Academic Policy Committee
The Academic Policy Committee supervises the academic operation of the Charter School and ensures the fulfillment of the mission and specific levels of achievement for the educational program of Discovery Peak. It is responsible for overseeing the mission and vision of Discovery Peak and provides an important link between the school and the community. The APC also acts as a trustee for public and private funds provided in support of the School.
The Discovery Peak Academic Policy Committee membership is made up of dedicated individuals who have worked to bring the vision of Discovery Peak Charter to a reality. Membership includes the following individuals:
I have lived in Alaska since 1993, moving here from Arkansas because I wanted to. I was looking for an adventure and have yet to be disappointed. Both my children were born and raised here and attended FNSBSD schools. Outdoor activities, watching a good movie, traveling, and spending time with family and friends are my favorite things to do. I retired from the FNSBSD in 2019 after 34 years of teaching. Most of my career was in North Pole, Alaska teaching 4th grade.
As one of the founders of Discovery Peak Charter School, I believe we have been an integral addition to the North Pole community. The philosophies of our school; individualized, personalized learning, science and social studies curriculum with a focus on community involvement, and increased, intentional, integrated activity empower students to take ownership of their education propelling them into success. I am proud to be part of Discovery Peak’s success.Vice President, Teacher, & Parent
Alaska, specifically North Pole, has been my home since I was born. I sincerely love it here and my husband and I plan to make it our home indefinitely. I love being outdoors and enjoying our seasonal pleasures from cross country skiing to gardening. I have two children who will be going through North Pole area schools.
I stumbled into my love of education and kids accidentally through my love of Alaskan summers and being outdoors. With a Bachelor’s in Organizational Communication, I began to look for a profession that would fit my desired lifestyle (which included fishing, and hiking, and cabins). Little did I know, that would lead me into my passion for education. I earned my teaching certificate through the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2009, and directly after graduation began a job at North Pole Elementary. I enjoy my job and the challenges it brings. My traditional teaching experience includes Kindergarten, First, Third, Fourth, Fifth, and several split level classes.
The ideas behind Discovery Peak Charter School are deeply rooted in my, and my colleagues, beliefs in what drives students to learn; learning by doing! We want our future students to have opportunities to help their community while receiving an education that fits their individual needs, and allows them time for movement to help stay focused and healthy.Kelly EgglestonTreasurer & Parent
Former elementary school teacher and current stay at home mom and small business owner. Kelly has 3 kids that attend Discovery Peak Charter School. Kelly enjoys spending time with her family, exploring AK, and horseback riding.Heather JorgensonSecretary & Parent
Born and raised in Alaska, I have never wanted to live anywhere else. I love both the unique people and the beauty of this state. After graduating from Palmer High School, I left for a year, so I could receive training as a medic and operating room assistant in the US Army Reserve. I served for eight years while I worked as an ophthalmic assistant in Anchorage. It was a wonderful field of work that I continued for the next 10 years, even after I moved to North Pole. Assisting the patients and being their advocate for better health and eyesight enriched my life and helped me to gain compassion for others. I furthered my education in the ophthalmic field and received the title of Certified Ophthalmic Assistant.
After my rewarding time as a medical professional, I knew I wanted to continue helping others with their health and well-being. I studied and became a Licensed Massage Therapist, first owning my own practice then down-scaling when I became a widowed mother of a spirited 18-month-old. Changes in life are what you make of them. Living alone with my young daughter I decided to pursue an Associates Degree in Disability Services with the intention of working as a speech therapy assistant in the school district locally. I graduated Magna Cum Laude the year my daughter was promoted from Kindergarten at Midnight Sun Elementary.
I have been working as a substitute for the past 4 years and look forward to continuing this for many years to come. I am devoted to this community and feel amazingly fortunate to raise my child here and contribute by working with the amazing students and educators I have come to know. Speech and Language is my passion as a para-professional and living in a community that strongly supports the growth of our young people is very rewarding. That is why when I heard about Discovery Peak Charter School I was so excited to become part of another educational endeavor. The School’s mission and philosophies embody key things I see missing from some curriculums – lots of physical activity, exploration of their environment and educational materials, and an appreciation for community with a focus on service. As the Secretary of the Academic Policy Committee, I enjoy serving the needs of our students and their families as well as working collaboratively with other board members and staff at Discovery Peak.Shannon TrizzinoTeacher & Parent
Hello! My name is Shannon Trizzino and I am a transplant to Alaska from the military. My family and I love being here in this great state that has so many opportunities to do amazing things outside. Before coming to Alaska and becoming a teacher, I was an officer in the Army and an Apache helicopter pilot for eight years. I traveled all over the world and flew to some pretty amazing places, but Alaska is where my family and I want to stay. Where else can you get such fantastic hiking, camping, trails, and views?
The environment and science have always been my passions in life, so in 2005 I graduated from the United States Military Academy (West Point) with a B.S. in Environmental Science. I love to tie science and the idea of environmental sustainability into all aspects of the classroom. I received my teaching license from UAF in 2015, thanks to their Post-Bac program, and taught on Eielson AFB before coming to Discovery Peak to be the Kindergarten teacher. In our second year as a school, I got the opportunity to teach 5th grade, and I truly enjoy it.
The tenets of Discovery Peak have been a part of my philosophy on teaching and education since the first day I stepped into a classroom. I could not be more excited to be a part of this school and the community.Teacher & ParentThis is my 20 plus year of teaching. I teach English to 7th and 8th graders. I live in North Pole and have taught in many places including Cambodia, Qatar, Kuwait, London, Kentucky and Hawaii.
I am married and have a son and one fur baby. I was born and raised in London and moved to the states in 2003. I enjoy reading, working out, travel, and cooking.Krista SmithTeacherHi! My name is Krista Smith and I have lived in North Pole my whole life. I come from a big family and we are all very close. I am married to a wonderful man named Sam and together we have two fur children, Hank and Dot.
Discovery Peak Charter School allows students to learn by doing which is one of my favorite curriculum pieces. As we know, children love hands-on activities where they are able to investigate and explore their learning. Teaching is my passion and I love being a part of children’s lives.
I have been teaching since 2014 and have taught all six years in first grade. I really enjoy teaching at Discovery Peak and watching children grow! In my spare time, I love to sew, go camping/fishing and take the pups for a walk.Susan CurrierParent
Hello! My name is Susan Currier. I was born and raised on a small farm in Iowa and then attended college in Omaha, Nebraska. There I met my husband, who was born and raised in North Pole, and after graduating we moved back up to Alaska. I graduated with a degree in music education and taught at West Valley High School for five years and Barnette Magnet School for one year until becoming a stay at home mom of three and small business owner.
While we enjoyed homeschooling for two years, the educational opportunities DPCS offered intrigued us and we have not been disappointed with our choice to switch over to this school! I now have two students attending DPCS (with a third one starting next year) and I am grateful to have been able to join the APC. I have enjoyed the chance to be involved in education again and look forward to serving on a committee that not only supports the education of my own children but our community’s children.Parent
My name is Loreta Thomas. For most of my life, I’ve lived in the North Pole area. I attended the local middle and high school. I’ve always thought North Pole was an amazing community. My husband and I decided to settle here and raise our two boys. One is in middle school and the other in elementary. We love being outdoors. In the warmer months, we can be found camping, fishing, and riding 4 wheelers, or whatever other activity comes along that with get us outside. In the winter we enjoy skiing, riding snow machines and playing in the snow.
I’m extremely excited about Discovery Peak being in our community. With smaller class sizes and individualized learning, every child will have the opportunity to excel. One of my favorite aspects of the school is the physical activity piece. It’ll help kids stay healthy and focused throughout the day.