Susana DeJesús, Ed.D.

Principal

Has been educating children for over 30 years. She is published in scholarly peer review journals and has consulted nationally and internationally. Before co-founding Lyceum Charter School, Susana was a Scholar in Residence and a Supervisor in the Department of Teaching and Learning at NYU. Over the course of her career, she has been a public-school teacher in NYC and Puerto Rico, Professional Development Manager, Head of School, Director of Title III, Bilingual/ESL and was on the Graduate Faculty of Bank Street College and University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras. At the University of Puerto Rico, she helped develop a four-language public school in Aruba and consulted with Chinese Educators and Government officials on Dual-Language Instruction. Susana consulted for many years with Head Start, with US Department of Education as a peer reviewer for FIPSE, as an OELA consultant and team leader and was a member of New York and New Jersey Bilingual Early Childhood advisory committees. In 1998, Susana designed and implemented a highly successful dual language program which continued for 12 years in Newark. Students in the program, from an Abbott district, consistently out-performed their district peers and were on par with suburban students. Susana has a unique breadth of knowledge, experience and a proven track record for developing high quality dual language programs for all students. She grew up in the Bronx, attended public school and is bilingual in Spanish. Susana graduated from Antioch College, NYU and earned her Ed.D from Columbia University, Teachers College.

Cecilia Clauzier

Teacher, Kindergarten, Spanish

Bonjour! My name is Cecilia Clauzier, originally from France, I have been in New York since 1997. Fascinated with the world of education, I decided to change careers in my early 30s and went on to obtain a bachelor’s degree in Bilingual Education as well as a masters in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) from the City College of New York. Coincidently nearly across the street from The Lyceum Charter School! I went on to teach for two years in the Middle East after which I moved to Japan for another year and a half. Finally back home in New York, it is with great excitement that I look forward to teaching at The Lyceum Charter school. Online or in person, we all strive for teaching excellence!

Qiao Gu

Teacher, 1st grade, Mandarin & English

Ni-Hao! I am Qiao Gu, a native Mandarin speaker who grew up in Shanghai, China. Before I chose to become an educator, I completed my Bachelor of Laws degree and lawyer internship in Mainland China as well as Hong Kong. I have always been fascinated by the possibilities in the field of education and culture, so I made a career change to become a dual-language teacher. I have experience serving elementary students in multiple settings, including ICT classrooms and Bilingual classrooms in different New York City Public Schools, and a cross-cultural organization. Being a passionate, self-motivated, and enthusiastic educator, I deeply believe in empowering every student by recognizing, and building learning on their culture and their funds of knowledge. I earned my MA degree from Teachers College, Columbia University in Bilingual/Bicultural Childhood Special Education. My MA project focused on the effect of trans-languaging on a bilingual student in a Mandarin-English dual-language program, in New York City. I am very excited to join Lyceum as a Mandarin dual-language teacher and to present my students the wonder of being bilingual!

Laura Montaño

Teacher, Kindergarten, Spanish

Hello, My name is Laura Montaño. Originally from Bogota, Colombia, I moved to New York City after finishing college. I have always been drawn to teaching and the creative arts and upon arrival in New York, I took a yearlong course in stop motion animation at the School of Visual Arts. After that I trained as an applied arts teacher at Sunbridge College, and since then, I have been teaching first to eighth-grade classes in NYC Waldorf schools for the last 15 years. As part of my job, I designed programs to develop age-appropriate skills in my students and foster creativity. I am excited to be able to share my passion for crafts, reading and art with my students. And I’m very grateful and eager to now have the opportunity to teach in Spanish. I have lived in Washington Heights for the last 17 years with my husband and my three children. In my spare time I like to knit, plant dye and weave. I am very much looking forward to being a part of this wonderful community of colleagues, children and families and finding ways together to deal with the unprecedented challenges we are facing today.

Hayden Murphy

Teacher, Kindergarten, English

My name is Hayden Murphy and I am an English Teacher at Lyceum Charter School. I am originally from Florida, but I recently graduated Barnard College of Columbia University with a degree in Elementary Education and Sociology. I have experience working hands-on with children ages newborn to sixteen as a tutor, camp counselor, teacher’s aide, and substitute teacher. Additionally, I recently completed my student teaching in a first grade classroom at another school in Harlem. I love music, theater, and art. I am thrilled to be joining the Lyceum family and I am so excited to set off on this school year adventure with all of you.

Neusa Rodriguez-Montemoíño

Teacher, 1st grade, Spanish & English

“I am Neusa Rodríguez-Montemoíño. I was born in Puerto Rico and raised there since I was 5 years old. I have taught elementary school, intermediate school, and in high school. For the past 18 years, I taught third grade math, science, social studies, and language arts in an English immersion school in Puerto Rico. I have a BA from Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and a MA in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL) from Framingham University in Massachusetts. I completed my doctorate degree in Linguistics on May 4, 2019, at University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras. In my dissertation I investigated how the agency of West-African women in traditional Yoruba religion was mostly lost in Spanish speaking America when West-African people were forcibly taken into slavery. West-African women were forced out of positions of power in the newly formed Santería to accommodate patriarchal European values of the time. This loss of agency is present even today as the descendants of these West-African women still have limited access to positions of power in society.

In addition to being an academic and a teacher, I am an avid reader and enjoy watching sports and films. I enjoy reading both fiction and non-fiction books. I have read all the Harry Potter series in English and Spanish and have seen all the movies. I love to watch sports on tv especially tennis, volleyball and soccer. I am a fan of the Star Wars saga and also love animated movies such as Zootopia, Rio, Frozen and Epic. Thanks to my Netflix subscription, I can watch in English or Spanish from different parts of the world. “

Pang (Candice) Sun

Teacher, Kindergarten, Mandarin & English

“My name is Candice Sun. I attended a four-year college in Beijing, China, where I majored in Early Childhood Education. I also earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Education from City College of New York, in Bilingual, Childhood Education, and I am currently pursuing my MA at City College in the same areas. I have been teaching children from early childhood to elementary level for the past 11 years, both in Beijing and New York City. I hold New York State certification in Elementary Education, with a Bilingual extension.

I love the arts, music, hiking, and exercising. I am always full of energy and I am very positive. I love working with children, and I have a strong passion for educating children and helping them grow to become self-motivated learners and responsible individuals. My broad experience working in China and the United States has helped me become proficient in designing creative and exciting lesson plans that spark students’ interests and activate their eager minds. I believe a student’s success, through developing their own potential, will help the student develop many different intellectual and social skills through interaction and having fun. That is my purpose. Learning is a beautiful thing, and it should be fun!”

Eliana Taub

Teacher, Kindergarten, English

Hi! My name is Eliana Taub, and I am so excited for a year of teaching and learning at Lyceum Charter School! I recently graduated from Barnard College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology and Elementary Education, and completed my student teaching at a public school in District 5. I have experience working at a Danish elementary school in Copenhagen, Denmark, and have worked with children with special needs ages pre-K through middle school. In my free time, I love to spend time with my family, practice yoga, and watch movies. I feel so lucky to work with a team that is committed to equity, community building, and hands-on learning. This school year may not look like a traditional one, but I believe that constant flexibility, creativity, and relationship-building can transform it into something special.

Xiaoshan (Sandy) Tan

Co-Teacher, Kindergarten, Mandarin & English

“I am a passionate and dedicated educator. I have been working with students in grades K-8 for the past five years with job titles ranging from Teacher in Non-public school settings, to English/Math Tutor, Teacher Assistant, and After school Teacher. I have also been a Chinese tutor for non-native Chinese speakers, for several years, while pursuing my college studies. I completed my bachelor’s degree in childhood education and English at Hunter College, last year, and I am now continuing my education and will obtain an MA degree in Bilingual Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.

Born and raised in China, I am fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese. As a devotee of traditional Chinese culture, I enjoy reading and writing Chinese poems and prose. In my free time, I like to sing, learn some simple Chinese folk dances, practice yoga, exercise, and do arts and crafts. I am also interested in becoming a professional translator so that I could serve as one of the bridges connecting the two cultures and, in that way, I can contribute back to the community. “

Diana Romero

Teacher, Kindergarten, Spanish

Diana’s interest in high-quality education was sparked early on in her life during her own attendance of NYC public schools. An important step in her journey as an educator came while she studied at Brooklyn Technical High School. While attending the specialized high school, she volunteered with an organization that sought to aid children in reaching and exceeding the grade reading level. This early experience prompted her attendance at NYU where she majored in Early Childhood and Special Education and graduated from with a BS in Teaching & Learning. Across the years, she has worked in various public schools in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Diana is a native Spanish speaker from the Mexican community, with roots in Brooklyn. Her multi-faceted approach as an educator is reflected by her varied personal interests, which include reading non-fiction, drawing, watching documentaries, and visiting museums amongst other activities.
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