best for each student each year, including his kids. Jeff Grunau is looking forward to helping families meet their student's needs every step of the way!

Jen Vernon - Homeschool Teacher Jen Vernon Homeschool Teacher
Jen Vernon - Homeschool Teacher

Jen Vernon

Homeschool Teacher

"Jen Vernon was born and raised in Northeast Texas and moved to California in 2007. She met her husband, Tom, when they worked together as camp counselors at Hume Lake during the summer of 2011. Back then, they were known respectively as Jiffy and Gumby! After getting married, the Vernons spent several years as full-time staff members at the camp and local charter school, then moved to the Clovis area in 2018. They have one son, Benjamin, who will be turning one this year! Jen's hobbies include art, photography, watching films, drinking coffee, traveling, and reading classic literature.

Jen received her B.A. in Humanities from Thomas Edison State University and later earned her M.A. in Teaching (Elementary Education) from Western Governors University. She taught at the junior-high level for three years, but also served as a long term substitute working in various content areas with grades K-12 prior to that. Helping students meet their personal and academic goals is her passion! As a new parent and a former home school student herself, she firmly believes that partnering with parents to build and implement a successful and engaging educational plan is the best way to truly help students meet their full potential. It is her desire to help parents make learning fun and accessible to each and every one of their students - supporting them in their weaknesses and embracing their strengths. Jen is thrilled to have the opportunity to assist families in this way through Yosemite Valley Charter! "

Jennifer Falco - Homeschool Teacher Jennifer Falco Homeschool Teacher
Jennifer Falco - Homeschool Teacher

Jennifer Falco

Homeschool Teacher

Jennifer Falco loves spending time with students and their families. She has especially enjoyed Enrichment Academy and Community Connections events during her time with Inspire. These give her an opportunity to really engage with students and families. This is her fifth year with Inspire and her 16th year providing educational support in a virtual environment. Jennifer was thrilled to receive the Inspiring Community Award in 2017 and has also really enjoyed learning new roles within Inspire. Jennifer has been married for 25 years and has three children of her own ages, 17, 19, and 21 and relies on her experiences with them to help guide many of her students. Mrs. Falco is excited to be starting a new school year and looks forward to working with families to achieve success.

Julia Keller - Homeschool Teacher Julia Keller Homeschool Teacher
Julia Keller - Homeschool Teacher

Julia Keller

Homeschool Teacher

"Julia Keller has been working with the Homeschool Community in California since 2009. She has worked both as a teacher and an administrator with CA Charter Schools serving homeschool families, and she has run her own small business offering Workshops and Field Trips for homeschoolers. She is fully and deeply committed to working with families as a team to give each student the best opportunities possible. In her personal life, she has two teenage children, a dog, and many birds (she works with Mickaboo Companion Bird Rescue and has foster birds in and out of the house on a regular basis). Her children, Parrots, and Disneyland are her passions outside of education."

Kara Smith - Homeschool Teacher Kara Smith Homeschool Teacher
Kara Smith - Homeschool Teacher

Kara Smith

Homeschool Teacher

"Kara Smith grew up in Fresno and is excited to begin assisting the families at Inspire! She left Fresno after high school to major in English and Creative Writing at U.C. Davis and then went on to earn her master’s degree in English at San Francisco State, and later, her teaching credential. Kara has taught at private and public schools in the past, most recently at the lovely Kepler Neighborhood School in downtown Fresno. She is enthusiastic about nurturing the interests of young people, including their social and emotional needs, and helping parents in their remarkable role. In her free time, Kara occasionally pretends that she is still an athlete; she also enjoys gardening and taking care of her family, including her 3 sons. She can’t wait to meet all of you in the Inspire community."

Karla Bell - Homeschool Teacher Karla Bell Homeschool Teacher
Karla Bell - Homeschool Teacher

Karla Bell

Homeschool Teacher

Karla Bell knows that all kids are unique and have individual learning preferences and needs. As a veteran homeschooler and Homeschool Teacher, she has experienced first hand the joy (and sometimes challenge!) of helping kids learn in the way that is best for them. Karla has been a homeschooling mom of her four kids since 2011. She has experience advocating for children of all ages and abilities and is committed to being a helpful resource for all of her families. Karla feels like learning and fun go hand in hand. Her favorite subject is math - she majored in Mathematics at Hendrix College and received her teaching certification from LeTourneau University. Karla is credentialed to teach in both California and Texas. Karla is looking forward to a great school year, meeting new families and cheering her students along!

Katie Millikan - Homeschool Teacher Katie Millikan Homeschool Teacher
Katie Millikan - Homeschool Teacher

Katie Millikan

Homeschool Teacher

"Katie graduated from Azusa Pacific University in 2008 with a BA in Psychology. After graduating, she spent a few years working as a Flight Attendant and traveling which was so fun! However, she always felt called to teaching so she went back to school and received her Teaching Credential. She then spent five years working in public and private schools teaching. She left brick and mortar schools to be home with her babies! She is married with a blended family with five kids ages 17, 15, 13, 5, and 3. It’s a busy but very sweet life! God is good!

She has a huge heart for homeschooling. Growing up she experienced private school, public school, and homeschooling. This gave her a unique perspective on the different choices and the benefits of homeschooling. In addition, dyslexia runs in her family so she has done extensive research on how homeschooling can be a perfect option for students with special needs. She has more of an eclectic homeschool perspective (whatever works!), but I do favor Charlotte Mason a bit. Researching different curriculum and finding a perfect fit for each individual student and family is one of her favorite hobbies! Working for Yosemite Valley Charter and getting to support families on their own homeschool journey is pretty much her dream job!"

Katie Talbot - Homeschool Teacher Katie Talbot Homeschool Teacher
Katie Talbot - Homeschool Teacher

Katie Talbot

Homeschool Teacher

"Katie Talbot believes that encouragement and investment in students' interests and gifts are what ignite their love of learning! She absolutely loves the partnership and friendship she's made with each homeschool family!

Having over 20 years of teaching experience (at Inspire Charter Schools, Yosemite Unified, Clovis Unified, and Salinas Christian School) have given her the opportunity to teach several grades, in a classroom setting, including Language Arts Intervention, TK, Kindergarten, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th. With a bachelor of science in Child Development and a multiple subject teaching credential with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education, Katie enjoys sharing her passion for hands-on, project- based learning! Her balanced approach to education incorporates the positives of traditional books, technology and a ""Learn by doing"" philosophy.

She's lived in the wonderful mountain community of Coarsegold for 17 years, and enjoys kayaking in Bass Lake, hiking, and spending time with her husband, two sons and daughter in law. Katie shared, ""It's so rewarding seeing my adult kids thrive in the same interests they had as children- what a joy! It would be a privilege to celebrate your child's learning and growing with you!"" "

Katie Torosian - Homeschool Teacher Katie Torosian Homeschool Teacher
Katie Torosian - Homeschool Teacher

Katie Torosian

Homeschool Teacher

"Katie Torosian has been in education for 20 years and loves connecting with her families! She taught for 6 years in Clovis Unified, 10 with another charter and now starting her 5th year with Yosemite Valley! Kindergarten through 4th Grade are her favorite grades, but she embraces and love all ages! She truly loves working along the side of her families. Guiding and encouraging them with their homeschooling journey is a passion for Katie. She has 4 kids who each have their own learning style so she loves helping families figure out what homeschooling style will work for them. Katie is Early Literacy trained and has enjoyed using the tools she learned in the training to help students read. She is enthusiastic and optimistic which contributes to wonderful student relationships that are full of joy while helping families build success in school."

Kelly Pettit - Homeschool Teacher Kelly Pettit Homeschool Teacher
Kelly Pettit - Homeschool Teacher

Kelly Pettit

Homeschool Teacher

"Kelly Pettit is someone who loves to help! She spent the first three years of her teaching experience in Clovis Unified. She loved the families and kiddos she got to meet but noticed that not every kid thrived in a traditional setting and felt there must be something else, something better for these kids. Kelly loves working with her families to find the right learning path for her students. Everyone learns a little bit differently, so she works with her families to maximize strengths and give support in areas of need.

Here is a little bit about Kelly’s family. She is married with two kids. She has a son who is entering high school and a daughter who is in Jr. High. As a family, they love to play games, go on bike rides, and enjoy the occasional trip to the beach. Everyone in her family is an avid reader and all are always looking for the next great book! Kelly has enjoyed coaching robotics through FLL and FTC for four years straight with her son when he was in grades 4-7. She is very proud that Inspire had their very first FLL robotics team during the 2019/2020 school year and is looking for new teams to start! STEM is a big part of her son’s education and she loves sharing that with others.

Kelly’s education includes a bachelor’s degree and teaching credential along with a Master’s in Education with an emphasis in English Language Learner Education. While that is a mouthful, it just means Kelly loves working with students who have a first language other than English.

Thank you for taking the time to read Kelly’s bio. She looks forward to getting to meet you in person! "

Kimberly Moore - Homeschool Teacher Kimberly Moore Homeschool Teacher
Kimberly Moore - Homeschool Teacher

Kimberly Moore

Homeschool Teacher

"Kimberly Moore knows that all students are brilliant in different ways. She has been in education since 1999 and has taught 1st through 3rd grade in the classroom, subbed grades K-6, taught K-12 in charter schools, and has homeschooled her own children for over 15 years. She has her BA in Liberal Studies from CSUF and a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from National University.

She loves all students' unique personalities and learning styles. Working with students and their families to create an academic plan that meets their strengths and needs is her goal every year. Coming alongside and supporting families that are homeschooling is such a privilege for her. "

Kristen Karr - Homeschool Teacher Kristen Karr Homeschool Teacher
Kristen Karr - Homeschool Teacher

Kristen Karr

Homeschool Teacher

"Kristen Karr is so excited to walk alongside you as you begin your homeschooling journey with Yosemite Valley Charter School. She has 20 years of teaching experience encompassing traditional brick & mortar, reading intervention, virtual education, and homeschool settings. This will be her 5th year with the Inspire Family of Schools. Currently, she is serving as a Community Connections Coordinator and Homeschool Teacher in the Fresno/Clovis area. She love's connecting with the families, supporting her students, and working together with families to make the educational experience a positive one.

She was born and raised in Fresno, and received both her BA and teaching credential at Fresno State. She has been married to her husband, Jason, for 19 years, and they have two wonderful children – Kassidy (16) and Braden (14). They keep them both busy with sports, dance, and school activities. Kristen feels privileged to work in a setting that allows her to have the best of both worlds…to be a mom and a teacher! Let’s have a great year!"

Lauren Wilson - Homeschool Teacher Lauren Wilson Homeschool Teacher
Lauren Wilson - Homeschool Teacher

Lauren Wilson

Homeschool Teacher

Lauren Wilson believes that a lifelong love of learning is one of the most precious gifts we can give our children. This is her fifth-year teaching after attending the University of Washington for her undergraduate degree, Arizona State University for a dual Master’s Degree in Special Education/Education, and Fresno Pacific University for her Multiple Subject Credential. She has taught several grade levels from first grade through sixth grade and most recently worked as a technology teacher at several elementary schools. Lauren also coached both high school and collegiate track and field athletes before her teaching career. One of her favorite parts of teaching is helping her students joyfully embrace difficult skills and then cheering them on when their goals have been reached.

Lex Crump - Homeschool Teacher Lex Crump Homeschool Teacher
Lex Crump - Homeschool Teacher

Lex Crump

Homeschool Teacher

Lex Crump is known for her high energy, taking initiative, being approachable, and knowing that families can reach any star on which they set their sights. She’s well matched with first-timers or veterans because She’s been homeschooling for 13 years. Her goal is to help you feel confident about your decision to join Yosemite Valley Charter School and help you track down resources to fulfill your homeschooling expectations! She’s delighted to provide hand-holding and friendly accountability as needed, but she also knows some families are masters at the ropes, have a well-established routine, and thrive with autonomy! Lex’s degree is in Interdisciplinary Studies, and her passion is project-based learning. She loves sharing with families ways to discover the joys of experiential and inquiry-driven learning. She excels at curriculum planning and finding novel and vestige ways to help her students access their education, potential, and community!

Linda Seldomridge - Homeschool Teacher Linda Seldomridge Homeschool Teacher
Linda Seldomridge - Homeschool Teacher

Linda Seldomridge

Homeschool Teacher

We are excited to introduce Linda Seldomridge as one of the newest members of our Yosemite Valley Charter School team. She is passionate about fostering success in learning. Her extensive background in working with children, students, and families as a whole brings a lot to the Yosemite Valley Charter School table. As a public school teacher she taught 1st and 2nd grade bilingual classes (English/Spanish), was a Bilingual Resource Teacher, coached 4th – 6th graders in literacy, and tutored junior & senior high school students. For 20 years she was the Children’s Director of a large church in Salinas where she oversaw multiple children’s programs, trained volunteers and partnered with parents. Both her Bilingual Multiple Subject credential (grades K-6) and English/Spanish Single Subject credential (grades 7-12) were received at the University of the Pacific. She is looking forward to a great year of learning and growing.

Lisa Peters - Homeschool Teacher Lisa Peters Homeschool Teacher
Lisa Peters - Homeschool Teacher

Lisa Peters

Homeschool Teacher

Lori Boles - Homeschool Teacher Lori Boles Homeschool Teacher
Lori Boles - Homeschool Teacher

Lori Boles

Homeschool Teacher

Lori Boles believes that students learn and families homeschool in different ways. She enjoys researching curriculum options to support those various learning and homeschooling styles. She is an eclectic homeschool mom herself, combining unit studies, Waldorf, project-based learning, and student-directed learning philosophies. Mrs. Boles taught in the classroom for 21 years, grades ranging from TK to second grade. She has received extra training in teaching reading (especially struggling first graders), science, and English language development to English learners. Mrs. Boles graduated from San Diego State University with a Liberal Studies major and Biology minor, and earned her Multiple Subject credential from CSU Stanislaus, becoming functionally bi-literate in Spanish along the way. She started working for the Inspire Family of Schools in the fall of 2018 and that year received the Inspiring Community Award for building relationships, bringing people together, and working collaboratively. Mrs. Boles is eager to guide you along through your homeschooling journey!

Lorie Hochberg - Homeschool Teacher Lorie Hochberg Homeschool Teacher
Lorie Hochberg - Homeschool Teacher

Lorie Hochberg

Homeschool Teacher

"Lorie Hochberg is pleased to be beginning her 15th year as a teacher in the education world. She has enjoyed learning about the Fresno area after relocating here last year with her husband and two sons, Elliott (8) and Oliver (4). One of her passions and talents is creating engaging, immersive thematic units of study to reach all learners. Her educator experience spans multiple grades, in-classroom experience with Kindergarten through 6th grade and even middle school art as well as 4 years supporting homeschool families with students TK-12th grade. Lorie began her journey in homeschooling by running and teaching an enrichment program called Guided Curiosity where she immersed students in incredible, hands-on learning experiences. She also was blessed to have the opportunity to teach 4th & 5th graders at an Enrichment Academy. She is a proud Alumni from Concordia University, Irvine- Go Eagles!- Graduating with a BA in Liberal Studies with an emphasis in Art. The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing awarded her a Multi-Subject BCLAD teaching certificate in 2005. Lorie is a member of the CUE organization and loves working with a wide range of technology to enhance learning.

Outside of the “office”, Lorie enjoys adventuring with her family, especially to The Big Island of Hawaii. She is a creator at heart- sewing, crafting, baking, and more! Lorie is eager to put her skills and creativity to use supporting homeschool families this year."

Marcia Maunder - Homeschool Teacher Marcia Maunder Homeschool Teacher
Marcia Maunder - Homeschool Teacher

Marcia Maunder

Homeschool Teacher

"Marcia is thrilled to be with Yosemite Valley Charter School.  It gives her great joy to connect with her families.

Over the course of 20 years, Marcia has served in a variety of teaching positions. Her career started as an ESL assistant at Monterey Peninsula College. She then taught mostly in North Monterey County, where she was on the district Leadership Team for 2 years. She taught 4th and 5th grade, and also served underperforming students as an Intervention Specialist in grades K-6. For 3 years, she was a Bilingual Resource Teacher, evaluating and monitoring the progress of English Language Learners. She taught high school Spanish for 1 year and English as a Second Language in Adult Ed. for 4 years. Her advocacy of students was recognized in 2005 when she received an award for her support of special education students in the general classroom. Her love of different cultures led her to one of her most cherished positions: teaching English online for 3 years to children living in China. Now, supporting homeschooling families feels like a perfect fit. 

Marcia graduated from the Monterey Institute of International Studies with a major in Hispanic Studies, which included two semesters studying in Spain. While in Spain she received a certificate from Estudio Sampere Madrid in Spanish Language and Culture. She earned her K-12 California Teaching Credential through Chapman University and a  single-subject credential in Spanish through examination. 

Marcia is married and has two daughters, Liliana Mary and Madeline. Her daughters are adopted from The Marshall Islands. Her family enjoys a close, open relationship with their extended Marshallese family. The cross-cultural connection is a source of immense fulfillment. 

In her spare time, Marcia enjoys getting out in nature with her family above all else. Family vacations revolve around picturesque venues that provide opportunities for hiking, biking, swimming, and canoeing.

Marcia believes that children who are read to voraciously, nurtured whole-heartedly, allowed to follow their interests, and gifted time in nature are most apt to be both successful and happy in later life."

Margo Sue - Homeschool Teacher Margo Sue Homeschool Teacher
Margo Sue - Homeschool Teacher

Margo Sue

Homeschool Teacher

Margo Sue would definitely say that she has the best teaching job! She enjoys working with Inspire families, supporting them as they educate their children. She has worked with home school families for 11 years and before that taught for 14 years with Fresno Unified, first as a first grade and then as a kindergarten teacher...which she loved! Margo earned her BA in Liberal Arts, Teaching Credential and Master of Social Work degree all from CSU Fresno and has happily been working with parents and their children ever since!

Megan Dorais - Homeschool Teacher Megan Dorais Homeschool Teacher
Megan Dorais - Homeschool Teacher

Megan Dorais

Homeschool Teacher

"Megan Dorais has been working in education for the last 10 years. She graduated from Fresno State with a BA in Mass Communications Journalism. She worked as a sports writer and a publicist focusing on celebrity branding in her post college years. After a few years in the realm of media, she discovered her first grade teacher was right...she was destined to teach.

As a result, she went on a radical journey teaching English in China for a year. Traveling Asia and immersing herself in a different culture opened Mrs. Dorais’ eyes to the world and forever changed her. She returned stateside and worked as an instructional aide in the K-8 environment while earning a Single Subject English Credential at CSU Channel Islands. From 2013-2019 she taught English at Clovis High School and was the school’s Instructional Technology Coach. She earned her Masters in Educational Technology from Boise State in 2016 and has a passion for equipping students with 21st century skills to prepare them to be college and career ready.

Mrs. Dorais has been married to her husband, Brian, for four years. They have two boys: Knox (2.5 years) and Dax (6 months). Mrs. Dorais loves taking her boys running each morning as they hunt for concrete and garbage trucks (Knox is a fan!) As a family, they love being outside any chance they get. This will be Mrs. Dorais’ second year at Inspire and she feels blessed to call it her home. Her heart feeds off of building relationships and connecting with families to make their educational experience a great adventure. She can’t wait for the 2020-2021 school year to begin!"

Megan Kilgore - Homeschool Teacher Megan Kilgore Homeschool Teacher
Megan Kilgore - Homeschool Teacher

Megan Kilgore

Homeschool Teacher

Megan is the wife of Greg Kilgore and has three children: Owen who is five, Cami who is three and JT who is a newborn. Megan is a teacher, homeschool mom and the Community Connections Coordinator for the Oakhurst area. She holds a degree in Biomedical Physics and a teaching credential in physics and general science. She loves the freedoms that come with homeschooling and loves being able to homeschool her oldest. Currently she lives in Oakhurst where her husband pastors a Southern Baptist church. They have two horses, four golden retrievers and two cats.

Megan Liang - Homeschool Teacher Megan Liang Homeschool Teacher
Megan Liang - Homeschool Teacher

Megan Liang

Homeschool Teacher

"Megan Liang is beyond excited to join the Yosemite Valley Charter team this year. She loves working with families and thrives on reaching kids at all abilities and levels. She knows that believing in and supporting her students sets them up for success both academically and personally. Her approach to partnering with families is to learn each child’s learning style and special interests to develop an individualized curriculum that supports the student and suits the whole family.

She is passionate about serving families and demonstrates this through teaching Sunday School at her church, volunteering in the NICU at Valley Children’s Healthcare (VCH), serving on the Patient and Family Centered Care Council at VCH, serving as a board member for CrossCity Christian Preschool, and working part-time for Clovis Unified School District. During her free time, Megan enjoys gardening, cooking, and traveling the world with her husband of 16 years and two daughters (ages 8 and 10).

Megan graduated with honors and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with a minor in Gerontology in 2002, as well as a Multiple Subjects Teaching Credential with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education in 2006 from Fresno State University. She thoroughly enjoyed teaching first grade for Clovis Unified, working with families as a Parent Representative in the NICU, and being with her own children during her time as a stay-at-home mom. She looks forward to working with families and helping each student achieve their personal academic goals."

Michelle Shelly Elrod - Homeschool Teacher Michelle "Shelly" Elrod Homeschool Teacher
Michelle Shelly Elrod - Homeschool Teacher

Michelle "Shelly" Elrod

Homeschool Teacher

Michelle Elrod is often referred to as Shelly. She has been teaching for more than 20 years and has a true passion for student learning. She taught in Fresno Unified for 7 years. While at Fresno Unified, Shelly taught 4th grade for four years and then transitioned into a Literacy coach position for 3rd-6th grade students for three years. She began her journey with public charter schools 17 years ago and has loved working closely with families to educate their children. She was delighted to join the Inspire Charter School family four years ago and has had a front row seat in watching our school exceed! Shelly LOVES creating community within the learning environment at our Community Connection events. This time with students in our community setting is the place where her passion for quality teaching and building friendships within students collide. Shelly has been married for 18 years to my husband, Mike, who is in the construction business. They have twin 11 year old boys who love sports! They are an active family that truly enjoys time together. Shelly looks forward to meeting more Inspire families and students and walking through their educational journeys together.

Michele loves working with homeschooling families! She homeschooled her own children through high school and enjoys sharing the many lessons she has learned. Having taught in the classroom also, she can help families successfully transition to home learning. Every child is unique in how they learn and there is nothing more rewarding than helping them reach their full potential.

Nicolette Pearce - Homeschool Teacher Nicolette Pearce Homeschool Teacher
Nicolette Pearce - Homeschool Teacher

Nicolette Pearce

Homeschool Teacher

Nicolette Pearce is entering her 14th year of teaching. After earning her bachelor's degree in liberal studies, multiple subject credential, and mathematics supplementary credential, Nicolette spent her first six years in a classroom setting as a high school mathematics teacher. She has been an online teacher, supporting homeschool families for eight years. The last four have been with Yosemite Valley Charter School. Nicolette not only teaches for Yosemite Valley Charter School but has homeschooled her own three children for the last six years. With each of her children having different learning styles, she has explored and personally used multiple curriculums in all four core areas. This insight helps her to assist families in finding curriculum that encourages and supports each child’s individualized learning needs and style. Nicolette is extremely passionate about families having the opportunity to educate and learn in a way that best serves their family and creates lifelong learners.

Rachael Jantzen - Homeschool Teacher Rachael Jantzen Homeschool Teacher
Rachael Jantzen - Homeschool Teacher

Rachael Jantzen

Homeschool Teacher

Rachael Jantzen is a Homeschool Teacher and is excited to have the opportunity and honor to work with amazing families and students at Yosemite Valley Charter School. Mrs. Jantzen was born and raised in the Central Valley and loves taking little trips here and there or simply barbecuing in the backyard with her husband, son, and extended family. Before deciding to pursue a career in teaching, Mrs. Jantzen wanted to be an attorney, so she worked at a law office while in college and earned her B.A. in Philosophy Pre-Law and Communication. She was also coaching high school pep and cheer while in college and realized how much she enjoyed working with students. So, Mrs. Jantzen earned her single-subject credential in English. Mrs. Jantzen taught English to every grade from 8th grade to 12th grade. While earning her Master’s in Educational Administration and Leadership and Administrative Credential, she was a campus culture director at a middle school. Mrs. Jantzen also taught at the Center for Advanced Research and Technology in Clovis, CA. Mrs. Jantzen enjoyed how students were excited to learn English because it was presented using a theme that intrigued them. One of the many amazing things about homeschooling is that students have the opportunity to study what interests them and pursue experiences that make learning fun. Mrs. Jantzen strongly believes that learning should be fun and exciting for students. Not all students learn the same way and homeschooling provides students with the ability to find curriculum options that appeal to them. When Mrs. Jantzen became a homeschool teacher, she saw the excitement and creativity in her students’ work samples which is a true testament to parents knowing their children and tailoring learning experiences to fit their needs. Mrs. Jantzen and her husband are also foster and adoptive parents and have seen how beneficial homeschooling is to fellow foster and adoptive families. Mrs. Jantzen looks forward to collaborating with Yosemite Valley families and seeing all of the amazing examples of learning!

Rebekah Richardson - Homeschool Teacher Rebekah Richardson Homeschool Teacher
Rebekah Richardson - Homeschool Teacher

Rebekah Richardson

Homeschool Teacher

Rebekah Richardson loves to help students and families get excited about learning! This is her 2nd year with Inspire Schools, and her 14th year teaching. She previously taught kindergarten, 1st grade, and 3rd grade before joining Inspire. She has a multiple subject credential, and received her BA and teaching credential from Fresno Pacific University. She has a passion for children's literature, and it brings her joy to see students gain confidence and excitement for reading and books. Mrs. Richardson is excited for another great school year with students and families!

Roxi Slakey - Homeschool Teacher Roxi Slakey Homeschool Teacher
Roxi Slakey - Homeschool Teacher

Roxi Slakey

Homeschool Teacher

Roxi Slakey wants all students to be successful! The 2020-2021 school year is Roxi's 21st year teaching. She has worked in brick and mortar classrooms as well as virtual classroom settings. Roxi is excited to begin a new year partnering with families to create a successful year for all!

Sheila Walsh - Homeschool Teacher Sheila Walsh Homeschool Teacher
Sheila Walsh - Homeschool Teacher

Sheila Walsh

Homeschool Teacher

"Sheila Walsh believes homeschooling is the best vehicle for inspiring life long learning at an early age. She has been a teacher for over 22 years, both in the classroom, as well as homeschool teacher for her own three children. She loves to travel and explore different cultures and completed degrees in International Relations and Latin American Studies at CSU Chico. She got her teaching credential from Dominican University of San Rafael. Sheila is also a believer in healthy families and is a certified nutritionist. She weaves both her nutritional and educational backgrounds into a weekly podcast called, The Moms I Know, where families are inspired to learn together."

Shirin Schneider - Homeschool Teacher Shirin Schneider Homeschool Teacher
Shirin Schneider - Homeschool Teacher

Shirin Schneider

Homeschool Teacher

"Shirin Schneider spent 18 years home educating her three children. While teaching in a variety of homeschool co-ops, coaching homeschool speech and debate, and volunteering in enrichment activities that supported her children’s education she continued to enjoy encouraging others on their homeschool journey. In her 18th year, she found her dream job as a Homeschool Teacher inspiring a life-long love of learning.

She believes in learning as a lifestyle. She is knowledgeable about literature-based instruction including the Charlotte Mason philosophy and understands the benefits of Classical Education as well. She understands how to prepare students for life beyond homeschool; she knows what students need to be successful in college and career.

Experience has taught her that Helen Keller was right when she said, ""Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much."" When she is not hiking with family, knitting baby hats, or watching BBC costume dramas, she partners with Guide Dogs for the Blind, raising puppies that will eventually become partners for those visually impaired. She looks forward to partnering with you on your homeschool journey. "

Sondra White - Homeschool Teacher Sondra White Homeschool Teacher
Sondra White - Homeschool Teacher

Sondra White

Homeschool Teacher

"Sondra White finds joy in personally coming alongside her homeschooling families and supporting them in the way they choose to educate their children. Her favorite part of her job is working closely with her families. She loves to see how each family is unique in their approach to education.

Sondra graduated from Fresno Pacific University with a Single Subject Credential in Mathematics. Before starting a family, she spent a number of years teaching a variety of math classes and electives in a brick and mortar classroom. Outside the classroom, she has devoted 22 years to providing support to parents and mentoring teenagers and college students.

Sondra has been married for 21 years and has two wonderful teenagers. In her free time she enjoys reading, bicycling, paddle boarding, taking walks and spending time with her family."

Stacey Munro - Homeschool Teacher Stacey Munro Homeschool Teacher
Stacey Munro - Homeschool Teacher

Stacey Munro

Homeschool Teacher

"Stacey Munro has served the Inspire Community and Schools since 2018 as a Homeschool Teacher and as a Testing Coordinator. She also taught EA for middle schoolers and has run the Math Olympiad Team for Monarch River Academy and Yosemite Valley Charter School. Mrs. Munro used to work in a large brick and mortar middle school where she taught mathematics. She's a self-proclaimed major math nerd!

Mrs. Munro has two teenage children, so life is pretty busy for her. Both of her children have been homeschooled as well as attended brick and mortars. They also both play tennis and love to travel.

Mrs. Munro has been married to her firefighter husband for over 20 years! They also have three fur babies, two dogs and a bunny. They have lived in Clovis most of their married life and love the community.

Mrs. Munro loves playing tennis, working out, traveling, going on mission trips, looking at stars and planets, reading and cooking. If she wasn't a teacher, she would for sure be a NASA astronaut!"

Stacy Burns - Homeschool Teacher Stacy Burns Homeschool Teacher
Stacy Burns - Homeschool Teacher

Stacy Burns

Homeschool Teacher

"Stacy Burns is a Homeschool Teacher with Yosemite Valley Charter and she is passionate about learning and supporting families on their educational journey. She’s always known she wanted to be a teacher and feels honored that she gets to come alongside families as they navigate the educational world together. One of her favorite parts about teaching is making connections with her students and their families. She loves to help them find their own unique style of learning so they can flourish while on their educational path. She’s been a teacher in both brick and mortar and virtual education for 15 years. She’s worked in Fresno and Madera Unified, teaching 1st, 4th and 6th grade, and most recently at another charter school.

Stacy received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies and teaching credential from Fresno State. After teaching for 6 years, she received her Masters in Education from Fresno State and an administrative credential as well. Stacy has been married to her husband, Nick, for 14 years. He is also in education as an Athletic Director and PE teacher. They have 3 children, Brooke (9), Brittany (8) and Braden (5), each with their own unique personalities and hobbies. When they are not busy with their kids sports and activities, they love to spend time together outdoors, playing games and traveling."

Tanell Herbert - Homeschool Teacher Tanell Herbert Homeschool Teacher
Tanell Herbert - Homeschool Teacher

Tanell Herbert

Homeschool Teacher

Tanell Herbert has been teaching with Inspire Schools for 4 years. She previously enjoyed homeschooling her 2 children for their entire education after teaching in public school for 10 years. She has taught all ages due to homeschooling her own and brings a variety of experience to our school. She is an alum of Cal State University Fresno and enjoys living in the Central Valley. She loves to encourage homeschooling families on their educational journey and considers it a great honor to join them in becoming lifelong learners.

Teresa Jacobsen - Homeschool Teacher Teresa Jacobsen Homeschool Teacher
Teresa Jacobsen - Homeschool Teacher

Teresa Jacobsen

Homeschool Teacher

Teresa Jacobsen knows that not all students fit into the same mold. She knows that all students learn differently, and that what works for one, may not be best for another. She is passionate about helping each family find the right curriculum to help their student succeed. Mrs. Jacobsen graduated from Fresno State University where she earned a multiple- subjects teaching credential. She has worked in both public and private schools and has more than 25 years of teaching experience including 5 years as a principal. Most parents know their kids and how they think and learn. Mrs. Jacobsen’s goal is to come along side the parents and help them achieve success for their children and get the most out of all the home school experience has to offer. It is her hope to inspire, support, and encourage you! Mrs. Jacobsen looks forward to this school year and building new relationships to help you and your student thrive in this home school community.

Traci Brisendine - Homeschool Teacher Traci Brisendine Homeschool Teacher
Traci Brisendine - Homeschool Teacher

Traci Brisendine

Homeschool Teacher

"Traci loves being a part of the Yosemite Valley Charter team and serving such amazing families and students, with such a beautiful array of circumstances that have brought them on this journey. We are all created in a unique, wonderful way and learning should be reflective of that. Differentiating learning opportunities is one of her favorite things to do as a teacher, and she can’t wait to do that with all of you on your homeschool journeys! She has been teaching for 11 years with a background in early child development and speech/language development. She taught kindergarten-fifth grades in a brick and mortar school and this will be her 3rd year in the virtual charter world.

On a personal note, she has been married to her amazing husband for almost 15 years. They have two amazing children. Her daughter, who is 10, loves to dance. Her son is almost 6 and loves to build with legos. As a family they love to explore, travel, and “do” life together, believing that experiences are some of the best teachers. She is looking forward to an incredible year with you all."

Vikki Shumaker - Homeschool Teacher Vikki Shumaker Homeschool Teacher
Vikki Shumaker - Homeschool Teacher

Vikki Shumaker

Homeschool Teacher

"Hello! Welcome to Yosemite Valley Charter School! This is Vikki Shumaker's third year as a teacher with Yosemite Valley, and her eighth year of working in the homeschool and online schooling environment. She has experience working with all grade levels, and feels blessed to have the opportunity to continue to work with all ages while teaching with Yosemite Valley Charter.

Vikki fell in love with this career and feels truly blessed to be able to connect with so many children and families through teaching. She enjoys learning along with her students and continues to still grow in her education by adding up to date courses to her degree and credentials. Homeschooling has opened so many new opportunities for little learners, and Vikki loves being a part of that. She enjoys seeing the growth and development that our school can provide for the students. Vikki welcomes you and cannot wait to join you on the path of learning and help your students achieve their academic goals!

Vikki was born and raised in Fresno and loves that with teaching at Yosemite Valley Charter she can connect with others from the Central Valley. When not busy with students, Vikki enjoys exercising, running, and spending time with her family of two teenage children and their cute Goldendoodle dog. They especially love spending quality time together traveling, mostly to the beach.

Vikki is very excited for the new school year and is looking forward to meeting other local families to connect and explore this amazing academic journey together! "

Zephyr Whitaker-Adams - Homeschool Teacher Zephyr Whitaker-Adams Homeschool Teacher
Zephyr Whitaker-Adams - Homeschool Teacher

Zephyr Whitaker-Adams

Homeschool Teacher

"Zephyr Whitaker-Adams has homeschooled her two daughters for five years now. Before homeschooling, Zephyr worked as a kindergarten and second grade teacher at a local elementary school. Zephyr believes in the process of education. She believes that this is achievable in many ways. Each child and family has their own unique approach to learning. Zephyr believes in cultivating and supporting the learning in all students.

Zephyr's passion for teaching began when she was twelve years old and in the sixth grade. She had a wonderful teacher who inspired her to become a teacher. Her goal to teach others began then and has never wavered. She thoroughly enjoys the process of teaching and learning. Education is incredibly important to her. Zephyr earned a B.A. in Liberal Studies, with an emphasis on Science in 2003 through California State University Monterey Bay. She received her teaching credential in 2004, also through CSUMB. After Zephyr received her teaching credential, she began teaching and hasn’t stopped.

Zephyr is very interested in developing the love for learning in both children and adults. She values a hands on approach to teaching and learning. Zephyr strongly believes in the natural process of education. It is important to understand the interests of our children before we can begin to fully understand their potential as learners. It is also important to always ask questions, ponder, wonder, and explore the world around us.

Zephyr looks forward to having new relationships with families in this wonderful homeschooling community. Zephyr's goal is to develop strong relationships with families in her community. She is excited about this amazing opportunity and learning adventure!"

Emily Heyler - High School Counselor Emily Heyler Program Specialist
Emily Heyler - Program Specialist

Emily Heyler

Program Specialist

Emily Heyler is a native Michigander enjoying life in California! Following graduation from Michigan State University, Emily began her career dedicated to supporting the learning of all students. Emily has taught special education in the middle and high school grade levels, and was a general education 5th grade teacher. This is Emily's 11th year in the education field and is proud and excited to be a program specialist with the special education department supporting Yosemite and Monarch students, families, and staff. Emily has a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Special Education from Michigan State University and is credentialed in three states.

Kim Souder - Regional Coordinator Kim Souder Regional Coordinator
Kim Souder - Regional Coordinator

Kim Souder

Regional Coordinator

"Kim Souder is a homeschool mom, teacher, and Regional Coordinator for Yosemite Valley Charter School. She earned her Bachelors of Arts degree and teaching credential through Fresno Pacific University and went on to teach 6th grade for 20 years at Caruthers Elementary School. During this time, many of her friends were homeschooling their kids and she wished she could homeschool as well. Four years ago, she finally was able to bring her kids home to homeschool when she joined Inspire Charter School as a teacher.

Much of her joy in homeschooling stems from family learning across grade levels. Towards this goal, she adopted a Writer’s Workshop approach to teaching writing this year. Writer’s workshop brought an excitement and joy of writing into her home. Her children who had approached writing with dread, are now inspired and excited to write. Her family learns together through literature, science, and history as well.

As an educator, Kim is continually seeking teaching strategies, curriculum, and experiences that will bring learning alive for her students and meet their individual learning needs. She has experience in understanding and meeting the unique educational needs of students affected by ADHD and anxiety. Kim strives to find a learning path for each child which values who they are and inspires and equips them to grow and learn.

Kim lives in Chowchilla with her husband and children. They have twins who are in college, and are homeschooling her 5th and 9th grade sons. She feels honored to be invited to partner with homeschool families on their homeschool journeys. "

Maria Thoeni - Regional Coordinator Maria Thoeni Regional Coordinator
Maria Thoeni - Regional Coordinator

Maria Thoeni

Regional Coordinator

"Maria Thoeni values individualized educational paths and is passionate about supporting parents in their goals as educators. She has a range of teaching experience from homeschooling her own son with a learning disability, to teaching at inner-city schools and children in a rural school.

In her role as Regional Coordinator for Monterey and San Benito Counties, Maria is grateful to have the opportunity to serve her community however she can. Plus, meeting with other families often gives her kids something to do besides pester her for a snack!

Maria believes education is a life long endeavor and has earned a range of credentials and degrees, most recently her Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Concordia University. Maria is also a Tribes Learning Communities certified trainer, and has received additional training in many programs including Teaching with Love and Logic, RIGBY training for reading recovery, and more. "

Mary Lowe - Regional Coordinator Mary Lowe Regional Coordinator
Mary Lowe - Regional Coordinator

Mary Lowe

Regional Coordinator

Mary Lowe has been in education the past 25 years with an ever-growing love for learning and teaching. This passion led her to earn a Masters of Arts degree in Education, and a Reading Specialist Credential from California State University, Fresno. Mary worked as an elementary school teacher for the first 11 years of her career in the Central Valley as well as Southern California. She then became a teacher for California Virtual Academies and transitioned to an Academic Operations Specialist. Mary then joined the Yosemite Valley Charter School family as a Homeschool Teacher, assisted as a Teacher Trainer, and is now serving as a Regional Coordinator. The past 4 years, Mary has thoroughly enjoyed working together with her families. Mary believes each student is uniquely gifted, and learning from home provides limitless opportunities to bridge their interests and talents into lifelong achievements and careers. She looks forward to amazing school year ahead!

Melanie Hemaidan - Regional Coordinator Melanie Hemaidan Regional Coordinator
Melanie Hemaidan - Regional Coordinator

Melanie Hemaidan

Regional Coordinator

Melanie Hemaidan is honored to be a Regional Coordinator and Homeschool Teacher with Yosemite Valley Charter. She has been teaching for 16 years, 7 of those supporting the homeschooling community. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree and Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from California State University Fresno. Melanie enjoys being able to support families who have the opportunity to truly individualize their student’s learning, based on the needs and the desires of each family. Each student learns and grows in different ways, and homeschooling is a wonderful way to foster a love for learning. In her spare time, Melanie enjoys traveling, going for walks, and spending time with her husband and three kids. She is excited about serving each of you in the 20/21 school year.

Natalie Giannetta Douty - Regional Coordinator Natalie Giannetta Douty Regional Coordinator
Natalie Giannetta Douty - Regional Coordinator

Natalie Giannetta Douty

Regional Coordinator

" Natalie’s love for teaching began many years ago while teaching piano lessons to elementary aged children and grew into her pursing the field of education. During her 12 years of teaching in Fresno Unified School District and at Fresno Christian Schools she has had the privilege of teaching students of all ability levels ranging from reading and writing intervention students to students in honors and AP classes. She is excited to use the knowledge that she has gained to better meet the needs of her students and families.

Natalie’s goal is to help each family feel supported and encouraged as they work together to personalize the learning experience of each child. She believes that one of the most beautiful aspects of homeschooling is that every aspect of the child is focused upon resulting in a joyful learning experience. She is excited to partner together to make the homeschool experience a remarkable adventure that provides each child with the best educational experience possible.

Natalie lives in Fresno with her husband and three daughters. She is an avid reader, enjoys playing the piano, walking her dog, snow skiing and taking trips to the beach. Nothing makes her happier than being with her family, enjoying the beautiful outdoors and making new memories of adventure and learning."

Jennifer Falco - Regional Community Coordinator Jennifer Falco Regional Community Coordinator
Jennifer Falco - Regional Community Coordinator

Jennifer Falco

Regional Community Coordinator

Jennifer Falco loves spending time with students and their families. She has especially enjoyed Enrichment Academy and Community Connections events during her time with Inspire. These give her an opportunity to really engage with students and families. This is her fifth year with Inspire and her 16th year providing educational support in a virtual environment. Jennifer was thrilled to receive the Inspiring Community Award in 2017 and has also really enjoyed learning new roles within Inspire. Jennifer has been married for 25 years and has three children of her own ages, 17, 19, and 21 and relies on her experiences with them to help guide many of her students. Mrs. Falco is excited to be starting a new school year and looks forward to working with families to achieve success.

Katie Millikan - Regional Community Coordinator Katie Millikan Regional Community Coordinator
Katie Millikan - Regional Community Coordinator

Katie Millikan

Regional Community Coordinator

"Katie graduated from Azusa Pacific University in 2008 with a BA in Psychology. After graduating, she spent a few years working as a Flight Attendant and traveling which was so fun! However, she always felt called to teaching so she went back to school and received her Teaching Credential. She then spent five years working in public and private schools teaching. She left brick and mortar schools to be home with her babies! She is married with a blended family with five kids ages 17, 15, 13, 5, and 3. It’s a busy but very sweet life! God is good!

She has a huge heart for homeschooling. Growing up she experienced private school, public school, and homeschooling. This gave her a unique perspective on the different choices and the benefits of homeschooling. In addition, dyslexia runs in her family so she has done extensive research on how homeschooling can be a perfect option for students with special needs. She has more of an eclectic homeschool perspective (whatever works!), but I do favor Charlotte Mason a bit. Researching different curriculum and finding a perfect fit for each individual student and family is one of her favorite hobbies! Working for Yosemite Valley Charter and getting to support families on their own homeschool journey is pretty much her dream job!"

Kristen Karr - Regional Connections Coordinator Kristen Karr Regional Community Coordinator
Kristen Karr - Regional Connections Coordinator

Kristen Karr

Regional Community Coordinator

"Kristen Karr is so excited to walk alongside you as you begin your homeschooling journey with Yosemite Valley Charter School. She has 20 years of teaching experience encompassing traditional brick & mortar, reading intervention, virtual education, and homeschool settings. This will be her 5th year with the Inspire Family of Schools. Currently, she is serving as a Community Connections Coordinator and Homeschool Teacher in the Fresno/Clovis area. She love's connecting with the families, supporting her students, and working together with families to make the educational experience a positive one.

She was born and raised in Fresno, and received both her BA and teaching credential at Fresno State. She has been married to her husband, Jason, for 19 years, and they have two wonderful children – Kassidy (16) and Braden (14). They keep them both busy with sports, dance, and school activities. Kristen feels privileged to work in a setting that allows her to have the best of both worlds…to be a mom and a teacher! Let’s have a great year!"

Kristen Rhodes - Community Coordinator Kristen Rhodes Community Coordinator
Kristen Rhodes - Community Coordinator

Kristen Rhodes

Community Coordinator

Kristen Rhodes is an Homeschool Teacher and Community Coordinator for the Monterey and San Benito Area. She has a long educational career including teaching preschool, working with special needs students, reading tutor, outdoor education teacher, and homeschooling her own four children. She has a Liberal Studies degree, Child Development minor, and a Multiple Subjects CLAD-certified Teaching Credential. She is currently working on her master’s in reading. She has been married for 20 years to her high school sweetheart with which they have four children ranging in age from 4- 16 years old. Three of her own four children are dyslexic and she understands the constant struggle to find the right curriculum and assistance. When she is not teaching, or studying she loves to be outdoors and or doing something creative. Kristen lives in the country on a few acres and lives in a multi-generational household navigating the world of toddlers, teenagers, and grandparents. She understands how crazy busy this season of life can be. She took on this position because it is her passion to help others navigate the homeschooling world. She is an out-of-the-box thinker with an unbelievable drive, and she loves a challenge. Homeschooling has been an unbelievable blessing in her family's life, and she wants you to help you achieve the same.

Linda L. Empleo - Community Coordinator Linda L. Empleo Community Coordinator
Linda L. Empleo - Community Coordinator

Linda L. Empleo

Community Coordinator

Miss Linda Empleo came to Yosemite Valley Charter School because of their motto, "Caring for students, appreciating parents, and respecting each other." Their slogan is part of her heart. She loves everything about educating through homeschooling! She homeschooled her children and has had the privilege to homeschool each grade from K-12 (not consecutively). In teaching her children, she found the LOVE of learning. She comes to you with a willing heart to serve and walk with you on your journey in the homeschooling lifestyle.

She comes with 21 years of teaching experience has a BS in communication disorders and sciences, A Masters in multicultural education, and a Clad teaching credential. She loves to read, garden, create art, hike, spend time with family and friends and especially loves to laugh! She looks forward to spending time together cultivating the educational goals of your child as she genuinely believes they are our future. Linda takes her hat off to you to take this exciting plunge in educating your child/children on the homeschooling journey!

Michelene Fitzgerald - Director of Community Connections Michelene Fitzgerald Director of Community Connections
Michelene Fitzgerald - Director of Community Connections

Michelene Fitzgerald

Director of Community Connections

Michelene Fitzgerald believes in leading children towards finding intrinsic motivation, critical thinking, childlike wonder, and chasing their dreams with joy. She has been teaching locally with homeschooling charters and families for twenty years. Michelene's passion to see children thrive is evident when you meet her. She enjoys being outdoors with her family and cheering on her three daughters at their swimming and water polo events. Michelene has been married for 24 years and is back in school finishing her Master's Degree. Life is a gift and she is actively enjoying it.

Michelle Michelle "Shelly" Elrod Community Coordinator
Michelle

Michelle "Shelly" Elrod

Community Coordinator

Michelle Elrod is often referred to as Shelly. She has been teaching for more than 20 years and has a true passion for student learning. She taught in Fresno Unified for 7 years. While at Fresno Unified, Shelly taught 4th grade for four years and then transitioned into a Literacy coach position for 3rd-6th grade students for three years. She began her journey with public charter schools 17 years ago and has loved working closely with families to educate their children. She was delighted to join the Inspire Charter School family four years ago and has had a front row seat in watching our school exceed! Shelly LOVES creating community within the learning environment at our Community Connection events. This time with students in our community setting is the place where her passion for quality teaching and building friendships within students collide. Shelly has been married for 18 years to my husband, Mike, who is in the construction business. They have twin 11 year old boys who love sports! They are an active family that truly enjoys time together. Shelly looks forward to meeting more Inspire families and students and walking through their educational journeys together.

Michele loves working with homeschooling families! She homeschooled her own children through high school and enjoys sharing the many lessons she has learned. Having taught in the classroom also, she can help families successfully transition to home learning. Every child is unique in how they learn and there is nothing more rewarding than helping them reach their full potential.

Stacey Munro - Testing Coordinator Stacey Munro Testing Coordinator
Stacey Munro - Testing Coordinator

Stacey Munro

Testing Coordinator

"Stacey Munro has served the Inspire Community and Schools since 2018 as a Homeschool Teacher and as a Testing Coordinator. She also taught EA for middle schoolers and has run the Math Olympiad Team for Monarch River Academy and Yosemite Valley Charter School. Mrs. Munro used to work in a large brick and mortar middle school where she taught mathematics. She's a self-proclaimed major math nerd!

Mrs. Munro has two teenage children, so life is pretty busy for her. Both of her children have been homeschooled as well as attended brick and mortars. They also both play tennis and love to travel.

Mrs. Munro has been married to her firefighter husband for over 20 years! They also have three fur babies, two dogs and a bunny. They have lived in Clovis most of their married life and love the community.

Mrs. Munro loves playing tennis, working out, traveling, going on mission trips, looking at stars and planets, reading and cooking. If she wasn't a teacher, she would for sure be a NASA astronaut!"

Carmen Marroquin - High School Counselor Carmen Marroquin High School Counselor
Carmen Marroquin - High School Counselor

Carmen Marroquin

High School Counselor

"Carmen Marroquin is passionate about education, counseling, and joined Inspire to empower families and help students reach their educational and future goals. Mrs. Marroquin began her career as an educator teaching high school Spanish and English Language Development in 1998, first in the Bay Area and later in the Central Valley. She transitioned to her dream job of high school counselor in the Merced Union High School District and is excited to bring her skills to homeschooling families in the area. Mrs. Marroquin double majored in psychology and Spanish at Santa Clara University, then earned her teaching credential and Masters of Education degree at Stanford University. She also holds a Masters in Educational Counseling and a Pupil Personnel Services credential from National University. Mrs. Marroquin looks forward to helping her high school students unlock their potential to pursue their passions! "

Denise Voth - High School Counselor Denise Voth High School Success Coordinator
Denise Voth - High School Counselor

Denise Voth

High School Success Coordinator

Denise Voth loves working with High School students and their families. She has been in education for over 15 years and has taught Algebra 1, Geometry, and Algebra 2 at the High School level. She has worked in the Independant Study Charter School environment for over 10 years. She enjoys finding out what high school students love to do and encorporate that into their high school schedules. Her favorite subjects are math and science and she earned her BA in mathematics from Fresno State. Mrs. Voth (rhymes with both) is excited to begin a new school year and get high school students excited about thier futures.

Laura Thiessen - High School Counselor Laura Thiessen High School Counselor
Laura Thiessen - High School Counselor

Laura Thiessen

High School Teacher

"Laura Thiessen knows that traveling the home school path is one of the most rewarding choices families can make, and the most challenging! Learning together can get pretty real! Ms. Laurie wants to encourage you in finding a learning lifestyle that rewards your family in each season of your home school journey. Now in her eleventh year of homeschooling her own children, Ms. Laurie has helped students with dyslexia, dysgraphia, and emotional disorders. She has confidence that every child can learn, and she loves the active lifestyle home school allows. When she coordinated a cooperative and a parent workshop Ms. Laurie discovered she enjoys sharing resources, tips, and the joys of teaching. Ms. Laurie received her AA from Fresno City College, and her BA and teaching credential through California State University, Fresno. Having recently renewed her CA teaching credential through Fresno Pacific University, she is eager again to help other parents feel supported."

Merrin Freel - High School Counselor Merrin Freel High School Counselor
Merrin Freel - High School Counselor

Merrin Freel

High School Teacher

"Marin Freel is passionate about making learning effective for every student and recognizes that education is not “one-size-fits-all”. Mrs. Freel considers it a privilege to connect with her students and their families to understand what they need to succeed. She has always loved working with kids and knew she wanted to be a teacher from a young age. Mrs. Freel lives in the Clovis area and has been teaching third grade for the past three years in Clovis Unified School District. She also has teaching experience in kindergarten, first grade, and fourth grade. Mrs. Freel was born and raised in San Diego, CA, where she attended and graduated college. She received her BA in Liberal Studies and Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at California State University San Marcos. Her love for the arts led her to minor in Visual and Performing Arts and Dance. She coached cheer in CUSD and enjoys watching her cheerleaders work hard and push themselves to achieve their goals while having fun. Growing up, she attended charter schools and appreciates the values of homeschooling your children. When she is not teaching, Mrs. Freel enjoys spending time outdoors, traveling with her husband, especially to the beach, hiking, surfing, and camping. Mrs. Freel is excited to offer insight, support, and encouragement as she works alongside you to provide the best quality education for your family at Yosemite Valley Charter!"

Sheri Collins - High School Counselor Sheri Collins High School Counselor
Sheri Collins - High School Counselor

Sheri Collins

High School Teacher

Sheri Collins is a fun-loving person who has a heart to love and care for children, parents, and families. She loves the quote by William Arthur Ward: "When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves." Since she began teaching in 1998, she has been devoted to bringing out the best in ALL students while making learning understandable and relevant to their everyday lives. During her years of teaching both high school and kindergarten, she has earned "Teacher of the Month" honors, participated in the California Writing Project, coached high school sports, and developed meaningful connections with her students. Sheri graduated from Azusa Pacific University with a B.A. in English and a CA Teaching Credential. Sheri and her husband Doug have two daughters and one son. She loves spending time with family and friends, cheering on her children as they play sports, and enjoying the outdoors.