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Staff Members

  • Eric Brucz

    Principal

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    Prior to joining the Academy 360 team, Eric worked at Denver Public Schools in several capacities – as a Special Education teacher, a School Psychologist, and in the Office of Social Emotional learning as a network support partner for charter schools. He has a Bachelor degree in Special and Elementary Education, and an Educational Specialist degree in School Psychology, and over a decade of experience in education. Eric is excited to implement a true 360-education at Academy 360 that allows students to maximize potential through social-emotional skills, high expectations, and rigorous academics. When he’s not working, Eric enjoys research, cooking, and taking road trips.

     

  • Becky McLean

    Director of Wellness & Operations

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    Becky champions health and wellness programming and strategies using the Whole School, Whole Child, Whole Community (WSCC) model, an evidence-based strategy originated by the CDC. Before joining A360 in 2013, she spent three years working on issues related to nutrition policy and healthy food access. She has also been involved in childhood obesity prevention programming, including a semester with the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition (PCFSN), working in partnership with the First Lady’s Let’s Move! campaign.  She is a proud former youth triathlon coach with Achieve Kids Tri in Washington, DC where she taught 9-12 year olds how to swim, bike, run, and the importance of a healthy diet.  Becky received her B.A in Law & Society and Philosophy from American University in Washington, DC and her Masters in Public Health from the Colorado School of Public Health in Aurora, CO.  She is a group exercise instructor at the Anschutz Health & Wellness Center.  She loves running, cycling, hiking, and camping throughout Colorado, is an accomplished Ironman, and enjoys walking her dog Fyfe alongside her husband Andy.  Becky is proud to have been recently accepted into the Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership (RIHEL) and volunteers with the Montbello Organizing Committee.

  • Sally Sorte

    Founder & Executive Consultant

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    Sally Sorte founded Academy 360 through a partnership with the Catapult (formerly Get Smart Schools) Fellowship and the Colorado Health Foundation because she fervently believes that every child deserves an excellent education, so that every child may pursue his or her dreams.  She has teaching and business experience through her tenure with Teach for America and Google, respectively. Sally earned her Bachelors degree from Whitman College, Masters in Education and Teaching from the University of Hawai`i at Manoa, and Masters in Public Administration from the University of Colorado Denver. Sally is part of the Leadership Denver class of 2017 and looks forward to learning about Denver to identify more opportunities to contribute to the community. She enjoys running, skiing, yoga, exploring the Colorado wilderness with her dog Moxie, and learning new things everyday from students and team members.

  • Aubreigh Ford

    Front Desk Manager

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    Aubreigh has been in Colorado for most of her life after coming from Dallas, TX. At age 4 she began school in a Private district until her 8th grade year when she transitioned to East High School, where she graduated with 4 years of Honors and a certificate in Nursing. Aubreigh has been working in education for 4 years as an instructor & an assistant. She is furthering her education at Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Practical Nursing Program. In her free time she enjoys spending time with family & friends. DPS education runs in her family — Aubreigh’s grandmother worked for DPS, her mother has worked for DPS for 20 years, and her sisters have both been with DPS for over 6 years. Aubreigh enjoys every bit of what she does in life; she enjoys the feeling she gets when she knows she has done something that will help a student to prepare for life choices in the future. This is Aubreigh’s third year at Academy 360.

  • Emily Stelling

    Whole Child Supports Manager

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    Emily is originally from Maryland. She attended University of Oklahoma for her degree in Elementary Education and loves the Oklahoma Sooners. Her favorite subject to teach is Reading but loves to see her students succeed in anything they are passionate about! Emily received her Masters in Teaching from Marian University while being a Teach for America Corps member and teaching 4-8th grade. She taught for 4 years before taking on a new role at Academy 360 to coach teachers in classroom management as well as a slew other roles. In her spare time, Emily is hiking in the mountains with her parents and dog, Gavin, reading a really good book, or cooking her favorite dishes.

  • Cait Partyka

    Whole Child Supports Consultant

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    Cait supports Academy 360 students and teachers in kindergarten through second grades by initiating and monitoring interventions, collaborating with and supervising social work interns, and providing teachers with planning and coaching supports. Cait grew up in Connecticut and studied Nutrition and Public Health at the University of Connecticut. She is so excited that her work at Academy 360 combines her passion for health and wellness and students first education. After working in community nutrition, Cait received her Masters in Social Work from Boston College. She has experience teaching kindergarten and first grades in Denver and she has also worked as an administrator in the Bay Area overseeing interventions for high school students. Cait loves trail running with her dog Guinness, visiting national parks with her husband Hao, and looks forward to her yearly family reunions on the East Coast. Cait strives in her work as an educator and social worker to provide every student with the opportunity to lead a healthy, happy, and fulfilling life.

  • Valerie Ireland

    ECE Lead Teacher

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    Valerie Ireland is in her fourth year at Academy 360 team. She brings over 15 years of early childhood teaching experience as well as 10 years of work with English Language development. She and her husband Dave are avid campers and hikers as well as students of permaculture and sustainability. Valerie is the founder and past board chair of Mountain Friends Camp. She has two college-aged children, two dogs, a cat, a rabbit, and a turtle. She is happy to bring her passion for teaching and learning to Academy 360.

  • Deborha Haywood

    ECE Lead Teacher

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    Deborha Haywood is part of the Academy 360 Early Childhood Education (ECE) team. Deborha has taught preschoolers for seven years and is Director qualified in ECE. She is a strong believer in the power of knowledge and critical thinking that can empower young minds to grow and blossom to their full potential. She graduated from Colorado Christian University, Lakewood, Colorado with a Bachelor of Science and is in the process of completing her Masters in Counseling.  Deborha is very active in her church; she enjoys reading and just relaxing in the park.

     

  • Amanda Schmidt

    ECE Lead Teacher

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    When asked the question in Elementary school, “What would you want to be when you grow up?”  Amanda’s answer was always, “I want to be a teacher.”  Amanda can honestly say, that she is doing what she knew she was always set out to do.  This is Amanda’s first year teaching at  Academy 360.  She just recently moved to Colorado from Michigan with her boyfriend Scott this July.  Amanda is one of the Lead ECE teachers here, and has been teaching preschool for three years.  Amanda received her degree from Rochester College, in Early Childhood Education and has a passion for working with children and helping them reach their max potential.  When Amanda isn’t in the classroom, she enjoys working out, going bowling, and going to concerts.  Amanda and her boyfriend love to mountain bike, and since they are new to the state, would like to try out some of the trails near the mountains.  Amanda is excited for the school year, and can’t wait share her knowledge with her students.

  • Miriam Cervantes

    ECE Assistant

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    Miriam Cervantes is a mom of two girls, Destiny (a 1st grader at A360) and Annabella. She was born in Los Angeles, California and moved to Denver, Colorado at the age of seven. She is the first child in a family of seven to attend and graduate college. She attended Pima Medical Institute where she proudly received her Medical Assistant Degree. she has experience in a variety of fields, working with  Dermatologists, Physiatrist, and the Elderly. As a mother, she had to take a break from her career and attend her daughter Annabella, who was diagnosed with bronchitis and had to be put on oxygen support for a period of six months. From that point on she was offered a position as a Preschool Teacher Assistant, at University Children’s Center. The experience brought her a significant amount of knowledge in getting to know different personalities and how to treat each one individually. Not only as a care provider but as a mother, I know that is crucial to treat children with an open mind and a kind heart. It always brings me joy to be able to help and assist the children’s growth and development. This upcoming school year will be her first year at Academy 360 and she is very excited to be part of the team. She plans to continue her education and attend college to pursue a degree in Early Childhood Education. She enjoys spending free time with her daughters, husband, and family. She love to cook, dance, and sing, bringing out her Hispanic culture.

  • Diana Soto

    ECE Assistant

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    This is Diana Soto’s first year at Academy 360 and she is working as an ECE Assistant. Her former position was working as an Instructional Assistant in first grade at High Point Academy. She enjoys spending time with her family, going shopping, and listening to music.

  • Cinthya Salas

    ECE Assistant

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    Cinthya is a mother of three girls, Dorly, Meleny, and Xochilt, all students at Academy 360. She was born and raised in Jalisco, Mexico. She moved to Colorado when she was fourteen years old. Cinthya and her daughters are a founding family of Academy 360. She has played many different roles at the school and is excited to start her second year in the ECE program! She loves all the students and families in the school community! In her spare time, she loves to dance, camp, cook, and be with family!

  • Natalie Kapchinske

    Kindergarten Teacher

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    Natalie is originally from the “corn fields” of Kankakee, Illinois.  She moved to Colorado twelve years ago, and for the first eight years Natalie lived in the mountains. While living in the mountains she worked as a  lead preschool teacher in Breckenridge, primarily caring for one and two year old kiddos. Natalie decided to make the move to Denver to pursue higher education, enrolling in the STR program at CU Denver.  She finished her BA in Psychology and also received a masters degree in Curriculum and Instruction.  Natalie spent one year at Colfax Elementary teaching kindergarten before finding her place at Academy 360.  She is ecstatic to finally find a school that encompasses her same passion and energy for teaching!  In her spare time she loves to cook, camp, mountain bike, hike, see live music…the list goes on.

  • Hollie Brooks

    Kindergarten Teacher

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    Passionate about empowering students, Hollie began teaching in 2011. She has a Bachelors in Elementary Education with a minor in Environmental Studies from the University of Colorado. Hollie has been enjoying teaching for the past four years. As a fourth and fifth grade teacher she has impacted the lives of her students by utilizing positive reinforcement strategies, and creative engaging lessons that increase learning in and out of the classroom. Hollie enjoys spending time with her family and friends, roller blading with her dog Ezra, and cozying up with her kitten Cleo.

  • Erin Bove

    1st Grade Teacher

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    Erin is originally from Boulder, Colorado. She graduated from Colorado State University with a BS in Human Development and Family Studies. Currently, she is working towards her Masters in Elementary Education and expects to graduate this December. Erin has always loved working with children and discovered her passion for teaching after spending a year in Thailand teaching English. Her favorite parts of teaching are building strong relationships with students and seeing each child’s growth throughout the year. When she is not in the classroom, she loves spending time with family and friends, reading, and going for walks with her dog Barnaby.

  • Cary Hines

    1st Grade Teacher

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    Cary just moved to Colorado from Houston, Texas where she was born and raised. She graduated from the University of Georgia where she earned a BA in Sociology. Cary has been teaching for 2 years and is thrilled to be a First Grade teacher at Academy 360. Outside of the classroom, Cary loves to spend time with friends and family and her new puppy. She is really looking forward to being able to spend more time outdoors and taking advantage of the beautiful mountains here in Colorado.

  • Ginny Adams

    2nd Grade Teacher

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    Ginny was born and raised in Dallas, TX. She graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder where she earned a BA in Psychology and completed the Elementary Education Licensure Program. Ginny has always loved working with children and is so excited to be a part of the Academy 360 community and watch each student grow in mind, body, and character. When she is not in the classroom, she loves spending time in the outdoors, especially hiking in the summer with her golden retriever Buddy and snowboarding in the winter.

  • Cassie Aten

    3rd Grade Teacher

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    Cassie is so excited about being a part of the A360 team this year! She is originally from NE Iowa and attended school at the University of Northern Iowa where she earned a bachelors degree in Elementary Education. During this time, she taught at a local preschool for 3 years. She hopes to begin working towards her masters in Elementary Education in the near future. Cassie moved to Colorado Springs with her husband Michael in June of 2014 where they adopted their amazing puppy Scout and she taught a 1st grade class. She moved to the Denver area over the summer and can’t think of a better place to be teaching! Cassie loves hiking in the beautiful Rocky Mountains, biking, and reading. She has a passion for helping others and showing kids that they have a purpose.

  • Nicole Sawick

    4th Grade Teacher

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    Nicole is very excited to be a part of the team this year and to work with older students. The past two years she taught 2nd grade in Denver Public Schools. She is from Chicago and went to college at Indiana University where she received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She is a big college basketball fan–Go Hoosiers! She moved to Denver 3 years ago and never wants to go back to the Midwest! She loves spending her time outside in Colorado; hiking, swimming, or playing games at a park. She also enjoys snuggling with her cat, Lucy, while watching Netflix. She loves to bake, but mostly she enjoys eating the desserts she makes.

  • Michelle Holmes

    5th Grade Teacher

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    Bio coming soon!

  • Arizona Alli

    Literacy Interventionist

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    Arizona grew up on the Olympic Peninsula in Port Townsend, Washington. She has a BA in Graphic Design and an Elementary Teaching Credential from the University of Redlands, in Southern California. Along with teaching, Arizona enjoys working with children through coaching gymnastics and Outdoor Education. During the summer, she leads high school students on international service learning trips.  In the classroom or outside, she loves the energy and creativity that each child brings!  When she’s not teaching, Arizona loves to go camping, hiking, and swimming.

  • Alyssa McMillan

    Kindergarten Interventionist

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    Alyssa has lived in Colorado her entire life. She loves every bit of living in this beautiful state! She currently lives in Golden and enjoys hiking, camping, taking vacations to the beach, and the color blue! This is her first professional job as an educator and is currently pursuing her degree in elementary education. She is excited to be part of the Academy 360 team and can’t wait to see where teaching takes her!

  • Josh Coraci

    Special Education Teacher

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    Originally from Michigan, Josh joins us from New York City where he lived the last 7 years. While in New York, he worked in NYC public schools, and received his masters in Special Education from LIU Brooklyn. He is excited about being part of the A360 community, and building strong, positive relationships with his new students.  When not working with students, Josh enjoys active time in the mountains, sports, and traveling with his fiancé.

  • Marc Venisse

    PE & Health Teacher

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    Marc was born in San Diego, California but moved to a small town in Arizona when he was 5 years old. He went on to play soccer for Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa where he earned a BA in Sport Management. After graduating, Marc moved back to Arizona to work in a professional hockey arena. Marc realized that was not for him and decided to move to Colorado where he would go back to doing what he loved, working with kids. He began as an Athletic Director for the Boys and Girls Club of Metro Denver and transitioned over to a Health Specialist working directly with schools. This is now the beginning of Marc’s second year at Academy 360 and he is very excited to further the health and wellness philosophy here. While not teaching, Marc enjoys camping, hiking, and exploring the city.

  • Ronnie Kenfield

    Social Emotional Learning Coordinator

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    Ronnie was born and raised in Colorado. He attended Chatfield Senior High School where he was an athlete in the sports of football, baseball, and rugby. Ronnie holds a Bachelors degree in Human Development with a minor in Elementary Education from Metro State University of Denver. Before joining A360, Ronnie combined his love for athletics and health with his passion for working with young people while working for youth programs at Denver’s local park and recreation districts. Ronnie is excited to now partner up with students, families, and teachers in refining and executing a positive school culture at Academy 360. He believes that every child has the potential of achieving even more than they think possible through the support and guidance of positive role models. On his days off you will find Ronnie, and his wife, with their two dogs, Elly and Cooper, fishing and hiking up at their mountain property. While in the city, Ronnie enjoys golf, trying new restaurants, and finding ways to further his education through conferences and courses.

  • Jazell Aldridge

    Aftercare Specialist & ECE Floater

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    Jazell is super excited to be joining the team of Academy 360. She is proud to have beeen born and raised in Denver, Colorado; growing up she was always the only girl amongst the four boys. She was a member of the graduating class of 2016 at Florence Crittenton High School and is the loving mother to one son named Theophus (Theo as a nickname). In her spare time, Jazell enjoys being outdoors playing lacrosse, going on bike rides with Theo, or cooking for friends and family.