Electives and Essentials

Electives and Essentials

High School Teachers
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Karen Giuffre’, M.Ed.

Founding Director
Teacher/Researcher, Humanities/Social Justice

Our director received her BA in Political Science and Communications from Hood College and her M.Ed. in Education and Partnership from Goddard College. She has also participated in Advanced Studies in Exercise Physiology at Springfield College and earned a Masters Certificate in College Counseling from UCLA.

Karen began her teaching career in Harvard, Massachusetts where she taught 5th, 6th, and 8th-grade social studies. This was followed by years of serving as a teacher and director of fitness and recreation programs. Karen developed an elementary interdisciplinary curriculum as a researcher and writer and then as a trainer and promoter of the national physical education program, Physical Best. Karen’s children inspired her to create a progressive learning environment that honors all children as people. She founded Voyagers’ Community School in 2004 after spending 18 months composing the philosophical foundation that guides our day-to-day operations.

Karen has garnered recognition as the Keynote Speaker and Presenter at both national and local professional conferences, including, most recently, the Association for Constructivist Teaching Conference and the Progressive Education Network. She has also advised many start-up school efforts. She serves as the New Jersey State Liaison for the Alternative Education Resource Organization. She also served as Chairperson and Treasurer for the New Jersey Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia, President of A Child's Place Education Fund, a member of The Colts Neck 9/11 Committee, and past Treasurer and President of The Colts Neck PTO.

Karen’s most recent project was directing the renovation of our new 14,000 square foot home, originally built in 1908. Our building was restored with thought to its original character, our contemporary needs, the necessary time-frame and the wants and visions expressed by students, faculty and staff. Currently, Karen serves as the Co-Chair of the Middle State Association Accreditation Team. Karen's passions include reading historical novels and memoirs, traveling, playing board games, chatting for hours with good friends and family and dancing always, everywhere.

"There is a vitality, a life-force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique." ~ Martha Graham

Laura McCullough, M.A.

Visiting Professor ~ Literacy

Laura, the 15-year Brookdale English professor and long-time poet published, in June 2015, her second anthology of essays, Sense of Regard: Essays on Poetry and Race, through University of Georgia Press, and was in the same year selected as a featured artist in Best American Poetry collection by Sherman Alexie.

Also in June, Laura’s previously unpublished poetry collection Molecularity & the Science of Light won honorable mention in the 2015 Homebound Publications Poetry Prize, while her fifth book of poetry, titled JERSEY MERCY, was accepted by Black Lawrence Press. Laura continues to enjoy lasting recognition from her 2013 book Rigger Death & Hoist Another

Accolades, however, are nothing new to the poet/anthology editor/fiction writer/professor. Since publishing her first book in 2006, she has collected a Kinereth Gensler Award, was a finalist for the Forward Book of the Year Award and has earned a wide range of arts fellowships and scholarships.

Laura is currently serving as a visiting professor in our high school humanities class, helping our students hone their writing and communication skills. She is also mentoring a teaching assistant in the classroom.

Student Work