Meet Our Teachers
Cassandra Shive – English/Tutor
Hello! For the 2017-18 school year, I am the sole English teacher for the middle and upper school. This year, I am the seventh grade homeroom advisor! I graduated from Shippensburg University in 2012 with a BA in English and secondary education. Currently, I’m working on my master’s degree at Kutztown University. Before coming to Gillingham in 2014, I spent two years working as a baker at Sublime Cupcakes in Wyomissing. I grew up in the Lehigh Valley, but reside in Wyomissing. In my free time, I love to bake, read, and practice yoga.
Laura Martin – Spanish
¡Hola! My name is Laura Martin, and I am the Spanish K-12 teacher. I graduated from Eastern University and completed my student teaching at Manheim Township High School in 2016. In college, I studied Spanish Education and ESL. During my junior year, I had the opportunity to study abroad in Seville, Spain. I lived with a host family and attended classes at a nearby school. Now back in PA, I am looking forward to share the Spanish that I love to the students at Gillingham Charter School. Outside of school, I enjoy being with others, being outside, being active and reading!
ElizaRae Michaud – Literature & History
Originally from Pine Grove, Pa., I am a cum laude graduate of Kutztown University with a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a minor in social studies. I started substitute teaching at Gillingham in 2012, and I am now entering my fifth year. I am currently pursuing my master’s degree in teaching English as a second language. I will be teaching social studies for the 2017/2018 school year. I currently live in Bethlehem, and I enjoy being a fiance, as well as a mom to our two year old daughter, Isabella. I enjoy sports, thrift shopping, music, reading classics, and vacationing on the beach.
Michael Meyer- Secondary Math Teacher
Hello. My name is Michael Meyer, the new Upper School mathematics teacher. I have been tutoring privately since high school, and have always have a passion for mathematics and helping others, especially to learn. I graduated from Kutztown University with my degree in Secondary Education Mathematics. I am very excited to use the Interactive Mathematics Program Gillingham Charter School has to offer the students. Not only does it foster communication and social skills, it has students critically thinking every class. To me, this is the type of math that sticks with students and has real-world applications. Recently married, I moved to the Reading area. I enjoy sports, board games, and puzzles of all kinds.
Mark Major – Special Education Teacher
During the 2017-2018 school year, I will be working as the Middle and Upper School, Special Education Teacher. Over the course of my four years at Gillingham Charter School, I’ve taught a variety of classes including History, Economics, Family Life, Personal Finance, Nature Study and Shakespeare. Last year I served as the Title I Teacher. Prior to coming to Gillingham, I spent three years as a Library Science teacher at Intermediate Unit 29. I completed my undergraduate education in History at Penn State. I earned my Teaching Certification for social studies at Alvernia University in 2008, where I am also continuing my graduate work in Special Education. I bring a variety of life and classroom experience to our school. I spent eight years in the U S Army between 1984 and 1992 serving in West Germany. When I returned home in 1992, I co-authored local history works, performed historical reenactments and assisted in the production of documentaries, and for 14 years I served as the director of the Schuylkill County Visitors Bureau. My love of promoting local history nurtured a desire to teach. At Gillingham, I see myself as a part of a family dedicated to the intellectual and social growth of our students. I live in Pottsville with my wife Nannette and daughter Skye, and I enjoy reading, tennis, running and spending time with family. I look forward to another year at Gillingham Charter School.
Kara Stalter – Reading Specialist (K-12)
This is my fifth year at Gillingham, and I serve as the school Reading Specialist, as well as the Assessment/Title I Coordinator. Although I reside in Berks County, working here in Pottsville is where I learn to live, not just to teach. I wholeheartedly believe in this philosophy of education, having seen first-hand the growth of our students. I finished my Master’s degree from Kutztown University in July of 2016 and am thrilled to be a Reading Specialist. When I am not at Gillingham working with the children and teachers, I most enjoy playing the piano and guitar, singing, taking walks, playing games, writing, and reading missionary stories. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brent Potteiger – Latin Teacher
After graduating with a degree in the classics – Ancient Greek and Latin – I worked for a time in a non-profit organization, before finally making my way into teaching. For the first seven years – believe it or not! – I taught theology, which – believe it or not! – actually involves a lot of Latin! I currently teach Latin from 3rd grade through upper school; but occasionally teach other courses, such as philosophy and Shakespeare (those classes are taught in English, by the way). I enjoy spending time with family and friends – especially my wife and six sons (that’s not a mistake: I have six sons); going for walks; reading; telling ghost stories; studying various subjects of interest; and getting away from worldly concerns once in a while to focus better on what is truly necessary.
Preston Charlesworth- Music Teacher
Hello! My name is Preston Charlesworth and this is my third year at Gillingham as the K-12 General Music teacher, Director of Choirs, and Cross Country coach. I graduated in 2015 from Slippery Rock University with a degree in Music Education and am planning on starting graduate work this summer. My interests outside of school involve playing the tuba and bass, reading books of all sorts, baking, and watching laughably terrible movies. I currently reside in Myerstown, PA with my wife, who is also a music teacher, and our two cats Hugo and Chessa.
This is my third year at Gillingham which I am the K-12th health and physical education teacher as well as the athletic director and boy’s basketball coach. I received my bachelor’s degree from Marywood University in 2014. Prior to getting a health and physical education degree I was the boys basketball coach at G.A.R. Memorial High School in Wilkes Barre for 8 years, currently where I live. I love being active and playing sports while helping others stay physically active and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
I am the upper school science teacher. My BA in Liberal Arts with concentrations in Biology and Chemistry is from the University of the State of New York. I also have a Juris Doctor from New York Law School. My Permanent Teaching Certificates from NY include; Biology, Chemistry and General Science. I am currently completing my PA certifications. My teaching experience includes private, parochial and public school. Most recently I had the pleasure of teaching for two years at the International Community School in Singapore. My personal interests are hiking, skiing, fishing, hunting, scuba diving, mountain biking, kayaking and collecting mechanical wristwatches.