Meet the Teachers

Margaret Moore

Margaret Moore
Pre-K Teacher
B.S. Elementary Education, Gwynedd Mercy College
Other roles: Jumpstart Coordinator, Early Childhood Team 

“It is my hope that each student embraces reading and a love of books. I hope that I am a positive role model imparting strong values to each child in my class.”



Kathy Asta

Erin Kelley 
Pre-K Teacher
Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Science, Philosophy, Marywood University 
Master's in Early Childhood Education (Pre-K - 4), Saint Joseph's University (in progress) 

“I love coming into school in the morning because the staff and the teachers are great. They are so helpful and passionate about teaching. The students are friendly and respectful. My philosophy is that learning should be fun and engaging. Students should want to learn and enjoy coming to school.”



Kathy Asta

Kathy Asta
Kindergarten Teacher
B.S. Elementary Education, Chestnut Hill College
Other roles: YET instructor, Youngest Scholars Summer Instructor

“My hope and prayer is that when a child leaves my class, he or she will have a love for learning, love of God, and respect for the world.”



Kathy Asta

Taylor Schuck  
Kindergarten Teacher
B.S. Early Childhood and Primary Education, University of Scranton 
M.S. in Special Education, Saint Joseph’s University (in progress ACE SJU Program) 

"I hope my students take with them every day and after they leave my class that they are cared for and that my classroom is a safe and enjoyable place where they are free to be themselves and explore. Making sure my students know they are smart, kind, amazing, and that they can succeed is most important and what I hope they can feel about themselves."




Kathy Asta

Tiana Mack
1st Grade Teacher
Bachelor's in Education, Saint Joseph's University 

“What wakes me up in the morning on school days is knowing the impact I can make on one child's life each day. When my students are through the year, I hope they take with them that they can do anything and that being themselves and loving education makes for a powerful adult.”




Erin WilliamsonMelanie Colozzi
1st Grade Teacher
B.S. Early Childhood Education (Pre-K - 4) and Special Education (K - 8), Saint Joseph's University 
Other roles: ELA Coordinator, Pre-K - 4

"I am genuinely excited to come to work at such a special place every morning.The reasons for this are many, but mainly because of my students and my second floor family. Walking through our bright and beautiful school hallway on the second floor every day is made so enjoyable by all of the smiling faces that are working very hard for our students. My extremely hard-working first grade students, who are both funny and very intelligent in so many different ways, are also what gets me up in the morning."




Kathy Asta

Caroline Dodds 
2nd Grade Teacher
B.S. in Elementary Education, Drexel University
M.S. in Reading with Reading Specialist Certification, Saint Joseph's University (in progress) 
Other roles: Gesu Justice League Program Coordinator 

"I want my students to know that they are loved and that they can make a difference!" 





Mary Ryder

Mary Ryder
2nd Grade Teacher
B.A. History, University of New Hampshire
M.Ed., Cabrini College
Other roles: Student Mentoring Program Volunteer

“What keeps me going is the challenge, the smiles on the children’s faces as they walk through the door every morning, the never-ending questions (can I answer them all?), faith in God, and the HOPE that something I say that day will reach or teach at least one child.”


Tyrone Myers

Tyrone Myers
3rd Grade Boys Teacher
B.S. Health and Education, Temple University

“My students’ quest for knowledge gets me up in the morning on school days.”




Mary Liva
3rd Grade Girls Teacher
B.A. Communications and Minor, Elementary Education, Villanova University 
M.S. Reading Specialist, Saint Joseph's University (ACE SJU Program) 
Fox Leadership Certificate, University of Pennsylvania 
Other roles: YET Instructor, Girls Varsity Basketball Coach 

"My goal as a teacher is to create a class family where my students feel safe and comfortable. I want my students to gain confidence and realize that they can accomplish anything they put their minds to. I hope that I can help my students become lifelong, compassionate learners who never give up on their dreams." 


Sean O'Brien

Sean O’Brien
4th Grade Boys Teacher
B.A. History, Penn State University

“What I love about teaching at Gesu is the family atmosphere. I especially enjoy teaching the subject of math, particularly multiplication.”




Leya Egea-Hinton '02

Jessica Miller 
4th Grade Girls Teacher
B.S. Early Childhood Education and Special Education, Minor in Autism Studies, Saint Joseph's University

“I enjoy working at Gesu because I am surrounded by students who are excited to learn and a faculty who truly cares. I love working with my amazing 4th grade students and guiding them as they open new doors in their educational journey. I strive to make my classroom a community of learners and hope every student knows they are loved and cared for.”




Chris Osborne

Michael Talvacchia 
5th Grade Boys Teacher







Tammi Crummy

Mariah Casillas 
5th Grade Girls Teacher
B.A. English, Concentration in writing, Cabrini University
M.S. in Education with PA Secondary Teacher Certification (English 7-12), Saint Joseph’s University (in progress ACE SJU Program) 

“I believe waking up and knowing I can help the future nurse, doctor, teacher, psychiatrist, chef, basketball player, artist, become closer to their dreams brings me all the motivation I will ever need as a teacher. I believe there should always be someone showing love, support, and striving for greatness in a child’s corner." 




Rufino de Santos
6th Grade Boys Teacher
B.A. Classics, The College of the Holy Cross
M.A. Elementary Education, Loyola Marymount University

"Over these last five years, I have transitioned from outside admirer to active participant to a true believer. Gesu works. The commitment to students demonstrated by the whole community supports me on my best days and encourages me on my worst. I am blessed to be a part of this team, who prioritize learning, imagination, and relationships."



Michelle Nicholson

Miki Randa
6th Grade Girls Teacher
B.S. Organizational Psychology, Saint Joseph’s University
M.S. Elementary Education, Saint Joseph’s University
Other roles: Faculty Liaison to the Board of Directors 

“I believe that all children can learn. Their capability and ability may not be evenly appointed; therefore, I need to tailor instruction and attitude to meet their needs. I am committed to Gesu’s mission to serve our neighbor children with a quality and innovative education. It is very important to me to empower my students with the skills to help them break the cycle of poverty through the benefits of their education.”


Thomas Rolland
7th Grade Boys Teacher
B.A. Social Science, Cheyney University 
M.A. Urban Studies, Temple University 
Other roles: Student Council

"I want to make a difference in urban education. I've always enjoyed working and teaching in private schools. The opportunity is vast, and the children are serious about their education." 




JoAnne Young

JoAnne Young
7th Grade Girls Teacher
B.S. Science, Morgan State University
M.Ed. Science Education and Administration, Neumann College
Other roles: Gesu-Rosemont Program Moderator, GEM Instructor 

“I hope my students take with them the knowledge that they can do and be anything they want.
It’s important that they leave my class with a good foundation in study skills, reading, and
writing. I also try to help them master real-life, daily experiences, so they can function outside
as well as inside Gesu School.”


Annette Pickett

Annette Pickett
8th Grade Teacher
B.S. Education, Saint Joseph’s University
M.S. Education, Saint Joseph’s University
Other roles: After-School Nutrition Instructor, GEM Instructor 

“I hope my students become lifelong learners. I hope that they begin to understand that the key to all their dreams is education. I hope that my history lessons stay prevalent in their hearts so that the mistakes of the past are not repeated.”


Laura Weatherly

Kevin Price 
8th Grade Boys Teacher
B.A. History, Goddard College 

“I hope my students will gain confidence in their own ability to think their way through problems. I hope they will be more comfortable seeing many sides of an issue and skillfully thinking and feeling their way through it. I hope they will be more confident in their ability to solve their own problems and will better understand the tools and resources that are available to them. I hope that my year with them helps to continue to expand their world.”


Sean Deal

Sean Deal
Physical Education Teacher
B.A. Elementary Education, Temple University
M.Ed. Multicultural Education: Health and Physical Education (in progress), Eastern University
Other roles: Athletic Director, Boys Varsity Basketball Coach, Recess Coordinator

“In addition to healthy eating and exercise habits, I try to teach my students the importance of respect, how to win with dignity, how to lose with dignity, and to be humble and shake hands.”



Dr. Eileen Erwin

Taylor Klein
Advanced Math Teacher, Grades 6-8
B.A. Education, Penn State University

"When I was growing up, I always wanted to pursue a career in which I could help kids. I found teaching to be the perfect fit. I love watching kids grow and learn. I love all topics in math, but my favorites are when I get to work with fractions, decimals, and percents. These are truly topics that follow you everywhere you go in life!" 



Dr. Eileen Erwin

Dr. Eileen Erwin
Backe Advanced Writing Teacher
B.A. English, Fairfield University
Ph.D. Urban Education, Temple University
Other roles: Peer Mediation Moderator, Literary Publications, GEM Instructor

“Teaching writing is so much more complicated than teaching students how to write complete sentences and well-developed paragraphs. It’s my goal to help students nurture a powerful voice within their writing that moves readers. When students’ hearts, minds, and souls echo within the words they write, I feel like I am living my mission as a teacher.”


Linda Hartzell

Linda Hartzell
Art Teacher
B.A. Art, Moore College of Art
Other roles: Yearbook Moderator, Gala Silent Art Auction Coordinator, GEM Instructor 

“I became a teacher because I wanted to use my God-given talent in art to help children express themselves and develop a sense of personal identity and integrity.”



Pat Leaf

Pat Leaf
Science Lab Coordinator
A.A.S. Nursing, Community College of Philadelphia
Former Lab Technician
Other roles: Track Coach, Homework Club Tutor

“My favorite topics that we cover in the science lab are the microscope and photosynthesis.”



H. L. RatliffH. L. Ratliff
Music Teacher
B.A. Music Education, Catholic University of America
Graduate Studies in Classroom Music, K-5, Villanova University Summer Program 
Other roles: Choir Director

“I want my students to be open to new cultural experiences that broaden their world and help shape who they are and will be.”



Dana Zern

Dana Gilbert
Learning Support Teacher
B.A. English, La Salle University
M.S. Secondary Education, Saint Joseph’s University
M.S. Ed Reading Specialist, Saint Joseph's University 
Other roles: YET Instructor 

“I greatly enjoy teaching literature in my classes because it opens the lines of communication between the students and myself. Through stories and character examination, students can find ways to share their own feelings and relate to each other. While we have discussions and tell stories, the classroom becomes more connected.”


Dana Zern

Sierra Wilson
Grades 2-5 Resource Room Teacher
Bachelor's in Early Childhood/Childhood Education, Canisius College
Master's in Special Education, Saint Joseph’s University

"What keeps me going is knowing the impact I am having on my students' lives and watching as they grow throughout the school year. We learn together and by the end of the year, my students teach me just as much as I teach them. I love each new and exciting lesson the day brings!" 



Dana Zern

Jose Gonzalez, Jr. 
Director of Graduate Support
Bachelor's in Business Administration, University of Notre Dame 

"Gesu is very much like the grade school I attended in Cleveland, Ohio. Knowing that there are students and families like mine at Gesu is what gets me up in the morning. My mother had the vision to enroll us in a school like Gesu, and I love helping parents and families who have entrusted their children's education to us. I love connecting our graduates/alumni to the vast network of resources that exist at Gesu as a result of the dedication and commitment of the Gesu board of directors, sponsors, faculty, and staff!"


Dana Zern

Raven Manrique
Service Coordinator, Religion and Spanish Teacher (K-2)
B.A. Political Science, Minor in Sociology, Baylor University 
M.Ed. in progress, Saint Joseph's University, ACE SJU Program

"Gesu School has great connections and relationships with the communities around us. Groups are excited to work with us, and we are excited to work with them. I hope our students see the impact they have and feel empowered to continue to serve others."




Mission and Ministry 

Rev. Raymond J. Donaldson, S.J. 
B.S. Electrical Engineering, University of Maryland College Park 
Master of Divinity, Weston Jesuit School of Theology/Boston College School of Theology and Ministry 

"Part of our charism as Jesuits is to be available for new missions. In the Society of Jesus, a Jesuit does not normally choose where he works. The Provincial Superior has the responsibility to decide, after conversation and prayerful discernment of God's will, to what work he will mission a particular Jesuit. Thus missioned to Gesu School, it is a joy and a gift for me to return where I served as a teacher from 2005-2008. Now as Chaplain and part of the new Mission and Ministry team, I look forward to serving the entire Gesu community as the school carries out the mission of the Church and the Society in Philadelphia." 


Laura Weatherly

Laura Weatherly
Mission and Ministry
B.A. History, Lincoln University
M.A. Sacred Scripture, Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary
Other roles: Religion Coordinator, Yearbook 

“My philosophy of teaching emphasizes teaching the whole child. I hope that students leave Gesu with the confidence and the desire to learn more.”



Counseling and Disciplinary Team

Rev. Neil Ver'Schneider, SJ

Rev. Neil Ver’Schneider, SJ
Vice Principal, Chaplain, and Disciplinarian
B.S. Industrial Relations, LeMoyne College
M.A. Education, Fordham University
Bachelor of Sacred Theology, Woodstock College, MD

 “I believe that every child is blessed by God with a special uniqueness that allows him or her to be a blessing to others. When children learn to share their gifts, there comes a strength and peace that helps them weather the ups and downs of life. I would hope that Gesu students would develop a habitual sense of God in their lives and of being called to reach out to others with respect and in gratitude for what others have shared with them. I would hope that Gesu graduates would lead the way in making a difference because they have walked this earth in faith and love.”


Alana Lee 
Vice Principal
B.A. Communication Arts, Minor in Performance Theater, Neumann University
Certificate: Youth Ministry, Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary
M.S. Education & Instructional Leadership, Neumann University
Certificate: Urban School Leaders, Harvard University 
In progress: Doctorate in Educational Leadership/Certification in Principal/Superintendent
Other Roles: Disciplinarian, Child Abuse Prevention Trainer, Facilitator for 6th Grade Girls with  an Agenda (GWA)


Tammi Crummy
Dean of Students
B.A. Sociology, Virginia State University
M.S. in Education, Elementary and Pre-K, St. Joseph's University 
Mental Health First Aid Certification, St. Joseph's University
Other roles: YET Coordinator. Youngest Scholars Summer Instructor  

“I hope students take with them a sense of pride and respect for themselves, their classmates, and Gesu School, knowing they can accomplish anything with hard work and determination.”


Rev. Neil Ver'Schneider, SJ

Jonathan Jackson 

Bachelor's in Labor Industrial Relations, Penn State University 
Master's degree in Counseling Psychology with concentration in Trauma, Rosemont College 

"I enjoy the opportunity to come full circle. I was a student here, and I also have a son here. Now I get the opportunity to work here as well and to give back." 




Amanda Rice
B.S. Clinical Psychology, Saint Peter's University 
M.S. School Counseling, University of Scranton 
Pre-K - 12 Professional School Counselor Certification, National Certified Counselor
Other roles: GEM Instructor, Gesu Justice League Program Coordinator, Assistant Baseball Coach 

“I care deeply about educating students to be whole, happy people with the social-emotional skills needed to navigate school and life. I want them to be determined and have a sense of ‘stick-to-it-ness.’ I hope students gain an understanding that they are capable of succeeding in school and life, no matter the challenge.”


Jeanne Wood
B.S. Psychology, Saint Joseph's University 
M.S. Couples and Family Therapy, Jefferson University Hospital/Counselor for Relationships 
Law Degree, Graduate/Professional Studies, Delaware Law School 
Other roles: GEM Instructor 

"What gets me up in the morning is wanting to see the children and help them. What I enjoy about working at Gesu is the wonderful staff that supports each other." 


Counseling Services

Gesu’s counseling staff works with our children and families to address issues such as grief and bereavement, poverty-related challenges, and emotional and academic needs through counseling, workshops, referrals, and testing. Our counselors assist approximately 100 children and families each week. Gesu provides two full-time counselors and two part-time counselors, as well as a social worker. 


Discipline and the “Time Out” Room

In a typical week, our two disciplinarians might see 50-70 children in the “Time Out” room for a variety of reasons, ranging from the need to take a make-up test, to incomplete homework, to disruptiveness in class, or arguing with a classmate. To help our children develop their social and study skills, the discipline office works hand-in-hand with the counseling office and offers a great deal of informal counseling, positive encouragement, and consequences for infractions that warrant it. Gesu also has a peer mediation program and an active anti-bullying program to help promote a positive school environment.

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