Amanda SurlessKindergarten Teacher
Welcome to the new school year! I am so excited to teach this year’s kindergarten class.
I grew up in Ramsey, New Jersey and attended The Academy of the Holy Angels. Following graduation, I was accepted into The Catholic University of America. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Early Childhood Education.
St. Ann’s is truly a terrific school and together we will make this year the best ever!
Leeanne RaleighFirst Grade Teacher
My name is Leeanne Raleigh. I received a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Salisbury University in 2006. After graduating from college I worked for numerous years in Anne Arundel County Public Schools as a Title 1 teacher for grades kindergarten through fifth. I was also a Title 1 teacher for the Archdiocese of Washington through the Learn It Systems team and serviced Saint Ann’s Academy and San Miguel Middle School. This is now my third year as the first grade teacher at Saint Ann’s Academy and I look forward to another great year. I am thrilled to once again be able to share in the loving and supportive Saint Ann’s community where we all have the we all have the common goal of creating the most supportive and academically challenging learning environment for the students.
Maggie O’BoyleSecond Grade Teacher
Hi! My name is Maggie O’Boyle. I am the new second grade teacher. I am super excited about this year. This is my first year at St. Ann’s Academy and I already love it here. The staff is amazing and the students are wonderful. I just graduated in May from the University of South Carolina in Columbia. I majored in Early Childhood Education. I look forward to meeting more people in the supportive St. Ann’s community. Although I attended college in South Carolina, I have grown up in Washington, D.C.
Kendra NealThird Grade Teacher
My name is Kendra Neal and I am currently the third grade teacher. I have been a member of this school for about
8 years now. In the past, I have had the wonderful opportunity of enriching young minds in the field of science. I now have the amazing gift of enriching young minds in all subject areas, in third grade. During my time here, I have grown a lot coming into the profession/calling of teaching as a career changer. My background and B.S. degree is in Biology. I attended Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina for my undergraduate studies and the College of Notre Dame for my graduate coursework in teaching, through the ADW Cohort program. I am currently certified in Elementary Education and still look forward to pursuing professional development opportunities, that will further my goals at being an effective teacher. I am very excited about being among the talented staff at Saint Ann’s Academy and being a positive influence in a child’s life. It is such a blessing to be able to be in an environment, that allows you to express love towards Jesus Christ and demonstrate the fruits of the Spirit daily.
Other Fun Facts About Me:
Some of my other hobbies/interests are: worship, time with family, reading, creative writing, ballet, music, spending time at the beach, and travel.
Joann TschiffelyFourth Grade Teacher
Hello! My name is JoAnn Tschiffely and I am the fourth grade teacher. This is my seventh year at St. Ann’s and I love it! We have the best students and the best staff. I received my B.S. in Economics from Villanova University and Masters in Business Administration from the University of Maryland. I recently received my certification in Elementary Education from the University of Notre Dame Baltimore. I am truly enjoying my time at St. Ann’s and look forward to a great school year. Go Falcons!
Leslie ThompsonFifth Grade Teacher, Alumni Coordinator
Leslie Thompson is a native Washingtonian and St. Ann’s Fifth Grade teacher. The majority of her career has focused on advancing education. Prior to teaching, Leslie worked as a development officer in an independent school. After moving into major fundraising for a large scale non-profit, she found that she missed being in a school environment. This time around, she entered the classroom and earned a Master’s degree in Elementary Education while getting on the job experience. She has been teaching for seven years in the Archdiocese. Leslie likes the diverse student body at St. Ann’s and the excitement of not knowing exactly what each new day will bring. She also enjoys being in an urban school which allows her to take advantage of the museums and off-campus learning opportunities in Washington, D.C.
Shaun MarkleySixth Grade Teacher
Deirdre FurrSeventh Grade Homeroom, superior essay writer and Extended Care Director
My name is Mrs. Furr. My family and I have recently moved back to the DC Metro area. I am very excited to be joining the faculty of St. Ann’s Academy. I am a local person who attended Stone Ridge for high school. I went on to Boston College, where I received my Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and my Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction. I worked at St. Elizabeth’s Catholic School before moving to Mississippi. While in Mississippi, I attended the University of Mississippi where I received my Master of Business Administration.
My husband and I have one son, Ned and 2 dogs, Merlin, a white lab, and Murdock, a beagle. All three keep us very busy.
Brian BlomquistEight Grade Homeroom Teacher, Middle School Language Arts & Vice Principal
Married to Trish for 21 years.
Four children: Abby, Bo, Nate and Charley.
Middle-school English teacher in fifth year at Saint Ann’s Academy. Fully certified to teach in DC since 2005. Masters degree in education from American University. Masters degree in journalism from Boston University. Taught three years in DC public schools before coming to Saint Ann’s. Served as vice principal at Saint Ann’s for four years.
Became teacher in 2003, leaving 17-year career as newspaper reporter. Wrote sports for the Washington Post in the 1980s. Covered crime, city services and city politics in the mid-1990s during the Barry administration for the Washington Times. Worked for several papers in North Carolina and Maryland, covering Congress and the Maryland State House. Covered the FBI, the Justice Department, the CIA, and the White House for seven years at the New York Post (also deputy Washington bureau chief). Coached youth football for 11 years at DC Police Boys Club No. 8, Maplewood, and Blessed Sacrament.
Sarah ErskineP.E. Teacher
I am returning to St. Ann’s Academy for my 6th year as the Physical Education Teacher. I am excited to help students learn new and fun ways of keeping active and healthy. Throughout the past years, I have also taught Health, Science, and assisted with Pre-K. I hold a psychology degree from Messiah College and also have worked previously as a Personal Trainer and Post-Rehabilitation Conditioning Specialists. I love to run, lift, and do hot yoga. Many of St. Ann’s students have met and love, Mr Piggy, my little pet guinea pig. I look forward to a great year in PE!
Suzanne SchaefferResource Specialist
Miss Schaeffer was born and raised in Washington DC. She received Bachelor’s degrees in Elementary and Special Education, as well as a Master’s degree in Special Education. This is her third year at St. Ann’s as a Resource Teacher, where she enjoys working with students from every grade. Her hobbies include reading, crocheting, and watching science fiction.
Aileen ShafferHonors Algebra
I am so blessed to be a part of this wonderful school. I entered teaching from a non-traditional path. I graduated from the University of Maryland with a BS in Electrical Engineering. I had a wonderful and challenging career in power plant operations which included many exciting challenges from inspecting underwater equipment to installing new information technology systems. I took a break from engineering to tackle a new and important challenge, raising two wonderful children. As my children got a bit older, I decided to go back to school to become a teacher. I am currently certified in mathematics grades 7-12 and physics grades 7-12. It just goes to show you what wonderful work God can do in your life if you are willing to take a risk and follow a new road. I am truly thankful to be trusted with teaching this amazing group of students.
Juan Pablo SotoSpanish Teacher & Information Coordinator
Juan Pablo, married to Alison, start his career when he was 18 years old, working for the government of Chile in the development of projects for the artisanal fisheries in the south of Chile. At the same time, he started studying computers systems(MS), network and security (MS) at the School of Engineering of Los Lagos University. He also started teaching—first, the Investigative Police of Chile, then mixing education and computers, and in that way he discovered One Laptop Per Child. With OLPC, local universities and with the help of the local government he went to public and rural schools installing and showing advances and uses of technology using Open Source.
At the same time, Juan Pablo was working in the salmon industry as system administrator for almost 9 years.
After many years of experience and studies he came to the States, where he start working in different areas—as trader and working with the Consortium of Catholics Academies. Always with passion, developing with a mix of technology and education using Open Source resources and in the administration of the network of four schools of the Consortium.
Finally, he is part of St. Ann’s Academy where is Señor Soto, the Spanish Teacher and Information Coordinator, where he enjoys every moment with students, families and faculty.
Juan Pablo enjoys Winter sports as Ice Skating, Ice Climbing, Mountaineering, Ski and others.
Michael KaneMiddle School Religion and Social Studies
Michael Kane B.A. History Univ. of Maryland (15 years at St. Ann’s).Employed Montgomery County Public Schools 1993-1999.High school football coach 1987-1998@ Bethesda Chevy Chase H.S.,and Walter JohnsonH.S. 2003-2005. High school basketball coach 1982-1997@ Bethesda Chevy Chase H.S.,Northwest H.S. 1999-2001 and Bishop O’Connell H.S. 2002.Licensed Real Estate Sales(Maryland) 1975-1983 and licensed Life Insurance Sales(DC) 1982-1992.