Teacher & Staff » Bios

Bios

JORDAN COTTON,
Resource Specialist
I was born and raised in Monterey Peninsula, and I now live in Seaside. I attended Cabrillo College, then CSU, Chico where I earned my Bachelor's degree. Now I am earning my preliminary credential in Mild/Moderate Special Education through CSU, Monterey Bay. I am proud to be an Olson Orca, where I can serve our students, support them in their academic journeys, and build a community with teachers, staff and admin!

MICHELLE HATCH,
Speech-Language Pathologist 
 
MOLLY HANSEN,
Therapist 

EUGENIE ADAMS,
School Psychologist 

MYRA ECHOLS,
Speech-Language Pathologist

CHRISTINA KLIEWER,
Academic Coach 

STEPHANIE SPROSS,
Transitional Kindergarten 
I was born and raised in the Bay Area before moving to Monterey to attend CSUMB. I have a B.S in Marine Science and worked in informal education before returning to school for my teaching credential and moving into a classroom environment.  This is my first year teaching TK after previously teaching kindergarten for two years. I love science and all things outdoors and I try to share that with my students to make learning exciting for all.

DEANNA FRYBARGER,
Kindergarten 
I was raised in Marina since I was born and I attended MPUSD schools. After high school, I attended Pepperdine University where I received my bachelors in Liberal Arts with my teaching degree. I have taught in Phoenix, AZ and Salinas, CA before coming to Olson. This is my 15th year teaching. I live here in Marina and have two sons and a supportive husband. Besides spending time with my family, I love to run, paint, and go to the beach.

SARA PRATHER,
Kindergarten
I was raised in Marina since I was born and I attended MPUSD schools. After high school, I attended Pepperdine University where I received my bachelors in Liberal Arts with my teaching degree. I have taught in Phoenix, AZ and Salinas, CA before coming to Olson. This is my 15th year teaching. I live here in Marina and have two sons and a supportive husband. Besides spending time with my family, I love to run, paint, and go to the beach.
 
BROOK CARTER,
First Grade

APRIL NELLIST,
First Grade
I received my Liberal Studies degree from Chico State University. This is my 12th year of teaching. I have worked with children my entire life, teaching preschool, and then becoming an elementary school teacher. I love watching children learn and progress throughout the school year. I really enjoy first graders. It is amazing to see what students are able to do by the end of the school year. I really enjoy working here at Olson.
 
GERI WOOD,
Second Grade 
This is her seventh year at Olson Elementary School. Over the past seven years at Olson, she has met many wonderful, supportive families and enthusiastic hard working students. She has had the opportunity of working with teachers who share the same love for teaching as she does. She is honored to be an Olson Orca!
She holds a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from Fresno State University. She holds a Multiple Subjects Credential form Cal State Teach.

JUDITH BACA,
Second Grade
I graduated from Chico State with a Liberal Studies degree and a Bilingual/Crosscultural Credential with a Spanish emphasis.  I also have minors in Business and Italian. My Master of Arts degree is in Education with a concentration in Reading. I love teaching at Olson School, and I enjoy working with students to build a positive classroom and school climate.

KAYLA BAUM,
Third Grade
 
KEIRA HORD,
Third Grade
 
BARBARA THOMAS,
Third Grade

HANNAH COBB,
Fourth Grade
Raised in Hollister, I grew up playing competitive travel soccer. I graduated from Cal State Monterey Bay with my BA and credential, plus I recently returned to finish my Masters degree. This is my second year teaching 4th grade at Olson. I absolutely love teaching… I teach to help our next generation become the readers, writers, and leaders needed in an ever changing world!
 
PAIGE KAPNER,
Fourth Grade
Ms. Kapner earned her bachelor's degree in biology at Humboldt State University (HSU). While in college she discovered her passion for working with elementary-age students. Upon graduating from HSU she moved down to the Monterey Peninsula to earn her multiple subjects teaching credential at CSU Monterey Bay. She feels both fortunate and blessed to call Olson Elementary her home and it is her highest priority to teach students how to be safe, respectful and responsible citizens as well as instill in each of them that they are valued and cared for.

KARIN ZANDAKIS, 
Fifth Grade
I graduated from Humboldt State University with my BA in Liberal Studies: Elementary Education. After graduating from Humboldt State, I moved to Monterey to complete the teaching credential program at CSU Monterey Bay. While I was at CSUMB, I co-taught a 2/3 combo and a 4/5 combo at Olson Elementary. After several years of teaching 5th grade in East Salinas, I came back to teach 4th grade at Olson. In 2019 I completed my Masters in Curriculum and Instruction at CSUMB and went back to teaching 5th grade!
 
ROBERT FURGURSON,
Fifth Grade

KELLY BURROUGHS,
Special Education Teacher,
LEAP Program [Language Enriched & Academic Performance]

MEGGAN IRISH,
Special Education Teacher,
LEAP Program [Language Enriched & Academic Performance]
 
Gretchen Neer, 
Special Education Teacher,
LEAP Program [Language Enriched & Academic Performance]

KELLY PELTON,
Performing Arts
This is her sixth year as Olson's Performing Arts and Music Teacher. She has toured internationally for 12 years as a professional dancer. She also directs a drama/Glee Club at Los Arboles Middle School in Marina.

ALLISON PREECE, 
Music Teacher