Dear Beacon Families,

We hope that you all have enjoyed the sunshine and heat the summer brings. With another school year upon us, we’re excited for Beacon Academy’s fifteenth year. We look forward to seeing all of the students back in the hallways and classrooms in just two short weeks.

As a Character Education School, we work hard to embody the beliefs embedded in the Responsive Classroom academic and social skills curriculum. This summer we sent thirteen staff to a week-long Responsive Classroom training. Our current staff now have over 48 weeks of summer Responsive Classroom training. We’re excited to implement more social skills curricula this fall.

We do have some changes in the classrooms for the 2018-2019 school year.

Last year our School Board voted to freeze the expansion and hold steady with a 632 student capacity in order to help solidify programs, curriculum, and be responsive to last year’s under enrollment of 550 students. With their work in mind, we will open the doors this fall with 3 sections of K, 1st, 3rd, 4th & 6th, and we will have two sections of 2nd, 5th, 7th & 8th. Below are the changes to our teaching staff:

CHANGES WITHIN THE STAFF

  • Allison Nelson is moving to the sixth grade team from our fifth grade team. Ms. Nelson has spent the last four years teaching here at Beacon Academy in the fifth grade classroom. Prior to that she worked as a paraprofessional here at Beacon for one year. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Concordia College, Moorhead. She also coaches soccer at Maple Grove H.S. and hockey and lacrosse for Osseo/Park Center H.S. teams.
  • Jessica Vaughan is moving to the fifth grade team from our second grade team. Ms. Vaughan spent last year in the second grade classroom after logging over six years of experience in charter school administrative offices, three of which were at Beacon Academy. Prior to that she was a lead Montessori teacher. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from Valley City State University and a Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Education from North Dakota State University.

NEW TO BEACON

  • Alysha Bredesen will be teaching 4th grade this year. Ms. Bredesen is coming to us from Centennial Middle School where she taught 6th grade Language Arts last year. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education with a minor in Middle School Communication Arts and Literature from Minnesota State University, Mankato. We’re happy to have her on our team.
  • Lindsey Graske will be joining us to teach 4th – 5th grade Spanish. Ms. Graske spent the last three years at a neighboring charter school, Prairie Seeds Academy, in Brooklyn Park and one year at South Junior High School in St. Cloud. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Hispanic Studies and Secondary Education at the College of Saint Benedict in St. Joseph. She also chaired the Positive Behavior Intervention Supports Committee at Prairie Seeds, so we know she’ll be an asset to our Responsive Classroom work here at Beacon.
  • Heather Guldan will be teaching Middle School Special Education. Ms. Guldan’s special education experience includes two years at the World Learner School in Chaska, one year in Bloomington School District, and one year at both Hmong College Prep Academy in St. Paul and Oak View Middle School in Andover. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from The University of Minnesota, Morris, and a K-12 Special Education Licensure in LD and EBD from Augsburg College. We are excited to have her bring her various middle school special education experiences to Beacon.
  • Amanda Kordovsky will be teaching Middle School Science. Ms. Kordovsky spent last year teaching 4th grade at Success Academy in Bloomington. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Minnesota State University, Mankato where she also earned her Middle School Life Science Licensure and a STEM Certificate. We look forward to having her on our middle school and honors program teams.

No matter whom your student(s) have for teachers this fall, we are all very thankful that you have chosen Beacon Academy and we look forward to continuing to get to you know you and your family.

Yours for a truly exceptional year of strong academic growth and positive character development,

Sean Koster

Principal