Middle School Leadership
Erin Goodridge graduated from Lebanon Valley College in 2001 with a B.S. in Music Education and a B.A. in Music. She also earned her Master of Music Education degree in 2016 from her alma mater. She started at OVCA as middle school music and art teacher in 2014 and moved to Assistant Principal in July 2019. After filling in as interim in Spring of 2020, she became Principal at OVCA Middle School in May. Erin resides in Tulsa with her husband, Ted, and their three children, Madison (6), Mason (5), and Evelyn (3). This is her 7th year with OVCA, and she plans to pursue a master’s degree in educational leadership. When she isn’t performing her principal duties, you will most likely find her teaching and practicing piano, reading a good book, or watching science fiction!
Debbie McWhirt is OVCA Middle School’s Assistant Principal. Mrs. McWhirt completed her bachelor's in Elementary Education from Western Governors University and became a certified teacher in 2010. However, she began her career in education several years prior as a para teacher. In 2013, she earned her master's in Instructional Design. The majority of her career has been in Special Education. Mrs. McWhirt has taught elementary, middle school and high school, as well as some time at the university level. She is passionate about seeing students grow and taking ownership of their learning. As Assistant Principal, she focuses on helping teachers interpret student data and provide targeted intervention to close the achievement gap.
Britani Joines is the Lead Teacher for Middle School. She has a Bachelor's degree in Biology and a Master's degree in Educational Leadership. 2020 marked her 4th year teaching, but her first year virtual.
Lisa Cottrell is the Middle School Flex Coordinator.
Middle School Staff
Elizabeth Britt is a 20 year education veteran who earned a Bachelor’s degree in English Education from UCO, a Master’s degree in Education Administration from UCO, and a Master’s degree in Education Technology from DeVry University. She taught 7th grade in a traditional school for 7 years and was awarded District Teacher of the Year in 2007. Elizabeth has been in online education for 12 years where she has taught 6th-12th grade English, supervised teachers, and developed online teacher effectiveness tools.
Mackenzie Butler is the music and art teacher at OVCA Middle School. She started with OVCA in 2020, and is in her seventh career year in teaching! She graduated from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma and holds a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education, an Associates degree in Liberal Arts and an associates degree in Music. She worked as a music teacher for grades PK-12th for five years and a 2nd grade teacher for one year, all in southwest Oklahoma.
Verna Chow is a 7th grade math teacher at OVCA Middle School. She started with OVCA in 2020, but taught math online for 13 years prior. She graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor's in Animal Sciences. A few years later she decided to become a math teacher and received her second degree in Secondary Mathematics Education from University of Central Oklahoma. Verna spent the first 6 years of her career teaching Pre-Algebra, Algebra and Geometry.
Mary Crow is a 2007 Northwestern Oklahoma State University graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Health and Physical Education. Mary began her teaching career at Pioneer High School and then went on to teach at Pond Creek-Hunter School before coming to OVCA in 2019. Mary currently teaches 8th Grade Math for OVCA.
Catherine Dennis began her teaching career in 1994 in Muskogee. She came to OVCA in 2018. She attended Northeastern State University earning a Bachelor's degree in Education in 1994 and a Master's degree in Math Education in 2009. She became a National Board-Certified Teacher in Middle Level Mathematics in 2008. She has over 25 years experience teaching middle school math.
Kim Evans has been a Special Education teacher for over 16 years. She started with OVCA in 2020. She has two Bachelor's degrees, one from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and the second for Northwestern Oklahoma State University at Alva.
Brittney Freeman graduated from Northeastern State University with a degree in secondary English education. She came to OVCA in 2019 with over 8 years experience teaching middle school English Language Arts. Her favorite part of teaching is helping her students discover a love of reading.
Ann Guerrant is an English Language Arts teacher who joined OVCA MS in 2019. She enjoys reading, writing, and the joys of being able to go on adventures through a book, which is why she chose this subject to teach. She is grateful that OVCA can provide students the ability to grow and learn in the safety and comfort of their own home.
Sara Jackson is a University of Central Oklahoma graduate with a BA in English. She began her teaching career at Jarman Middle School in Midwest City teaching 7th grade English Language Arts (ELA) for four years. Sara then taught 7th grade ELA at OVCA Middle School for three years, took last school year off, and is now back at OVCA Middle School in an ELA Special Services position.
Nancy Johnson is a middle school paraprofessional who joined OVCA in 2020. She is very excited to learn along with everyone, and to build relationships with coworkers, students and families. She is from Stillwater and loves going to all Cowboy sporting events.
Meagan Kieslich started with OVCA in 2018 teaching seventh grade English and Language Arts. She graduated college from Northeastern State University. 2020-21 marks her thirteenth year in education.
Britney Lathrom attended Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford, where she received a Bachelor's of Science in Elementary Education. She started working in the public school setting in 2009 and her passion for teaching increased and she became a teacher in 2018.
Pam Morgan is a 1997 Northeastern State University graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Education. Pam began her teaching career at Muskogee Public Schools where she spent 17 years teaching 8th Grade American History. She then spent 2 years as the Curriculum Specialist and teaching at Connors State College before coming to OVCA in 2018.
Cindy Mullins graduated from Oklahoma State University with a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and Middle School Social Studies and a Master’s degree in Teaching and Educational Leadership. She started with OVCA in 2010. Before coming to the virtual world, she taught twenty-one years in Stillwater Public Schools.
Patience Newsom started at OVCA in 2018. She teaches in the OILERS program at the middle school, with 10 years teaching in public education overall. She has a Master of Special Education from Wayland Baptist University. Mrs. Newsom still remembers her first class of students like it was yesterday, and they have now graduated!
Melissa Parks is a Special Education Math teacher who joined OVCA Middle School in 2020. Previously, she spent 20 years in education serving in many positions (teaching, counseling, principal, superintendent), teaching a variety of subjects (special education, math, character education, AVID, psychology, personal financial literacy, senior seminar), and serving in a variety of roles (coach, athletic director, AVID district director, special education director, Title I coordinator, Outreach and community relations). She has an A.A. in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting from Rogers State University, B.S.Ed in Special Education from Northeastern State University, M.H.R. in Human Relations - Counseling Track from University of Oklahoma, and has completed all but her dissertation for an Ed.D. in School Leadership from Concordia University.
Casi Peters has been teaching English since 2005 in Edmond and Putnam City Public Schools. She lives in Edmond with her husband, three children, three dogs, and chickens. She can usually be spotted at her son's football games, track meets, or her daughters' gymnastics meets or choir performances.
Rebecca Pittman is a middle school interventionist who began with OVCA in 2019. She has a master's degree in Education with a focus in curriculum development and instruction.
Nicole Price is a 6th grade math teacher who started with OVCA in 2020 after 19 prior years teaching experience. She has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from West Texas A&M University, a master’s degree in Special Education/Educational Diagnostician from Texas Tech University, and a Specialist degree in Educational Leadership from Grand Valley State University. In her experiences, she has been a teacher, diagnostician/psychometrist, and an elementary and high school principal.
Karlena Riggs is a middle school teacher for the OILERS program who started with OVCA in 2015 after teaching special education for 3 years prior. She holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Tulsa.
Taylor Ritschel is a 7th grade ELA teacher who started with OVCA in 2019 after 8 prior years of teaching. She loves working with students of all ages and helping them take ownership of their learning. She has a passion for helping students find a love for reading and making goals for themselves.
Amanda Schmidt is a graduate of East Central University with a Bachlor of Arts in Education. She then studied abroad at El Instituto de Lengua Español in Costa Rica and received an additional certification in Spanish Education. Amanda taught for Putnam City Schools and Piedmont Schools for 5 years, and 2020-21 will be her 6th year at OVCA.
Bryan Shepherd started with OVCA in 2019 as a 6th grade math teacher. He graduated from Coweta High School in 2001 and started college at Tulsa Community College right after graduating. He ended up transferring to Northeastern State University where he earned a bachelor's degree in math education in 2006. He then decided to pursue education even further, earning a master's degree in math education at Northeastern State University in 2008. While pursuing his master's degree, he was a substitute for Coweta Public Schools. He worked for this district for 11 years until he took a teaching job at Muskogee High School where he taught math for 1 year. After that, he decided to just be a substitute for Muskogee Public Schools and worked for the district another year. He has also been an adjunct instructor for Connors State College teaching math for several years. Around September 2019, he was hired on with OVCA Middle School. He enjoys teaching online compared to teaching in the public setting.
Jennifer Sissom joined the OVCA middle school team in 2014. Currently, she teaches special education math. She has over 19 years experience teaching. Jennifer completed a bachelor's in Chemistry and Mathematics in 1996, and a master's in Science Education in 2018. She is certified to teach mathematics, science, and special education.
Jessica Smith has been teaching 6th grade math with OVCA since 2018, with 15 years prior teaching experience. She graduated from Oklahoma City University.
Megan Sutton started with OVCA in 2019. She teaches 8th grade ELA. Previously, she taught English and coached cross country and track in Edmond Public Schools. She graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2008 with a degree in English Education.
Theresa Thompson is a 7th grade math teacher. She joined Oklahoma Virtual Charter Academy in 2018, after teaching at community college for 17 years and 1 year of teaching English online to students in China. She holds a bachelor's in Mathematics Education from Northeastern State University and has 33 hours towards a master's in Mathematics Education. Ms. Thompson hold certificates in Mid-Level Math, Intermediate Mathematics and Advanced Mathematics. She is also the sponsor of the Chi Alpha Mu mathematics club and would welcome anyone interested to email her.
Mindy Wells is a 2005 Texas Woman's University graduate with a bachelor's in Business Administration Education. Mindy began her teaching career in Texas and started at OVCA in 2020 with 15 years of prior teaching experience. Mindy is married and has a two-year old son, Conner, who keeps her busy.