Danbury High School     43 Clapboard Ridge Road Danbury, CT 06811     (203) 797-4800

DHS welcomes new staff for 2019-2020 school year

An introduction to DHS' new 2019-2020 staff members

Marina Lavaredas

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I was a Danbury High graduate, so I love the fact that here I am back at Danbury High.

What subject do you currently teach?

I work in the attendance office.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing so far is the friendly staff and students, as well as the awesome schedule.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

I have never worked in a school before so I’m just enjoying every day.

 

Mike Obre

Heather Eve

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

Arizona State University;  I was a double major in Political Science and Psychology for my first two degrees, and then I went back and majored in Education for my third degree.

What subject do you currently teach?

I teach CP and Honors Geometry.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

So far, the greatest thing about DHS has got to be the students!  I love meeting and interacting with so many unique personalities on a daily basis, and I value the time I get to spend with the amazing young adults here at Danbury.  Everyone has an interesting background and learning their stories makes my job much more dynamic.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

In Arizona, many schools don’t start until 8:00am or 8:30am, and I thought that was very early for teenagers (and me!) to be waking up.  I was shocked to find out that schools here start even earlier! You guys are crazy.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

Probably those early mornings, but once it gets cold, I am sure that the weather will be a huge factor, for sure.

Fun fact:

Favorite Food: Sushi

 

Mike Obre

Jack Malone

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I am a DHS graduate (Class of 1994).  I served active duty Air Force for 25 years and retired this year.  I attended Thomas Edison State University and while active duty and have a degree in Applied Science and Technology with a study in Air Traffic Control.

What subject do you currently teach?

Air Force Junior ROTC (which I was a student when I attended DHS)

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

I graduated from DHS, so I love being here.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

This is my first year teaching.

What is one thing you are still struggling with/adapting to?

I am trying to get used to being a civilian.

Fun fact:

Favorite Movie: Tombstone

 

Mike Obre

Nicole Schirmer

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to school and Western CT State University and majored in Secondary Education-English, and Fairfield University where I majored in Special Education.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach 11th grade resource and I co-teach English 2 and Earth and Space Systems.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS so far are the students and the diversity.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

Danbury High School is different than my old high school (Bethel High) in size (DHS is way larger and the freshmen class size at DHS is probably bigger than the entire student population at my old school).

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

I have worked at Danbury High as a special education tutor for the last three years and I am still adapting to being a teacher here instead of a tutor.

Fun fact:

Favorite Movie: Interview with the Vampire

 

Mike Obre

Thomas Sparaco

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

Bachelor’s Degree – Purdue University Master’s Degree Troy State University

What subject do you currently teach?

Air Force JROTC

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

The great number and variety of learning opportunities for students.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

Size and the percentage of English Language Learners.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

Assisting English Language Learners.

Fun fact:

Favorite Animal: Tortoise

 

Mike Obre

Angela Mcaleavey

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to Dowling College and I studied Health and Sports Management.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach Health.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing so far about DHS is the awesome staff I work with and my kids I have been teaching.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

DHS is different in how large it is.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

One thing that I am still adapting to is commuting from NJ.

Fun fact:

Favorite Song: “Working On A Dream” by Bruce Springsteen

 

Mike Obre

Alexandra Moravsky

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I graduated and received my Bachelor’s Degree, at WCSU, where I studied Sociology/Anthropology. I am currently in my last year at CCSU, for my Master’s Degree in Special Education.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach two Study Skills Classes, and I co-teach Algebra 2, and Chemistry.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS so far is how helpful all of my co-workers are. Them, along with administration, have been super supportive, and encouraging as I try to find my way at DHS.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

One thing about DHS that is very different from other schools I’ve worked at is DHS is a very diverse school. I came from a school where you would walk the halls with the same 15 kids all day, and here, walking through the halls, I’ve never seen the same face twice.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

One thing I am struggling with is that there are many different systems that need to be utilized by teachers and students. Understanding, and knowing what they are and what they do has been challenging.

Fun fact:

Favorite Artist(s): Dan and Shay 

 

Mike Obre

Matthew Esposito

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I attended Roger Williams University; a wonderful, little school near Newport. I received my undergraduate degree in History and then later received a graduate degree in History and another degree in Education.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach World Studies and Modern World History. It is going great as of now!

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

The students were welcoming and quick to let me into their world. The inclusivity here is not only contagious but, fun to see in action.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

I am proud to say I work in a school with such diversity. It is reflective of the way our world is changing, and that is a good thing!

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

As a new teacher, there are many parts of this job that are overwhelming. But I think I am doing a good job of not letting the students see me sweat. Regardless, this is part of the process and I am enjoying every second of it.

Fun fact:

Favorite Song: “Remember the Time” by Michael Jackson

 

Mike Obre

Zachary Shemms

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

Southern Connecticut State University-Art Education

What subject do you currently teach?

Photography

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

The extremely inviting and helpful art department/staff.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

The size!

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

The size and learning parts of the building.

Fun fact:

Favorite Food: Pasta

 

Megan Grace Lovell

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to undergraduate and graduate school at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, New York and studied communication sciences and disorders.

What subject do you currently teach?

I am a speech language pathologist and help students improve speech and language skills.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS is how friendly and welcoming the students and staff have been so far! 

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

DHS is much larger in size compared to other places I have worked.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

I am still getting to know my way around the building without getting too lost!

Fun fact:

Favorite Movie: Good Will Hunting

 

Mike Obre

David Levine

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

WCSU (master’s in history); Upper Valley Educators Institute (master’s in education); Upper Valley Educators Institute (license to teach history 5-12) Alternative Route to Teacher Certification (endorsement in special education K-12).

What subject do you currently teach?

History/Special Education

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

The people of DHS!

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

The “Danbury Hatters” is authentic with substantial history whereas other schools have a generic name like “eagles” or “falcons.”

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

Finishing work before 10pm.

Fun fact:

Favorite Animal: Sloth

 

Mike Obre

Jacob Thivierge

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to school at Central Connecticut State University where I got my Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics along with my certification to teach math for secondary education schools.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently am teaching Algebra 1.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS so far is all the different personalities my students bring to class every day. We have so many interesting conversations in our math classes!

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

One thing that is different here compared to places I worked at before is the size of the school. The last school I worked at did not have nearly as many students as DHS.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

I am still adapting to block scheduling since before I met my students every day. It is interesting to not see the same students every day for school.

Fun fact:

Favorite Artist(s): Post Malone

 

Mike Obre

Ana Maria Schrynemakers

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to St. John’s University in Jamaica, Queens. In undergrad I majored in Criminal Justice and minored in Theology. My master’s degree was in Education at SJU.

What subject do you currently teach?

I teach Spanish in DHS.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS are the students.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

DHS is a huge school. My previous schools did not have such an enormous student population.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

Perhaps not having my own classroom; however, I do enjoy the company of the person with whom I’m sharing the room with.

Fun fact:

Favorite Movie: Anything Star Wars (past & present)

 

Mike Obre

Nancy Dias

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I received my bachelor’s degree from Western Connecticut State University in Elementary Education and my master’s degree from Quinnipiac University in Special Education.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach 9th grade special education.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS is the students. I look forward to seeing them and they certainly know how to make me laugh.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

One thing about DHS that is different from other schools I have worked in is the diversity of students. It is so important to collaborate and communicate with people of different cultures and backgrounds and DHS is definitely the place to get that.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

One thing I am still adapting to is the change in grade. I’ve worked with mostly kindergarten and first graders in the past, so changing the way I say things or how I do things is definitely different! It’s a good change though and I’m looking forward to what the school year brings.

Fun fact:

Favorite Song: “I Don’t Care” by Ed Sheeran

 

Mike Obre

Elizabeth White

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I received my bachelor’s degree at the University of Houston in Houston, Tx. My degree is a mouthful…. Bachelor’s in Science in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Early Childhood Education. I have my Master’s in Special Education K-12 from the American College of Education.

What subject do you currently teach?

I teach all subjects including Science, Math, English, Social Studies, Activities of Daily Living Skills and Vocational Skills.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

So far, my favorite thing is I don’t have to look too far for assistance or help with a question. If I don’t know where an area of the building is, every student I have run into, is willing to help or even walk me there. The faculty and staff are also helpful in answering questions or just asking how my day was and if there is anything I need.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

Respect!! Respect by the students, staff, environment, community, everything!

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

I am directionally illiterate, and this is a big school. Fortunately, I can always ask someone for help.

Fun fact:

Favorite Color: Green

 

Mike Obre

Hannah Mikesell

Where did you go to school and what did you study/major in?

I went to Grove City College to Major in French; and I went to Western Connecticut State University to study Business Administration.

What subject do you currently teach?

I currently teach French.

What is your favorite thing about DHS so far?

My favorite thing about DHS so far is how friendly the students and staff are to each other, every day.

What is one thing about DHS that is different from other schools you have worked in or been to?

One thing about DHS that is different is the size!  This is a huge place.

What is one thing you are are still struggling with/adapting to?

One thing I am still struggling with is the location – how to find my way around to the different rooms, and how to help students who are lost in the building.

Fun fact:

Favorite Animal: Elephant

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