Teacher & Staff » Bios

Bios

MADISON ALLEN,
Resource Teacher
I graduated from CSUMB with my BA in Liberal Studies. I found my passion working with students through being in a Special Education classroom and am working toward getting my credential in Special Education. I enjoy hiking, drawing, reading, and all things outdoors. I am so excited for this year at Olson Elementary and building relationships with it’s students and staff.

MICHELLE HATCH,
Speech-Language Pathologist 
 
Nicole Lyons,
Mental Health 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.

JENNIFER DAWALT,
Kindergarten 
I was born and raised in the Chicago area in Illinois. I graduated from Eastern Illinois University and taught 1st grade for eight years before moving to California. This is my 5th year teaching kindergarten and I enjoy working with this age group. I love working at Olson and being a part of the wonderful community of dedicated teachers and parents. Teaching is an amazing adventure and I am happy to be a part of it.

SARA PRATHER,
Kindergarten
I was born in the bay area and grew up in Northern California. I eventually moved to the Monterey area to attend CSUMB. I received my bachelors in 2007 and multiple subjects teaching credential from Cal State Monterey Bay in 2008. I have been working in MPUSD ever since. I first worked as a substitute, then long term substitute, and finally ended up teaching kindergarten. I have taught every grade from K-5th but I love teaching kindergarten the most! I went back to school and received my Masters in Education- Curriculum and Instruction, from Brandman University in 2017. Olson school has such a great community and I feel privileged to be a part of it. I hope to be at Olson for many years to come.
 

TINA GLENN,
First Grade
I graduated from Fresno State with a Liberal Studies degree.  I then received my Masters in Education from the University of La Verne.  I began my teaching career at Holy Cross School in Santa Cruz where I taught for 3 years teaching second grade.  Afterwards, I worked for MPUSD at Patton School which is now Marina High School then Stillwell and currently, Olson.  During my teaching career, I have been fortunate to teach with amazing teachers, students and principals who have taught me so much about collaboration, kindness, compassion and love.

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.

MICHELLE FRY,
First Grade
I received my BS from Cal Poly in business administration and worked in the corporate world for the past 10 years. I recently went back to receive my teaching credential from CSUMB. I co-taught 3rd grade in Watsonville and last year, co-taught here at Olson teaching first grade.  This is my first year having my own class and I could not be more excited to be part of the Olson team! I love teaching first grade and also have a son who is in first grade. My hope is to teach the children kindness, compassion and bravery to try their best each day!

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.

MEGAN HOPKINS,
Third Grade
 
 
KEIRA HORD
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!

KARIN ZANDAKIS, 
Fourth 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 credential program at CSU Monterey Bay.  While I was at CSUMB, I co-taught at Olson in a 2nd/3rd grade combo and a 4th/5th combo. Immediately after graduating I accepted a job in East Salinas teaching 5th grade. Now I am happily teaching 4th grade at Olson Elementary!
 

JESSICA BAKER,
Fifth Grade

BARBARA THOMAS,
Fifth Grade
I was born and raised on the Peninsula and attended MPUSD schools.  I teach 5th grade, but have taught 4th as well. I am very happy to say that I have spent my entire 33 years teaching at Olson.  

KELLY BURROUGHS,
LEAP Teacher

MEGGAN IRISH,
LEAP Teacher
 
Gretchen Neer, 
LEAP Teacher

KELLY PELTON,
Performing Arts - This is her fifth 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.

MR. CLICKARD,
Music Teacher