OBEN Proudly Welcomes 10 New Teachers
The Oyster Bay-East Norwich Central School District welcomed 10 new teachers as it opened its doors for the 2020-21 school year, six at Oyster Bay High School and four at James H. Vernon School.
Ms. Keegan Harris joins Oyster Bay High School as a social studies teacher, replacing Mr. Robert Browne who retired in June. Ms. Harris has 12 years of professional teaching experience. She comes from Smithtown West High School but spent most of her teaching career in the Half Hollow Hills School District where she was granted tenure in 2012. In addition to public school teaching, Ms. Harris has unique experience as an Institute of Nuclear Power Certified Instructor at a nuclear power plant. She played women’s lacrosse in college and coached the sport in a previous district. Ms. Harris earned a Bachelor of Science in Adolescent Education and a Master of Science in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment from Oswego University. Considered cheerful, enthusiastic, and caring, Ms. Harris said she is “thrilled to be working in a small district with a close-knit community and a supportive staff.”
Mr. Ryan Towers also joins the District as a social studies teacher at Oyster Bay High School, replacing Mr. Tore Barbaccia who retired in June. In his previous position, he taught social studies at Cold Spring Harbor Jr./Sr. High School for eight years and was tenured in 2016. Mr. Towers said he is “energetic, fun and passionate about history and teaching, and is excited to get to know the students, faculty and staff.” He is an avid golfer and coached girls’ varsity soccer in his previous district, a sport he played while in college. Mr. Towers earned a Bachelor of Arts and Science in History and Secondary Education from Salve Regina University and Master of Science in Adolescent Education (Grades 7-12) from Mercy College. He earned New York State (NYS) Certification in Social Studies Grades 7-12.
Ms. Maria Zambuto joins the District as a high school science teacher, replacing Ms. Susan Fagan who retired in June. Ms. Zambuto was most recently a science teacher at Robert M. Finley Middle School in Glen Cove and has taught high school science at Lawrence Woodmere Academy and in the Herricks School District. In addition to classroom experience, she also has extensive experience in science research. Ms. Zambuto attended Stony Brook University where she earned a combined Bachelor of Science/Master of Teaching degree in Biology through an accelerated program. She earned NYS Initial Certifications in Biology and General Science (Grades 7-12), a Grades 5-6 extension and a Secondary Certification in Earth Science (Grades 7-12). Ms. Zambuto is quite familiar with Oyster Bay. She spent many summer days sailing out of Oyster Bay on a family sailboat.
Ms. Lisa Marie McDougal is a chemistry teacher at Oyster Bay High School. She comes from Edmund. W. Miles Middle School in Amityville where she was a Living Environment and Science Research teacher. She also taught Chemistry and the Living Environment in summer school at Oyster Bay High School. Ms. McDougal earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Loyola University and a Master of Arts in Ecology from Stony Brook University. She earned an Advanced Certification in Science Education (7-12) from the State University of New York College at Old Westbury. Ms. McDougal also earned NYS Initial Certifications in Biology and Chemistry (Grades 7-12) and an extension in General Science (Grades 7-12). Described as caring, creative, and dedicated, Ms. McDougal is a first-generation college graduate who is looking forward to getting to know her students. Ms. McDougal grew up close to Oyster Bay and often comes to the hamlet to kayak, bird watch or go hiking.
Ms. Meagan Galioto comes to Oyster Bay High School as an English Language Arts teacher. Ms. Galioto has been working in the District as a Literacy Connections/AIS teacher for grades 7 and 8 and was previously a teaching assistant at the high school. Before coming to Oyster Bay, she gained teaching experience in Pennsylvania. Ms. Galioto earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Arts in Education from Villanova University. Her certifications include Pennsylvania Instructional 1 Certificate-English 7-12, NYS Initial Teaching Certification -Secondary English Language Arts 7-12 and she is currently working on her NYS Initial Certification - English to Speakers of Other Languages. Ms. Galioto describes herself as student-focused, dedicated, and passionate, and is excited about “watching her students shine.”
Mr. Richard Geiger is a physical education teacher at Oyster Bay High School. He comes from The Dwight School in Manhattan where he taught physical education and health for the past four years. Mr. Geiger earned a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education from Springfield College and a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Stony Brook University. He earned several certifications in Massachusetts and New York in physical education K-12 and health education K-12. He is also Automated External Defibrillator (AED), First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) certified and has training in concussions. Mr. Geiger grew up in a family of educators. “Education has always been a part of my life and this has allowed me to develop a passion for teaching,” Mr. Geiger said. “Even though this school year will look different than previous school years, I look forward to becoming a member of the Oyster Bay community, building professional relationships with my new colleagues, and helping my students learn and grow.”
Ms. Lindsey Oliva joins James H. Vernon School as a fifth-grade teacher. Ms. Oliva previously taught at P.S. 101 The School in the Gardens in Forest Hills and at Chatterton Elementary School in the Merrick School District. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Childhood Education from St. John’s University and a year later earned her Master of Science in Literacy, Birth-Grade 6. She earned NYS Initial Certifications in Early Childhood Education (Grades 1-6), Early Childhood (Birth-Grade 2) and Literacy (Birth- Grade 6). Ms. Oliva was a Division I golfer and was named a Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) All-American Scholar. “It was an amazing experience getting to travel the country while competing in golf tournaments against some other talented players,” she said. Ms. Oliva looks forward to building relationships with students and staff in Oyster Bay and helping her students achieve their academic goals.
Ms. Nicole Turner is James H. Vernon School’s newest fourth-grade teacher. Nicole comes to Vernon from P.S. 89Q in Elmhurst where she taught fourth grade for the past five years. While earning her Bachelor of Science in Childhood Education from the State University of New York at Cortland, Ms. Turner spent time abroad and taught English to 7-12 grade students in Thailand. She received her Master of Science in Education (K-12) from Molloy College. She earned NYS Initial Certification in Childhood Education Grades 1-6 and in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages Pre-K-12. She is working on an extension certificate in Early Childhood Education (Birth-Grade 2). Ms. Turner describes herself as determined, energetic and organized, and looks forward to becoming acclimated to the Oyster Bay-East Norwich learning community. In addition to teaching, she was also hired as the assistant coach for varsity cheerleading.
Ms. PatriciaAnn McCaffrey is excited to be an official Reading teacher at James H. Vernon School after temporarily filling in for a teacher on leave last year. “Everyone was so kind and inclusive, I am excited to continue to build relationships with students and staff and continue to see my students’ reading skills grow,” Ms. McCaffrey said. Before coming to the District, she served as a Literacy Support Coordinator and as a fifth-grade Learning Specialist/English Language Arts pull-out teacher at KIPP Academy Lynn, a charter school in Massachusetts. She received her Bachelor of Arts in History and Elementary/Special Education from Wagner College and a Master of Education, Curriculum and Teaching from Boston University. She earned NYS Initial Certification in Students with Disabilities (Grades 1-6) and in Childhood Education (Grades 1-6). Ms. McCaffrey is an avid traveler and has visited every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
Ms. Jacklyn Allgier joins James H. Vernon School as a special education teacher but has been working at the school in different capacities for the past few years. She served as a teaching assistant, then student taught and then was a resident substitute teacher before attaining her current position. During that time, she has “experienced first-hand the passion and dedication the staff, administration, and community demonstrate inside and outside the school buildings of the District,” she said. Ms. Allgier became a special education teacher after working for 10 years as a behavior consultant. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders from James Madison University and a Master of Science in Childhood Education/Special Education (Grades 1-6) with an Autism Content Specialty from Long Island University. She earned NYS Initial Certification as a Teaching Assistant and in Childhood Education and Special Education. “I look forward to getting to know each and every individual student and seeing what they have to teach me to better myself as an educator and support students the best I can,” Ms. Allgier said. “I truly feel being a special education teacher is my calling, and I am thrilled for the adventures that lie ahead!”