Meet The Tch NGSS Squadsters
The Tch Next Gen Science Squadsters are a selected group of science educators working across the country in a range of positions to support and guide implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. You can learn more about each person through their individual pages which will be available soon, and hear about their journey and discoveries along the way. In the meantime, you can connect with them on Twitter by clicking on their names and pictures below.
Sandy Cappelli is a first grade teacher at Horgan Elementary School in West Warwick, Rhode Island. She has been teaching for 27 years and is a Rhode Island Federation of Teachers NGSS facilitator and AFT Thinking Math K-2 Trainer. She is also a Lead teacher in her district and Peer Evaluator. Sandy is a member of the Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Sandy on Twitter: @scappelli3.
Liza Rickey is a science and STEM curriculum specialist at Issaquah School District in Issaquah, Washington and has taught elementary students for the past 13 years. Liza is a University of Washington graduate with a bachelors in Zoology and a Masters in Teaching, a Mickelson ExxonMobil Teachers Academy alumni, and Teachers College Writing Institute alumni. She is currently working on her administration certification and is excited to be a part of Teaching Channel’s Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Liza on Twitter: @lizarickey.
Jennifer Munoz is a STEAM + Science Specialist who works in San Diego, California, in the Del Mar Union School District. Jennifer enjoys working with other science teachers as a Tch NextGen Science Squadster and stays connected with the local research and science industries throughout the San Diego region as a BIOCOM Teaching Fellow. Currently, she works with K- 6 students as a science specialist. Jennifer has taught grades 8-12 in both Physical Sciences and Life Sciences, but truly loves teaching all sciences and engineering projects. Recently, she has been focusing on the design process and how it connects science with art and literacy to bring real world experiences to the classroom. She is truly grateful to work with children each day because they have no filters and enjoys sharing these experiences to further her work of strengthening the hearts and nourishing the minds of children. Follow Jennifer on Twitter: @pettaluma.
Kathy Renfrew currently works for the Vermont AOE as the K-5 Science Coordinator. Kathy has been deeply involved with the development and implementation of NGSS and is co-developer/presenter of NSTA: Teaching NGSS in K-5 webinars. Kathy earned National Board Certification in 1998 and won the prestigious Presidential Award for Education in Math and Science in 2000. She taught science in a self- contained classroom for over 30 years. While in the classroom, Kathy won a Toyota Tapestry grant and built a 16×20 foot log cabin with her students outside her classroom window. Kathy’s passion is improving science opportunities and education for ALL K-5 Students. The Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards create a land of opportunity for students. We just need to lead the way. Follow Kathy on Twitter: @krsciencelady.
Shelly Hammons is the Federal Programs Coordinator at Daviess County Public Schools in Owensboro, KY. She has taught middle grades science for 11 years before moving into her current position. Shelly is a graduate of Murray State University and University of the Cumberlands. She is currently working with the twelve elementary schools in her district in the implementation of NGSS and is a part of the Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Shelly on Twitter: @HammonsShelly.
Middle School Teachers
Susan Lyons is a middle school science teacher, Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Master teacher, AIW Local coach and National Board Certified teacher at Pella Middle School in Pella, Iowa. Susan has been teaching secondary science and PLTW since 2000 and is a graduate of Central College and Nova Southeastern University. She currently serves as one of the district’s AIW coordinators, is a member of the district leadership team and the State of Iowa’s Science Leadership Team. Susan is a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Susan on Twitter: @mslyons7207.
Meg Richard is a seventh grade science teacher at California Trail Middle School School in Olathe, Kansas. She’s been teaching science for five years, and is a graduate of Central Methodist University and the University of Central Missouri. Meg is the coach of her school’s Robotics team and co-coaches their Science Olympiad team. Meg is passionate about integrating authentic, hands-on science experiences for her students, and at times she can’t believe she is lucky enough to get to do the best job in the world: teach! Meg is excited to be a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with her on Twitter: @frizzlerichard.
Lauren Levites is an Environmental Science and AP Environmental Science teacher at Lindblom Math and Science Academy in Chicago, Illinois. She’s been teaching for seven years, and is a graduate of Loyola University Chicago (B.S. Biology) and National Louis University (M.A.T.). Lauren is the seventh and eighth grade science fair coordinator, NJHS sponsor, and Class of 2016 sponsor. Lauren believes integrating real world events and experiences are key in science education. Lauren is excited to be a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with her on Twitter: @LELteach.
Jamila Holt has over ten years of experience as a middle and high school science teacher. After completing a master of science at Hampton University, Jamila attended the University of Illinois as fellow in public policy and genomics. Jamila is currently an educator in the District of Columbia and is part of the Teaching Channels' Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Jamila on Twitter: @sunny11mind.
Tom Jenkins teaches both middle school science and STEM in Enon, Ohio. He is a NASA SOFIA Airborne Astronomy Ambassador, Teaching Fellow for the Whiting School of Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, as well as the Boeing Science Teacher Laureate for Teaching Channel. Connect with Tom on Twitter: @TomJenkinsSTEM.
Patti White is the District Science Coordinator for North Haven Public Schools in North Haven, CT. She has served in the district for 25 years, 20 years as a high school science teacher and for the past 5 years as the science coordinator. Patti is a graduate of Southern Connecticut State University and is part of Teaching Channel's Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Patti on Twitter: @pwhite_diane.
High School Teachers
Surinder Kaur is a high school AP Biology, Biology and Chemistry teacher at Woodrow Wilson High School in Camden, New Jersey. She has been teaching for 5+ years. Surinder has her BS in Biochemistry, MS in Biotechnology, MEd in Teacher Leadership. She is currently working on her doctoral studies in Educational Leadership. She also serves as a ELL department chair for her school and is a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Surinder on Twitter: @skgeducator.
Kathryn Davis is a science teacher in Hood River, Oregon. She has been teaching science for 14 years. Kathryn is a Stanford, Washington University in St. Louis, and Teach For America alumni. She is an Oregon Science Project NGSS Learning Facilitator, Amgen Biotechnology Experience teacher, and received the Oregon Science Teacher's Association "Outstanding Classroom Teaching Award" for High School. She is excited to be a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Kathryn on Twitter: @biokathryn.
Olukayode (Olu) Banmeke is a high school AP Environmental Science and Biology teacher at DuVal High School in Lanham, Maryland. He has been teaching for 20 years (15 overseas and 5 in the United States). Olu is a Ph.D. candidate at Notre Dame of Maryland University. He is currently working as a curriculum writer for his school district and is a part of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Olu on Twitter: @kaybanms.
Isaac Raymond is a high school Biology and Chemistry teacher at Alhambra High School in Martinez, California. He has been teaching for six years. Isaac is a graduate of UC Berkeley. He is currently working as Common Core Site Facilitator and NGSS Facilitator for his school as well as a member of Teaching Channel’s Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Isaac on Twitter: @angrrybuddha.
Kyla Burns is a high school biology, zoology and AP environmental science teacher at Johnston High School in Johnston, Iowa. She has been teaching for 12 years. Kyla is a graduate of Iowa State University. She is currently on her district's Science Leadership Team as well as a member of the State of Iowa's Science Leadership Team. Kyla is a part of Teaching Channel's Tch Next Gen Science Squad. Connect with Kyla on Twitter: @burnskyla13.