Our Staff - Monarch River Academy
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Our Staff

Anna Wilkinson - Homeschool Teacher Anna Wilkinson Teacher Trainer
Coordinator
Anna Wilkinson - Homeschool Teacher

Anna Wilkinson

Teacher Trainer
Coordinator

"Anna Wilkinson is a Homeschool Teacher and Teacher Trainer Coordinator for Yosemite Valley and Monarch River Academy.

Anna graduated from Fresno Pacific University with a BA in Liberal Studies in 2003. She completed her credential there immediately after and has been in education since then. She has taught almost every elementary grade (2, 3, 4, 5, and 6th!) and also adults. She is passionate about teaching and loves to continue learning herself! Anna believes that education should be accessible to all and that through schooling at home, students’ individual needs are met and their education can be personalized.

Anna has been married to Ken for 16 years and has 3 children. She grew up in Fresno and loves raising her family here as well."

Kathryn Buckley - Homeschool Teacher Kathryn Buckley Homeschool Teacher
Kathryn Buckley - Homeschool Teacher

Kathryn Buckley

Homeschool Teacher

Kathryn Buckley understands the importance of individualized education and knows there is no "one size fits all" when it comes to learning. This is her 3rd year as a homeschool teacher and 7th year as an educator. Kathryn spent her early years as a high school history teacher and loves all things historical. She completed her undergraduate degree at Fresno State with a Bachelors in History in 2011 and immediately went on to finish her Social Science Credential at Fresno State in 2012. She lives in Clovis with her husband, Dustin, and two young children, Morgan and Avery. She is ready and excited to begin a new year helping families on their homeschool journey!

Kristen Kroeker - Homeschool Teacher Kristen Kroeker Homeschool Teacher
Kristen Kroeker - Homeschool Teacher

Kristen Kroeker

Homeschool Teacher

"If asked what is the most important bit of advice you would give a new homeschooler, Kristen Kroeker would answer, “Teach the child you have.” As a credentialed teacher with a Masters of Arts degree in Teaching and Curriculum, as well as a mother of five children who has homeschooled for more than ten years, Kristen knows well the beauty and the challenges that come with educating children at home. She knows that no child fits perfectly into a “box” and that each child has strengths and weaknesses that are unique to them. As a homeschool teacher, Kristen encourages students to run with their passions, while at the same time gently strengthening their weaknesses, letting them be victorious and not discouraged about the things that challenge them."

Lindsay Hughes - Homeschool Teacher Lindsay Hughes Homeschool Teacher
Lindsay Hughes - Homeschool Teacher

Lindsay Hughes

Homeschool Teacher

"Lindsay Hughes is excited to be in her third year at Monarch River Academy as a homeschool teacher. She has a deep passion for homeschooling families, and is excited to work with parents and help foster their child’s learning. Her goal is to encourage and support parents, and walk with them in this amazing journey of homeschooling. She has been homeschooling her three girls for the past seven years. With this this experience, she has learned so much about the homeschool journey and how it looks so different for every family. Before Inspire, she worked as an Independent Studies teacher for high school students. That job taught her how to work one on one with students and families, individualizing each student’s learning needs, in turn leading to their success and graduation! Prior to that, she was a kindergarten teacher for three years. Lindsay attended Fresno Pacific College for her BA as well as her teaching credential. Mrs. Hughes is excited to start this journey with you!"

Margie McIntyre - Homeschool Teacher Margie McIntyre Homeschool Teacher
Margie McIntyre - Homeschool Teacher

Margie McIntyre

Homeschool Teacher

Margie McIntyre has been a Homeschool Teacher for the past two years. She loves to see students learning about the world around them and is privileged to walk with parents as they support their students in their homeschool journey. Margie taught 8th-grade math and science for seven years prior to coming to Monarch River Academy. She was homeschooled during her own elementary years and has really enjoyed being a part of the homeschool community again. 

Megan Rios - Homeschool Teacher Megan Rios Homeschool Teacher
Megan Rios - Homeschool Teacher

Megan Rios

Homeschool Teacher

"Megan Rios is a teacher with Monarch River Academy and has been working in the field of education for over 6 years. She has been passionate both about homeschooling and about teaching since she was a child; her mother homeschooled her and her siblings for most of the elementary school years. After completing her bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University and earning her teaching credential through California State University San Marcos, she began her teaching career in Selma. She taught 3rd grade for four years before joining the Inspire family. She enjoys her job immensely and is looking forward to a great year of learning!"

Melissa Ens - Homeschool Teacher Melissa Ens Homeschool Teacher
Melissa Ens - Homeschool Teacher

Melissa Ens

Homeschool Teacher

"Melissa Ens is someone who loves teaching and loves learning. She is beginning her 3rd year as a Homeschool Teacher, and is happy to be part of the Monarch River Academy family! In addition to teaching TK, 4th grade, and bilingual kindergarten for local public schools for over 6 years, Melissa homeschooled her own children for several years, covering grades K, 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and half of 10th. She knows that some families always planned to homeschool and others found it necessary at some point due to unexpected, sometimes difficult circumstances. No matter their story, Melissa is passionate about supporting each family’s efforts to help their children learn and grow.

Melissa lives in Fresno, CA with her husband, three teenagers, two dogs, and 11 chickens. She completed her undergraduate and credential coursework at Fresno Pacific University and later lived in Peru for 2.5 years. She has a bilingual teaching credential and loves reading, playing the guitar, living in a culturally rich city, and eating anything she didn’t have to cook. "

Miriam Hofer - Homeschool Teacher Miriam Hofer Homeschool Teacher
Miriam Hofer - Homeschool Teacher

Miriam Hofer

Homeschool Teacher

"Miriam Hofer is passionate about Homeschooling . This is her fourth year teaching with Yosemite Valley Charter Schools. Miriam is both a Homeschool teacher and a Homeschool mom. Being both an Homeschool Teacher and Homeschool mom gives her great insight as to the ins and outs of what it takes to Homeschool successfully, and also the joys and challenges of homeschooling.

Miriam's passion for Homeschool is evident, as she received Inspire's Heart of Homeschool award in 2018. She works diligently to meet the needs of her students and loves to encourage families to grow in their learning and thrive as Homeschool families. Miriam taught a 3rd/4th grade class at Inspire's Enrichment Academy and led a Book Club at this year's Community Connections Events in Kingsburg. Miriam loves to encourage students to read and she can often be seen with her portable library that she has created out of vintage suitcases.

Miriam has been married for 23 years and has 3 children, all of which she has homeschooled at some point. She is currently homeschooling her youngest child who is in 7th grade.

In her spare time Miriam enjoys baking, camping and spending time with her family. She is looking forward to another fantastic learning year with Inspire!"

Shiela Skibbie - Homeschool Teacher Shiela Skibbie Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher
Shiela Skibbie - Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

Shiela Skibbie

Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

Shiela Skibbie loves helping homeschool parents and students be successful! She is entering her third year as an Homeschool Teacher and has over 20 years of education experience in public, private, and home school environments as a classroom teacher, charter school leader and administrator, and as a homeschool mom to both a middle school and high school student. She has her multiple subject credential, a Masters in Educational Media Design & Technology, and a passion for helping students pursue their college & career goals.

Stacey Pettitt - Homeschool Teacher Stacey Pettitt Homeschool Teacher
Stacey Pettitt - Homeschool Teacher

Stacey Pettitt

Homeschool Teacher

"Stacey Pettitt is a homeschool teacher with Monarch River. She has been a teacher for 26 years and has homeschooled her own children for 16 years. She believes it is the best parenting decision she and her husband have ever made! She has found that the relationships within the family have been strengthened by the time spent learning together at home.

Stacey has a passion for homeschooling and helping other families on their homeschool journey. She enjoys coming alongside other homeschooling families to help them find the best methods and strategies to fit their learning and teaching styles. She is here to be your encourager, cheerleader, advocate, and facilitator. She enjoys children and encouraging and motivating them."

Tami Goossen - Homeschool Teacher Tami Goossen Homeschool Teacher
Tami Goossen - Homeschool Teacher

Tami Goossen

Homeschool Teacher

"Tami Goossen has been in education and teaching for the past 25 years. Her passion for education and love of teaching took her from the classroom to homeschooling her own three children and then to Inspire, where she has been a Homeschool Teacher for the last two years. While schooling her children at home, she saw the truth of the statement made by Charlotte Mason, ""Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."" Throughout her 18 years of home educating, she taught in various co-op and classroom settings and also gained knowledge of different teaching methods, curriculum, and how to foster real-life learning. Tami loves coming alongside families to encourage, support, and help find what best fits the needs of a student. She understands the challenges and joys of homeschooling and enjoys being able to encourage the process of a life of learning!

Tami received her BA and Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Fresno Pacific University and is looking forward to another wonderful year of learning!"

Valerie Blackburn - Homeschool Teacher Valerie Blackburn SST Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher
Valerie Blackburn - Homeschool Teacher

Valerie Blackburn

SST Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

Valerie Blackburn traces her road to teaching all the way back to 3rd grade when she wrote a report on Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan and was forever captivated by the story of the difference a dedicated teacher can make in the life of a child. Mrs. Blackburn has had a wide variety of experiences in education prior to joining the Inspire Family of Schools, which include classroom teacher, independent study teacher, and charter school developer. The most rewarding experience, by far, was the ten years she spent homeschooling her own three children. Mrs. Blackburn received a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies from California State University, Fresno, a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from National University, and a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Teaching from Fresno Pacific University. Mrs. Blackburn believes that great teachers are the ones who inspire students to ask their own great questions, and she has always been guided by the words of Helen Keller, "A well-educated mind will always have more questions than answers." Mrs.Blackburn is eagerly looking forward to a great year partnering with families to ensure that their children have everything they need to experience a successful and joyful school year!

Amy Friesen - High School Specialist Amy Friesen High School Specialist
Amy Friesen - High School Specialist

Amy Friesen

High School Specialist

Amy Friesen has been in education for 11 years. She has taught kindergarten and first grade in Selma Unified, kindergarten in Clovis Unified, junior high math, and bible at Fresno Christian as well as homeschooling two of her children from 2nd-8th grade. Mrs. Friesen earned a Multiple Subject Credential, a Master of Arts degree in Education and a Reading Specialist Credential from Fresno State University. She lives in Clovis and has been married to her husband, Anson, for 22 years. Mrs. Friesen has three children: Brittany, Kaden, and Keely. When she is not teaching, she enjoys riding dirtbikes, wake surfing, camping, relaxing at Hume Lake, reading and going to the beach. Mrs. Friesen is excited to work alongside your family and help you tailor an education that best suits your child’s individual learning style while maintaining a love for learning. She also looks forward to having the opportunity to build a relationship with your family while encouraging you on the hard days and celebrating with you on the good days. Welcome to Inspire!

Shirin Schneider - High School Specialist Shirin Schneider High School Specialist
Shirin Schneider - High School Specialist

Shirin Schneider

High School Specialist

"Shirin Schneider spent 18 years home educating her three children. While teaching in a variety of homeschool co-ops, coaching homeschool speech and debate, and volunteering in enrichment activities that supported her children’s education she continued to enjoy encouraging others on their homeschool journey. In her 18th year, she found her dream job as a Homeschool Teacher inspiring a life-long love of learning.

She believes in learning as a lifestyle. She is knowledgeable about literature-based instruction including the Charlotte Mason philosophy and understands the benefits of Classical Education as well. She understands how to prepare students for life beyond homeschool; she knows what students need to be successful in college and career.

Experience has taught her that Helen Keller was right when she said, ""Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much."" When she is not hiking with family, knitting baby hats, or watching BBC costume dramas, she partners with Guide Dogs for the Blind, raising puppies that will eventually become partners for those visually impaired. She looks forward to partnering with you on your homeschool journey. "

Michelle Shelly Elrod - High School Specialist Michelle "Shelly" Elrod High School Specialist
Michelle Shelly Elrod - High School Specialist

Michelle "Shelly" Elrod

High School Specialist

Michelle Elrod is often referred to as Shelly. She has been teaching for more than 20 years and has a true passion for student learning. She taught in Fresno Unified for 7 years. While at Fresno Unified, Shelly taught 4th grade for four years and then transitioned into a Literacy coach position for 3rd-6th grade students for three years. She began her journey with public charter schools 17 years ago and has loved working closely with families to educate their children. She was delighted to join the Inspire Charter School family four years ago and has had a front row seat in watching our school exceed! Shelly LOVES creating community within the learning environment at our Community Connection events. This time with students in our community setting is the place where her passion for quality teaching and building friendships within students collide. Shelly has been married for 18 years to my husband, Mike, who is in the construction business. They have twin 11 year old boys who love sports! They are an active family that truly enjoys time together. Shelly looks forward to meeting more Inspire families and students and walking through their educational journeys together.

Nailya Jarocki - Homeschool Teacher Nailya Jarocki Lead English Language Learner Coordinator
Nailya Jarocki - Homeschool Teacher

Nailya Jarocki

Lead English Language Learner Coordinator
Rachael Jantzen - English Language Learner Coordinator Rachael Jantzen English Language Learner Coordinator
Rachael Jantzen - English Language Learner Coordinator

Rachael Jantzen

English Language Learner Coordinator

Rachael Jantzen is a Homeschool Teacher and is excited to have the opportunity and honor to work with amazing families and students at Yosemite Valley Charter School. Mrs. Jantzen was born and raised in the Central Valley and loves taking little trips here and there or simply barbecuing in the backyard with her husband, son, and extended family. Before deciding to pursue a career in teaching, Mrs. Jantzen wanted to be an attorney, so she worked at a law office while in college and earned her B.A. in Philosophy Pre-Law and Communication. She was also coaching high school pep and cheer while in college and realized how much she enjoyed working with students. So, Mrs. Jantzen earned her single-subject credential in English. Mrs. Jantzen taught English to every grade from 8th grade to 12th grade. While earning her Master’s in Educational Administration and Leadership and Administrative Credential, she was a campus culture director at a middle school. Mrs. Jantzen also taught at the Center for Advanced Research and Technology in Clovis, CA. Mrs. Jantzen enjoyed how students were excited to learn English because it was presented using a theme that intrigued them. One of the many amazing things about homeschooling is that students have the opportunity to study what interests them and pursue experiences that make learning fun. Mrs. Jantzen strongly believes that learning should be fun and exciting for students. Not all students learn the same way and homeschooling provides students with the ability to find curriculum options that appeal to them. When Mrs. Jantzen became a homeschool teacher, she saw the excitement and creativity in her students’ work samples which is a true testament to parents knowing their children and tailoring learning experiences to fit their needs. Mrs. Jantzen and her husband are also foster and adoptive parents and have seen how beneficial homeschooling is to fellow foster and adoptive families. Mrs. Jantzen looks forward to collaborating with Yosemite Valley families and seeing all of the amazing examples of learning!

Becky Bennett - English Language Learner Coordinator Becky Bennett English Language Learner Coordinator
Becky Bennett - English Language Learner Coordinator

Becky Bennett

English Language Learner Coordinator

"Becky Bennett is a Homeschool Teacher for Yosemite Valley Charter School. She believes in preserving the dignity of childhood and has made it a priority to make students feel important, loved, and capable. This is her fifth year as a professional educator and second year with the Yosemite Valley team. She received her bachelor’s degree and teaching credential from Brigham Young University in 2016 where she also minored in Teaching English as a Second Language.

Becky believes that every student has the right to an individualized education. She has seen how homeschooling allows children to discover, learn and explore the world through the lenses of their own interests and questions. Becky encourages teaching to the whole child with a focus on movement, art, imagination and storytelling as key foundations in a child’s journey.

Becky lives with her husband and one-year-old daughter in Madera Ranchos. They love being outdoors and in their free time are developing a small homestead on their property."

Vikki Shumaker - 504 Coordinator Vikki Shumaker 504 Coordinator
Vikki Shumaker - 504 Coordinator

Vikki Shumaker

504 Coordinator

"Hello! Welcome to Yosemite Valley Charter School! This is Vikki Shumaker's third year as a teacher with Yosemite Valley, and her eighth year of working in the homeschool and online schooling environment. She has experience working with all grade levels, and feels blessed to have the opportunity to continue to work with all ages while teaching with Yosemite Valley Charter.

Vikki fell in love with this career and feels truly blessed to be able to connect with so many children and families through teaching. She enjoys learning along with her students and continues to still grow in her education by adding up to date courses to her degree and credentials. Homeschooling has opened so many new opportunities for little learners, and Vikki loves being a part of that. She enjoys seeing the growth and development that our school can provide for the students. Vikki welcomes you and cannot wait to join you on the path of learning and help your students achieve their academic goals!

Vikki was born and raised in Fresno and loves that with teaching at Yosemite Valley Charter she can connect with others from the Central Valley. When not busy with students, Vikki enjoys exercising, running, and spending time with her family of two teenage children and their cute Goldendoodle dog. They especially love spending quality time together traveling, mostly to the beach.

Vikki is very excited for the new school year and is looking forward to meeting other local families to connect and explore this amazing academic journey together! "

Kellie Hickey - Lending Library Specialist Kellie Hickey Lending Library Specialist
Kellie Hickey - Lending Library Specialist

Kellie Hickey

Lending Library Specialist

Hello! I am one of your Library Specialists. I began working with Inspire in the summer of 2020. I was born and raised in Fresno California. I have been married to my husband Michael for 2 years and together we have a daughter named Lorelai who is 1. In our spare time, we love to swim and play water polo together (Lorelai is taking her first swim classes to join us soon). I have a degree in Liberal Studies with a concentration in English Writing. I love working in education and building relationships with students and parents. I am very excited to meet all of you!

Jenny Plumb - Regional Coordinator Jenny Plumb Regional Coordinator
Jenny Plumb - Regional Coordinator

Jenny Plumb

Regional Coordinator

"Jenny Plumb grew up in a homeschooling family and is a homeschool mom with three kids in 11th grade, 8th grade and 5th grade. Some of her children are dyslexic and she understands navigating education to fit your child’s specific needs. Her husband is an airline pilot and they have sometimes homeschooled for the freedom to travel with them around the world. She believes that the best gift she can give her children is the desire to explore, create, play, and become lifelong learners - strong in who they were born to become. She has always taught her children a variety of curriculum, as each one is an individual, and takes schooling year by year for each one. She crafts, does photography, gardens, and is happily renovating her old house with her husband.

Jenny has a BA in English and a teaching credential from CS Monterey Bay and started teaching in 2000. She also has an administrative credential. She has taught in private, public, charter and homeschool classrooms. She's taught K, 2nd, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade and writing classes in traditional schools along with homeschooling her own K-8. She has been a mentor/lead teacher in former schools, and enjoys curriculum and learning styles research. She loves to help and support other teachers/parents find their own teaching style and couldn’t be more excited to be supporting families on their homeschool journey!"

Shiela Skibbie - Homeschool Teacher Shiela Skibbie Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher
Shiela Skibbie - Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

Shiela Skibbie

Community Coordinator & Homeschool Teacher

Shiela Skibbie loves helping homeschool parents and students be successful! She is entering her third year as an Homeschool Teacher and has over 20 years of education experience in public, private, and home school environments as a classroom teacher, charter school leader and administrator, and as a homeschool mom to both a middle school and high school student. She has her multiple subject credential, a Masters in Educational Media Design & Technology, and a passion for helping students pursue their college & career goals.

Carmen Marroquin - High School Counselor Carmen Marroquin High School Counselor
Carmen Marroquin - High School Counselor

Carmen Marroquin

High School Counselor

"Carmen Marroquin is passionate about education, counseling, and joined Inspire to empower families and help students reach their educational and future goals. Mrs. Marroquin began her career as an educator teaching high school Spanish and English Language Development in 1998, first in the Bay Area and later in the Central Valley. She transitioned to her dream job of high school counselor in the Merced Union High School District and is excited to bring her skills to homeschooling families in the area. Mrs. Marroquin double majored in psychology and Spanish at Santa Clara University, then earned her teaching credential and Masters of Education degree at Stanford University. She also holds a Masters in Educational Counseling and a Pupil Personnel Services credential from National University. Mrs. Marroquin looks forward to helping her high school students unlock their potential to pursue their passions! "

Denise Voth - High School Counselor Denise Voth High School Success Coordinator
Denise Voth - High School Counselor

Denise Voth

High School Success Coordinator

Denise Voth loves working with High School students and their families. She has been in education for over 15 years and has taught Algebra 1, Geometry, and Algebra 2 at the High School level. She has worked in the Independant Study Charter School environment for over 10 years. She enjoys finding out what high school students love to do and encorporate that into their high school schedules. Her favorite subjects are math and science and she earned her BA in mathematics from Fresno State. Mrs. Voth (rhymes with both) is excited to begin a new school year and get high school students excited about thier futures.