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Our staff

Staff List

Administration and Facilities

Julie Wiley, Administrative Director / Principal

Sandra Traub, Office Manager
Andrea Williford, Administrative Assistant & Enrollment Coordinator

Jeff Cortez, Maintenance Supervisor


Linda Bennett, Kindergarten
Michelle McDougall, First grade
Samantha Legorreta, Second grade
Darlene Beal, Third grade
Lisa Fowler, First-third grade 
Josanne van der Wilk, Fifth grade
Karen Hansen, Fourth grade
Shaun Gruber, Fifth grade
Seth Lewis, Sixth grade
Michelle Faeth, Seventh-eighth grade Humanities
Brett Hagerman, Seventh-eighth grade Science and Math

Adjunct Teaching Staff

Mark Damiani, Physical Education
Mike Rindt, Music Instructor
Alisabeth Jarrett, Resource Specialist
Lynn Steele, Speech Pathologist
Vincent Rodriguez, Resource Aide
Susan Yambra, EL Teacher

Staff Biographies

Julie Wiley

Administrative Director/Principal [e-mail]

Julie Wiley graduated With Honors from California State Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a B.S. in Social Sciences. After completing a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from San Jose State and teaching briefly, Julie took time off to raise a family before returning to teaching in 1996.

When Julie returned to the classroom, she taught 6-8 grade humanities, integrating social studies with language arts curriculum for 18 years. She is a presenter with the Central California Writing Project, a member of the Coalition of Essential Schools, and a member of the International and California Reading Associations.

Julie has a strong background in classroom teaching strategies and school leadership having served on a variety of advisory committees, grassroots community movements, and the Linscott Charter School Site Management Team.

Linda Bennett

Kindergarten, Hummingbird Hall (email)

Linda first became involved with Linscott in 2006 when her two daughters began attending the school. As a parent, she loved being at Linscott and had always wanted to be very involved. She worked as a substitute teacher and member of the Site Management Team for two years, in addition to serving other roles in our Linscott parent community until her youngest daughter graduated in June of 2012.

Linda's educational background includes having earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Environmental Studies and Political Science at U.C. Santa Barbara in 1986, a Master’s Degree of Urban and Regional Planning at San Jose State University in 1997, and a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Cal State Teach at CSUMB in 2007. She earned the Academic Achievement Award in 1996 in her Master’s Program at San Jose State University, and earned a Cross-Cultural, Language and Academic Development (CLAD) Certification from Cal State Teach. She just completed her professional development program through the Santa Cruz County Office of Education which has enable her to earn her lifetime teaching credential. In addition to these courses of study, she has attended many specialized trainings to enhance her ability to work with students of varying learning styles. She comes experienced in teaching all grades from preschool through fifth grades and am currently in her eleventh year of teaching.

"I am delighted to be working at Linscott, and very much look forward to meeting you and working with you and your child".  --Linda

Michelle McDougall

First grade, Heart Room (email)


Samantha Legorreta

Second grade, Discovery Room (Email)

 Bio Forthcoming

Josanne van der Wilk

Fifth Grade, Looping, Treehouse (Email)

Josanne graduated from UC Santa Cruz with her BA in sociology in 2014 and her Masters in Education and Multiple Subjects Teaching Credential in 2015.

Josanne loves to surf, swim, play disc golf and ultimate frisbee, take walks, camp, and go on long road trips.

Josanne was a college athlete for 5 years, swimming for UC Santa Cruz and Chabot Community College in Hayward. At the age of 16, Josanne became involved in coaching and swim lessons, which lead her to realize how much she genuinely loves teaching. There was nothing more rewarding than seeing a swimmer's smile when they swam their first independent lap or set a new personal record. Swimming and coaching lead Josanne to truly understand the value of hard work, perseverance, and helped her develop a philosophy that viewed failure as an opportunity to learn. This knowledge and passion carried her through her education, and she decided to pursue a teaching career after graduation.

Josanne's philosophy as an educator is shaped by both her experiences as a collegiate athlete and her time as student at a small alternative elementary school. Being a student at an experiential learning and parental involvement based school taught Josanne how crucial it is for teaching and learning to be viewed as an opportunity, not an obligation. Because of this, as an educator, Josanne understands how crucial and valuable it is for students to be passionate, engaged, happy, and appreciated.

This is the sort of environment Josanne has found at Linscott, which she feels so appreciative and fortunate to contribute to and be a part of.

Darlene Beal

Third grade, Phoenix Hall (Email)

Darlene received her B.A. Cum Laude with distinction in Liberal Studies with an emphasis in Child Development at California State University Monterey Bay. She holds a BCLAD credential and has taught third grade at Linscott Charter School since 2001. Darlene was a vision therapist for 8 years working with children and adults with vision related learning difficulties.

She worked with John Fleming at Developmental Learning Solutions for three years where she gained knowledge and experience working with many different learning styles. She is a graduate and support training staff of GLOBE (Global Observations to Benefit the Environment). For several years she has participated in the SCHELD (Science, Culture, History and English Language Development) Institute, first as a participant and then in the leadership training.

She loves teaching at Linscott Charter School because it allows her to address the whole child and provide hands-on integrated curriculum. She also values the parent, teacher, student collaboration which is fostered here. Darlene feels especially connected to Linscott because she and her children attended this school for 14 years before she finished her credential program and became a teacher.

Lisa Fowler

Multi-Age / First through Third Grade, Rainbow Room (Email)

Lisa has been a teacher in the Pajaro Valley School District since 1997. She has taught Kindergarten, first and second grade in addition to her 6 years as a reading and language development specialist.
One of the things she enjoys most about teaching is the opportunity she has to celebrate with kids as they read their first books and write their first words. Even after 15 years of helping kids learn to read it is always exciting and wonderful to participate in those “A-HA” moments!

Lisa builds upon the natural curiosity of  children with her year long theme “Exploring our World.” She teaches students how to “think like scientists,” observing, asking questions and making predictions about the animals and habitats here in Pajaro Valley and around the world. She uses field trips to give students hands-on experiences related to each unit of study. Units are developed based upon the California State Standards for Science and Social Studies. Literacy, science, social studies and math are integrated (interconnected) as much as possible. Art, music and hands-on science are an integral part of the "Rainbow Room" learning experience.

Karen Hansen

Fourth grade, Exploration Station (Email)

Karen received a BFA degree in Graphic Design from Brigham Young University. She worked for several years at Macy’s Department Store as a Visual Merchandising Manager, and for Cost Plus World Market as a Store Reset Designer. Travel in between jobs, to Europe and to South America has been important and enriching, too. Karen returned to BYU in 1998, in order to be part of a specialized teaching credential program for at-risk students. She worked for three years at Stansbury Elementary, and for 14 years at Rucker Elementary School.

            In her spare time, Karen is a working ceramic artist. She has participated in many shows, and has had work listed in local galleries. For the past five years, she has been juried into Santa Cruz County Open Studios. Teaching kids the ceramic process is her way of giving back to the elementary school teachers in her life, who first introduced her to clay. She also likes to integrate art into social studies, science, and math lessons. An avid reader, Karen hosts student Lunchtime Book Clubs, and a weekly Lunchtime Scrabble Club in her classroom.

            Her main goal each year, is to form a personal connection with each student in the classroom. She also hopes to help each child to feel successful.

Shaun Gruber

Fifth grade, Research Room (Email)

Shaun graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a Bachelors Degree in Studio Art.  After two years of being a college graduate and living in the UK for a period of time, she ended up back in Santa Cruz. Shaun began volunteering at two local elementary school classrooms (6th grade at Mar Vista Elementary and 5th grade at H.A. Hyde).  Literally, within days, she fell in love with the idea of becoming an elementary school teacher.  Six months later she was convinced that she needed to make this idea a reality.  Shaun entered San Jose State in 2012 and enrolled in their Multiplication Subject Teaching Credential program, where she was exposed to creative educators and an inspiring cohort of peers. While student teaching at Si Se Puede, a Rocketship parent-participation and college-prep charter school, she was trained in individualized instruction and was taught the importance of holding high academic expectations for her students. Shaun also became interested in public policy and making sure all children have access to quality education. 

"I feel so lucky to be teaching such an amazing group of students at Linscott and having the chance to implement all of my new found skills, as well as developing many more!   I have grown so much already through my time at Linscott and my collaboration with both teachers and parents.  My love for teaching increases everyday and I am so thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful community of teachers, administrators, parents and students!" --Shaun  

Seth Lewis

Sixth grade, Fox Landing (Email)

Seth has been working as an educator at Linscott Charter School since 2007.  His background and life experiences have fortuitously provided him with the skills and motivation to have an extremely positive impact on the both the students in the classroom, as well as the school. The following paragraphs give a brief introduction to who he is as a person as well as his philosophy as an educator.

In his youth, Seth spent time in Santa Maria, California, an agricultural community with startling similarities to Watsonville. After graduating from UC Santa Barbara with a Bachelors Degree in History in 2001.  Seth along with his wife, who is an environmental educator spent several years traveling, teaching, and learning in the South Pacific, New Zealand, Australia, South East Asia, and Central and South America. When he returned to the United States in 2005, he attended the University of California, Santa Cruz where he obtained his Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and Master of Education degree. Seth spent 2006-2007 in Burlington, Vermont while his wife completed her Master of Science in Environmental and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont.

"As an educator, I have extensive experience teaching children from diverse social, economic, and ethnic backgrounds, teaching in multi-age settings, and working as an outdoor educator. In fact, six years orchestrating the surfing portion of UCSB's Eco-Surf and Kayak Camp taught me that experiences and engagement in the outdoor world are an irreplaceable form of education. I am particularly motivated by Linscott's community support, and vibrant atmosphere. I am enjoying integrating myself into the Linscott community, while I strive to inspire innovation and development".--Seth

Michelle Faeth

Seventh and Eighth Grade Humanities, Lion's Lair (Email)

Michelle Faeth is a life-long learner who teaches 7th and 8th grade Humanities.  A graduate of Michigan State University and CSU Monterey Bay, Michelle came to teaching after raising two daughters and running an after-school daycare.  Here at Linscott she enjoys the challenge of the middle school curriculum, especially helping students become competent writers and thinkers.   She also has a passion for History and enjoys making the lessons come alive with skits, artwork, music and interactive projects.  When not grading papers or creating lesson plans, Michelle likes to travel, volunteer in the community, read, and watch Jeopardy!

Brett Hagerman

Seventh and Eighth Grade Math and Science, Lion's Lair (Email)

My name is Brett Hagerman. I teach 7th & 8th Math & Science along with Exploratories here at Linscott Charter. I graduated from CSUMB, May 2010 with my teacher certification in secondary education with an emphasis in Biology with my undergraduate work completed in Wisconsin at the University of Wisconsin- Oshkosh with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology and Environmental Studies as a minor.

I have worked at two outdoor facilities as a cabin and field instructor and as a marine biology instructor and have taught in other public schools and private schools working with students from K-12th. My 15 years of teaching offers me a rich diversity of teaching experiences to draw upon when working with the students, but nonetheless I’m constantly evaluating and refining my techniques and trying to find new ways to engage my students and continue to make learning interesting and meaningful.

 I thoroughly enjoy working with youth and building positive rapports with each individual. The job of teaching is extremely diverse, constantly changing, and there is seldom a dull moment. It is equally as rewarding as it is challenging. The real joy of teaching comes from the growth and development that can be observed as a child makes learning advancements socially and academically, positive life skill shifts, or is unraveling the knowledge they possess within and realizing the power and enjoyment of learning.

Sandra (Sam) Traub

Office Manager (Email)

Sandra (Sam) has been working for Linscott since 2002 as the Office Manager. She enjoys working along side the parents, students and staff at Linscott assisting with any needs that arise. Her focus is on student records, personnel, purchasing and dispensing medications while providing medical assistance to students. She provides support to staff, students and parents and although she always looks busy, she never minds stopping to help out in any way she can.

Sandra enjoys spending time with her family, husband Terry, sons Tyler and Trevor and daughter Xani (all former Linscott students) and of course her granddaughter. Favorite activities include camping, dirt biking, Martial Arts, bonfires in the backyard with family and friends and reading a good book! She also heads up the Watsonville P.A.L. Martial Arts Program where many of our Linscott students have studied Taekwondo.

Andrea Williford

Administrative Assistant & Enrollment Coordinator (Email)

Andrea has been at Linscott since 2004 as a parent volunteer and joined the office staff in 2007 as the Administrative Assistant. She is in charge of processing field trips for classes, tracking our parent participation including parent fingerprinting and driver clearances. Andrea handles all of our enrollment, is our former LFKF President (and is still actively involved in our parent organization). She puts together our Middle School Exploratory classes and facilitates our Breakfast/Lunch program amongst a million other things.

Jeff Cortez (aka:Superman)

Facility Manager 
Although I didn't realize it at the time I found my calling in 1995 when I was hired as Facilities Manager.  My responsibility is the maintenance of our site.  I come into contact with staff parents and students  and I truly enjoy the opportunity to interact them, assisting them with anything they may need.  I take an active roll in empowering students with knowledge about the little stuff.  I take my job seriously and feel it is a privilege to be here.

I am married have 2 sons who who attended middle school here and are now attending College.

Mark Damiani

Elementary physical education

I showed up here at Linscott in 1990 as a parent. Both my children attended 2 years of preschool here at the co-op and they stayed here right through 8th grade. After filling many voluntary positions here at Linscott over the years, I hired on as the Physical Education Instructor. Over the last 13 years I have participated in some of the nation's top Instructors conferences and workshops.This has helped me to develop a Physical Education Program that is based in a mix of cooperative games, competition, character reveal, cross curricular activities as well as basic skills development. Along with specialized training in Physical Education and Development and Conflict Resolution, I also earned an AA and a BA in Liberal Arts, graduating Cum Laude and with distinction in the major. I have taught English as a second language in both Peru and Argentina. I am currently awaiting acceptance into a Masters of Education Counseling and Credential program. So much for qualifying myself...what I want you to know is that I come to work every day happy to be a part of Linscott. I love my job and I love the kids. I have the best job in the world. I get to be outside unless it rains which isn't often, I get to make Physical Education fun and exciting for your kids; which means that they will probably keep active and playing hard throughout their lives; which means I get to make a difference in this world! That is what is important to me, to be useful and joyful and to carry that message into my program and into the lives of your kids. Play hard, play fair and have fun!

Mike Rindt

Music Instructor

Bio Forthcoming

Susan Yambra

EL Teacher

Bio Forthcoming
Nicholas Jarrett
Technology Specialist

Bio Forthcoming

Alisabeth Jarrett, Resource Specialist / Vincent Rodriguez, Resource Aide / Lynn Steele, Speech / Aurora Ortiz, Psychologist