Our scholars had a great start to the 2012-2013 school year! Kindergarten scholars have been busy learning their numbers 0-20 in math and first grade scholars have been learning all about author's purpose during reading comprehension instruction. Please know that the last Town Hall of the month will be open to families. Please join us from 1:05-1:35pm!
Ms. Colarusso Head of School Blackstone Valley Prep Elementary 2
Ms. Colarusso is the founding Head of School of Blackstone Valley Prep Elementary 2. She joined the BVP family as a Kindergarten teacher in 2009. Colarusso started her career in education as a Teach for America Corps Member teaching both Kindergarten and First Grade in the urban school district of Miami-Dade County Public Schools in Florida. A native resident of Massachusetts, Ms. Colarusso holds a dual bachelor’s degree in History and Spanish from Regis College and a master’s degree from the Mind, Brain, and Education program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has previously worked in both traditional public and public charter schools in her home state.
Yasmin Heras, Office Manager
Mrs. Heras was born in Caracas, Venezuela, but lived most of her life in New York. She has a bachelor’s degree from Metropolitan College of New York, and also attended Rhode Island College, School of Social Work. She has over 10 years experience in the social service field; including working with Head Start Programs for low-income families, charter schools, children’s shelter, and Family Daycare Agency. She previously worked at Seventh Avenue Center for Family Service for over 2 years, Harlem and the Bronx. She also worked and completed 3 semesters of her internship at ReadNet Bronx Charter School, in the Bronx. Mrs. Heras has a 12 year old son, with whom she enjoys spending her free time. She was looking to work primarily in a school setting for a change in her career, and is very enthusiastic to work at BVP.
Mr. Bedard graduated from Wesleyan University in 2002 and went on to earn his Master's Degree in Elementary Education from Rhode Island College in 2010. This will be his second year at BVP, and he couldn't be more excited about the upcoming school year.
Ms. Delano is a Massachusetts native who traveled to Southern California to study PR and advertising. She spent two years working in the field of entertainment marketing and volunteering with non-profits, which allowed her to spend time working with the area youth. Now, as a 2012 Teach For America corps member, Ms. Delano’s work will be deeply rooted in instilling a love of learning and personal growth in her young students.
Ms. Lorraine graduated from Rhode Island College in 2011 with a B.S. in Elementary Education and a specialization in Special Education (mild/moderate and severe/profound). She worked as a long-term substitute teacher in the town of Smithfield for the past two years and is now very excited to be part of the BVP team! In her free time, Ms. Lorraine enjoys taking walks with her two dogs, Charlie and Lola, cooking and writing. She is extremely grateful for the opportunity to be part of such a wonderful school community!
Ms. Hayes is currently teaching her third year with BVP as a kindergarten teacher. During high school and college she performed on dance teams and has taught dance to children between the ages of 3 and 10. Ms. Hayes is looking forward to another exciting and successful year at Blackstone Valley Prep!
Ms. Lyons is currently teaching her second year at BVP, as well as attending graduate school at Providence College for Special Education. Ms. Lyons is from Easton, Massachusetts where she graduated from Oliver Ames High School. She student taught kindergarten at Aquidneck Elementary School in Middletown, RI. Ms. Lyons is excited to continue teaching at BVP to lead scholars toward a bright and successful future.
Mrs. Smorol is thrilled to be starting her second year as a Kindergarten teacher at Blackstone Valley Prep! She was born and raised in Syracuse, NY, and relocated to RI in 2004 where she taught children K-5 at Mt. Pleasant Academy, a day treatment facility for children with emotional/behavioral needs. During this time, she collaborated with The Autism Project through graduate level courses promoting positive practices for children. Julie resides in Cranston, RI with her husband and two children.
Born and raised in Rhode Island, Ms. Bunn is passionate about working with scholars and has extensive experience working with youth from different districts in the state. She recently returned from a ten day "Teacher Trek" through Israel visiting unique schools to learn classroom and school wide techniques. Ms. Bunn is elated to be part of the BVP ES2 team and is dedicated to getting every scholar on the path to college.
A Cumberland native, Ms. Covino is returning to RI after teaching four years in both public and charter schools in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Being passionate about making a tangible difference and working with youth, she joined Teach for America in 2008, and was certified through the New Teacher Project in Louisiana. Ms. Covino has taught kindergarten and first grade in the past and is looking forward to working with fabulous first grade scholars from her hometown!
Mr. D'Avanzo is excited to begin his second year at BVP ES2 as a member of the 1st grade team. He is a former member of the Brown men's soccer team and is still involved as a coach in local and youth soccer leagues. In the fall of 2009, Mr. D'Avanzo studied abroad in Havana, Cuba, where he taught English to adults in his community. Mr. D'Avanzo is a 2011 TFA RI corps member and is extremely proud to be a BVP teacher.
During college, Ms. Donahue worked as a substitute teacher at the Evergreen Center working with children with Autism and severe developmental disabilities. After serving as BVP’s kindergarten special education teacher last year, she is very excited to begin her new role as a 1st grade classroom teacher in ES2. She is very proud to be a part of Blackstone Valley Prep’s incredible team.
Ms. Grant was born and raised in Warwick, RI. While in college, she played NCAA varsity volleyball for 2 years. When she graduated in 2011, she began substitute teaching in the West Warwick Public School District until January 2012, when she was asked to join the BVP Middle School team. As a second year teacher, she will be working with Kindergarten and 1st Grade. She is looking forward to this school year and can't wait to see the wonder that emanates from each and every scholar.
Ms. Harrison is a recent graduate of Brown University where she majored in Public Policy and Organizational Studies and was a member of Brown women's cross country and track teams. She was born in Newport, RI and grew up in Gaithersburg, Maryland. In her free time, Ms. Harrison enjoys running, cooking, and spending time with family and friends. She is a 2011 Teach for America Rhode Island corps member.
Art, Music and P.E.
Raffi Rachdouni, Music
Mr. Rachdouni is a graduate from the University of Rhode Island with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education. He has been playing the piano since he was 7 years old, along with clarinet and organ, and singing. Mr. Rachdouni is extremely excited to continue teaching these brilliant scholars everything he knows about music.
Katelyn Guignard, Art
Miss Guignard was born and raised in New Jersey. She attended Rhode Island College and decided to stay in Rhode Island after graduating. Miss Guignard holds a B.A. in Art Education and is looking forward to starting a Master’s program in the coming year. She has three years of art teaching experience in grades K-5 and is very excited to be teaching art at ES2 this year. She enjoys running, yoga, bike riding, sewing, traveling, and going to the beach.
Ariana Stanton, P.E./Health
Originally from Massachusetts, Ms. Stanton moved to Burrillville, Rhode Island, where she was raised. At a young age, Ms. Stanton discovered her passion for physical fitness and movement through recreational sports. Throughout high school, she was a three sport varsity athlete and team captain, as well as a BGYSA and BGYBA coach for soccer and basketball. She also taught several Zumba dance-fitness classes at gyms in Burrillville and Smithfield during college, which allowed her to introduce Zumba fitness to the URI’s PHETE program. Her passion and dedication to her work throughout college earned Ms. Stanton the privilege to be the URI representative at several state and national professional conferences held in Rhode Island, Boston, and Pennsylvania. Ms. Stanton is elated to be joining the Blackstone Valley Prep team as the ES2 P.E./Health teacher. She cannot wait to share her enthusiasm with all scholars and fellow team members!
Student Support Services
Mrs. Efflandt graduated from Brown University in 2009 with a Bachelors degree in Visual Art. She began teaching as a 2009 Teach for America Corps member in Dallas, TX. In Dallas, she served for two years as a bilingual kindergarten teacher and earned a Master’s degree in Education from Southern Methodist University.
Casey McIntyre, K and 1st Grade Special Educator
Ms. McIntyre is a Cumberland native. She is a recent Rhode Island College graduate with degrees in Elementary Education, Mild/Moderate Special Education and Severe/Profound Special Education. Ms. McIntyre is the 2012 recipient of the Eliza Bonaventura Award from Rhode Island College for her work with students with disabilities from diverse ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. She is looking forward to a great year at BVP!
Ms. Blanchard comes to BVP with over 12 years of experience in early childhood and behavior intervention. She will be working at ES2 as a behavior interventionist consultant and will return for the 2013-14 year as a Kindergarten teacher at ES1.
Liz Murray, Nurse
Ms. Murray is a graduate of the Rhode Island College School of Nursing, and also attended URI where she obtained additional Bachelor's Degrees in Biology and Chemistry. Liz has been a professional registered nurse for 12 years and has worked in various pediatric settings including Psychiatry, Oncology and Med/Surg. Murray is a native Rhode Islander and a proud parent of two BVP scholars! As a BVP parent and School Nurse, her goal is to provide all scholars with a safe and healthy school environment to facilitate learning and success. Ms. Murray is excited to be collaborating with a fantastic team and looks forward to working with scholars and families this year.
Kyle Quadros, Special Populations Chair
Mr. Quadros is a Pawtucket native who joined Teach for America in Phoenix, Arizona after graduating from Providence College. He taught in a Self-Contained Autism classroom at T.G. Barr Elementary School. There, Mr. Quadros coached middle school soccer, basketball, and started the Teen Court program. He spent the last year working as a Dean of Students at Match Middle School in Boston before joining the BVP family. Mr. Quadros is excited at coming back to his community and having the opportunity to work with amazing scholars.