HAAHUUPAYAK'S WONDERFUL TEACHERS & STAFF

Teachers & Staff

My name is Ms. Nancy Logan. I am a member of the Ditidaht First Nation. My mother is Geraldine Tom and my grandparents are Francis Edgar and the late Joe Edgar. I have over twenty years of experience working with children and youth in community schools. I was employed as a youth worker prior to completing my Bachelor of Education degree, at VIU, in 2012. As well, I have seven years of experience on the Parents’ Advisory Council, executive member, at the Bamfield Community School. I am guided by trauma-informed practices in my work and my life. Before I became Principal, I was the Grade 7 teacher at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School. Coming into my eighth year at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak, it continues to be a privilege and honour to teach and learn in this incredible community. What I love the most about our school (aside from the students) is our cultural program. Every day, students engage in their culture. They strengthen their send of identity, self-esteem, confidence and resiliency. I am a parent of two children, ages 19 and 23.  My children value school as much as I do and both are in university. My favourite thing to do is spend family time in outdoor activities.
Brenda has been a steady and loyal member of the Haahuupayak Community for many years.
Talk to Rita if you have any questions at all.
FLORENCE JOE, KINDERGARTEN TEACHER : He’n’-le (Greetings)! My name is Florence Joe and I am from the Nlaka’pamux Nation.  I grew up on the Shulus Reserve outside of Merritt, British Columbia. This fall will be my fifth year teaching and my second year at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School. I am thrilled to continue my teaching journey here; I absolutely love the school and all the students! I graduated from the Education Program at Vancouver Island University in 2015.  A year later, I went on to obtain my Kindergarten Instruction Certificate. I love teaching and finding joy in helping students reach their highest potential. “I believe that the best classroom includes a sense of community, a welcoming environment and a positive teacher.” When I am not teaching, I enjoy exploring outdoors. I love gardening, hiking, and camping with family and friends. When I am not outside, you can find me beading and watching Netflix with my adorable cats, Fuco and Mouse.
LESLIE TANDRUP, GRADE ONE TEACHER : I am the Grade One teacher at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School. I am the longest serving teacher on staff, being employed by ḥaaḥuupay̓ak since 2004. I studied education, with an Early Childhood Focus, at the University of Alberta. I see teaching as a two-fold blessing at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School. I am delighted to support children’s academic growth, and I am honoured to witness the children learning their language, song, dance and cultural teachings. The connection they demonstrate with their spirit while singing and dancing, is truly magnificent to experience!  I know their culture will be a lifelong guide for them. I believe that treating my students with kindness and gentleness promotes their ability to learn. My motto is, “With joy and with laughter we work and we play, making each day a blessing in some way.” A passion outside of teaching is enjoying the 1 ½ hour scenic drive to Long Beach with my partner, Peter. We take delight in challenging the big waves at Long Beach. I also enjoy spending time in my garden and harvesting organic vegetables. This year, for the first time in my life, I took to the basketball court for the Teacher-Student challenge. Students made comments like, “Ms. Leslie, that’s a double dribble!” and, “Thanks for the elbow!” I always enjoy the teachable moments where I learn from a student. I believe our learning is always a two-way street.
KATIE ANDERSON, GRADE TWO/THREE TEACHER : Hello!  My name is Katie Anderson. I completed my Bachelor of Education at UVIC in 2012. My time teaching at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School is deeply fulfilling. This is my fifth year now, and I am one of the Grade 2/3 teachers.  I am guided by the teaching that, “We are all learners. We all learn from one another.” Some highlights of my time here include learning the Nuu-chah-nulth language and culture, and meeting the many smiling faces of our students. I like spending time outdoors hiking and exploring the beautiful West Coast. I also enjoy reading, listening to music, and anything to do with animals. Family is so important to me. Quality time spent with my nephews and nieces is wonderful, as well as spending time outside of work with my ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School family too. I love being a part of the ḥaaḥuupay̓ak family. I look forward to many more years here!
CARLY EVANS, GRADE TWO/THREE TEACHER : Hello everyone! I am Mrs. (Carly) Evans, and this year I am one of the Grade 2/3 teachers at our amazing school. I completed my Bachelor of Education degree at Vancouver Island University in 2013. I then began my teaching career in Kyuquot, as the Preschool and Kindergarten teacher in their community school. After that, I came to ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School where I have been the Kindergarten teacher for the past four years.  I grew up in the Cowichan Valley, and I have lived in Port Alberni since 2011, but Kyuquot will always be my other home. When children walk into my classroom I believe the most important thing is that they feel safe and happy, then we can learn!
TAMMI GREENWOOD, GRADE FOUR TEACHER : I received my education from the Simon Fraser University, majoring in History and English. After graduation, I began my career as a Teacher-On-Call (TOC) in the Greater Vancouver area. My first full-time position was at the Pacific Academy where I taught in both middle school and high school. While my children were still young, I decided to take a break from full-time teaching. My time was devoted to my three children, along with working for my community. I was a coach for my children’s soccer teams, and I also taught at a Sunday School. When I returned to teaching, my husband and I were living in Cache Creek. During this time, I worked as a regular TOC for the Gold Trail School District. In 2012, our family moved once again. This move brought us to Port Alberni.  I have had opportunities for diverse teaching experiences here. I worked at the Port Alberni Christian School, Klitsa Tutoring, and as a TOC at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. I have been an educator for more than twenty years now. My wonderful teaching experiences include teaching children at elementary, middle and high school levels of education. My guiding principle for education is, “Preparing them for the world.” For the 2019-2020 school year, I am teaching Grade 6 at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School.  I am a student of the people; growing in my appreciation of the culture.
HELEN LUCAS, GRADE FIVE TEACHER : My name is Helen Lucas. My quuas ?imtii is hakuumał. I am Tseshaht, Ditidaht and Ahousaht. I attended ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School myself, from Preschool to Grade 6. I am the Grade 5 teacher at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak. I started my career as a substitute teacher at the school, and I have taught in every single grade. I now teach full time.  I have been a Grade 3, 3/4, and 6 teacher during my time here. My biggest professional accomplishment happened when my Grade 6 class was involved in an event organized by the Quu’asa staff called, “Feed the People.”  At the event, Quu’asa provided a meal for those less fortunate.  The meal took place during the Christmas season. My students fundraised and purchased some of the warm clothing given away at the event. I am a proud member of the Tseshaht community. My values stem from being brought up in my culture. I have a strong belief that my strength comes from my people.  I teach community connections to all my students and I know that they will use their cultural teachings to help them throughout their lives. “I believe that my students teach me at the same time I teach them. I am so grateful for all that I have learned from them.” I am a mother of three and I love to travel with my family when I have the time. I also enjoy participating in cultural events, song and dance, and anything to do with Tribal Journeys. This year, the Grade 6 students learned about Residential Schools. I took them for a walk down to the old residential school site near the Maht Mahs gymnasium, where the Alberni Residential School once stood. We talked about what the people who ran those schools tried to do to First Nations people, “to take the Indian out of the child.” One of my students put his hand up and said, “They tried to take the Indian out of the child, but we (ḥaaḥuupay̓ak students) are putting it back in!”
JESSICA PIPO, GRADE SIX TEACHER : A valued member of the Haahuupayak Community
SERENA SCHWAGER, GRADE SEVEN TEACHER : Hello my name is Serena Schwager. I am the Grade 7 teacher at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary. This is my 6th year teaching at our school. I am so fortunate to be teaching and learning on Tseshaht traditional territory. I love being able to take part in cultural activities, including learning the nuuchahnulth language, and it’s great to see the pride our students display through their culture. The community of Port Alberni is dear to my heart as I have grown up here. I am easily found outdoors on local trails with my two dogs, or on our lakes or the inlet in my kayak. I am involved in community events through Port Alberni Parks, Recreation and Heritage. I also have the role of lifeguard and swim instructor at our local pool. I attended Vancouver Island University, completing a Bachelor of Education Degree in 2013. This year, I am working on the Post-Degree Diploma in Adventure Education through Camosun College. I am so lucky to be able to apply my skills and passion for education and outdoor learning here. I have had many enriching, fun and funny experiences so far and I can’t wait to continue learning and growing with all of our students. The relationships that I have made with students and families are so valuable to me. I really love to share humour and have fun. Every year, my goal is to learn all the student’s names in the school. Each child is important in our school community, and we are like a big family. I love teaching at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak. I will continue to try my best to meet students’ needs, help them grow into good people, and provide opportunities such as the Outdoors Club, where students can learn and explore outside of the classroom.
LENA ROSS, NUU CHAH NULTH STUDIES TEACHER : Hello my name is Lena Ross. My traditional name is nasqaadam, a Gitsksaan name which ties me to roots from my mother, Millie Watts. I am also Tseshaht First Nation through my father, the late Teddy Watts. I am married to Darrell Ross and we have three children. I am pleased to say that all of my children attended ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. The focus of my formal and informal education is involved in training for language and curriculum courses. I spent many hours sitting with Kathy Robinson and the late Carrie Little. Four of my grandchildren have also attended ḥaaḥuupay̓ak. Two grandchildren completed their elementary education here, and the other two just started in Grade 1 this past year. Students at our school often hear me say, “We’re better together!” It is an honor to teach the intermediate classes cultural studies at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak.  I have done so, on and off, since 1998. One of the most meaningful ways that I can give back to the community is by sharing that which has been taught to me. I truly believe in what the late George Clutesi said, “Every adult, man or woman, is responsible for every child and to see that each child, learns all that should be known in order to live a good life.” I am a cheerleader for family and community, whether that is in a sports arena or in a classroom!
TREVOR LITTLE, NUU CHAH NULTH STUDIES ASSISTANT is a valued member of the Haahuupayak Community.
HELEN TOWNSEND, SPECIAL EDUCATION COORDINATOR : I trained in England to be a teacher. While there, I worked as a classroom teacher for six years. The last two years I lived in England, I was a Special Education teacher. My husband and I moved to Port Alberni in 2015. He is a physiotherapist in town. At first, I worked at the Port Alberni Friendship Center supporting families in the valley. In 2016, I started working at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School as their Inclusion Support Teacher. I am very honoured to be able to support the children to grow academically, socially, and emotionally. Relationship is key to a child’s learning. I strive to create a calm, nurturing environment for children to grow and develop. At our Individualized Education Plan meetings, we talk about children being at school to reach for their dreams. My belief is, “Each child has a different learning style and pace. Each child is unique; and not only capable of learning, but also capable of succeeding.” I am very privileged to be able to bring my dog, Zoey, into the school once a week. He listens to the children read, helps them when they feel sad or worried, and plays with them. Zoey is always there to give love and affection to anyone in need. When I’m away from ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School you may find me close to the water. I love paddle boarding and swimming at the lake, and going for walks with Zoey at the beach. I love being in Port Alberni for the beautiful outdoor lifestyle it offers here.
GAYLE MADDOCKS, TRAUMA SCHOOL COUNSELOR is a valued member of the Haahuupayak Community.
STEPHANIE BARCLAY, YOUTH AND CHILD CARE WORKER : Hello. My name is Stephanie Barkley.  I attended Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo for four years. While there, I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Child and Youth Care. Child and Youth Care (CYC) is a profession which focuses on the developmental needs of children and families within the space and time of their daily lives. I have worked at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School for the last 3 years. I am a Child and Youth Care Worker at the school. I really enjoy working with and supporting children, families, and caregivers in any way that I can. My goal is to work alongside students and to assist them in developing strategies and tools to help promote their social skills and emotional well-being. ḥaaḥuupay̓ak is such an amazing place to work! There is so much love for the students here. The school feels like a second home to me. I know that all of our amazing staff work really hard to make the students feel the same way. The well-being and success of each student that attends ḥaaḥuupay̓ak, along with their families, is very important to me. When I’m not here at the school, I love to spend my time outdoors in nature. As well, I love spending time with my family. I am born and raised here in Port Alberni. One of the reasons why I enjoy living in a small town is because I get to see the students and their families out and about, and not just here at the school.
SANDRA VISSIA, LIBRARIAN Hello. My name is Sandra Vissia. I am the Librarian at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School.  When I think back to my education I realize that most of my learning has been on-the-job. I have worked in many types of careers and I have always seen the importance of learning what I need to know to do a good job. Along the way, I’ve learned patience. I share these important teachings with the children I work with. I really enjoy watching the children grow, and following them from Kindergarten to Grade 7 and then out into the world! In my spare time, I enjoy doing my chores. I find doing chores very satisfying and it leaves time for one of my other favourite pastimes, relaxing.
ERNIE NETZER, PE TEACHER & EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hello, my name is Ernie Netzer. I was born and raised here in the Alberni Valley. I am a certified soccer and softball coach. I spent six years coaching the Sealions Club. I obtained my Human Service Worker/ Education Assistant Program Certification before starting work at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. This is my eighth year at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak. I am the Athletic Director, Physical Education teacher, and Education Assistant. When I’m not teaching or running the after-school sports programs, I am working with teachers and staff to support students in other areas. The after-school program is very satisfying for me as it offers results-based activities.  I also coach our school teams in a variety of sports. The students often hear me say, “Good attitude. Good effort. Good results!” I’m married and have two children.  I have developed and maintained many ties to the community through a lifetime of athletics and work. My hobbies now include golf, fishing, hiking, and camping. I am very thankful for the opportunity to help grow good people!
CHERIE THOMAS, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hello everyone. My name is Cherie Thomas and I come from the Tseshaht First Nations here in Port Alberni, B.C. I am an Education Assistant in the Special Education Department at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. I have completed specialized training in the area of speech, language and reading. As of January 2019, I have been with ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School for eleven years. It is so rewarding to see the accomplishments of the students I work with, especially watching them go from Kindergarten to graduation. As a member of the Tseshaht Nation and an Education Assistant at our school, my guiding principle is, “It’s where we come from.” In my spare time, I enjoy being outdoors, socializing with friends and family; and finally, I can’t get enough of retail therapy!
ALISHA ROGERS, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hello. My name is Alisha Rogers. I moved from Powell River to Port Alberni in 2008. I enrolled in post-secondary school in 2009. I completed the Human Service Worker Certificate at North Island College in Port Alberni. I went on to complete my Bachelor of Arts through Malaspina College. I enjoy teaching at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. It has been nice for both of my children to attend t’aatnee?is Daycare, right beside the school. I believe that children learn best through play. Now that I have been at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak for nine years, I find that one of the most rewarding parts of my career is watching my former students graduate from high school. It is so fulfilling for me to be part of each child’s journey through education. In my spare time I enjoy photography, along with film photography.
ALISON YOUNG, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : uułaamaḥ Alison Young. histaqšiƛ čumaʔas iš matuuni. My husband is Corey Anderson. His roots are from the Watts’ family in Tseshaht. I have two young children attending ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. I am very honoured to be a part of the school and the community. My love of working with children started in 2001. I had the opportunity to travel to China to teach English. I loved it so much that in 2003, I took the Montessori Preschool Kindergarten Training along with the Education Assistant Training. I went on to work as an Education Assistant in a Montessori school. After having our children, our family moved back to my husband’s traditional territory of  the Tseshaht. I have worked at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak since 2016. I immediately felt at home here and felt that this was the place for me.  I have run a dance club, the knitting club and currently, I am the president of the Parent’s Club. I love the culture, language and dance at the school, it makes me proud to send my children here. I have been studying Nuu-chah-nulth language since our return home and I am teaching it to my family. I believe that it is important to show the students that you care about them and to be consistent with your expectations. The best parts of working at haahuupayak is building relationships with the children and helping them to reach their potential. My belief is that, “every child learns differently and I hope to give all of them the tools for success.” My interests outside school include family, culture, language, dance, photography, travel and gardening. This is why haahuupayak is such a nice fit for me. I am able to incorporate my interested with my job. It is an amazing school and I am blessed to be a part of this amazing family.
JOELY SELVA, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : My name is Joely Selva. I am a proud Metis and Cree woman with roots in Saskatchewan. I moved to Port Alberni from Vancouver when I was a young girl. I was born in Vancouver. Many of my family, on my dad’s side, still live there. I finished high school in 1987. I was a business owner and hairstylist in town for seven years. In 2013, I decided to take the Human Service Worker/ Education Assistant Certificate with an Indigenous Focus, at North Island College in Port Alberni. When I graduated from the HSW Program, this led me to an education assistant position with ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. I believe that, “Healthy families make healthy communities.” My passion is to help children succeed and most importantly, to believe in themselves. I am part of the ḥaaḥuupay̓ak after school girls’ group. We empower young girls to embrace their identities as strong Nuu-chah-nulth youth, by promoting healthy self-images and self-esteem. In building their spirits, we are supporting each girl to develop a foundation for life, for navigating into high school and well beyond. I love learning Nuu-chah-nulth culture and language with all of them. One funny story of my time at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak was when Mr. Netzer and myself had the same lunch container. Both of our lunches had pasta in them and both had the same red top. Later in the day, Mr. Netzer realized that someone ate his lunch! We couldn’t figure it out until we started talking with Trevor. (I brought an extra lunch in that day for Trevor.) He ate Mr. Netzer’s lunch in the red top container by mistake! We all laughed for days. I have many hobbies and interests. With my dog, I love to hike and walk every day. Port Alberni has a beautiful system of trails to explore. I enjoy gardening and growing my own food every year. Then, there is my newest hobby. I’m learning how to play golf.  My time with my family and friends is so important to me. I have two biological daughters (24 and 17), three stepdaughters, one stepson, two granddaughters and two grandsons.
CHELSEA JARVIS, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hello! My name is Chelsea Jarvis and I have been employed with ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School since 2014. My home town is Powell River and my husband’s home town is Port Alberni. I have the unique experience of being able to support students at the school from their early beginnings in the primary classes, and then into the upper intermediate classes. This offers me the ability of making connections and relationships with students from ages six to sixteen years old! I feel like I am a part of a big family both inside and outside of the school. My youngest child attended t'aatnee?is Daycare/Preschool since she was one year old. She is very enthusiastic in learning the Nuu-chah-nulth language and culture. She loves to come and visit at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak quite regularly. I love living here, in the Alberni Valley, and I especially love working at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School!
CHERIE THOMAS, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hello everyone. My name is Cherie Thomas and I come from the Tseshaht First Nations here in Port Alberni, B.C. I am an Education Assistant in the Special Education Department at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School. I have completed specialized training in the area of speech, language and reading. As of January 2019, I have been with ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School for eleven years. It is so rewarding to see the accomplishments of the students I work with, especially watching them go from Kindergarten to graduation. As a member of the Tseshaht Nation and an Education Assistant at our school, my guiding principle is, “It’s where we come from.” In my spare time, I enjoy being outdoors, socializing with friends and family; and finally, I can’t get enough of retail therapy!
MARY BARNEY, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : My name is Mary Barney and I am from Tseshaht First Nation. I am a mother of four beautiful children, with two of my younger children attending ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School. This is my fifth year as an Education Assistant at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak. I lead a small math and reading group. As well, I assist the teacher and students in their classroom. It is an honour working with all the amazing children and staff. One of my many joys is learning Nuu-chah-nulth language and songs right beside the children. My belief is, “You are never too old to learn!” A student made my day when they told me, “You are like the mom of the school. When we need a hug or a shoulder, you are always there for us.” When I’m not working, I enjoy reading and going for walks.
TONIELLE BRADBURY, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : Hi, my name is Tonielle Bradbury. The students call me Ms. Tonielle. I completed my diploma in Human Services in 2006, and I have worked with children in a variety of settings since this time. I have worked at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak Elementary School for the past two and a half years. I am an Educational Assistant and my role is to support students with their studies as well as support them emotionally. I love being immersed in an immensely rich cultural school. I see the benefits for all in the cultural teachings and practices. Culture fills and strengthens the students’ spirits, and I find such joy in my experiences too. I'm so fortunate to be from our community Port Alberni. I am a mother of two school-aged children. We love being surrounded by our beautifully landscaped valley. My family have begun raising chickens, and we have loved every minute of it. They provide eggs for our family. We have grown to love them just as much as our cats and dogs. So, instead of being called, “the crazy cat lady,” I might become known as the crazy chicken lady!
JASON FERGUSON, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT : I was born and raised in the Alberni Valley and now, as a parent I have settled here with a family of my own. I completed my Human Service Worker Certificate in Educational Assistant/Community Support, Indigenous Focus at North Island College. I was fortunate to do my practicum at Haahuupayak ̣ School and I immediately saw the wonderful environment that exists at the school. I continued my education, going on to achieve a Human Services Diploma. Once again, I was gifted with an opportunity to complete my practicum at Haahuupayak. I like to bring a fun and positive attitude to each day, and so I chose to work here. I feel free and supported; I can let my spirit shine.  Students often hear me say, “We treat everyone the way we want to be treated, and if you’re not, double your efforts and you’ll see it come back.” Away from work, I am a journeyman carpenter. I enjoy working in my shop and sharing knowledge around safety and building. I give much of my free time back to our Port Alberni community through my work with the Kinsmen Club. As a club, we proudly put on the Alberni District Fall Fair each year.  I started the Little Lighting Soapbox Derby and continue to be involved in this competition. I also lace up my skates for Breakers Marine; a local recreational hockey team. I am supported everyday by my wonderful wife. She happens to be my high school sweetheart! We have two unique children.  Both of them have a terrible disorder called, Cystic Fibrosis. They are home schooled in a classroom I build in our basement. This learning place provides endless excitement for them. I think the best job I will ever have is being a dad.
STACIA QUINN, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT is an important part of the Haahuupayak Community.
QUINN TURGEON, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT Hello my name is Quinn Turgeon. I completed the Human Service Worker Certificate program at North Island College in 2016.  My motto for life is, “If I can be a safe person for just one child, that is enough for me.” As an Education Assistant, I really enjoy being part of the ḥaaḥuupay̓ak School community. Soon after I started working at ḥaaḥuupay̓ak I had a baby. All of the staff and students here offered me a lot of support and guidance for this new chapter in my life. When I was at ADSS, in Port Alberni, I was on the cheerleading team. I continue to be involved with cheerleading to this day as a cheerleading coach now.
MANESHA BAINS, EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANT is an important part of the Haahuupayak Community.
RAY SEITCHER, BUS OPERATOR is an important part of the Haahuupayak Community.
JOHN ROSS, CUSTODIAN is an important part of the Haahuupayak Community.