Pre-K & Kindergarten Charla has been a member of our school community since 1984. As a parent and then as a teacher, she has seen Clear Spring develop and is a vital part of our family. Charla specializing in early childhood education, has extensive Montessori training, is a member of the Junior Master Gardeners Program, and has studied Neurological brain development of children as well as their Social-Emotional growth. "We do not teach children to learn through harshness but by paying attention to what amuses them."
Head Teacher Rigdon has a bachelor's degree in fine arts, a master's degree in education, and 25 years of teaching experience. Throughout his time as an educator, he has received many awards for his work including Teacher of The Year for the Bentonville, AR public school district for the 2005/06 school year and The Walton Arts Center Outstanding Educator Award. He also has participated in extensive educational training, including Skill Path Leadership Training, Love and Logic Training, Arkansas A+, and Great Expectation of Arkansas Institute. "I love working for Clear Spring because I am given the freedom to allow my students to learn through discovery and hands on learning. It is truly a student-centered curriculum.” firstname.lastname@example.org
Core Teacher Kristi is the Yoga and Health and Wellness instructor at Clear Spring School. She taught yoga and meditation at the school in 2016-17 school and returned in 2021 as a teacher assistant and Health and Wellness specialist. Kristi acquired her Bachelor’s degree in Food, Human Nutrition, and Hospitality from the University of Arkansas, 2010. Following graduation, she moved to San Francisco to further explore the hospitality industry at large. It was there that she discovered a new direction of interest in yoga and the impactful health benefits resulting from the practice. She relocated back to Northwest Arkansas and emerged in yoga teacher trainings in 2016 to present. She states that getting the students in touch with their bodies and minds and surpassing the illusion of limitations has been the ultimate fulfillment in teaching.
Core Teacher Chris has worked in education for over 15 years. He studied drama at the University of Arkansas. A Clear Spring alumnus, he worked in the Pre-Primary for 10 years, as well as in other education facilities around the state. He returned to Clear Spring in 2018 as the core Lower Middle school teacher, where he is passionate about sharing his love of hands-on learning and community engagement. email@example.com
Core Teacher Juanita is a professional naturalist and a member of the Kings Rivershed Partnership. She is an expert on water and land use and teaches a variety of environmental studies blocks including river studies and geology.
Librarian Ginny has a Bachelor's degree in English and a Master's degree in French. She has been a youth mentor and tutor for over 15 years. She has spent time teaching English in France and also teaching French to students in Arkansas. "Kindness begets kindness, respect begets respect; learning is infectious when you make it fun! I appreciate the freedom teachers and students at Clear Spring have to explore concepts in multiple ways, to pursue their true interests and learn self-reliance at a young age." firstname.lastname@example.org
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PrePrimary Assistant Victoria will be working with Charla Destry at our preprimary and kindergarten campus. Victoria is a Health & Wellness Professional. She and her husband own Eureka Integrative Wellness. Victoria offers our student a variety of health & wellness curriculum in her classes including yoga, preparing healthy foods, self-care and nutrition.
Beekeeping & Gardening Bethany Smith directs the Clear Spring School’s Beekeeping and Edible Garden Program. She’s been a successful beekeeper and small-scale homesteader for several years and is the owner of Sedge and Bees Apiaries, LLC. Her honey was awarded 3rd in the Bemis Honey Bee Farm state-wide competition in 2017. Bethany’s family moved to Eureka Springs in 2018, and her son attends Clear Spring. All children need the experience of caring for living, growing beings very different from themselves, the knowledge that they can do hard things, skills and confidence to create their own food and supplies, and encouragement to appreciate the natural world around them. Bethany enjoys providing these opportunities for the kids at Clear Spring.
Sewing & Fiber Arts Mark has been sewing since the age of nine. He spent 25 years in professional theatre as a costume designer in his hometown of Little Rock before moving to NW Arkansas in 1997 for a life change. He designed and constructed period-appropriate costumes for the Arkansas State Parks system but soon became interested in designing natural-fiber clothing for women. In 2000 he opened his own boutique, Regalia Handmade Clothing in downtown Fayetteville, then moved it to Eureka Springs 14 years ago. Mark is very excited to be working with the Clear Spring students because he knows that sewing increases hand/eye coordination, problem-solving, and opens a world of creative possibilities.
Wisdom of the Hands Program Doug has been a professional woodworker for 40+ years and is the author of 13 woodworking books and over 90 articles in woodworking magazines and educational journals. He carries a BA in political science, and has been with Clear Spring School since 2001. Doug was named an Arkansas Living Treasure by the Arkansas Arts Council and Department of Heritage in 2009. "I believe that children and adults learn best (most thoroughly, most efficiently and to greatest lasting effect) when their hands are engaged and they are doing real things in service tot their interests and those of their families and community." email@example.com
Shilah Molina -
Fine Arts & Music Shilah is a professional musician as well as an artist who has worked in lots of art media and shares her enthusiastic creative approaches with all the students in her classes.
Math Teacher Aly will be working with our students on a variety of math projects throughout the year.
Drama & Creative Writing Kendra has a bachelor’s in fine arts from the University of Arkansas. She is currently teaching drama and creative writing here at Clear Spring. She has been involved in the theatre throughout her life and wants to blend creative writing and drama to help the students explore all the possibilities through the fine arts. Her goal is to help students gain a sense of self-worth and security. Students can find their voice and confidence and experience the many avenues of theatre arts, such as screen writing, costume design, set building, production, and performing.
Woodshop Assistant & Makerspace Teacher Dustin brings a variety of talents to Clear Spring School. He worked for the Amazeum as well as Makerspaces in NWA. He is currently assisting Doug in the Woodshop as well as helping students and teacher with Makerspace projects.
Spanish & Cultural Studies Carmen Rose has been with Clear Spring since 2016. She has worked as an educator, activities director, events coordinator, Spanish teacher, and culinary arts instructor. Carmen has been influential in getting the culinary program off the ground and her passion for cooking inspires the students in her classes. "Communication is very basic way for humanity to evolve. I believe humanity depends especially now on the continuation of our ways and languages. Every Language is a valuable tool for us to become successful and as free as we want to be. I want to teach my students to open their minds to travel, to connect with people and traditions, to be able to empathize with those in different situations. I love being a part of the Clear Spring Community. I get to teach my culture and traditions to my children and their classmates. We get to share a wonderful learning experience within our families and community." Carmen is currently our Spanish teacher and our cultural studies specialist.
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Staff & Administration
Jessica FitzPatrick, PhD.
Head of School Jessica is Head of School, at Clear Spring School this year. This is a return to her educational home. She began teaching at the Pre-School with Charla in 1999 and worked her way through the grades at Clear Spring until 2010 when she left to explore education from a global perspective. She taught in South Korea, Uganda and studied in New Zealand and has now returned to Eureka and Clear Spring School. She has a Masters in Progressive Education from Goddard College in Vermont and has just completed her PhD. In teacher professional development and the assessment of 21st century skills through the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. Jessica@clearspringschool.org
Assistant to the Head of School and Director of Finances. Nathina will be working with Jessica to oversee daily operations and school finances. firstname.lastname@example.org
Office Manager Stephanie is the welcoming face behind the front office desk. She helps the office with a variety of tasks from managing attendance, sending notices to parents and scheduling visits and meetings.
Maintenance Jeremy keeps everything running at Clear Spring School. He helps with repairs, setting up technology and driving the school vans.
Director of Development Dawn has a Ph.D. in Arts Education and a Masters in Studio Art. She taught studio art, art education and art history at the college level for over 26 years. She works with the board, volunteers, and staff to promote the school. She also coordinates our fundraising events, writes grants and designs promotional materials.