Our Teachers

Meet Our Team

Katie Pfeif

Katie Pfeif grew up in Newport Beach and graduated from USC with both a BA in Communications and MA in Education. She taught both third & fifth grade before putting her teaching career on hold to raise her four children, one is at University of Wisconsin, one at the University of Georgia, and two at CDMHS. For the last two years, Katie has been a preschool teacher before joining the Seashore Family. In her free time, you will find her at the beach, with family and friends, or spending time with her two Aussie puppies.

Tina Yang

Tina Yang was born and raised in Taipei, Taiwan. A graduate of California State University, Fullerton, she is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Education from National University. She is a passionate, enthusiastic teacher devoted to student development. Specializing in Mandarin Chinese bilingual education and mathematics, Tina uses interactive, multi-sensory teaching methods to focus on the individual needs of each student. She enjoys working across cultures and communicating with students and parents. Tina has worked at Seashore for over 7 years and loves the individualized attention she is able to give each student.

Katie Donahue

Katie Donahue has worked at Seashore Academy in various capacities over the past seven years, from summer camp counselor to English tutor, American Sign Language instructor (ASL) and substitute teacher. After graduating from Arizona State University she has come to work full time at Seashore Academy as an ASL speciality teacher. She also excels at Art Masters and has stepped up into that role.

Ashley West

A native of Newport Beach, CA, Ashley West graduated from the University of Arizona and earned her California teaching credential. After teaching 5th grade at Newport Coast Elementary, Ashley craved a smaller, more intimate work setting and spent a number of years working in real estate and medical practices. Since then, she’s combined her business expertise and teaching background to become the Lead of the Newport Beach Campus.

Ian Batstone

Hi! My name is Mr. Ian. (Ian Batstone) I’ve been teaching for 19 years, mostly Middle and High School English and Social Studies. I love teaching. It’s never boring. I love discovery learning and student-centered teaching. My hobbies are guitar, singing, volleyball, soccer and taxidermy. Just kidding, I don’t know how to tax…dermies…or whatever.

Victoria Abbot

Victoria Abbott was born and raised in Newport Beach. She went to Andersen Elementary, Mater Dei, and Corona Del Mar High School. Victoria completed her B.S. at The University of Arizona majoring in Deaf Studies and minoring in Sociology. Shortly after graduation, Victoria entered into a master’s program at Grand Canyon University. In May of 2020, Victoria graduated with an M. Ed. in Secondary Education, earning her teaching credential in English and American Sign Language. Victoria found that American Sign Language was a great outlet for her because it gave her a chance to be hands-on! Victoria loves to go out to dinner, cook, travel, and spend time with friends and family. Victoria is excited to be a part of the Seashore community!

Robin McCarthy

Robin McCarthy has been an educator for almost 20 years. She was an elementary school teacher for 14 years, and had her own tutoring business, and most recently was a lead preschool teacher at St Andrew’s. Robin is so excited to be teaching T-K at Seashore Academy this fall. She loves working with children and it has been her passion to instill a love of learning for all of her students. Robin has lived in Newport with her husband Joseph and our four kids for over 14 years. Her oldest is 23 and her youngest is 10. She is part of a busy family that loves to surf, ski, and hike. During Robin’s free time she can be found outside enjoying nature with friends or family.

Jasmine O'Hea

Jasmine joined the Seashore Academy team in February 2020. She is currently a teaching artist at South Coast Repertory and previously taught the performing arts at Christian Youth Theater and Newport Mesa Unified School District. Jasmine has worked with students at Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes, a living-history Smithsonian museum, and Mariners Church. She loves creating interactive lessons and seeing students grow passionate about what they are learning. Jasmine graduated summa cum laude from Wheaton College, IL with a degree in Communication and Theater and is a Master of Arts in Teaching candidate at USC.

Ivette Mendoza

Ivette Mendoza graduated from UCSB with a Bachelors of Art in Sociology and Language, Culture & Society. She obtained her Masters in Education and teaching credential in English from Pepperdine University. Ivette’s teaching style includes visualization, cooperative learning, as well as inquiry-based instruction. Her interests include running, reading, writing, and exploring new hiking trails. Ivette looks forward to meeting and working with Seashore students!

Carrie Frankson

Carrie Frankson is a CDMHS, UCSB, and Chapman alum. Carrie also has a master’s in Education. Since 2006, she has taught elementary, art, and children with special needs. Carrie loves school and learning. As an artist herself, she tries to integrate creativity into every lesson.

Nyna Murrietta

Nyna Murrietta studied at California State University of Fullerton where she received her B.A. in Child and Adolescent Development. She is currently pursuing her Masters Degree in Education. Nyna’s teaching style is a caring and structured approach. When not teaching, Nyna enjoys spending time with her husband, taking care of their plants and shopping for home decor.

Elizabeth Saukkola

Elizabeth Saukkola is the 5th/6th Grade Science Teacher at Seashore and will be exploring Earth Science with our students this year. Her past experiences in teaching include 6 years of teaching Earth Science, Biology and Chemistry at Laguna Beach High School, and 12 years of running a private tutoring business for High School Students across Orange County. After graduating from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a degree in BioChem, she received her teaching credential at Cal State Fullerton. Elizabeth is excited to be teaching science at seashore academy with a hands-on, activity based approach to science. Her goal for each student is to help them love school, and to spark a curiosity for science and an appreciation for the beauty and complexity of the world around them.

Lexy Weber

Lexy Weber grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona and attended the University of Arizona. Lexy graduated with a BA in education and minor in psychology. She taught for 3 years at Orange Tree Christian and is excited to start her teaching journey at Seashore Academy. Lexy loves spending time with her family and friends. In her free time she is outdoors on walks, or at the beach!

Allison Phillips

Allison Phillips is excited to be back in the classroom after taking time off to raise her three children. Her kids are now 18, 16 and 11. Her son Jack will also be attending Seashore Academy in the 5th grade. Allison is teaching middle school math and supporting high school students as well. She has her California Single Subject Teaching Credential in math and has experience teaching at the high school level. Allison loves to take her dog George “Bailey ” on long walks on the beach, ride her peloton, read historical fiction, and cook food that her kids will not eat. She is excited to get kids excited about math!

Savannah Farrell

Savannah Farrell graduates magna cum laude from CSU Sacramento, receiving her BA in child development. She has worked as a teacher for the last 3 years and worked with children for the past 8 years. Her teaching style is to have her lessons be interactive and cooperative to get the children engaged Mx she is excited to teach at Seashore Academy with the first graders. She loves working with children, helping them learn and become independent. In her free time, she likes to be with her family and friends, and doing art.

Tiffani Rosing

Tiffani Rosing grew up in Newport beach going to local schools and then graduated from CDMHS. She went on to USC and graduated with a BS in Education with a minor in Fine Arts. She then attended Pepperdine and graduated with a Masters degree in Education with a Professional Clear, CLAD Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. Tiffani has taught grades K-8 in many different settings from Title One schools in LA to NMUSD and a private school. She paused her teaching career to raise her 3 boys but has stayed current and active with her sons’ schools, district and teachers.

Tiffani is very excited to be teaching 2nd / 3rd grades at Seashore this year. She loves educating all types of children and believes that no matter what their abilities they can thrive. Everyday her goal is to instill a love for learning and a confidence that with the right attitude nothing is impossible!

Tiffani lives a fast paced life with her husband and their 3 boys who are aged 16,14 and 12 as well as her one girl, Penny, who is their beloved rescue pup. Tiffani enjoys hikes (ask her about Mt.Whitney), riding bikes,walking Penny, skiing,yoga ,a good Latte, road trips, back bay walks, watching her crew surf/ wake board or snowboarding and dinners in her backyard with family and friends.

Victoria Taylor

Victoria Taylor was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and is passionate about arts and education. She obtained her BA in English at Westmont College in Santa Barbara CA. One of her passions has always been to write, and as a Senior in high school, Victoria found inspiration in her advanced placement English class, where her interest for literature and writing was ignited. She has been an editorial assistant and published writer for two magazines; nationally and regionally and has also earned her ASCAP publishing as a songwriter. Victorias teaching career has spanned for over 20 years in a variety of venues; Southcoast & Tennessee Repertory theaters, after school programs and currently teaching private voice and piano. After creating multiple programs in the arts, writing and tutoring courses throughout the United States, Victoria deepest desire is to help educate the next generation by investing in student development and excellence. Victoria loves to cook and enjoys long walks!

Mr. Wade Banowsky

Mr. Wade Banowsky is originally from Dallas, Texas. He has degrees in Special Education and Sports Marketing from the University of Arizona. Wade teaches 7th and 8th-grade science. Prior to teaching science at Seashore Academy, he has taught in both 1st and 5th-grade classrooms in nearby school districts. Wade still works privately with students who have been diagnosed with learning disabilities in reading, writing, literacy, and comprehension training. When Wade is not teaching, he spends his time enjoying hobbies like skydiving, scuba diving, surfing, mountain biking, riding motorcycles, and camping. In the classroom, Wade values responsibility, respect, fairness, trustworthiness, cultural awareness, and honesty. If you happen to see Mr. Banowsky on campus, feel free to walk right up and say hello!

McKenna Vargas

McKenna is excited to be part of the Seashore Academy team! She is a recent graduate of Syracuse University in New York where she studied stage management. She’s spent time studying in London and working Off-Broadway in New York City. She has worked with children at Camp James in Newport Beach for the past 3 years and as a private instructional aide and tutor. She is currently looking to teach English abroad next year and later attend either Cal State Fullerton or UCI to obtain her Masters of Arts in Teaching and CA teaching credential. Her teaching style is to engage students by tailoring the lessons to their interests in an interactive and collaborative way.

Clare Dahl

Clare Dahl is a native of Southern California. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of College of Charleston. Since graduation, her career has focused on teaching and child development. Recently, she was with Rainbow Rising Child Care responsible for education in child development. Clare is pursuing her teaching credential. Clare has always loved teaching children. Clare’s goal for all her students is for them to love school and to love learning. When Clare is not teaching, she enjoys sailing, being with friends and family, and giving back to her community.

Stefanie Baeker

Stefanie Baeker is a native from Germany and – besides English – fluent in Spanish and French. She has combined her passion for travel, studying other cultures and teaching through leading study tours to Mayan territories in Central America, as well as throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Stefanie has been involved in education since the late 90s and gained teaching experience while acting as a Program Director in a gymnastics school, through teaching ESL to ages 3 – 19 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico; as well as teaching language classes to private students of various ages. She worked as a Recreation Leader at the Specialized Recreation Center in Walnut Creek; and tutored at-risk youth in Richmond elementary schools.

Stefanie has taught German at the German School Campus in Newport Beach and holds the DLL6 certificate for curriculum creation issued by the Goethe Institute.

At Seashore Academy, she is thrilled about teaching subjects like Science, History, Public Speaking, STEM and Spanish.

Stefanie’s other passions are working with natural healing techniques such as Phototherapy, Reiki; and – as a certified astrologer – the application of cosmic sciences in daily life.

Marlene Dandler

Founder, Seashore Academy

Jocelyn Quintana

Jocelyn Quintana was born and raised in Los Angeles. She has attended CalState Longbeach majoring in Recreational Therapy. She joined the Seashore team in August 2020. She teaches her primary language of Spanish to grades Tk to 4th grade along with administrative work. Some of her hobbies include working out and hanging out with friends.

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