Springwater Staff


 

Greg Mylet | greg@springwaterschool.com

I am so fortunate to be the Principal of Springwater Environmental Sciences School. This school community feels like a reflection of my personal interests and passions.  When I am not at school I spend time exploring the natural world.  I love backcountry snowboarding, mountain biking, canoeing with my wife and skateboarding with my sons.  I engage in a friendly battle with deer and slugs to grow a garden every year.  I enjoy walking through Mary S. Young park in my neighborhood noticing the seasonal changes in flora and fauna. 

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of Portland, a Master’s degree in Teaching with an emphasis on the natural science from PSU, and an administrative license from PSU.  Prior to joining the Springwater community I spent 5 years at Rosemont Ridge MS as the Assistant Principal.  Before that I taught middle school science for 19 years at Lake Oswego Junior high.  I also worked for a year teaching english in Japan and as a traveling science educator with OMSI.  Needless to say, I love science, particularly when we get outside and get our hands dirty.

Working at Springwater with our focus on exploration of the natural world, curiosity and a commitment to creating a strong community has been a dream come true. If I could design an ideal school, Springwater would be that school. Spending time with students exploring Clear Creek Natural Area, learning in the garden or playing in the mud at recess refreshes my soul and brings me joy.  The commitment and creativity of our amazing staff inspire me to be my best self as both a person and leader.  Being supported by families who are involved and invested in the success of every student provides both the people power and positive energy necessary to run such an amazing school.

 

Kathy Lowrie-Barraza | kathy@springwaterschool.com

I grew up in Wilsonville, Oregon.  I come from a close-knit family that spent a lot of time working together in our family grocery store.  In 1995 I graduated from Western Oregon University with a degree in elementary education.  I continued to work in the grocery store until 1997 when I decided I better give this teaching thing a try!  I was hired by the Canby School District.  I worked at Trost Elementary. When Trost became a bilingual school I took a one year leave of absence and moved to Honduras to improve my Spanish language.  I ended up coming home a year later with a husband and two stepsons and my Spanish improved immensely!!  In 2015, I decided I needed a change so I applied at Springwater school, as it spoke to the side of me that believed that the connection between nature/humans is delicate and needs to be founded in education.  I love being at Springwater.  After teaching 3rd, 4th and 5th grade my whole career in 2019 I made the decision to teach kindergarten.  It has been an amazing experience full of learning and self reflection.  On a personal note, I love to travel with my husband Jorge as well as hike and ride bikes.

 

Rachael Fairbanks | rachael@springwaterschool.com

Rachael is grateful to be joining Springwater as their 1st grade teacher. She has her Masters in Teaching. She has educated students in a variety of settings from wilderness camps to girl scout activities, reading and math groups to farm schools. She has over ten years of environmental education experience and three years of early childhood experience. In her free time you will find Rachael reading childrens books, camping with her dog Penny Mae, or working on her archery skills.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sienna Gaskins| sienna@springwaterschool.com

I grew up in Salem, Oregon in a household of educators so my love for learning was embedded into life early on. My brother, parents, and I enjoyed summers of long road trips, camping in national parks, and spending time outdoors.

Growing up thinking I’d become a teacher too, I surprised myself when I chose to pursue a Bachelor’s of Science in Natural Resources at OSU. Post graduation I worked as a park ranger and traveled internationally, not quite sure how to link my passion for nature and my desire to share knowledge. Then, I found immense gratification for a couple years coordinating a summer camp and outdoor school program at a nonprofit in Salem. This experience was my signal to pursue a teaching license and search for a school that held the same science and nature values that I hold. I am so looking forward to joining the Springwater learning community!
When not in the classroom, I enjoy snowboarding, difficult hikes, camping, and spending time near any body of water! I have an exploratory attitude and love to search for interesting bugs or mushrooms while outside.

 

 

Kimberly Carley | kimberly@springwaterschool.com

I am so excited to be joining the Springwater community! I was raised in the Chicagoland area and landed in the Pacific Northwest at 17. Immediately I found solace in the many beautiful and awe-inspiring landscapes we are surrounded by. I spent my undergrad years at PSU with a major in Geography/GIS. As part of my capstone project, I worked at Tryon Creek State Natural Area leading visiting students of all ages and backgrounds on educational hikes throughout the park. Through this experience I came to know that a connection to the natural world is something not all children have the opportunity to explore, but that environmental education is vital for developing healthy kids. Additionally, I have grown up surrounded by teachers who are passionate about investing in children. This, along with volunteering in my own children’s classrooms, inspired me to become a teacher. I received my Masters of Arts in Teaching from Concordia University in 2018. Since then, I have worked in the Oregon City School District. When school is not in session you will find me enjoying time with my family and friends, often in nature. I am a lifelong learner, curious about the world around me. Daily I find new treasures as I hike and garden or play in rivers and lakes. Even when I am trying a new recipe or meeting the challenge of a jigsaw puzzle, the world is an exciting place.

 

 

Emese Schloegl | emese@springwaterschool.com

I am a native Oregonian. I grew up in Portland and attended Outdoor School (MESD) every chance that I could get as a 6th grader, several times as a high school counselor, and as a special needs counselor. This is where my love for science and nature truly blossomed and I knew I wanted to become an environmental educator. As soon as I began my student teaching at Springwater in 2018, I was sure it was the school for me. I couldn’t imagine teaching anywhere else.
I received a Bachelor’s in Environmental Science with a minor in Education from USC in Los Angeles, CA in 2005. While there, I traveled abroad to Australia to study rainforest restoration in Northeast Queensland. Later, I earned my Master’s in Teaching from Concordia University.
Outside of teaching, I have several hobbies and interests that keep me busy. I love seeing live music, traveling, camping, hiking, gardening, and anything to do with water! I’m an artist at heart and help build large scale sculptures for music and art festivals. This experience and love of the arts has followed me to Springwater where I have become the unofficial performance arts teacher. I’m looking forward to another year of hikes, nature journaling, exploring nature, plays, crafting, tie-dying, Outdoor School, community events, and most of all, learning!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jen Wozniak | jen@springwaterschool.com

I have been teaching at Springwater since 2008. For most of that time, I’ve taught fourth grade, and several years ago I added K-5 Art to my weekly schedule. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pacific Northwest College of Art, where I studied Printmaking, and a Masters of Arts in Teaching from Lewis and Clark College. Before becoming a classroom teacher, I taught with NatureBridge in the San Francisco Bay Area and the Olympic National Park, and with Caldera Arts in Oregon. I recently became the first Educator in Residence at Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, where I developed a K-5 field study curriculum. I enjoy guiding students to attend to what is easily overlooked, nurture relationships with place, and seek out nature as the ultimate teacher. Working at Springwater allows me to teach in a way that’s grounded in nature, the senses, and inquiry –  every single day. When not at school, I love being outdoors with my husband Owen and our son Lee, whether floating the John Day River, skiing on Mt. Hood, foraging for nettles at a local park, or tending our garden in Portland. 

 

 

Amanda Schwanz | amanda@springwaterschool.com

I have been at Springwater since Fall of 2016 and have loved it, I don’t see myself teaching anywhere else. I love the community here that encourages one another, helps without hesitation, and inspires creativity. Originally I got into teaching because it felt the natural pathway for me to go, coming from a teaching family. Before teaching I was in the science field, so Springwater is a wonderful fit for me. When I’m not teaching I am a busy wife and mom of four. We spend a lot of time together swimming, hiking, and exploring the outdoors. I also love creating in my craft room at home.

 

 

 

Troy Frystak | troy@springwaterschool.com

I grew up in Kailua, on the island of Oahu, in Hawaii. I enjoyed riding my bike around town, going bodyboarding at the local surf break, hiking the trails around our area, playing soccer, and working with youth. I was a Junior Leader for Summer Fun, and at 15 I started coaching youth soccer. I coached numerous rec and club teams. I loved working with kids and seeing their improvement and the fun they had. 

I recieved an International Baccalaureate and High School Diploma from Hawaii Loa College Academy. In 1986, I came to Oregon to attend Lewis and Clark College. I took up playing volleyball and organized and coached a men’s club team. 

I graduated and got a job doing sales and marketing for a small screen printing company. The company was located next to Tigard Swim Center and looked out on the soccer field. Every day, while I was working, I would look out and see young students showing up for soccer practice. I realized that I wanted to be out there with them rather than in an office selling t-shirts, so I started coaching and eventually quit my job to get my Master’s in Teaching from Pacific University. My first day in the classroom confirmed my suspicions. This was the place for me. 

At Pacific University, I had a Science Professor who challenged me to get students outside to learn science and another professor who challenged me to integrate science with reading. That year, I read the Ecological Mystery, Who Really Killed Cock Robin, out loud to all my classes. We took weekly walks to the local park and took water samples from the Tualatin River. My love of field studies was born. 

In 1996, I moved to South Pasadena, California, to be closer to Kris Collins. I worked for 8 years at Huntington Middle School in San Marino teaching 6th-grade science, math, pe, and 8th grade math. I also coached middle school soccer, volleyball, basketball, and track. I also became the Girls Varsity Soccer Coach at San Marino High School. After 4 years, I started coaching at Pasadena Polytechnic High School as Assistant Varsity Soccer Coach and Varsity Boys Soccer Coach. I was married to Kris in 1999 and our son, Sawyer, was born in 2003. Teaching science was my passion and I was always looking for ways to integrate ecology and the outside world into their urban setting. We could not travel to a nearby river because all the rivers in the area are concrete washes, so I got a grant to build a pond outside the classroom. That became our field study location.  

In 2004, we decided to move to Chiang Mai, Thailand where my wife was born and still had a lot of family. I taught 6th grade in an elementary classroom at Nakorn Payap International School. I also coached soccer and Boys Varsity Volleyball. At NIS, I used science to anchor most of my units and we often spent time outside on our large campus studying ecology. I helped start a Roots and Shoots Club and we had campaigns to help stray dogs and reduce plastic bag use. 

In 2008, I was looking for a new challenge and a move back to the states and I started my search with charter schools in Oregon. I found a newly established charter school with a science and outdoor focus. They were expanding to 6th grade and came a visited and saw my first Community Meeting. I started at Springwater in 2008. I have taught a 4th/5th grade blend, 6th/7th grade blend, and I currently teach 6-8 science and Capstone. I love our students and the passion they show for science, ecology, and sustainability. 

These days I spend my free time riding my mountain bike, playing soccer, watching Sawyer play volleyball, coaching volleyball, and cooking Thai food.

 

 

Shelley Radcliffe | shelley@springwaterschool.com

I’ve always been drawn to teaching. Initially, I thought I wanted to be an English teacher because of how much I love reading and writing. However, while studying at Western Oregon State, I found myself accruing more Math credits than English credits; mostly because the Math classes seemed to have more available seats than the English classes did. Eventually I began to see the beauty in mathematics and I was hooked. Upon graduation, the professors in the Math Department gave me recognition as the Best Math Student of the Year.  I’m sure that’s because I would camp out in the room down the hall from their offices to study; I had lots of questions to ask them and liked to have them handy!

My first position was in Halsey, Oregon teaching 7th/8th grade at their Jr/Sr High School. I spent my summers working on my graduate degree in Mathematics Education at Oregon State University.  Those were fun summers! I would commute (30 miles round trip) every day on my bicycle. I still remember the sweet fragrance of the strawberry fields along Hwy 20, and the stops I would make along the route home to linger in the cooling mists of the irrigation sprinklers on extra hot afternoons. 

Next, I joined the community at Lake Oswego Junior High, where I met Greg. We were hired there the same year! I didn’t just teach Math during my years there. I also did some coaching: volleyball, basketball, and track. After getting in the nice round number of 10 teaching years under my belt, I pushed the pause button to dedicate my time to becoming a mom.

My husband and I bought a fitness center and I was able to have more control over how much time I could be home.  That was so much fun that I decided to homeschool! I treasure those years and enjoyed supporting my children in their activities: music, gymnastics, wrestling, football, pole vault, ballet,  4-H (equestrian) and OHSET.

Now that the fitness center is sold and the homeschooling is done, I’m coming back to what has always drawn me. Teaching! I’m excited to be teaching in the classroom again, and excited to be a Springwater.

 

 

Chris Lohbeck | chris@springwaterschool.com

 

 

Kristen Mann | kristen@springwaterschool.com

I am thrilled to be a part of the Springwater community this year!  I am originally from Maryland and attended Towson University near Baltimore.  I have a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology and a Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary and Middle Special Education.  When I first visited the Pacific Northwest, I fell in love with the natural beauty and the friendliness of the people.  For the past 8 years, I have taught in Evergreen Public Schools in Vancouver.  I have taught at both the elementary and middle school level. I am big on inclusive teaching and working with students’ strengths and interests.  I believe we all learn differently and at our own pace and my job is to help all students succeed.

In my free time, I enjoy reading, camping and hiking with my family.  I live with my husband and our 20 month old daughter.   We love spending time on the water together or camping in our RV. I am also pretty proud of my backyard garden!  I love learning new things and look forward to working with your child this year.

 

 

 

 

Tony Miceli | tony@springwaterschool.com

My full name is Anthony Miceli but you all know me better as Mr. Tony. I’m a National Certified Counselor & I earned my Masters in Counselor Education from the University of Wisconsin Whitewater. What inspired me to become a counselor is years of teaching swimming & martial arts lessons. I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to make a career out of helping people become more confident, happy & healthy as individuals. I am originally from Brookfield, Wisconsin and my family is very spread out across the states. I live with my partner Amanda; a pediatric nurse, and our three furry animals: Princess Leia, Crickett & Lilly. I moved to Oregon because I love nature, mountains, photography, fishing & hiking and this state has such a large variety to do all those things. Traveling is also a big passion of mine. I made a promise to myself long ago to travel somewhere new at least once a year every year no matter what. The reason I love working at Springwater is because this school community really values helping students grow through a holistic mindset. This enables me to proactively help more students at greater depths and in more diverse ways through my classroom, group & individual counseling sessions. 

 

 

Mark Lapides | mark@springwaterschool.com

Hello, I am so happy to have found my way to this amazing school community.

I started my teaching career in 1997 as a kindergarten – second grade teacher in the Pribilof Island School District, which is in the middle of the Bearing Sea. Since then, I have worked in a wide variety of diverse communities including San Francisco, Oakland, Canby, and Wilsonville. Along the way, I have learned a few things: meet students where they are, celebrate growth, collaboration is messy (and essential), try to listen (even when you think you know the answer), be proactive, and take the first step (even when you are scared to do so).

One of my all time favorite writers is David Whyte. Here is an excerpt from his poem Start Close In:

Start close in,
don’t take
the second step
or the third,
start with the first
thing
close in,
the step
you don’t want to take.

I look forward to getting to know you!

 

Jenny Wetzel | jenny@springwaterschool.com

My name is Jenny and I joined Springwater School in the summer of 2020 as the new Garden Coordinator. My career has included stints in both education and agriculture and I am thrilled to be combining those interests together by teaching students in the school garden. I have worked as a wildlife biologist in Alaska studying seabirds, a farm hand and agricultural researcher on five organic vegetable farms, and as a middle school science teacher for five years. I earned a degree in biology, a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Alaska Anchorage, and a Master of Science in Horticulture from OSU. I also grow vegetables for the Clackamas Community College Organic Farming Program. I take pride in being a lifelong learner and am always excited to try new things. I hope to share this curiosity with the Springwater students through experiments and projects in the school garden.

In my free time I love to hike, ski, and grow a wild garden. I am learning to play the violin and always have a half finished knitting creation and home improvement project keeping me busy on the weekends. I can’t wait to meet all of the students in person, and I am feeling lucky to have landed in such a vibrant, engaged, and connected learning community.

 

Julia Mcleod | julia@springwaterschool.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roxanne LaForce| roxanne@springwaterschool.com

I’m thrilled to be a part of the Springwater community! I’m a very active individual and value good health and a sound well-being. It’s my life philosophy that if these things are in place, we can ultimately be the best version of ourselves. I’m excited to be able to help instill these values in Springwater’s students as the PE and Health instructor.

I’m originally from Syracuse, New York and was fortunate enough to realize early on that I wanted to be a teacher. My parents are both from Ukraine, and while growing up I’d occasionally help my father teach English to newly arrived Ukrainian immigrants. This, coupled with teaching swim lessons as a teenager, sparked my desire to become a teacher. I received my undergraduate degree from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Oswego and my Master’s from SUNY Albany. I started my career in Upstate New York teaching Spanish and Russian, and coaching soccer. Eventually, I migrated west. I spent two years in the mountains of Bailey, Colorado teaching Spanish, Russian, Reading, and Study Skills, and coaching volleyball, cross country, gymnastics, and teaching swim lessons. During my first year in Oregon, I taught Spanish in Molalla, and coached volleyball. For the past 23 years, I taught ESOL, Language Arts, Social Studies, and Science in the Woodburn School District. During my time in Woodburn, I also coached volleyball and golf.

Aside from my love of teaching, I enjoy hiking with my husband, Matt, and yellow lab, Blossom, and watching my two sons, Zennon and Bodie, play lacrosse. Additionally, I really enjoy swimming, playing guitar and piano, and reading.