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Welcome New Faculty

Posted on: Mon, August 31, 2015 at 1:59

Welcome New Faculty

Joining Nantucket Lighthouse School this year as the 5th/6th classroom teacher is Shelley Dresser formerly of the prestigious Eaglebrook School in Deerfield, MA. “With a B.A. in Psychology from Queens College, a Masters of Forest Science from Yale University and a Masters of Education from Smith College Shelley brings to us a deep passion for education and the environment,” noted Nantucket Lighthouse School Head of School Emily Miller. 

Prior to becoming a teacher, Dresser worked at the Council of State Governments as the Director of Environment and Energy Policy and started the Northeast Recycling Council, helping to spearhead recycling efforts by building markets for recycled material.  She incorporated her knowledge and passion for the environment when she began her career as a classroom teacher, first at Full Circle School, a one room schoolhouse, with a philosophy of learning that is very similar to Nantucket Lighthouse School and then as a middle school science and math teacher at Eaglebrook School.  Dresser built the sustainability program at Eaglebrook, incorporating her intense love of gardening into the program.  The sustainability committee participated in a range of student selected projects including windmill design, videography, dorm electricity conservation challenges, tree labeling, and recycling waste analysis. Most recently Dresser managed "Global Day," incorporating art with natural materials, white water rafting, and visits to local sustainable businesses.

Dresser recently moved to Nantucket from Brattleboro, VT. She is married to David Gagnon of the Maria Mitchell Association and tutors math and SSAT in the summer.

Also coming from a prominent New England private school is Michael Pasch of Greenwich, CT. Pasch has worked in various roles as an educator in both the public and private setting, including time at Greenwich Country Day School, instructing learners from preschool to 8th grade. Working as a classroom teacher and a learning specialist, he has extensive experience tailoring curriculum to individual learners and learning styles.

“Joining a very talented group of educators at Nantucket Lighthouse School, Michael brings a broad range of experience, particularly in the areas of special education and educational technology,” shared Miller. “We are thrilled to welcome Michael and his family to Nantucket.”

With a B.A. in English and Music, teacher certification in general and special education, and a Masters in Educational Technology from Ramapo College of New Jersey, Pasch will be overseeing the implementation of Nantucket Lighthouse School’s technology program. With contributions raised through a Fund-the-Need auction at the School’s summer event, the Nantucket Garden Festival Garden Soirée, Nantucket Lighthouse School recently purchased 20 new MacBook Pro computers for its middle school students. “Due to the growth of our middle school program, there was a significant need for more computers and we are very grateful to the 27 donors who raised their hands to help make this dream a reality for our school and students,” shared Logan Gomes, Nantucket Lighthouse School’s Director of Advancement. “With Michael’s expertise and insight, we are thrilled to be expanding our school’s use of technology in a thoughtful manner that is consistent with our educational philosophy.”

Returning to Nantucket Lighthouse School as a Lower Primary teacher is Julia Kuratek Maury. Maury grew up on Nantucket and developed her love of learning early in life when she had Nantucket Lighthouse School co-founder Lizbet Carroll Fuller as a first grade teacher. She attended Columbia University in New York City, where she earned her B.A. in American Studies. While in college, Maury lived abroad in Cape Town, South Africa and tutored young children in language, writing, and life skills. She has her certification as a Lead Teacher with the State of Massachusetts and recently received her certification in Early Childhood Education with the American Montessori Society. Maury previously held the positions of Extended Day Instructor and Small School Teacher at Nantucket Lighthouse School and has spent the past two years as a Lead Teacher at the Montessori Children's House of Nantucket.

“Having started her own educational journey and her career in the Lighthouse tradition, Julia brings a unique perspective and a deep understanding of Nantucket Lighthouse School’s philosophy and approach to teaching,” shared Miller. “We are delighted to welcome Julia back to the School.”

Nantucket Lighthouse School will commence its 16th year on Wednesday, September 9th.