Paideia’s teachers and staff are all faithful Christians, living lives transformed by the grace of Jesus Christ and subscribing to our Statement of Faith. Here is the list of our teachers and staff for the 2020-2021 school year.
2019-2020 Board Members
Job Cacka, Matt Dau, David Spears, Kate Singleton, Mike True
David Spears: Head of School
David served in the military for six years and then gained his B.A. in Economics and Political Science from George Fox University. David is a permanent board member at Paideia and serves as disciplinary principal and head of school. He and his wife Rose have four boys and a passion for advancing Christian education in the Portland metro area.
Brenda Kulbe: Executive Assistant
Brenda received her diploma in Office Administration – Executive from Niagara College in Ontario, Canada. She worked for 12 years before taking time off to move to the States, get married, and raise her family. She enjoys paper crafts, painting, and amateur photography. She is an invaluable asset to our teachers as she coordinates volunteer scheduling, parent communications, and all things office-related.
Rose Spears: Director of Academics and Admissions
Rose Spears graduated from New Saint Andrews College with a B.A. in Liberal Arts and Culture. She has been teaching secondary-level classes using Classical curriculum and pedagogy for fifteen years, first at King’s Academy and Schole Academy, and now at Paideia. Rose also oversees academics and admissions at Paideia. She and husband David have four boys enrolled at Paideia. In her spare time, Rose writes historical fiction.
Amy Hayes: Kindergarten Teacher
Amy Hayes is in her fourth year at Paideia, teaching kindergarten. Amy has taught in a variety of educational settings for the past 20 years including homeschooling her own children, grandchildren and the children of friends, running a one-room-school classroom in her home, tutoring foreign students, Barton dyslexia tutoring, and doing teacher training in phonics curricula. She and her husband Doug raised his five children from a previous marriage and now delight in their many grandchildren – several of whom attend Paideia. When not teaching, Amy loves being in her kitchen, creating a welcoming home and garden, photographing babies, all things books, and the worship and life of her church community.
Jayna Heath: First Grade Teacher
Jayna continues with us in her fourth year at Paideia. Jayna graduated from Northwest University with a B.A. in Elementary Education, including endorsements in ESL and English. She is a native Oregonian who returned home after living in Washington, DC and Louisville, KY with her husband and growing family. Kurt and Jayna have four children.
Sharon True: Second Grade Teacher
Sharon is entering her fifth year teaching at Paideia. Previously she graduated from Central Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts in Education, Special Ed. major/minor in Elementary Ed., then attained a Master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from City University. She taught elementary for 15 years in Vancouver, WA, and high school English in Poland, then married a “True” musician and had three children, whom she homeschooled until she found Paideia, where all of her kids attend, love this school, and are thriving! Signing for the deaf, traveling, and mentoring youth have been interests of hers since her late teens. Recently she just returned to biking, (with her sons when she can keep up with them) as well as thoroughly enjoying listening to live piano, bass guitar or marimba at her house played by her children and husband. Because it was done for her, she considers it an honor to pass on truth to the next generation, as there is no greater joy than taking the hand of a child and placing it in the gentle, kind hand of Jesus for all of life!
Beth Anne Cacka: Third Grade Teacher
Beth Anne Cacka continues with us this year as our new third grade teacher! She graduated from Hyles-Anderson college with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. She taught 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade for several years before marriage and becoming a mom of two boys. She loves art, history, music, animals, baking, hiking, and spending time outdoors with her family in our beautiful state. Previously, she has taught elementary art at Paideia and assisted in a variety of elementary subjects as a teacher’s aide.
Kaitlyn Wagner: Fourth Grade Teacher & Elementary Dean
Kaitlyn continues with us in her seventh year at Paideia in the fourth grade classroom. She holds her A.A. from Clackamas Community College, her one-year Certificate of Biblical Studies from Montana Bible College, and her B.A. in Humanities from Thomas Edison State University. Kaitlyn delights in bringing learning to life in the classroom through hands-on projects and singing. Her goal as a teacher is to instill a love for Christ and a passion for learning into her students as they uncover the many wonders of creation together. Kaitlyn is also the Elementary Dean at Paideia, helping oversee elementary curriculum and teacher development.
Caitlin Gentle: Fifth Grade Teacher
Caity Gentle continues at Paideia in her second year in the fifth grade classroom. Caity holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Bible and Christian Ministry from New Hope Christian College and a Master’s Degree in School Counseling from Northwest Christian University and has seven years experience in education. She and her husband, Rob, have twins who are going into seventh grade. Caity loves being a wife and a mom, cooking, playing games, smiling and being happy, and coffee!
Alice Barnard: Sixth Grade Teacher & College Advisor
Alice continues at Paideia in her sixth year as teacher of our sixth grade classroom. She also works as our College Advisor and Standardized Testing Coordinator for the secondary grades. Alice graduated from Trinity Western University with a B.A. in Geography, minor in English. She loves to garden, crochet, and read, read, read. Whenever possible, she visits art museums and studies art history. Previous to teaching at Paideia, she tutored Foundations and Essentials classes for Classical Conversations. She is married to Gary who keeps bees for fun, and they have four children ranging from secondary through college age.
Alison Tertin: Secondary Math & Admin
Ali returns to our team this year as math teacher for Algebra 2 and administrative assistant. She hails from northern Minnesota, where she taught middle school and coached for 8 years before moving to Oregon in 2007. She is a mother of two, the wife of a pastor, and a compassionate friend to all, having served for years in youth ministry, women’s ministries and the Classical Conversations home school co-op in Portland. On any given weekend, you’ll almost certainly find her with her husband and kids on some kind of adventure in the woods, on the beaches, or down the trails of the Pacific Northwest. Her peppy German Shorthair Pointer, “Daisy, the Roo Roo,” is always nearby, tracking squirrels and birds. To her, cooking is a necessary evil more than an art, and household plants are simultaneously beautiful and impossible to keep alive, but she remains optimistically hopeful on both accounts. Most of all, Ali continues to experience the profound grace of Jesus each day and is always inviting students, parents and neighbors into the way of life that belongs to Christ alone.
Sarah has a B.A. in Studio Art from University of California, Davis, a Master of Architecture from University of Oregon and is a licensed architect in California and Oregon. She happily left office work when her first of four daughters was born in 2008. She and her family have lived in California, North Carolina and Oregon- in all those places they have loved getting out and hiking, camping and playing on the beach. Sarah has a myriad of interests that mostly fall into the theme of making- from gardening, cooking, sewing, and drawing to interior design and architecture. Sarah joins the Paideia team this year teaching Calculus, PreCalculus, Biology, Physics, American Government, seventh grade Literature.
Elly is looking forward to joining the Paideia team this year as teacher for PreAlgebra! She graduated from University of Idaho in 2002 with a B.S. in Accounting. After a brief stint in real estate accounting she left the corporate world to raise a family. Elly and her husband, Michael, have 5 children who are all attending Paideia. She enjoys bread baking, gardening, reading and getting together with friends for coffee.
Elsha graduated from the Master’s University in Santa Clarita, California with a degree in English and later revived her teaching license and M.A. in Teaching from the same institution. She taught both middle and high school classes in California where she first encountered the value of classical education. Having moved to Oregon three years ago, she enjoys exploring coffee shops and book stores with her Husband, Ryan, three year old daughter, Charlotte, and toddler son, Jack. Teaching is one of her favorite things and she looks forward to the adventures of this year!
Chelsi Lacine: Secondary Science, Math, Bible
Chelsi returns in her third year at Paideia, teaching a variety of courses in science, math, and Bible. Chelsi studied Biology at Chemeketa Community College and George Fox University. She is a pastor’s wife and mother to four children. Chelsi is passionate about inspiring young people in the wonder of God through the study of the Bible and his creation.
Connie Meyerdierk: Secondary Bible
Connie studied Elementary Ed. at Western Oregon State College. She and her husband Mike are committed to educating their three children from a Christian perspective. She has enjoyed many years of homeschooling. Connie helped to form a co-op in her early homeschooling days, and taught a variety of subjects in the six years her family participated in it. She is returning for her third year as one of our Bible Class teachers with the desire to nurture a love for God and His Word.
Devin Smith is a pastor at Reformation Covenant Church. Before that, he served for 10 years in classical Christian education as a humanities and Latin teacher. He received his BA and M.Div from The Master’s University and Seminary, and is currently writing a dissertation for a doctoral degree in Christian education through Biola University. He and his wife, Amy, have four mostly-grown children: Aiden, Jonathan, Geneva, and Abigail. In his free time he enjoys hiking, board games and chasing his wife around everywhere.
Raised in the Seattle area, Julie studied Early Childhood Education at Edmonds Community College after high school. She also attended Calvary Chapel Bible College in California. She’s been married to her high school sweetheart for 40 years and they have 7 sons together. While living in Anchorage, Alaska she started homeschooling their sons and began to delight in the redemptive story of scripture and human history. She has taught history classes in several home school cooperatives, and for 4 years directed the Classical Conversations of Happy Valley’s Foundations and Essentials Programs. Julie will be teaching 9th grade Bible this year at Paideia. In her spare time she enjoys gardening, travel, mentoring women (including doula birth work), and time with her husband, sons, daughters-in-law, and 19 grandchildren.
Jakob Janssen: Secondary History & English
Jakob continues in his second year at Paideia, teaching a variety of history, English, and Latin classes. Raised in Dayton, OR, Jakob received his BA in Medieval Studies from St. Olaf College in 2018. During his time at St. Olaf he enrolled in the college’s Great Books program, took organ lessons, and tutored Latin. It was also during this time that he discovered Classical Christian schools. As a Medievalist he is passionate to preserve the use of the Trivium and the exploration of our European heritage. His favorite author is C.S. Lewis, his favorite hike (right now) is Cascade Head, and his favorite organist is Dietrich Buxtehude.
Donna graduated from North Park University in Chicago with a
B. A. in English and from Marylhurst University with an M. A. in Interdisciplinary Studies. She loves being in the classroom, teaching writing and literature to middle school and high school students. Most recently, she taught at Alliance Charter Academy in Oregon City. She enjoys writing, reading, gardening, and hiking and has two children with her husband Gary.
Rachel Cogbill: Secondary Spanish
Rachel Cogbill is the wife of a pastor and mother to two at Paideia and one more still at home. She earned a B.A. in Business Finance (minor in Spanish) from Texas Christian University and a Master’s in Education with emphasis in teaching reading from Dallas Baptist University. She taught at the elementary level for five years before “retiring” to stay home with her kids, and this year she will continue teaching high school Spanish at Paideia. Rachel enjoys running and spending time with her family and church.
Jeff Lacine: Biblical Greek
Jeff Lacine was captured by God in April of 2000. Ever since then Jeff has had a passion to glorify God through preaching, evangelism, and discipleship. He received his B.A. from Multnomah University and his M.Div. & Th.M. from Bethlehem College & Seminary (Minneapolis, MN). He and his wife, Chelsi, have four children; Hosanna, Hope, Abraham, and Haven. In his free time he enjoys reading, fishing, camping and hiking with his family. Jeff has served as the pastor of Sellwood Church since January of 2014.
Ana Dau: Elementary Latin Teacher
Ana Dau continues with us as fourth grade Latin teacher. She received her B.A. in Liberal Arts with an emphasis on Classical Studies from the University of Idaho. She has had several years instruction in drawing and painting and enjoys studying art history and theory in her spare time. She has extensive experience teaching dance and theater arts at both the elementary and secondary levels. Ana is a stay at home mother with four students at Paideia.
Imelda Nedelcu: Music Teacher
Imelda was born and raised in Portland, Oregon and has led various singing groups over the years. Before ten years of homeschooling her children she worked at Spring Mountain Elementary and Sunrise Middle School. She and her husband Ovi enjoy farm life at their Damascus homestead, along with their five children, all of whom attend Paideia. Imelda teaches secondary music at Paideia.