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Dr. Deirdre Spollen-LaRaia is currently a Principal at Hawthorne Elementary School in Teaneck, New Jersey. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the College of Saint Elizabeth in Morristown. Deirdre began her career in New York City Public Schools as a teacher of Grades 1, 3, and 5; Literacy Staff Developer; Assistant Principal and Supervisor of Special Education. She has presented topics on literacy coaching and nonfiction reading, and teacher evaluation at NCTE, IRA, NJSBA and NJASCD and spent three years presenting the common core state standards as a part of the Professional Development Faculty at Kean University in Union, New Jersey. Deirdre has written articles on teacher evaluation, PARCC assessment, and school culture for Think Teachers and NJASCD publications. The past five years have been instrumental in restructuring and building a collaborative team teaching (inclusion) program at her school for children in Grades 1-4. You can connect with Deirdre on Twitter at @DslDspollen.
Saundra Warren-Givens is currently a fourth grade teacher at Hawthorne Elementary School in Teaneck, NJ. She has been teaching for 22 years and has experience teaching 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade classes. She has been teaching in an inclusive setting for the past 10 years. Saundra began her career in Worcester Public Schools as a second grade teacher in Massachusetts. She obtained her Master’s in the Art of Teaching degree from Marygrove College. Saundra enjoys collaborating with colleagues to plan for student success and has a particular strength in implementing kinesthetic strategies for learning. During her years of teaching, she has served as a mentor and cooperating teacher. You may contact Saundra to discuss teaching strategies at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tawana Smith is currently a special education teacher at Hawthorne Elementary School in Teaneck, NJ. She has been co-teaching in an inclusive setting for the past 8 years. During this time she has worked with 1st, 3rd and 4th grade inclusion students and enjoys collaborating with her colleagues. Tawana began her career as a paraprofessional for an inclusion program which motivated her to pursue a career in special education. She attended a dual certification program and obtained her certificates in Elementary Education as well as a Teacher of Students with Disabilities from Rowan University. Tawana has an expertise in the area of Autism. Over the course of the past four years, Tawana has served as a mentor and coach for new teachers. If you would like to get in touch with Tawana Smith to discuss her inclusive and special education practices please contact her via email: email@example.com.
Jemara Blount is currently a third-grade Inclusion teacher at Hawthorne Elementary School in Teaneck, NJ. She has been teaching in the inclusive setting for the past four years. Mrs. Blount practices differentiated instruction for special education students in a general education setting. Mrs. Blount also holds an Orton-Gillingham Certification and has over 120 hours of tutoring students with learning disabilities. Mrs. Blount has been a model teacher for the inclusion program. She and her co-teacher have been team teaching and collaborating for over three years. Her ability to differentiate and parallel teach has proven successful for the students she teaches. If you would like to contact Jemara Blount to inquire about her inclusion practices, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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