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Jenna is the mother to five children that currently span educational levels from middle school to college. Jenna attended the University of New Hampshire, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with minors in Political Science, Philosophy and Education. She began her journey in education as a teacher in the public schools and started homeschooling her children in 2002. She has had experience with her children in public and private settings and has been most impressed by the University Model® of education. Jenna joined Grace Prep in 2014 and has played many roles as a parent, teacher, administrator and is the current the Program Administrator of Grace Prep.
Mrs. Wertheimer's favorite thing about leading Grace Prep is "praying with the children when resolving conflicts, seeking godly resolutions and seeing grace and forgiveness extended to each other. Seeing God’s work in these little lives is such a privilege."
Judi Reid has been a classroom teacher for 38 years, a literacy coach and has held several leadership roles as an educator. She has her Bachelor's in Early Childhood Education/Special Education and her Master's in Educational Administration from Wheelock College. Her family leads The Light of the World Empowerment Center in Dorchester. Her husband is the pastor and she and her adult children also serve the congregation. As a school teacher, Mrs. Reid believes that she is charged with living out her faith daily so that her light might shine before men so that they might see Christ through her. As a leader in her congregation, she also feels called upon to be an example for Christ. She believes that it is her duty to love, nurture, teach, and instill Christian values in everyone with whom she interacts.
Grace Prep is excited to welcome Lara Kastelein as the first grade teacher for the 2022-2023 school year!
Lara is enthusiastic about teaching and has taught in a variety of settings for over two decades including special-ed classrooms, after-school programs, tutoring for children on the spectrum, and church Sunday school. She is experienced in Classical Conversations and the Institute for Excellence in Writing and serves as Children's Ministry Coordinator at Christ the King Church in Cambridge. Lara received her Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Clemson University. Mrs. Kastelein is mom to three daughters, two of whom will be joining her as students at Grace Prep this year. She is eager to teach first grade at GPA and find ways for each student to be successful in their academic journey.
Welcome to Grace Prep Mrs. Kastelein!
Deanne has a well rounded portfolio in education including having homeschooled her five children as well teaching in Christian schools. She has also enjoyed using her gifts as an English-as-a-Second-Language teacher, educational tutor, worship band member and pastor’s wife. Deanne and her family lived cross-culturally as missionaries in Kiev, Ukraine for 8 1/2 years. She has a passion for teaching and discipling kids and her enthusiasm in the classroom has been enjoyed by all her students since she joined our school in 2019.
Mrs. Taylor's favorite thing about teaching at Grace Prep is "fostering a sense of awe and wonder about God and the amazing world He has made. I also love the delightful children and their families who make up the Grace Prep community!"
In addition to leading GPA as School Administrator, Jenna is also using her expertise to teach our 3rd grade. She enjoys being in the classroom in the mornings teaching character training, math, phonics and writing. Pam Marando is the 3rd grade Teaching Aid and joins the children for the afternoons to teach History, Geography, Science and Literature. Together, Jenna and Pam thoroughly enjoy leading our third graders! Grace Prep is currently accepting applications for a third grade teacher for the 2023-2024 school year.
Interested in applying?
Pam is a part of Grace Prep as a mom, 3rd Grade Teaching Aid and Marketing Coordinator. She has a bachelor's degree in Business Entrepreneurship, acted as a Marketing Manager for 5 years in the insurance industry and then transitioned her efforts toward directing the Children's Ministry at Charles River Church in Boston, where her husband is the Discipleship Pastor. Pam co-owns Salted Family, an online business that creates fun family discipleship products. She has a passion for engaging children and parents in deep biblical truths together and has been writing children's ministry curriculum for many years. Pam is grateful the Lord is allowing her to use both her marketing and teaching skills at Grace Prep.
Mrs. Marando's favorite thing about Grace Prep is
"seeing students being encouraged in their studies and their faith at the same time. Having teachers who will pray with our kids and remind them of scripture as they engage in their studies is a blessing and a beautiful reflection of Christ."
Grace Prep is excited to welcome Moriah Fisher as the fourth & fifth grade teacher for the 2022-2023 school year!
Moriah's dream of becoming a teacher began in her elementary years, when she ran her own summer school in her family's basement for her siblings and neighbor kids. Needless to say, her youthful entrepreneurial endeavours led her to pursue a career in education. Following a summer of teaching English and Dance at a school in remote El Salvador, Moriah received her Bachelor of Arts in Inclusive Elementary Education from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. This program included training in K-12 SPED Methodology and a certification to teach culturally and linguistically diverse students. Moriah began teaching 5th grade in a public school setting as a student teacher. For the last two years, Moriah taught 12th grade World Literature at her alum high school, a charter school in Colorado Springs. Moriah recently got married and is new to Massachusetts. She looks forward to partnering with parents and students at Grace Prep this school year!
Welcome to Grace Prep Mrs. Fisher!
Cat joined as a Grace Prep parent in 2015. Since then, she has served in many roles over the years. She is excited to forge into this new role as the Middle School teacher. Cat earned her degree in Elementary Education from Wake Forest University and her Masters in Technology, Innovation and Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education. Cat and her husband have four children, one who is a Grace Prep alumnus, and three who are currently attending Grace Prep. They are active members of Christ the King Church, where they met, got married, and currently serve in a variety of capacities. Cat enjoys middle school students. She taught middle school Sunday School for four years and is currently serving on the Middle School Youth Planning Team at her church. Cat is passionate about fostering a love of learning and watching kids grow in their faith.
Mrs. Sherrill's favorite thing about Grace Prep is
"hard to choose - there are so many wonderful things! Some of my favorites include the community, the hybrid model, and that Christ is at the center of everything we do here."
Amanda has the privilege of participating in the Grace Prep community as both a parent and a teacher. The arts have been an integral part of Amanda's life for as long as she can remember; from piano lessons to art club to marching band and musical theatre, she has enjoyed a variety of experiences along the way! Amanda holds a Masters in music and has taught classroom music and private music instruction. She is also on staff as the music director at Christ the King Presbyterian Church, where she has served for almost 16 years. Amanda loves revealing connections between the arts and other areas of study and life.
Mrs. Holley's favorite thing about teaching the arts is
"helping kids (and adults!) see the beauty and creativity of God and the things he has made, and then giving them the tools to respond and express themselves in beautiful, creative ways."
Nicole Croak is a certified Pediatric Occupational Therapist who has a passion for seeing children thrive. She worked for many years in OT before co-founding the REACH Program to support families with children birth-age 3, through developmental play groups, as well as working in a level III NICU as an OT. Nicole was also owner and CEO of Cobblestones - a resource for families to address questions about their child’s development, meet other caregivers and allow children to socialize with peers. When you meet Nicole, it’s easy to see her joy and passion for children. She joins us this year at Grace Prep to teach Monday Specials for all grades, which we affectionally call, “Super Fun Time with Mrs. Croak.” By combining physical fitness with problem solving games, Grace Prep students are learning about social interaction with peers, being a team player, and how their God-given bodies respond to the world around us. Mrs. Croak also loves meeting with parents, and is an amazing support to Grace Prep families who have questions or need resources regarding child development.
Welcome to Grace Prep Mrs. Croak!
Lacey attended the University of Oklahoma, graduating with a Bachelors of Science in Zoology. She moved to Boston in 2002 and worked in the biotech industry until meeting her husband at church and having their first child. They now have 2 elementary-aged children. Prior to coming to Grace Prep she worked part-time at a Christian preschool in Newton. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to work in another Christian school that values instilling a love for God and His Word in its students.
One thing Mrs. Baron loves about Grace Prep is
"being a part of such a unique Christian community."
Grace Preparatory Academy is overseen by a board of advisors.
Our school is thankful for the hardworking board members currently serving:
Linda Kearns, Head of the Board
Andre & Manuella Pacheco
Laura Richmond (On Sabbatical)
Grace Preparatory Academy
754 Greendale Avenue, Needham, MA 02492
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Mailing Address: PO BOX 35271, Brighton, MA 02135