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High School

High School

Operations Team

  • Operations Manager

    Audrey Argandona-Lemus is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th Grade Operations Manager. Ms. Lemus grew up in the South Bronx and California. She is a licensed social worker and emergency medicine physician assistant who previously worked in operations and college and career counseling at Inwood Academy located in upper Manhattan for over five years. Ms. Lemus is not only passionate about academics, but also, mental, social emotional, and physical health.

  • Special Projects Operations Manager

    Joye Rice is Atmosphere's Special Projects Operations Manager. Ms. Rice was born and raised in New York City. She is an advocate for school choice and supports educational equity. In previous roles, Ms. Rice was an Operations Manager at Harlem Village Academies and the Founding Family Impact Coordinator at Democracy Prep Public Schools. Ms. Rice earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from The College of New Rochelle and is currently pursuing a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership. She enjoys watching anime and Marvel movies with her teenaged son. She is excited to be part of the Atmosphere team!

Culture Team

  • Culture Associate

    Reginald Jay is Atmosphere's 10th Grade Culture Associate. Previously, Mr. Jay served as the 8th Grade Dean of Discipline/Culture at Equality Charter School in the Bronx. Mr. Jay is a dedicated and motivated educator. His goal is to help all children, especially those from the Bronx community, recognize their full potential while supporting them in achieving their academic and behavioral goals.

  • School Counselor

    Darryl Jenkins is Atmosphere's 9th Grade School Counselor. Previously, he worked with The Family Welcome Center at the NYC Department of Education. As an Enrollment Counselor, he assisted families in enrollment processes for grades K-12. He also served as an Academic Advisor for the Young Adult Borough Center at Herbert Lehman High School, where he counseled over-aged and under-credited students. He received his Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Master of School Counseling from Mercy College. He has a strong commitment to working with a diverse population of students.

  • School Counselor

    Michael Roach is Atmosphere's 10th Grade School Counselor. Mr. Roach earned his Bachelor of Arts and Master’s Degree in School Counseling from Manhattan College, which is located in the surrounding neighborhood of Riverdale/Kingsbridge. Previously employed by the NYC Department of Education, Mr. Roach has gained experience and specialization while working with Special Education and ELL students around the Bronx. Invested in his craft, Mr. Roach believes that advocacy and support are essential to student growth, development and success.

  • Culture Associate

    Tiffany Mitchell is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Culture Associate. She holds a Master of Science in School Counseling and a Bachelor of Arts in Behavioral Science. Before working at Atmosphere Academy, she served as a Crisis Management Paraprofessional in the Department of Education for 11+ years. Tiffany is thrilled to bring her experiences to Atmosphere and looks to develop trust and create a sense of transparency and shared purpose with students, parents, and staff.

  • Culture Assistant

    Luz Maria Ynfante is Atmosphere 9th & 10th Grade Culture Assistant. She did an internship during high school as a teaching assistant. She worked in customer service at CVS for around one year. She worked as a security officer for around five years. She finished her associate degree in liberal art and science at Hostos community college. She is currently completing her bachelor's degree in criminal justice and a minor in criminology at john jay college. She is planning to do her master's in social work for the reason she cares too much for people and loves to help everybody around her.

  • Culture Associate

    Steven Gerleit is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Culture Associate. He is pleased to join the new high school team. He brings with him many years of experience as a teacher in many different middle school and high school settings. Mr. Gerleit is happy to bring positivity, professionalism, encouragement, support, and a spirit of collaboration to everyone in the Atmosphere Academy community and to help scholars achieve their goals and reach their full potential.

  • Culture Associate

    Johnnie Del Toro is Atmosphere's 9th-grade Culture Assistant. He has excellent experience working with all ages as a former law enforcement officer who brings leadership, structure, care, and compassion to our environment. Having graduated from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Johnnie will assist in enabling our scholars to prosper in their studies where scholars can grow as a whole. He pushes the scholars to be the best version of themselves academically and individually. Johnnie is here to help mentor and guide the scholars and bring his experiences to the forefront to add to Atmosphere's Culture and way. In addition, he has coached Atmosphere's middle school baseball team, which was successful, and now brings his talents to the High School level. He has been involved and continues to do so and will be one of the assets for our community here at Atmosphere.

  • School Aide

    Efren Guerrero is Atmosphere Academy 9/10th grade "Utility Man' and School Aide. Efren is currently working on getting his associates in education as he was previously a criminal justice major. Like many students, Efren came from a charter school, specifically KIPP NYC College Prep, where we worked as Instructional Assistants. At KIPP, he was motivated to want to teach kids and saw the positive impact on kids. Efren's goal is to be a dean by 25, and he wants to put his mark on the newer generation of kids as it is apparent that they need help. He plays Soccer, Basketball and loves sports in general. He as well loves music and loves to connect with songs.

Programs Team

  • Programs Associate

    Alex Berzofsky is Atmosphere's Programs Associate. He has a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard University. Before Atmosphere, he taught ELA for two years at Brooklyn Prospect Charter School. Before that, he was a partner at a Global Private Equity and Venture Capital firm for 20 years. Alex is excited to bring his business experience into the classroom.

  • Programs Assistant

    Priscilla Rottier is Atmosphere's Programs Assistant. Born and raised in the Bronx, NY. Her experience as an N.Y.P.D. Law Enforcement Explorer had led to her passion for helping others. However, Priscilla's career path shifted when she became a mother. Priscilla loves to travel to exotic countries and has been to Egypt, Abu Dhabi, Thailand, China, Coast Rica, Nicaragua, Bahamas, Jamaica, Paris, and Italy. Her travels have inspired her creativity and broadened her view of the world.

Instructional Team

  • Art Teacher

    Annona Giam is Atmosphere's 9th & 10th Grade Art Teacher. Ms.Giam has her BFA in Painting and Drawing from SUNY Purchase. She has been teaching for two years. She believes that good art education can give students skills that will benefit them in every aspect of life.

  • Physical Education Teacher

    Charles Kosek Jr. is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Physical Education Teacher. Mr. Kosek earned his Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education from CUNY Brooklyn College and his Master of Education in General and Special Education for Grades 1-6 from Touro College. Mr. Kosek holds three teaching certifications in physical education, special education, and general education, and has six years of experience teaching physical education.

  • English Teacher

    Christina Calhoun is Atmosphere's 9th Grade English Teacher. Ms. Calhoun is originally from California where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Literary Studies and a Master of Humanities in English. She received a TEFL from the Via Lingua Institute in Florence, Italy, and a TESOL from the SEAS Language Corporation in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. From there, she taught English as a second language to a wide range of scholars throughout Southeast Asia, the U.K., and Europe. Ms. Calhoun has experience in IELTS, SAT prep, academic essay writing, and creative writing workshops. Ms. Calhoun enjoys traveling to places she’s never seen, enjoying food from other cultures, studying art, and curating stories to relay her experiences. Her words to live by are — “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken” (Oscar Wilde) and to never forget that: “You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and much smarter than you think” (Christopher Robin).

  • Social Studies Teacher

    Darian McDermott is an Atmosphere 10th Grade Social Studies Teacher, who is beginning her 21st year in the educational field having worked both in the DOE and the Charter School System. In addition to her teaching experience, she has administrative experience in Social Studies Dept. A chair as well as Curriculum Co-ordinator. Dr. McDemrott holds 2 master's in Social Studies and Education, a Masters's in Business Administration in Finance (Fordham University), and an Ed.D in Organizational Leadership from Teachers College, Columbia University. When not in the classroom she enjoys attending plays, listening to jazz, reading, and hiking with her dog, Mochaccino(Mocha) for short.

  • Science Teacher

    Daud Abdel-Aziz is Atmosphere's 9th & 10th Grade Science Teacher. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Rutgers University, and a Master in Business Administration from Kent State University. He is in his second year of Graduate Studies majoring in Science Education at The Relay Graduate School of Education. He previously worked in the pharmaceutical industry, consulted in the oil services industry in Southern Africa, and taught at middle and high schools in The Middle East, and middle school science in Brooklyn New York. Two of his favorite sayings are: 1. Time only goes in one direction. 2. "Invent yourself, then reinvent yourself."

  • Special Education Teacher

    Elizabeth Rivera is Atmosphere's 9th/10th Grade Special Education Teacher. She received her Bachelor's degree from Binghamton University and her Master’s in Special Education from Touro College. Ms. Rivera is certified in Special Education. Previously, Ms. Rivera taught at The Lorge School where she began her teaching career. At The Lorge School, Ms. Rivera provided behavioral and academic interventions for students of the highest need for 17 years ranging from K-12. She has dedicated her life to helping students learn the strategies needed to be successful both academically and socio-emotionally.

  • French Teacher

    Enrico Joseph is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th Grade French Teacher. He has taught History, Ethics, Theology, Religion, Politics, International laws, Philosophy, English, Spanish, and French. Enrico has a Specialized Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from the University of Montreal, a Master's of Arts in Theology from Sherbrooke University, and a Ph.D. in Theology from Laval University in Quebec City, Canada. He is a published author and presented at several international conferences. Enrico believes in French because it is a major cultural component of USA culture, from our nation's national beginnings. Enrico is fluent in French, Haitian Creole, English, and Spanish. Mes amis et amies, let's have together a wonderful educational year. A la prochaine!

  • Art Teacher

    Hector Ogando is Atmosphere 9th & 10th Grade Art Teacher. He graduated from Quinnipiac University with a Bachelor Degree in Arts and Science in Game Design and development. He moved to Texas to pursue a Certificate Art Program at SMU Guildhall. Where he was part of a development team that created Goofballs, a 3D soccer game that can be found on Steam. He taught at a high school after school program for a year teaching 3D modeling to students. Then taught for three years at an online program teaching middle school students art, coding, and design.

  • Social Studies Teacher

    Ian Stewart is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Social Studies Teacher. Ian has been teaching High School Social Studies for sixteen years. A proud New Yorker since moving from the West Coast in 1997, Ian has lived in three of the city's five boroughs. After a two-year adventure in Honduras, Ian returned to New York City classrooms in the fall of 2021. When he's not teaching, Ian immerses himself in the music of the Grateful Dead and the exploits of Manchester City Football Club. He is also a proud parent of two cats (Cappy, Tracha) that he adopted while living in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

  • English Teacher

    Indiana Aleman is Atmosphere's 10th Grade English Teacher. Ms. Aleman was raised in New York City, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies from Hunter College, and a Television News Production Certificate from New York University. Ms. Aleman received a Master of Science in Educational Technology from Barry University, and an International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme Certificate in Language & Literature from the Center for the Advancement and Study of International Education in Atlanta. With 17 years of teaching experience, Ms. Aleman has taught many subjects under the English domain at the middle school, high school, and college levels. She believes all students are capable of achieving academic success, and is grateful and excited to be a part of the Atmosphere community.

  • Jaiprakash Shiwprasad is Atmopshere's 9th & 10th grade Math Teacher. Jaiprakash attended Mercy College for his undergraduate studies. Currently, he is working on his graduate studies at Mercy College. He worked in both academic and recreational settings with students. Some places include the YMCA, talented and gifted, children of promise, and success academy. Aside from work, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, having BBQs, taking road trips, music, etc.

  • Jeann Baker-Decambre is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th Grade Math Teacher. She has earned her degree in Mathematics from Marymount College. Mrs. Baker-DeCambre has been teaching math for over 20 years, both at the High School and Middle School level. She's Certified in New York State and Florida. Mrs. Baker-DeCambre enjoys motivating and aspiring her scholars to succeed.

  • Social Studies Teacher

    Jeffrey Gross is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Social Studies Teacher. Previously, he taught Global History at International Leadership Charter High School in the Bronx and American History at Westchester Torah Academy and Salesian High School in New Rochelle, NY. Jeff earned a BA in Psychology from George Washington University, a Master in Business Administration from The Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania, and a Master of Science in Teaching from Iona College. Before changing careers, he sold taxable bonds to institutional investors on Wall Street.

  • English Teacher

    John Gallagher is Atmosphere’s 9th-grade teacher of Pre-AP English, as well as Regents English Lab. With twenty years of teaching experience, Mr. Gallagher leads students into new realms of self-discovery and understanding of how they relate to their world. Mr. Gallagher has spent the last six years teaching in New York City Charter High Schools. During that time he has been instrumental in raising student passing rates on the ELA Regents. He also has extensive experience teaching SAT and ACT prep all over Long Island and parts of Queens. Mr. Gallagher has also been involved in musical instruction and studio recording engineering in previous schools.

  • Health/Physical Education Teacher

    Jonee Carvalho is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th Grade Health/Physical Education Teacher.

  • Substitute Teacher

    Kimone Hall is a 9th &10th Grade Substitute Teacher. She earned her bachelor's Degree from Buffalo State College and has been working with children of all ages for years. She is excited to further her career in teaching. She aspires to give every scholar their best chance at a great education as well as encourage scholars to obtain skills that can help them in their everyday life.

  • Spanish Teacher

    Luis Baron is Atmosphere's 9th & 10th Grade Spanish teacher. Mr. Baron has a Bachelor of Arts from Hunter College and New York State Certified Teacher of Foreign Languages and an Associate in Network Computing from LaGuardia Community College. Mr. Baron has been an adjunct professor at Brooklyn College and a Spanish tutor at LaGuardia Community College. He is convinced of the power of education to sow critical thinking in his students.

  • Science Teacher

    Monique Wilson is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Science Teacher. Ms. Wilson was born in Nassau, Bahamas and migrated with her mom here at a young age. She grew up in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Ms. Wilson has been teaching middle school for almost 20 years and has taught science every year of her career. After graduating from LIU-Brooklyn, she later continued to pursue and complete her Master of Science at Kaplan University. Her passion for education grounds her in teaching her students how to "THINK" about their thinking and helps them use that as their foundation for understanding the concepts and laws of science. Her years of experience are just a part of the skill and expertise that she brings to our teaching staff and Atmosphere family.

  • English Teacher

    Panagiota Kapanika (Penny) is Atmosphere's 10th Grade English Teacher. She has enjoyed serving the communities she has lived in as a teacher and school leader since coming to NYC two decades ago to pursue her Master's degree at Teachers College. Her classroom has been home to many English and Social Studies courses, and when she is not enjoying time with her students there she can be found enjoying some good music, food, art, or movies.

  • Math Teacher

    Patrick Cooney is Atmosphere's 10th Grade Mathematics Teacher. He has been teaching for 14 years and has a Bachelor's degree in mathematics from Ithaca College, and a MAT from Ithaca as well. He has taught Geometry for eight years and is very excited to work with the scholars at Atmosphere. Get ready to have fun and get mathing!

  • Math Teacher

    Phiola McFarlane is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Math Teacher. She has over 15 years of experience as a mentor and classroom teacher. In addition to her supervisory certifications, Mrs. McFarlane holds a Master's Degree in Public Administration. She values working in collaborative environments that support learning from the soul. Her motto is "Math is my Gift & Teaching is my Passion!" Helping society to cultivate inquisitive math students is her lifelong vocation. She enjoys outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking & camping.

  • English Teacher

    Raquel Sommerville is Atmosphere's 9th Grade English Teacher. She teaches 5 sections of Critical Reading and Critical Writing. Ms. Sommerville holds both a Master of Arts in Teaching (Secondary English Education) and a Bachelor of Arts in English from SUNY New Paltz. She is New York State certified as an English teacher. Previously,  Ms. Sommerville was an English Teacher and a Department Chair at VOICE Charter School.

  • English Teacher

    M. Skye Holly is Atmosphere's 9th Grade English Teacher. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from The New School. She holds a Master of Fine Arts from Fairleigh Dickinson University and a Master of Science from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. Her career as a writer and community journalist intertwined when she entered education as a writing workshop coach and facilitator. Ms. Holly's work as a writer, editor, and journalist span 20-plus years. She has taught in public and charter schools and 2022 marked her 10th year as an educator. A native New Yorker of Haitian descent, she looks forward to spreading the love of "the Brooklyn way" and amplifying the Bronx brilliance of Atmosphere Academy's stars.

  • ICT ELA teacher

    Tami Silverstein is Atmosphere’s 9th/10th grade ICT ELA teacher. Tami attended Bloomsburg University in PA and received her Bachelor’s degree in Interpreting American Sign Language with a minor in Deaf ED/Special ED. She then continued her education and received her Master’s degree in Students with Disabilities with a concentration in Autism from CW Post Long Island University. This will be Tami’s first year teaching at Atmosphere and her 15th year teaching overall. Before coming to Atmosphere Tami taught Math, ELA, Science, Health/PE, and American Sign Language. She also taught Career Education at Lexington School for the Deaf as well as coached soccer, basketball, and Track. Tami currently lives in Queens and is excited to join the Atmosphere community.

  • Science Teacher

    Teresa Rountree is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th Grade Science Teacher. Ms. Rountree was raised in a low-income community in New York. Many years of her professional career were dedicated to working in nonprofit organizations. She spent 7 years supporting families in the community she grew up in as an Afterschool Program Director. She has earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology/Zoology and a Master’s Degree in Adolescent Science Education. Additionally, she has 9 years of experience teaching in Bronx middle schools. Her love for teaching science is partially credited to her 7th and 9th grade science teachers. They cultivated her love for science in the way she hopes to do for her students.

  • Mandarin Teacher

    Xiaohan Yang is Atmosphere 9th & 10th Grade Mandarin Teacher. Ms. Yang holds a Master of Educational Studies in Urban Education from Johns Hopkins University and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the Florida Institute of Technology. She also has the PSC Mandarin Chinese Certification and NTCE Chinese National Teacher Certification. She is a proactive and caring teacher with over five years of teaching experience in Mandarin Chinese. She eagerly offers help to young scholars at Atmosphere Academy.