OGMS Welcomes Our New Staff!

Dr. Julie Nikolas, Assistant Principal - I am excited to be a part of CFSD! I choose to serve in education because I believe the mind is beautiful & I love helping others. I grew up in South Dakota & earned my professional degrees in Educational Leadership from the University of South Dakota. I completed undergraduate degrees at Northern State University in elementary/middle school education and K-12 Music Education. This year I am blessed to serve as the Assistant Principal at OGMS and as a Learning Support Specialist for the District. I dedicated my professional life to 22+ years classroom teaching and 15+ years leadership, supervision, human resources, and training & development. I love learning. I am a widow but have a wonderfully supportive and fun family with two children enrolled in college. I love to inspire others to optimal performance and build healthy relationships, utilizing creative problem-solving solutions, while being attentive to detail. I look forward to getting to know everyone.

Pam Pyne, Science Teacher - I am very excited to be teaching 6th and 7th grade science this year and returning to OGMS! I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Northern Arizona University. I have worked for Catalina Foothills School District for 14 years. I have always been involved in education and knew that being a science teacher was my calling. I look forward to sharing my love of science with your son/daughter through our enriching and challenging curriculum. During my free time I enjoy going to the ocean, playing racquetball, and hiking.  I was here last year, but came after the school year started.

Carla Prinster, Art Teacher - I am excited to return to Orange Grove this year after a teaching one semester, last year. I have been a studio artist for thirty plus years with an expertise in clay. I draw and paint on my pottery as well as on paper and consider myself a colorist. My teaching experience has been varied, with a range of students from kindergarten to adult. My philosophy of teaching is to be a facilitator and guide. I value the uninhibited mind of youth and their ability to explore ideas freely. I will be teaching and reviewing the basic elements of art and principles of design as a foundation that students will expand on while creating their own fine art. I am optimistic for a great year ahead while students create their masterpieces.

Annie Gathmann, ELA Teacher - My journey in education commenced in Durango, CO where I graduated from Fort Lewis College Teacher Education Department with a Bachelor's degree in Secondary English Education. Little did I know, my passion for educating students would lead me to the Navajo Indian Reservation. For five years I worked for the students and community of Pinon, AZ as an English teacher. I was recognized for my thematic based units, leadership and community involvement. After three years of teaching in Pinon, I was promoted to an Instructional Coach. As I learn about the needs of your children, I am excited to facilitate their learning and growing in new and engaging ways. Middle school is a very pivotal time for many students. I believe what happens in middle school will inevitably impact their futures, so it is my promise to help your children unlock the mysteries of grammar, discover the and connect with the personalities of characters in a story, and write our own stories.

Christina Borth, Resource Teacher - I am originally from the Twin Cities of Minnesota and attended Southwest Minnesota State University and The University of Minnesota Twin Cities, as well as Augsburg College. While there I studied Spanish language, Teaching English as a Second Language/Foreign Language, and Special Education.   I went into teaching originally as an English as a Second Language Instructor. After working in a bilingual elementary and middle school, I transitioned into working in special education. I taught second semester at OGMS last year and look forward to a full year with the students and staff at OGMS.  My hobbies include reading, running, hiking, water skiing, baking, and taking walks with my dogs Richie and Oscar. Ms. Borth is excited for another school year with the Orange Grove Family this 2016/2017 academic year.

Diana Kelley, Resource Teacher - I grew up in upstate New York. I have a dual certification in elementary education and special education. I have had the privilege of teaching all grade levels and all subject areas through my 3 years as a substitute in upstate New York. During that time, I also was a stay at home mom with my two daughters, Stella and Nina. Before that, I taught K-3rd grade special education in the commonwealth of Virginia for 7 years. I enjoy being a special educator because I work best as part of a team, I enjoy each child's individuality and I am an educational seamstress: tailor-making each child's educational experience so it fits their personalities and abilities as accurately as possible for the best 'fit'. I am also a human buttress: my job is to lean in and support the foundations of the people who are in my life. I enjoy music and art: I play piano, guitar, flute, drums and I like to sing. So stop by room 702, we're always open and awesome!

Alexandra Pierce, ELA Teacher - I'm a Tucson native and two time UA alumna coming to Orange Grove from Catalina Foothills HS. I started off my career at Mountain View HS which is actually where I attended school! I'm mom to a feisty 15 month old. I'm excited to able to fill a part-time English Language Arts teaching position here at Orange Grove!

Ashley Martin, Math Teacher -  I graduated from the University of Arizona and am returning to OGMS after a two year hiatus I spent with my two young daughters.   In my spare time I enjoy being with my girls, trivia, athletics, movies, board games, and reading. I look forward to seeing our familiar faces, meeting the new faces of the 2016-2017 school year, and once again being part of the wonderfully supportive community that encompasses OGMS.

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