OSCS Staff

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Mrs. Abbie Freeman is the Principal of Ocean Studies Charter School.
Mrs. Abbie has worked in the field of education for the past 16 years. She received her undergraduate degree from Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama. She started working immediately as a fourth and fifth grade teacher, later as a reading coach, and lastly as an assistant principal before stepping in to the role as Principal. Mrs. Abbie has served as Principal for the past 3 years at Hall-Kent Elementary in Homewood, Alabama. She received her masters degree from Samford University in Instructional Leadership and received National Board Certification in 2005 and 2015. Mrs. Abbie has been married to her husband Kurt for 18 years and they have two beautiful daughters, Mackenzie and Emerson. Mrs. Abbie enjoys working with teachers, parents, and the community to provide the best education possible for children. When she isn’t at Ocean Studies she enjoys cooking, kayaking, and paddle boarding. Please feel free to contact Mrs. Abbie using her email abbie.freeman@keysschools.com  
 
Miss HillaryMs. Hillary is very excited for her fourth year at Ocean Studies Charter School. She was born in Miami, Florida where she grew up. She attended the University of Florida (Go Gators!) where she studied psychology. After college, Hillary decided to pursue one of her passions, so she went to work with animals. She rehabilitated manatees and sea turtles at a few different facilities around Florida. She also worked with other animals, including dolphins, birds, bears, crocodiles and much more! Hillary became a SCUBA instructor and moved to the Florida Keys in 2012.
 
She decided to pursue her other passion, which is working with children! Hillary started working at Ocean Studies Charter School in November of 2013. She earned her Professional Teaching Certificate and continues to learn every day. When she is not in school, Hillary enjoys spending time on the water with her husband, Mike, and her two terriers, Captain and Coral. She loves boating, fishing and diving. Ocean Studies Charter School and Hillary are the perfect match!
Please feel free to contact her at hillary.cassel@keysschools.com
Miss PennyPenny Tugwell was born in Montreal, Canada where she was raised until the age of 13. After moving to the states, she finished high school and in the 70s I attended Long Beach City College. Since then she has been in the Keys where she met my husband, Paul, whom she has been happily married to for the last 42 years.
 
Ms. Penny has built her life and family here in the Keys where she loves enjoying the beautiful environment and kayaking out to secret snorkeling spots on the tropical reefs. On less adventurous days, she enjoys working in her vegetable and herb garden and tending to her orchids. Her husband and she have raised one son together whom she feels fell in love with education through his foundations in Montessori for he has since become a
university math teacher. The former Key Largo Montessori School was Ms. Penny’s son’s first school experience and she was so impressed by the Montessori method that she decided to take the course and earn her Early Childhood Credential. Through the Montessori Academy of the Upper Keys she has taken the classes of the Canadian Montessori Teacher Education Institute to continue her education in the Montessori method. The course allowed her to strengthen her knowledge through the reflection on her experiences by providing her with more essential tools for the classroom through an in-depth understanding of the Montessori philosophy. You may contact c
 
Through the years she has been involved with various community organizations, taught swimming through the Red Cross, and aided the handicap in basic skills with M.A.R.C. She has 22 years experience and considers herself a dedicated, patient, organized, and conscientious worker that gives above and beyond what is requested. She is pleased that she has the opportunity to teach your children here at the Ocean Studies Charter School.
Please feel free to contact her at carol.tugwell@keysschools.com.
danielleMs. Danielle is thrilled to be a part of Ocean Studies Charter School. She is a New Jersey native who set out of her own boundaries to attend college at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. During her time at Miami University, Ms. Danielle gained experience in preschool, elementary, and special education. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education and certifications in Elementary Education as well as Special Education. In her spare time at Miami University, Ms. Danielle enjoyed volunteering with Delta Delta Delta, Sigma Alpha Pi, and Bridge Riding for Disabled Children. After graduation she moved back to her hometown and began her teaching career in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten at a top rated S.T.E.M school, right outside of New York City. While she loved living in the rural Midwest and the busy East Coast, the Florida sunshine was calling her name. Ms. Danielle is a Lifetime Girl Scout Member who had earned her Gold Award. When she isn’t teaching, Miss. Danielle enjoys tackling DIY projects, swimming, painting, reading, and traveling. Please feel free to contact Ms. Danielle at Danielle.Castellaccio@keysschools.com
CaroleMrs.  Carole relocated to the Florida Keys with her family three years ago after spending 10 years in Long Beach Island, NJ.  Mrs. Carole has spent the last 20 years in the field of education working in both administrative and classroom capacities.  She taught Kindergarten and Kindergarten Enrichment for 6 years and was the Educational Director of the Goddard School in Forked River, New Jersey most recently.  She has primarily worked with our youngest learners and is beyond thrilled to be working with our 4th and 5th graders again this year!
Mrs. Carole obtained her Bachelor’s of Science in both Elementary and Early Childhood Education from Kutztown University where she met her husband, P.J.  When not surrounding herself with children, Mrs. Carole can be found with her nose in a great book, cooking, getting “seasick” aboard the “Viewfinder” or chasing their son, Jesse and their dog, Salty, around the beach! You can contact Mrs. Carole by emailing her at carole.hoeltje@keysschools.com.
Marcia Portrait Ms. Marcia has been an educator the majority of her adult life, most recently as the classroom lead teacher at a Montessori school in the Cayman Islands.  For five years, she guided children toward becoming self-directed, independent, and confident learners in the Lower Elementary program (ages 6-9).  Ms. Marcia is a graduate from the University of Arizona and also earned a J.D. and M.B.A. in Chicago, Illinois.  As a former business owner and manager, Ms. Marcia believes in making connections between academics and real-world applications for students.  She also embraces the Montessori philosophy of educating the “whole child”, cultivating in students the qualities of community responsibility, self-esteem, and leadership. In her spare time, Ms. Marcia enjoys spending time with her husband, Mike, and daughter, Jeri.  They love to travel, experiencing the unique differences of foreign cultures and landscapes.  Ms. Marcia’s family also delights in the peacefulness of scuba diving, appreciating the special creatures and their interactions.  As a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer, Ms. Marcia looks forward to sharing her knowledge with students during field trips! Please feel free to contact Mrs. Marcia at marcia.goldberg@keysschools.com.
Ms. Martha teaches marine science and has been teaching and contributing to the curriculum at Ocean Studies since the school was first started in 2011. She originally comes from New Hampshire and studied Zoology at Ohio Wesleyan University. A study abroad experience in the Turks & Caicos brought Martha into the world of marine science.
 
Since then, she has taught SCUBA and marine science in summer programs for students, worked in aquariums and on boats, and most recently was the assistant director at MarineLab in Key Largo. Ms. Martha loves to enjoy the ocean with her two beautiful boys, Manolo and Luca and especially loves to share her passion with the students of OSCS.
Please feel free to contact her at marth.loizeaux@keysschools.com.
Ms. Jessica is in her fourth wonderful year at Ocean Studies Charter School. She has been teaching the children and loves the knowledge she gains every day in her class.
 
Ms. Jessica graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science in Recreation Management and Tourism in 2003. After graduating, she was ready to move to the Florida Keys to live out her dream of living on an island did so. She’s been in this amazing community now for 11 years. A few years ago, her family had the adventure of a lifetime and moved to a small coastal community on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica for a year and a half so their son could learn Spanish in a natural environment and they could learn a different way of life. They brought back the “Pura Vida” and try to live their life in harmony with nature, each other and our community.
 
She is blessed to be married to her best friend, John, and bring her wonderful son Zane to such an amazing school. 
 
She looks forward to getting to know all the children and parents of this wonderful school as you all grow and learn together.
Please feel free to contact her at jessica@oceanstudiescharterschool.com
 VirginiaThis is Mrs. Virginia’s first year teaching at Ocean Studies Charter School. Mrs. Virginia received her Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Grand Canyon University. She grew up in Ft. Lauderdale, and has lived and worked in the Keys for the past four years with her husband and daughter. I taught VPK, 5th, 2nd and 3rd grades at Key Largo School. She is certified to teach grades K-6, ESOL, and ESE. She loves being on the water with her family and horseback riding. She is very excited to teach at Ocean Studies! If  you need to reach her you can email her at virginia.drewes@keysschools.com
        Ms Jenn Coming Soon…
 

Mr. Mike is beginning his second year as the physical education teacher.  Mr. Mike especially appreciates Ocean Studies’ promotion of children’s independence, creativity and their commitment to creating well-rounded individuals.  

Mike has always been driven to be physically active and healthy. He is excited to impart his passion for athletics and a healthy lifestyle to develop individualized lifetime fitness skills for Ocean Studies.  Throughout his athletic career, Mike has been a part of sport teams in basketball, baseball, and soccer where he learned early on the value of teamwork in all aspects of life.

Mike graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey in 2011, with a degree in Psychology.  After college he worked as a math tutor for elementary school children, a recreation baseball umpire, and pursued his love for traveling. 

Mr. Mike loves to give back to the Key Largo community and the environment. He has enjoyed volunteering as a working diver with the Coral Restoration Foundation to help replant and grow the essential part of the ocean ecosystem.  Mr. Mike is trained as a scuba dive master, and he enjoys guiding others and teaching about the Florida Keys reefs.  He also loves fishing, kayaking, running, tennis and golf.  If you need to contact Mr. Mike you may email him at michael.nasto@keysschools.com.

 
 

Beth Kaminstein

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Laura Brooks

Ray Bonachea

Dave Thompson

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Joe Thompson

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Bridget Dangel

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Ariel Poholek

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Kim Carter

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