High School

High School

Operations Team

  • 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!

  • 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.

  • Community Manager

    Moddestine Cobbs is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th-grade Community Manager. She graduated with a Master's in Psychology from Southern New Hampshire University. Moddestine brings 7+ years of experience working in the education system and enjoys helping families connect to an excellent educational environment for their children. During Moddestine's downtime, she enjoys watching movies and spending quality time with her son.

  • Operations Associate

    Jeralyn grew up in Inwood, Manhattan, and is pursuing Project Management. Jeralyn enjoys making content and helping others. Growing up in Inwood has made her passionate about building relationships and guiding her community and young adults through their journey. Jeralyn is excited to bring her previous experience at a charter school not only as a staff there but also as a student here to Atmosphere.

  • Data Associate

    Katie Thayer is an Atmosphere Data Associate. Katie most recently worked for a non-profit that manages a local universal preschool program in North Carolina as their outreach and communications coordinator. Katie has a Human Development and Family Studies degree from the University of North Carolina. She will graduate with a master's in Education Policy from Teachers College in May 2023. Though her career has been primarily in early childhood education, Katie has worked with middle and high school students as a literacy tutor and a volunteer baseball coach. She's excited to join the data team and support students' learning and success.

  • School Aide

    Sania Zain is Atmosphere's 9th & 10th Grade School Aide. Ms. Zain attended Lehman University for her graduate studies in Psychology and minor in Sociology. She was previously a tutor and worked as a Program Aide and an Art Teacher in an after-school program. Also, she worked as a Medical Assistant in the clinic. Sania's primary goal is to complete her Master's in School Counseling and become independent. She enjoys helping others, such as Social work; she also likes doing art, writing poetry/stories, traveling, and is a nature lover. She is also learning more about her religion (Islam), which gives her hope to live a happy life.

Culture Team

  • 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 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.

  • Culture Associate

    Jonathan Berenguer is Atmosphere's 10th-grade Culture Associate. He graduated from Lehman College with a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Science. He also holds certificates in Social Justice Reform and Entrepreneurship. Jonathan brings 15+ years of experience working with high school students. He's worked as an academic/college counselor, SEL instructor, and director of grant-sponsored programs. Having been born and raised in the Bronx, Jonathan has led and organized multiple annual empowerment seminars to inspire Bronx students to unlock their potential and strive for greatness.

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.

  • Program Associate

    Esau Greene is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th-grade Program Associate. He graduated from Quinnipiac University with a BA in Political Science and Sociology. Upon earning his degrees, Esau worked as a 7th-grade math teacher in the South Bronx. During this time, he finalized the creation of his non for profit organization EWRL. An NGO centered around providing business and legal services to women of rural Liberia. As the organization took form and grew, he took a temporary leave of absence, where he began work in marketing and production at Warner Bros in Los Angeles, CA. However, Esau wanted to continue his passion for developing young leaders, which brought him back to NY.

  • 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

  • Science Teacher

    Andrew Vlassis is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Science Teacher. Andrew graduated from Queens College with a Bachelor of Science Degree and pursued his Master of Science Instructional Degree from NYIT. Andrew also obtained his School District Leader/School Building Leader degree from Stony Brook University. He joins us after having retired from teaching for 25 years in Long Island. His expertise is in Chemistry and Forensic Science. He will introduce all Living Environment Regents Labs and push into various science classes. Andrew is happily married and has two children (Alexandra, 7yrs old, and Andrew, 4yrs old).

  • 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.

  • English Teacher

    Brandon Coreale is Atmosphere's 9th Grade English Teacher. Brandon attended Texas A&M University (Corpus Christi), where he received a BA in English Literature and his MA in English - Rhetoric & Composition. Brandon began his teaching career nine years ago in Houston, TX, with 9th graders and eventually ended up teaching 9-12 English/Language Arts and English as a Second Language. In addition, he was an Academic Coach, Cheer Coach, staff pianist for the Jazz Band and the Theatre Arts Department, and Title I Coordinator and Dyslexia Specialist. He believes an excellent education is the foundation for a more equitable society and leads students to a choice-filled life. Brandon's favorite books are "A Man Without a Country" by Kurt Vonnegut and "Go Set a Watchman" by Harper Lee.

  • Math Teacher

    Caterina Plymouth is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Math Teacher. Caterina received her Bachelor's degree from Nyack College, New York, and has been a middle school STEM teacher for the past three years. She is currently looking forward to continuing her education journey by getting a master's degree in education and continuing to grow as an educator.

  • 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).

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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 & 10th Grade Physical Education Teacher. Mrs. Carvalho holds a Bachelor of Arts in Exercise Science and a Masters Degree in Education from Concorida University in Irvine. She has over 20 years of experience working with youth. Jonee is passionate about helping scholars obtain the tools that are essential for living a happy and healthy life. Mrs. Carvalho is excited to be a part of the Atmosphere community.

  • Teaching Assistant

    Ke'aisa Washington is Atmosphere's 9th Grade Teaching Assistant. She appreciates building connections with scholars in any classroom where she is needed. She previously worked as a 1:1 paraprofessional, working strictly with Special Education students. She is gaining new experiences and knowledge. She is thrilled to contribute and become a part of Atmosphere's outstanding growing community.

  • French Teacher

    Louisket Edmond is Atmosphere's High School French Teacher. He is originally from Gonave island, Haiti. Mr. Edmond completed his dual Bachelor's degree in French and Spanish literature at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and a Master's degree in French education at the University of Maine in Orono, Maine. He studied abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico and taught ESL while in Oaxaca. He also escorted students from the University of Maine to Laval University in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada and taught them French while in Quebec City. Mr. Edmond focused on Curriculum as a doctoral student at American College of Education and he currently creates a culture of encouragement in his classroom at AAPCS.

  • 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.

  • Math Teacher

    Moshen Shawarby is Atmosphere's 9th and 10th-grade Math Teacher. Dr. Shawarby has extensive experience in Mathematics teaching and school leadership. He has expertise in STEM, Special Education, remedial Math, and delivering instructional materials accessible to students with developmental disabilities. He has two NYS provisional certificates to teach Math in Middle and Secondary schools and two NYC certificates. He has the skill and training to develop students' conceptual understanding and skills in basic and complex mathematical topics.

  • 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!

  • 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.

  • 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.