Meet the 5th Grade Team
5 409 Catherine Pacilio 54092016.weebly.com
Catherine began her teaching career as a 6th grade ICT Humanities and Math teacher in East Harlem at Isaac Newton Middle School. She is excited to be returning to the PS261 community, teaching 5th grade for the past four years. Prior to teaching she earned her bachelors degree in Marketing and Psychology at the College of William and Mary and studied Advanced Psychology for a year at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. She also earned her Masters Degree in Childhood and Special Education at New York University. Catherine worked as Marketing Director for Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association prior to becoming a teacher. Soccer is a life-long passion of hers, from playing in college to coaching all ages at recreational and advanced levels. When she is not on the soccer field she enjoys knitting with her cat Lola by her side. She hopes to use her experience working in middle school to guide 5th graders in transitioning from elementary school to the years beyond.
Mrs. Hewitt is a born-and-raised New Yorker and a product of NYC public schools. She has a degree in Journalism from NYU and worked for over 10 years as a Reporter, Fashion Editor, and Fashion Stylist at both People en Español and Teen People magazines. She also holds a Masters in Childhood Education. She is the proud daughter of immigrants who taught her to work hard and dream big. Her passions include a love of travel and the arts. This will be her 9th year teaching. She has taught grades 1-3 in the Lower East Side of Manhattan and Chinatown, and this will be her 4th year teaching 5th grade at PS261. She credits her success as a teacher to her smile and her love of learning.
5 412 Tara Mchugh 5412ps261.weebly.com
Tara McHugh has been an NYC public educator for nine years. She has taught every grade from kindergarten to fifth, though she has a special place in her heart for fifth grade. Following graduation from Susquehanna University with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, Tara taught at PS 272 in Canarsie, Brooklyn for four years. That experience guided her in pursuing a master’s degree in TESOL at Teachers College, Colombia University. During her field study in graduate school she worked at Hamilton Heights School; where she then taught second and third grade for two years before teaching oversees in Maracaibo, Venezuela. Tara continues to grow and learn with the PS261 community and feels overjoyed to work with such a passionate and smart group of educators. Her free time is filled with family/friend love, outdoor activities, and soaking in the abundant culture and art throughout the city. In a world without tennis hour regulations and annual fees, one would catch her playing tennis most days after school. Instead, you might see her bopping around town or playing with her nieces in Prospect Park.
5 415 Casey Jones email@example.com
Casey hails from the Golden State of California, and is entering his 10th year as an educator and his 6th in New York City. When he first moved to New York, he lived in the neighborhood surrounding P.S. 261 and is thrilled to be a new member of the team. Casey has taught all grades K-8, physical education, science as well as coaching various sports both in school and in his free time. He earned his bachelors degree in Physical Education with a minor in Biology from Arizona State University and his Masters in Special Education from The City College of New York. His passions include traveling, baseball, and photography. He likes to spend free time exploring, going to sporting events, movies, and spending time with his wife and new daughter. He’s looking forward to a great first year at PS 261.
5 415 Dana Levy firstname.lastname@example.org
Dana Levy is super excited to return to PS261 after teaching in Guatemala for the past two years! While living outside of the United States Dana reinforced her love of learning by traveling all over Central and South America to find out about different cultures, communities and languages. Dana began her teaching career at PS 261 in 2007, after student teaching while attending New York University where she received her masters degree in special education and childhood education. Dana loves helping her students have amazing mathematical discussions and when the class is engrossed in a great read aloud together. One of the things Dana likes best about PS 261 is the ability of families and school staff to come together to advocate for the students. When not working, Dana loves cooking, traveling, and spending time with her baby Joaquin, her husband and their Guatemalan dog, Mona.