2021-22 Classroom Teachers and Faculty

Principal Nichole Schlagel
Director of Business & Operations Shannon Gossard
Community Learning Center Director Tracy Evangelista
Office Manager Jada Kankel
Registrar/Receptionist Amanda Woods
Special Education Teacher Lauren Cole
Special Education Staff Elizabeth Bayliss(Speech)Julie McIntire(OT); Robyn Williams (Psychologist)
Kindergarten Dana Smith; Amber Hall
1st Grade Alison Sloan;  Keaton Smith
2nd Grade Caitrin Cullen
3rd Grade Lisa Thompson
4th Grade Eilish Poe; Kirsten Schnell
5th Grade Raleigh Fairchild
Music Teacher Lorna Floyd
Visual Arts Teacher Dianne Andrejasich
Expressions Teacher
Facilities Randall Foss; Mike Fuller
School Nurse  Keri Dennison
Information Technology Scott Wilson
Community Learning Center Teachers/Interventionists Stephanie Trujillo; Brooke Bodnar; Breeann Sanchez; Rebecca Hyman

Learn about our Faculty Favorites!




NICHOLE SCHLAGEL – PRINCIPAL

Email: nschlagel@aakelementary.org

My name is Nichole Schlagel and I am honored to be the Principal at The Academy of Arts and Knowledge!
I live in Fort Collins with my family.  We are very busy with 3 children (18, 17, and 10).  My oldest is starting college so we are preparing him for his new adventure.  We enjoy camping, car shows, and being outdoors.  We are always up for trying something new and taking advantage of the social activities Northern Colorado has to offer.
I have been in education for many years and I have a passion for personalizing education to support students in reaching their personal best.  I believe every student has a right to achieve at high levels.  It is our responsibility to provide the necessary support to help them reach their goals.  When students feel safe and secure in their learning environments they will take risks and discover their passion for learning.  As a community, we will continue to work together to increase academic achievement as well as the social and emotional well-being of all of our students.

SHANNON GOSSARD — DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS AND OPERATIONS

Email: sgossard@aakelementary.org

From the moment I stepped into this school, I was blown away by the amazing things that teachers do every day with their students and the amount of passion and dedication they have for each and every child they work with. Over the last eight years, I have seen immense growth in our students and witnessed them blossoming into confident and expressive students who have the ability to think critically about the world around them. I am honored to be able to support such an amazing community of staff, students, and parents.


JADA KANKEL — OFFICE MANAGER

Email: jkankel@aakelementary.org

Both of my children are alumni of the school. I have been working here since 2009 and my heartstrings are tied to the children and staff. This school embraces students with differences and teaches them to be comfortable in their own skin. Students graduate from school with a confidence in who they are and acceptance for who others are. I greatly enjoy working with this community and I look forward to meeting new and returning students and staff in the fall.


AMANDA WOODS — RECEPTIONIST/REGISTRAR

Email: awoods@aakelementary.org


AMBER HALL – KINDERGARTEN TEACHER

Email: ahall@aakelementary.org

I am beyond excited to be teaching Kindergarten at the Academy of Arts and Knowledge! This will be my first year teaching! I am a Colorado native and absolutely love anything outdoors whether that be snowboarding, hiking 14ers, paddleboarding, or running with my dog.

I love the community AAK offers and can’t wait to welcome students and families into my classroom this 2021-2022 school year. Encouraging, supporting, and teaching children has been a lifelong passion of mine. I believe providing opportunities for children to strive, develop, learn, and grow is essential within a classroom setting. We are going to have such an amazing and fun year!


DANA SMITH KINDERGARTEN TEACHER

Email: dsmith@aakelementary.org


KEATON SMITH 1ST GRADE TEACHER

Email: ksmith@aakelementary.org

This year will be my 6th year as an educator at AAK! I have had the wonderful opportunity to work alongside Ms. Sloan, and together we have fostered a creative, engaging, and safe learning environment here in first grade. One of my favorite perks of this job is watching the students grow, not only in education but also in their confidence in themselves as creative individuals. I love working alongside educators who are here to make learning feel unique, positive, and enjoyable.

In my free time, I am usually playing video games, dancing around my house, spending quality time with friends, or up in Wyoming visiting family.


ALISON SLOAN — 1ST GRADE TEACHER

Email: asloan@aakelementary.org

I’m so excited to begin another year here at AAK. This is the most amazing school I have taught at. I love the freedom to be creative and to explore with the students. I’m beginning my 6th year in first grade with the best teammate in the history of teaching, Mr. Smith.  As your child’s teacher I will work hard to show the students how amazing they are. Boosting confidence in academics and who they are as an individual are my goals as an educator. I’m looking forward to growing and learning with your child. In my spare time, I enjoy arts and crafts, video games, puzzles, and watching movies.

 


CAITRIN CULLEN — 2ND GRADE TEACHER

Email: ccullen@aakelementary.org

I am excited to be a Second Grade Teacher at the Academy of Arts and Knowledge! I grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and moved to Fort Collins, Colorado for college. I enjoy all that Colorado has to offer, from skiing to hiking to boating on Horsetooth Reservoir. I am excited to create a community in our Second Grade class full of learning, fun, laughter, and hard work. It will be a fun 2021-2022 year!

LISA THOMPSON THIRD GRADE TEACHER

Email: lthompson@aakelementary.org

I am so excited for my first full year here at AAK. My name is Lisa Thompson, I am married, a mother of three children (21,20, 14).  I have been homeschooling my children for several years and teaching students English remotely over the past three years. I have a great PASSION for teaching!!! I am currently enrolled and attending CCU (Colorado Christian University) to obtain my Master’s in Education with a Focus on Curriculum and Instruction. I hold a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from the University of Phoenix as well.

 I have been with AAK since September 2021, I am honored and very proud to be a 3rd-grade teacher here. I look forward to the many adventures in learning and different projects that our third grade will do this year. The students are so creative and I love that I can integrate the subjects to help enhance their learning experience.  I am also looking forward to working with such a supportive team of admin and teachers! Looking forward to an awesome year!!


EILISH POE — 4TH GRADE TEACHER

Email: epoe@aakelementary.org

I am extremely excited to be a part of this wonderful community.  For the last 2.5 years, I have been working at Bauder Elementary, here in Fort Collins. I grew up in Dallas, Texas and moved to Colorado when I was 18 to come to Colorado State University. I am an extremely community-based teacher, and feel like AAK is going to be a great fit for that.

 


KIRSTEN SCHELL FOURTH GRADE TEACHER

Email: kschnell@aakelementary.org


RALEIGH FAIRCHILD — FIFTH GRADE TEACHER

Email: rfairchild@aakelementary.org

The Academy of Arts & Knowledge has been a wonderful school to be a part of. We have had the best teachers, and I am so happy to work with and learn from them. I have had the opportunity to use my creativity to find innovative ways to teach my students. From going on Viking raids, to learning and trying out Roman battle tactics. We have spent time creating mosaics, and writing about our “first-hand experiences when Mount Vesuvius erupted.” We have worked with many different classes and grades to help our 4th and 5th graders become the teachers and leaders, and share what they have learned with the younger grades.

I have loved teaching here for the past five years and I am looking forward to working with a new group of amazing students. I love combining my love of History and English together to really go deeper into both subjects. I am really looking forward to working with the students to create new things that are unique to our class!


DIANNE ANDREJASICH – VISUAL ARTS TEACHER

Email: dandrejasich@aakelementary.org

I have taught at AAK since the opening of our school. Watching our highly creative student’s brilliance shine has been one of the greatest inspirations in my 20-year education career. Before I received my teaching license I worked as a commercial and fine artist for 20 plus years teaching art as an artist-in-residence for schools.

 As a young elementary school student, several core academics were difficult for me because I learn differently than most people. Ingenious teachers guided me with different learning methods opening new doors for me and raising my academic studies.  Thus, I strive to unlock frustration in students who need a different approach to many academic subjects through the visual arts.  Along with motivating them to soar to new heights in their artwork.  Our art projects begin with a goal giving students choices for exploring various materials that will complete their imaginative concepts building confidence with their accomplishments.

My goal in the visual arts is not assembling project activities with little room for creativity.  Instead, students will go beyond their initial ideas to develop higher-order thinking skills in their approach to artistic problem-solving.  “Genius is made, not born. And human beings are gifted with an almost unlimited potential for learning and creativity.”  How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci


LORNA FLOYD – MUSIC TEACHER

Email: lfloyd@aakelementary.org

I have been the music teacher since fall of 2010. I love how our school music program meets and exceeds the Colorado State Music Standards in a unique way–by offering an elementary instrumental program!

When I am not in my classroom I’m in my many gardens with my husband and three little dogs or making my own music! I play alto saxophone with the funk band Archie Funker, flute with Bole Bole Brazilian band, and clarinet and vocals in my own ensemble, Lorna’s Swingset.


 – EXPRESSIONS TEACHER

Email:

Coming soon!


LAUREN COLE— SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER

Email: lcole@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


ELIZABETH BAYLISS— SPEECH PATHOLOGIST

Email: ebayliss@aakelementary.org

My name is Elizabeth and I am a Speech-Language Pathologist. Although I am a native Oklahoman, I have lived in several states (TX, NJ, MO) throughout my journey, and I am so grateful to have landed in Fort Collins! I received my Bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University and completed my Master’s degree at Rockhurst University. I have worked in several settings including home healthcare and outpatient clinics, but I am especially excited to be working in a school setting with such a devoted team and supportive community. I have a passion for communication and believe every child’s “voice” is important. My mission as a speech therapist is to provide the tools, support, and encouragement each child needs to understand and communicate in his or her world. Communication is the key to connection!

In my free time, I enjoy reading, yoga, art projects, and exploring Colorado with my Blue Heeler, Buckley Blue!


JULIE MCINTIRE— OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST

Email: jmcintire@aakelemetnary.org

Bio coming soon!


ROBYN WILLIAMS— SCHOOL PYSCHOLOGIST

Email: rwilliams@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


TRACY EVANGELISTA— COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER DIRECTOR

Email: tevangelista@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


STEPHANIE TRUJILLO— COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER TEACHER

Email: strujillo@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


REBECCA HYMAN— COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER TEACHER

Email: rhyman@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


BROOKE BODNAR— COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER TEACHER

Email: bbodnar@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


BREEANN SANCHEZ— COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER TEACHER

Email: bsanchez@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


SCOTT WILSON— INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Email: swilson@aakelementary.org

Bio coming soon!


RANDALL FOSS— FACILITIES MANAGER

Email: rfoss@aakelementary.org

As the facilities manager for AAK, I am grateful to be a part of such an outstanding educational family.  The faculty and students here are continually enhancing my life with positivity and teaching me many great things a long the way.  I truly enjoy caring for this school! It is like my second home!


MIKE FULLER— CUSTODIAN

Email: facilities@aakelementary.org

Hello! I am anxious to start working and to meet all the staff and kids.  I am an easy-going guy and have a great sense of humor!  I am also a sports nut.  My favorite teams are the Raiders, Yankees, and Lakers.  I am engaged to a beautiful lady!