2nd Grade Teachers
Nicola Fleischer, Master Teacher, Grade Level Chair
I grew up here in San Francisco, and am thrilled to be building a new educational institution for my amazing home city. I am energized by the perspective and enthusiasm that my young students bring to learning, and I love the daily surprise of what they can accomplish. I joined New School in 2015 from my 2nd Grade classroom in SFUSD, and am fired up to improve equity in our city's schools. I began my career as a Kindergarten Teacher at a Rocketship charter school in San Jose, where I implemented blended learning models and learned the practices of robust literacy instruction. I graduated from Brown University with a degree in Education History and Policy, and received my credentials through Teach For America.
I love getting up with the sun, making smoothies, and playing with new crochet projects. I like spending my weekends outside, exploring the parks and hills we have in such close reach!
Vanessa Garcia, Resident Teacher
I’m a Texas transplant who recently received an MA in Elementary Education from UC Berkeley’s Developmental Teacher Education program. I began my career in education as Education Coordinator of an in-school tutoring program through Sylvan Learning in Austin, Texas. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, I taught elementary school English in Japan for three years. I’m excited to be joining the New School community and sharing in a vision for equitable education, inquiry, and change.
I enjoy baking, sketching, watercolor and finding new places to hike in the Bay Area when I’m not teaching.
Camille Spivey, Lead Teacher
With nine years experience in the field of education, I have worn many hats: Coach, After School Program Director, Camp Director, Teacher, as well as Special Education Coordinator. I have a heart for equitable urban education, and an even deeper desire to get it right -- for ALL students. Most recently I was a founding science teacher at UP Academy Dorchester in Boston, Mass. I graduated from Northeastern University with a BS in political science, and an MAT in elementary education.
I enjoy discovering San Francisco, running, spending time with my family, hiking, and of course, Beyonce!
Willa Via, Lead Teacher
I am a San Francisco native who spent my childhood years from seventh grade onward right here in Potrero Hill. As you can imagine, my parents are just as thrilled with my position as I am!
After graduating from the University of San Diego where I studied art history, gender studies, and communication, I ditched a career in tech for one in elementary education. I began working with the New York charter school, Success Academy and then went onto receive my Master’s in Childhood Education from Touro College in New York City along with my certification in both childhood education and students with disabilities grades 1-6. After learning the ins and outs of 2nd grade and earning the title of Grade Team Lead, I jumped on over to BASIS Independent Brooklyn to teach first graders. Outside of school, I am an avid hiker, indoor rock climber, artist, cinnamon roll fanatic, and proud Virgo. My husband and I try to explore the outdoors as often as we can and are always looking for recommendations of new places to see!
Ella Glasser, Resident Teacher
Everyday "Aha" moments fuel my aspirations to be a teacher. I love witnessing these moments in my students and experiencing my own "Aha's" too. Most recently, I've had these revelations while working as an Education Outside outdoor science teacher at Hillcrest Elementary's garden the past two years. I love presenting scientific phenomena as mysteries to students and letting them unfold the truths. Before this, I graduated from Pitzer College in 2015 and am presently enrolled in a masters and credentialing program through BATTI. I have also instructed art at Camp Galileo, tutored weekly, and traveled abroad to Spain and Nepal, speaking both languages. (Sometimes I find myself mixing up Nepali and Spanish too).
After a restful summer babysitting, spending time with family in Chicago, getting sunburnt at the beach, and watching my brother play professional minor league baseball, I'm ready to take the New School by storm! Can't wait to get to know all of you.