Our Staff

Karen Alston

Specialty – Maintain the day to day responsibilities required by the school.
Title – Assistant to the Principal, Transportation & Attendance Coordinator
Education – Associate’s Degree in business – Emphasis in Stenography
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x101
Email – kalston@upcsK5.net
Profile – Karen Alston has 30 years of Business Administration & Finance experience.  She has been employed with Urban Pathways Charter Schools since 2009, serving as both the Administrative Assistant to the Principal of the 6-12 building, and since 2011, for the K-5 building.  She is also the transportation coordinator, ensuring that all students get transportation intact.  Some of Karen’s past employment history includes: Administrative Assistant for the Technology Collaborative; Executive Director of the Pittsburgh Rotary Club; Secretary for the District 1700, Rotary International; Treasurer of a Borough; and 13 years working at Forbes Hospital.

Amanda Ansell

Art Teacher

Ashlee Anthony

Specialty – elementary education K-6, Principal K-12
Title – 2nd grade Teacher
Education – Bachelors in Elementary K-6, Masters in Administration K-12
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x301
Email – aanthony@upcsK5.net
Profile – Mrs. Anthony has been teaching for 13 years. She graduated from California University of PA with a degree in elementary education K-6. She began her career in the McKeesport area school district. She worked in McKeesport for nine years and West Mifflin for one before coming to UP. While working in McKeesport, Mrs. Anthony went back to Cal U and got her masters in Administration K-12. This is her third year at UP and she is looking forward to another great year in second grade!

Kelly Babin

Speech Therapist

Amber Beck

SpecialtyElementary and Early Childhood Education
Title – First Grade Lead Teacher
Education – Master of Education in Elementary Education; Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x202
Email – abeck@upcsK5.net
Profile – Amber Beck has been at Urban Pathways since it opened in 2011, teaching first grade. She has over 10 years of teaching experience. Prior to teaching at Urban Pathways, she taught kindergarten at Calvary Preschool Center in Irwin, PA, and was a substitute teacher for Southmoreland and Mt. Pleasant School Districts.

Reiley Blakemore

4th Grade Teacher

Rachel Bodenlos

Specialty – Reading Specialist
Title – Reading Specialist and PSSA School Assessment Coordinator
Education – Master of Education Degree in Reading; Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x407
Email – rbodenlos@upcsK5.net
Profile – Rachel Bodenlos has over ten years of experience within the field of education. She began as a substitute teacher for Northside Urban Pathways Charter School before serving as a full-time sixth grade teacher. In 2011, she accepted the position as a third grade teacher at Urban Pathways K-5 College Charter School where she currently serves. As of August 2015, she will serve grades 3-5 as a reading specialist. Rachel is also the PSSA School Assessment Coordinator at Urban Pathways K-5 College Charter School.

Mary Elizabeth Brown

Behavior Specialist

Ruth Campet

Specialty – Special Education, Elementary Education, Reading Specialist
Title – Supervisor of Special Education
Education – Master of Education Degree in Special Education; Bachelor of Arts Degree in Special Education/Elementary Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x311
Email – rcampet@upcsK5.net
Profile – Ruth Campet has nearly fifteen years of experience within the field of education teaching all grades K-12 as a Special Education Teacher, Elementary Education Teacher, Reading Specialist, and Instructional Interventionist. Data-based instructional decisions, partnerships with parents, collaboration with colleagues, ongoing professional development, and serving as a school leader has enabled Ruth to become a master level teacher. Ruth’s educational philosophy hinges on fair teaching. Fair teaching is not giving every student the same education, rather the education they individually need.

Gabriella Chuong

2nd Grade Teacher

Abbey Clark

Guidance Counselor

Shannon Conner

Specialty – Reading Intervention, Dyslexia, Grant Writing and Management, coordinating literacy events and activities
Title – Reading Specialist, Literacy Coordinator, and Director of Federal Programs
Education – Dyslexia Certification, Reading Specialist Certification, Master of Education in Early Childhood and Elementary Education, Bachelor of Science in Business Marketing
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x271
Email – sconner@upcsk5.net
Profile – Shannon Conner has over 10 years of experience in the field of education. She has been at Urban Pathways Charter Schools since 2009, teaching at both the elementary and middle school levels. Prior to joining Urban Pathways, she served as a Building Substitute in Quaker Valley School District and taught at the elementary level in Newport News Public Schools in Virginia. In addition to her responsibilities as a reading specialist, Shannon manages the Keystones to Opportunity grant for Urban Pathways K-12.

Tayla Coulverson

Specialty – Cafeteria Management, First Friday Facilitator, and Thursday Communication Assistant
Title – Café Coordinator
Education – Diploma in Medical Assisting
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – tcoulverson@upcsK5.net
Profile – Tayla Coulverson is an Urban Pathways 6-12 alum and has worked in the medical field. She has served as a volunteer at Urban Pathways K-5 building and for the PNC YMCA – Urban Pathways Summer Readers Camp as a counselor.

Brian Easton

Specialty – Excel, Word, Skyward, data visualization
Title – PIMS & Student Management System Coordinator, and Data Analyst
Education – Bachelor of Arts in English Writing
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x310
Email – beaston@upcsK5.net
Profile – University of Pittsburgh graduate.

Marie Farkas

Specialty – Coordinating literacy events and activities, reading intervention
Title – Reading Specialist
Education – Master of Education Degree – Reading; Bachelor of Science in Education Degree – Early Childhood and Elementary Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – mfarkas@upcsK5.net
Profile – Marie Farkas has been a reading specialist for the past 10 years.  She has also served as a pre-kindergarten teacher and substitute teacher.

Alex Fedornak

Specialty – Multitasker
Title – Custodian
Education – Diploma in Building Maintenance
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email –  afedornak@upcsK5.net
Profile – Alex started at Urban Pathways 6-12 building May of 2005 as a part-time night position lasting 2.5 years. He then became a full-time employee on January 1, 2009. Alex specializes in safety and cleanliness of our beautiful elementary school creating a learning and growing environment for our elementary students.

April Flack

Specialty – Linton Food Service Management
Title – Linton Food Service Director
Education –  Serve Safe Certification
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x303
Profile – April Flack has served as the cafeteria assistant to both the K-5 and 6-12 Urban Pathways buildings. She is going into her eleventh year at UP and prides herself on knowing all of the student’s names.

Eileen Ford

1st Grade Teacher

Matt Galando

Specialty – Working with children.
Title – Special Education
Education – Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, Special Education, and Sociology
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x312
Email – mggalando@upcsK5.net
Profile –  Proud graduate of Seton Hill University.

Julie Gallagher

Specialty – Foreign Language
Title – Spanish Teacher
Education – Bachelor of Art in Spanish; Master of Art in Foreign Language Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – jgallagher@upcsk5.net
Profile – Proud alum of the University of Pittsburgh. Julie Gallagher has been the Spanish teacher at Urban Pathways K5 since 2015. In addition to her role as a specials teacher, she also plays a big part in the school’s daily arrival and dismissal procedures (you see her outside every morning, welcoming the kids to school!), classroom subbing/ push-in support, accountability tracking, and lunch monitoring.

Amber Garrett

3rd Grade Teacher

Sheena Gibson

Specialty – Inspiring children.
Title – 3rd Grade Teacher
Education – Master of Art in Teaching; Bachelor of Art in Philosophy
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – sgibson@upcsk5.net
Profile – Sheena has been working in urban education for 8 years.  She served in Literacy AmeriCorps* Pittsburgh, worked as the Remediation Specialist and Education Coordinator at Gwen’s Girls, Inc., and taught at the Environmental Charter School.  She is delighted to be learning and having fun with the students and staff at Urban Pathways.

Emily Gigliotti

Specialty – Elementary Education, Middle School Mathematics, S.T.E.M. education
Title – 5th grade Lead Teacher
Education – Master of Education Degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education and; Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education, certification in Middle School Mathematics
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x105
Email – egigliotti@upcsK5.net
Profile – Emily Gigliotti has nearly twelve years of experience within the field of education teaching all grades PK-8 as a Elementary Education Teacher, STEM specialist/teacher, Middle School Mathematics Teacher, and Middle School Science Teacher. Mrs. Gigliotti is in her third year teaching at UPCSK-5.

Cait Haniotakis

Specialty – Special Education
Title – 2nd Grade Teacher
Education – Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education, certificate in Special Education PK-8
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x302
Email – CHaniotakis@upcsK5.net

Maeve Hendricks

4th Grade Teacher

Jessica Houston

Kindergarten Teacher & Special Education

Brandie Johnson

4th Grade Teacher

Nicole Kelly

Special Education

Bethany Knicely

Specialty – K-6 PA Certification
Title – 2nd Grade Teacher
Education – Bachelor of Art in English, Master of Art in Elementary Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – bknicely@upcsK5.net
Profile – Bethany Knicely has worked in multiple educational settings including After School Excellence Tutoring at the Lawrenceville Boys & Girls Club, para-professional work in the Quaker Valley School District, and a long term substitute 4th grade Math Teacher at the Moon Area School District. Bethany is also pursuing a Reading Specialist Certification through the graduate school at Westminster College.

Jason Knox

Specialty – Specialize in Math
Title – Math Specialist
Education – Bachelor of Science in Education: Elementary Education K-6
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – jknox@upcsK5.net
Profile – Jason Knox will be starting his seventeenth year as an Elementary Education teacher. His journey started with his graduation from Clarion University in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in Education and an Elementary Education K-6 certification. His first teaching role was for Pathways Adolescent Center as a 3rd through 5th grade teacher. He then moved to Florida where he taught at Pierson Elementary school for seven years in 4th and 5th grade. He moved back to Pennsylvania in 2013 where he worked at Propel Charter School in Braddock Hills as a 5th and 6th grade math teacher, and then at Freedom Area School District as a Math Specialist. Jason is currently entering his fourth year as a math specialist at Urban Pathways K-5 College Charter School.

Darnise Lester

Specialty – Student Enrollment
Title – Executive Assistant to the CAO
Education – Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x307
Email – dlester@upcsK5.net
Profile – Darnise Lester has over twenty years of experience as an administrative assistant. She began her career at Westinghouse Electric Corporation, which lead to opportunities at Children Youth and Families, Youth Works, and the McKeesport Area School District before serving at both Urban Pathways 6-12 and K-5 buildings. Darnise is a proud graduate of Carlow University.

Janine Macklin

Specialty – Community and parent engagement, partnerships, events, and grants.
Title – External Engagement & Grants Manager/Parent Liaison
Education – Master of Science in Organizational Leadership; Bachelor of Science in Human Resources Management Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x302
Email – jmacklin@upcsK5.net
Profile – Janine Macklin has over 15 years of experience within the field of education. Some of her past administrative experience includes coordinating a Teacher Quality Enhancement Grant for the State System of Higher Education and serving as non-teaching faculty at the University of Pittsburgh. She was the former Chief Operating Officer for Urban Youth Action, Inc. and also worked in the Human Resources department at Pittsburgh Public Schools. Janine served on Governor Elect Wolf’s transition team on education in 2014 and currently represents charter schools on the Pennsylvania Association of Federal Program Coordinators (PAFPC) Executive Committee.

Erin McCoy

Music Teacher

Paul McMahon

Specialty – Front Desk Security  and cat herding
Title – Security
Education – Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x300
Email – pmcmahon@upcsK5.net
Profile – Paul is the father of 5, grandfather of 3, plus 250+ elementary adopted grandkids. This is his 5th year as gatekeeper at Urban Pathways K-5 College Charter School and he also served as an adult education instructor for five years.  Paul is a proud graduate of Duquesne University.

Brandie Menhart

Specialty –
Title – 4th Grade Teacher
Education – Elementary/Early Childhood K-6
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x403
Email – bmenhart@upcsk5.net
Profile –

Lora Nickel

1st Grade Teacher

Laurel Newberry

Specialty – Elementary Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment, and Supervision
Title – Interim Principal/CAO & Director of Curriculum and Assessment
Education – Master of Education Degree in Supervision of Curriculum and Instruction from University of Pittsburgh; Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education from Linfield College
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – lnewberry@upcsk5.net
Profile – Laurel Newberry is nearing 10 years of experience within the field of education. Currently, Ms. Newberry is the Interim Principal/CAO for the school while also adhering to her administrative role as the Supervisor of Curriculum and Assessment for UPCS K5. She has been at UPCS K5 since the Fall of 2013 with her early role as a 3rd grade teacher for three years before moving into her administrative role in 2016.

Gina Potter

Specialty – K-6
Title – 3rd Grade Teacher
Education – Clarion University Masters in Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – gpotter@upcsK5.net
Profile – I went to Clarion University for my undergrad and graduate work.  I taught 5 years at Brockway School District and 5 years at Hampton Township School District.

Jessica Potts

Specialty – Inspiring children.
Title – Teaching Assistant/Co-Teacher
Education – Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Special Education
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075
Email – jpotts@upcsK5.net
Profile – Jessica served as a substitute teacher in the Hopewell School District before deciding to start her full time teaching career across the country in Casa Grande, Arizona.  While in Arizona, she taught 4th grade for two years. Jessica is thrilled to be back in Pennsylvania and working with the students at Urban Pathways!

Kathleen Reeder

5th Grade Teacher

Mark Schnupp

IT Director (TEQ Guys)

Lora Schwartz

Specialty – reading specialist
Title – 1st Grade Teacher
Education – Master of Science in Reading and Language Arts; Bachelos of Science in Elementary Education; Reading Specialist Certification
Phone Number –
Email – lschwartz@upcsK5.net
Profile – Lora Schwartz has over three years of teaching experience at the elementary school level in the Pittsburgh area.  Prior to coming to Urban Pathways K-5 Charter School last year, she taught kindergarten and held a dual preschool/sixth grade teaching position.  In her past experiences she has served on various school committees and created Common Core aligned curriculum units.   She received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees at Duquesne University and holds a reading specialist certification.

Jennifer Seitzinger

Human Resources

Brittany Sheets

Specialty – Reading Specialist
Title – Kindergarten Teacher
Education – Master of Science in Reading; Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education K-6; Reading Specialist Certification
Phone Number –(412) 392-4601 ext. 201
Email – BASheets@upcsk5.net
Profile – Ms. Sheets received her Master of Education Degree in Reading and her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education K-6 both from California University of Pa. She began teaching at UPCS K-5 during her student teaching semester. She has taught at Urban Pathways Charter School as a kindergarten teacher for 6 additional years.

Mauri Tate

Social Worker

Raymone Thomas

Specialty– Keeping Children Safe and Healthy
Title– Certified School Nurse
Education-Educational Specialist I (School Nurse Certificate); Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing; Associates of Arts & Sciences Degree.
Phone Number– 412.325.4075 X 104
Email– rthomas@upcsk5.net
Profile– I graduated from Citizens’ School of Nursing in 2009 and immediately began working at West Penn Hospital, Pittsburgh. I always had a passion to work as a school nurse so I furthered my education and graduated with my Bachelors’ of Nursing from Penn State New Kensington in 2012 and then my School Nurse Certificate from Slippery Rock University in 2017.
I started my first certified position at Urban Pathways K-5 in the 2017-2018 school year and am still employed at West Penn Hospital.

Ashley Wagner

Specialty – Teaching
Title – Elementary Education K-6, Reading Specialist
Education – 5th Grade Teacher
Phone Number – (724)-993-7863
Email – Awagner@upcsK5.net
Profile –Ashley Wagner graduated from Penn State University. She was previously an assistant and reading tutor for 2 years for grades K-5. She has 3 years of experience as a regular classroom teacher in 2nd grade. This is her first year at Urban Pathways K-5 College Charter School.  Prior to that, she taught at Young Scholars of Central PA in State College. She is glad to be back in the Pittsburgh area and excited to be an UP family member!

Linda Williams

Specialty – Physical Education/Yoga
Title – Yoga Education Instructor
Education – Bachelor of Arts in Mass Media Communications, Yoga Education certified K-12
Phone Number – (412) 325-4057 x 305
Email – lwilliams@upcsK5.net
Profile – Linda Williams has 20+ years of experience in fitness education. She has served as a Yoga teacher at Urban Pathways for the past 5 years.

Adam Winter

Special Education

Bethany Wolford

Specialty – K-6, Reading
Title – 1st Grade Teacher
Education – Reading, M. Ed; Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education K-6
Phone Number – (412) 325-4075 x304
Email – bwolford@upcsK5.net
Profile – Bethany Wolford has taught kindergarten and first grade for 8 years. She earned for bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh and her Master’s from Edinboro University.