VCS Elementary School Directory

Kelly Alfieri

Assistant Athletic Director | Kelly has served as the assistant athletic director since 2011 and the CYO athletic director since 2008. She earned an athletic scholarship to Oregon State University where she competed in track for four years. Kelly earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology and worked in the Human Performance Laboratory for OHSU before becoming a full-time mother. She was an active volunteer parent in the Valley Catholic grade school before becoming involved in the athletic department. All six of her children have attended Valley Catholic.

 

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Assistant Athletic Director
Zach Bromert
Fifth Grade Teacher | Zach joins the elementary staff this fall as a fifth grade teacher.  He spent 21 years in leadership roles in sales and product creation at Nike before receiving his call to be a teacher. Zach earned his master's degree at the University of Portland after student teaching. He is married to his wife Katie, and their three children, Andrew, Hannah, and Kevin, are students at Valley Catholic. Outside the classroom he enjoys the great outdoors, youth sports including coaching in CYO, and his parish of St. Juan Diego. He is passionate about teaching and supporting Valley Catholic students to grow, develop, and achieve their potential. [email protected]...
Fifth Grade Teacher
Julie Canoy

Administrative Assistant | Julie Canoy joined the front office staff at Valley Catholic Elementary School in April 2022.  Before that she was an instructional assistant for 10 years in first grade and kindergarten. Before joining Valley Catholic, Julie was a full-time mom, raising her two children with her husband. Both children also attended Valley Catholic. Julie also spent more than 10 years in human resources, most recently with a major medical device company in Beaverton. Her interests and hobbies include traveling, crafting ceramics, painting, photography and spending time with her family: Robert, Stephanie, and Martin.

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Administrative Assistant
Tricia Croy

Third Grade Teacher | Tricia Croy has enjoyed teaching at Valley Catholic Elementary School for more than 20 years. She currently teaches third grade. Her favorite subjects to teach are math and science. Tricia received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the University of Portland. Tricia grew up in Lake Oswego, Oregon. She enjoys reading, hiking, cycling and spending time with her family. One of her goals is to visit all of the national parks.

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Third Grade Teacher
Caroline Custino
Kindergarten Instructional Assistant | Caroline Custino was born in Reno, Nevada, but moved to the bay area, where she lived most of her life. She attended a Catholic School from Kindergarten all the way to 12th. She later met her husband, Derrick, in the 90s. In 1999, her and her soon to be husband moved to Oregon, where they later tied the knot in 2001. They have two kids, who have also experienced a Catholic education most of their lives. Her oldest just graduated from Valley Catholic High School, and is now a freshman at George Fox University. Her youngest is a sophomore at Jesuit High School. This is her third year at Valley Catholic Elementary School. She started in the cafeteria, subbed last year, and is now full time kindergarten assistant. [email protected]  ...
Kindergarten Instructional Assistant
Sydney Davies

Social-Emotional Learning and Behavior Specialist | Sydney Davies is a proud member of the Beaverton community and excited to continue getting to know all the students at VCES. She attended Pacific Lutheran University and continued at Central Washington University where she earned a master's degree in Family and Child Life. She is passionate about working with children to find different ways to reduce stress and anxiety in a school environment. She loves getting to know kids at lunch and recess, and can be seen going into classrooms during religion, art, and SecondStep lessons. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her dogs and getting outside to go running, skiing, or biking. With the combination of her passion for kids, education, and faith, Sydney is excited to continue supporting the students of Valley Catholic Elementary School.

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Social-Emotional Learning and Behavior Specialist
Sarah Davis

VCES Vice Principal | Sarah Davis earned her Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Linfield College (now Linfield University) in McMinnville, Oregon, and her Master of Science in Educational Leadership from Western Governors University in Salt Lake City, Utah. Sarah taught grades 1-2 in the Greater Albany Public School District 8J. She then taught children with dyslexia and language processing disorders in grades 3-12 at Park Academy in Lake Oswego. At Park Academy, she was an Assessment and Data Specialist, created a school-wide assessment protocol, served as a liaison for local public school districts, and coordinated student profiles, education mapping plans and service learning experiences. She then became a principal for hospitalized youth and children in long-term care and treatment. Sarah is thrilled to be a member of the Valley Catholic community.

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VCES Vice Principal
Erin DeClark
Reading Support Specialist | Erin DeClark is thrilled to join the Learning Support team as the Reading Specialist. Erin’s interest in reading intervention started with her mission to help her daughter who was diagnosed with dyslexia as a first grader. Erin trained as a tutor in the Barton Reading and Spelling System, and also completed the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education’s Comprehensive Orton-Gillingham Training. With the goal of working with a greater number of students in the classroom setting, Erin obtained her Master of Arts in Teaching with a Reading Endorsement from George Fox University. She has taught kindergarten and first grade in both public and private schools. As a life-long learner, Erin received her BA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, her JD from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College, and she frequently attends seminars through her memberships with the International Dyslexia Association and Decoding Dyslexia Oregon. Outside of school, Erin enjoys reading, traveling with her family, and playing the daily games of the New York Times, especially Spelling Bee. [email protected]...
Reading Support Specialist
Sally Delplanche

Spanish Teacher | Sally (Deans) Delplanche became the Valley Catholic Elementary Spanish teacher in the fall of 2012, after 17 years of teaching English as a Second Language and Spanish Immersion in the David Douglas and Beaverton School Districts. She first joined the Valley community as a substitute teacher in 2010, and prior to that had been a Valley parent and volunteer since 2001. Sally came to Oregon from her hometown of Billings, Montana, to attend and graduate from Pacific University with both a bachelor’s degree (Spanish language and international studies) and a master’s degree in education. Sally has also studied abroad, having lived in Huancayo, Peru, and Guayaquil, Ecuador. Sally serves as a extraordinary minister in her parish, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Aloha. Sally is married to Dr. Remy Delplanche, O.D., and together they have four children: Remy, graduate of VCMS in 2012, and Claire, graduate of VCMS in 2013, and Olivia, graduate of VCHS in 2020, and Gabriel, a future graduate in 2025. In 2017, Sra. Delplanche was awarded the VCES Spirit award by her fellow staff, and she continues to love being a part of the VCS community.

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Spanish Teacher
Melissa Doxtator

VCES Principal | Melissa Doxtator is a K-12 alum of Valley Catholic who graduated in 2002. After graduating, she attended Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI, where she earned a BA in History and Education in 2006, and began teaching at St. Anthony School. She attended Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee and earned a MS in Educational Leadership and Administration in 2010. She then became an assistant principal at St. Anthony School. In 2013, her family decided to relocate back to Oregon, and she was hired at St. Joseph School in Salem as principal. After three years at St. Joseph School, a position at Valley Catholic became available and she could not pass up the opportunity. She and her husband have three children, who are all currently attending Valley Catholic and are thrilled.

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VCES Principal
Melissa Efstathiou

P.E. Instructional Assistant | Melissa Efstathiou came to Valley Catholic Elementary School from Holy Trinity Parish School in Beaverton, where she worked for 18 years as an extended care director, instructional assistant, and in library media. She also worked one year at Cathedral School. Melissa is not new to the Valley Catholic family; she was the varsity volleyball assistant coach from 1996-2011. She was the varsity volleyball assistant coach at Westview High School from 2012-2016, before returning to Valley Catholic as the head coach for JV volleyball. Melissa’s two sons graduated from Valley Catholic High School. Her youngest son is a teacher in the Valley Catholic Middle School.

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P.E. Instructional Assistant
Kelsey Griswold

Kindergarten Teacher | Kelsey Griswold joined the Valley Catholic community in August 2014 as a first-grade teacher. In 2017, she moved from first grade to Kindergarten. Kelsey grew up in Portland, attending All Saints School and Central Catholic High School. She then moved to Eugene for college where she earned a bachelor's degree in sociology with a minor in special education from the University of Oregon. After graduating, Kelsey remained in Eugene to earn her master's degree in elementary education with an English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) endorsement. Kelsey enjoys hiking, baking and spending time with family and friends. She has a love of children and is inspired by their curious minds and sweet hearts.

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Kindergarten Teacher
Connie Heger

Fifth Grade Teacher | Connie Heger enjoys teaching fifth grade at Valley Catholic Elementary. She has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from St. Cloud State University and a master's degree in teaching from Pacific University. While teaching at Valley Catholic, she was awarded “Teacher of the Week” sponsored by K103. Throughout her teaching career she has taught second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eight grades in Minnesota, California and Oregon. Her interests and hobbies are traveling, hiking, photography, exercising, gardening, cooking, biking, arts and crafts, reading and spending time with family and friends.


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Fifth Grade Teacher
Eric Holstrom

Physical Education Teacher | Eric Holstrom has served as the elementary physical education teacher at Valley Catholic since 1986. He has been the head coach for the Valley CYO swim team for the since 1989 and also enjoys coaching cross country and track. Before coming to Valley Catholic, he worked for the Evergreen School District in Washington state as their assistant outdoor school director and as the program director for the YMCA’s Camp Collins. Eric is a runner and outdoor enthusiast. He does search and rescue as a member of the Mt. Ski Patrol’s Nordic Patrol. He has led numerous backpack and canoe trips throughout the Western United States and Canada as a Boy Scout leader. Eric holds a degree in human development and performance from the University of Oregon. Eric’s wife Ann is also a teacher.

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Physical Education Teacher
Monique Ierardi

Second and Fourth Grade Instructional Assistant | Monique Ierardi came to Valley Catholic in 2012 as an instructional assistant. Before that she was an IA at St. Mary Catholic School in Stayton, OR. Monique completed the teacher education program and received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from St. Anselm College. After graduation, she volunteered as a youth minister in Hawthorne, CA, worked as a youth minister at St. Joseph and Queen of Peace Parishes in Salem, OR, and was blessed to be a stay-at-home mom for 11 years. Monique’s husband, Doug, is a teacher and coach at Valley Catholic High School. Their three children, Allison (2016), Matthew (2018), and Joseph (2021), all graduated from VCHS.

[email protected]

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Second and Fourth Grade Instructional Assistant
Carrie Keeler
Third Grade Instructional Assistant | Carrie was born in Rochelle, Illinois and spent most of her childhood in the Midwest. After moving to California, she married, had four children, and was fully “employed" as a stay at home mom. The family moved to Oregon in 2005 and when her nest was empty she began working for Sister Krista Von Borstel at CYO until 2019, when she joined Valley Catholic and is now working as an Instructional Assistant. Her youngest daughter attended Valley Catholic High School and her mother lives at Maryville. Carrie now has fourteen wonderful grandchildren, nine boys and five girls. They are her greatest joy. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family and walking across the street when school is out to visit “mom”....
Third Grade Instructional Assistant
Akhila Madhusudan

Second Grade Instructional Assistant | Akhila has been with Valley Catholic Elementary School for 10 years. Before joining the Valley Catholic community, she gained valuable experience working in K-5 and preschool classrooms. She loves the energy and joy that comes from being with children. She holds a master's degree in Commerce and worked in the banking industry for 10 years before becoming an educator. Akhila volunteers extensively by providing meals to homeless shelters and family support groups. She has also coached for Portland Girls on the Run. She loves the Pacific Northwest and enjoys taking walks, hiking and biking. She and her husband are parents to a son who is a software engineer and a daughter who is studying biology in college.

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Second Grade Instructional Assistant
Cindie LoCascio
Library Assistant | Cindie joined the Library Media staff in 2022. After earning her degree, she assisted at the local public library and district elementary school libraries while also working in accounting. Cindie appreciates the joy of working with children and feels blessed to be part of Valley Catholic's faith filled Community. Both her son and daughter attended VC Early Learning School. Cindie has always been an avid reader of all genres and age groups. In addition to reading, she enjoys traveling, kayaking, beach combing, and especially loves spending time with her family outdoors in beautiful Oregon. [email protected] ...
Library Assistant
Tom Losch

Fourth Grade Teacher | Originally from Williamsport, Pennsylvania, Tom earned his bachelors degree from Penn State University where he majored in hospitality management and minored in theater arts. He earned his master of arts in teaching from the University of Portland. When he is outside of the classroom, Tom enjoys spending time with his family and dog, reading, coaching basketball, cooking, road trips, camping, running, paddleboarding, listening to music, and movies.

 

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Fourth Grade Teacher
Audrey Muller
Kindergarten Teacher | Audrey Muller joined the Valley Catholic community in August 2020. Audrey grew up in Minden, Nevada and moved to Portland to attend college. She graduated from the University of Portland with a bachelors in Elementary Education, an endorsement in reading, and a minor in Spanish. Audrey had the opportunity to study abroad in Quito, Ecuador where she studied language and culture inclusivity in the classroom. Audrey enjoys hiking, camping, trips to the ocean, and spending time with friends and family. Audrey loves teaching kindergarten and watching as children grow and make new friends....
Kindergarten Teacher
MJ Nickless
MJ Nickless Counselor | MJ joined Valley Catholic Elementary in 2022 as VCES Counselor. She and her husband, Bryan, moved from Omaha, Nebraska last fall. MJ has both taught in the classroom and been a counselor for more than 30 years. She received both her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and master’s degree in counseling from Iowa State University. MJ loves Oregon and exploring the great outdoors. She is an avid animal lover who has adopted many pets over the years. In her free time, she is usually hiking, gardening, or spoiling her current rescue dog. [email protected] ...
Counselor
Jillian Bell Nelson
P.E. Teacher | Jillian joined VC staff in 2022. She is a P.E. teacher for 3rd through 5th grades. She got her master’s degree from the University of Oregon, and spent six years in Portland working as an early childhood special education teacher. She has a passion for teaching kids through play and helping children build friendships and community with their peers. In her free time, she enjoys spending time outside, hiking, traveling, and going to the coast with her husband and golden retriever Rainey. She is excited to join the Valley Catholic community and support children in staying active and healthy throughout the school year.  [email protected] ...
P.E. Teacher
Jessica Norton
Media Library Specialist | Jessica Norton joined Valley Catholic Elementary School in August 2022. She is the Media Library Specialist. Jessica earned her bachelor's degree in Visual Arts from University of Northern Colorado in Greeley and her Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education at Liberty University. Jessica taught elementary school for Portland Public Schools and Special Education at Heron Creek, a therapeutic day school in Clackamas County. Her time at Heron Creek was spent in a Social Emotional Classroom supporting students who struggle with behavioral challenges. Jessica has a passion for helping students develop a love for learning by building upon students interests and strengths. During her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading, running, and traveling....
Media Library Specialist
Anna Parker
Fourth Grade Teacher | Anna Parker joined Valley Catholic Elementary in August 2022. Anna went to University of Oregon where she earned her bachelor’s degree in educational foundations. She then went to Portland State University and received her master’s degree in elementary education. Anna grew up in Portland where she attended St. Clare and Central Catholic High School. Anna loves to hang out with family and friends, do arts and crafts, and play games. Anna loves teaching children and loves their curious minds. [email protected]   ...
Fourth Grade Teacher
Eric Pennick
Honors Math and Science | Eric began teaching at Valley Catholic in 2020. After spending nearly 20 years in sales and management Eric decided to follow is his love for children and become a teacher. He received his master’s in the art of teaching form Concordia University in 2019. Eric is married and has two kids with his youngest a third grader at Valley Catholic.  In his free time, he enjoys golfing, exercising, the beach, anything outdoors and coaching his daughter’s sports teams. “I feel blessed to be a part of such a great community here at Valley Catholic and look forward to working with these amazing students”....
Honors Math and Science Teacher
Emily Pockat

Music Teacher | Emily Pockat went to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and graduated with a degree in instrumental music education. After graduating in 2007, she moved to Las Vegas where she taught for thirteen years teaching elementary general music, middle school and high school orchestra, high school band, choir, mariachi, and guitar. In 2015, Emily earned her masters in curriculum development and instruction with Walden University. She moved to Beaverton in 2019, where she accepted the position of elementary music teacher at VCES. She feels very blessed to be given the opportunity to work at this amazing school.

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Music Teacher
Deidre Pribula

Second Grade Teacher | Deidre Pribula joined Valley Catholic in January 2017. She has worked for Catholic schools for 11 years. Pribula received her degree in early childhood education from Western Governors University and has taught pre-K, kindergarten, first and now second grade. Her favorite things are teaching, her family and her faith. She is excited about sacramental preparation formation and loves her parish at Holy Trinity Catholic Church. She and her husband, Paul, have two adult children. When not at school she loves gardening, traveling, hiking, trips to the beach, knitting and crocheting, and spending time with family and friends.

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Second Grade Teacher
Christine Rhoney
First Grade Instructional Assistant | Christine joined Valley Catholic in January 2021 as a 1st grade Instructional Assistant.  She earned her bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a concentration in Child Development from Kent State University. Prior to coming to Valley Catholic, Christine worked with children and families in need for 30 years providing education, mentorship, resources, and support. She is a Disaster Services volunteer with the American Red Cross and is a founding team member and volunteer with the Portland Food Project.  Christine enjoys dancing, baking, traveling, hiking, and making memories with her family....
First Grade Instructional Assistant
Daniel Rodriguez
Instructional Assistant | Daniel Rodriguez joined Valley Catholic Elementary school in 2022 as an Instructional Assistant. He received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Seminary of Christ the King in British Columbia, Canada. Where he also completed two years of study in theology. Daniel grew up in Beaverton, attending public schools, and graduated from Aloha High School in 2014. Daniel enjoys running, hiking, watching movies, and reading. [email protected] ...
Instructional Assistant
Catherine Sand
Third Grade Teacher | Catherine officially joined Valley Catholic Elementary School in September 2022. She is excited to return to Valley Catholic where she was a long-term substitute in the Spring of 2021. Growing up in Beaverton, she attended Catholic school from Kindergarten through college. Catherine received her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Portland. Before coming to Valley Catholic, Catherine taught Kindergarten at St. Rose Catholic School in Portland. In her free time, Catherine enjoys traveling, playing piano, baking, and spending time with family and friends. She looks forward to joining the Valley Catholic community.   [email protected]   ...
Third Grade Teacher
Kim Smith

Learning Support Specialist | Kim Smith is a learning specialist at Valley Catholic Elementary School. She joined the Valley Catholic School community in 2014 after relocating to the Portland area from Columbus, Ohio. Kim grew up in Ohio, attending Catholic schools from kindergarten through 12th grade. She comes from a long line of educators. In 2002, Kim earned her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Bowling Green State University. She spent the next 10 years as a Catholic school teacher in a third-grade classroom working with students and families from diverse socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. With the desire to learn the most effective strategies to meet the needs of all learners, Kim went on to earn her master’s degree in special education from The Ohio State University in 2011. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Kim transitioned from teaching third grade to working as an intervention specialist for third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade students. In addition to loving her career as an educator, Kim is happily married to her high school sweetheart, Nick. They have two boys, both who attend Valley Catholic School. When not at work, you can find Kim at the ice rink where both of her boys are busy with hockey! 

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Learning Support Specialist
Megan Smith

Second Grade Teacher | Megan Smith joined the Valley Catholic Community in 2014. She was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. She attended Catholic schools from Pre-K through 12th grade. In 2011, she earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Concordia University. In the summer of 2018, she returned to Concordia University to receive her master’s in curriculum and instruction in reading. Megan currently lives in North Portland and enjoys reading, boating, playing games, cooking, cruises, going to Bend, and spending time with friends and family.

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Second Grade Teacher
Anne Storm

First Grade Teacher | A native of the Portland area, Anne Storm graduated from Central Catholic High School and the University of Portland, where she earned her undergrad and graduate degrees. Before coming to Valley Catholic in 2016, she worked with youth in Santiago, Chile, for a year. She also taught at St. Luke School in Woodburn and at Holy Cross Catholic School in Portland. She is married with two children. When not at school, Anne enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, gardening, and spending time in nature. She feels very blessed to be part of the Valley Catholic community.

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First Grade Teacher
Angela Tuck

Kindergarten Instructional Assistant | Angela Tuck is in her 2nd year at Valley Catholic. She received her bachelors degree in Human Development and Early Childhood Education with a minor in business administration from Oregon State University. She has most recently worked as a preschool teacher. She and her husband Jeff have 3 daughters; one attending college in New Mexico, one a senior at Jesuit and one in 7th grade at Valley Catholic Middle School. As a family, they love sports. Angela has assisted her husband in coaching basketball and softball for many years and they enjoy watching their kids play sports.

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Kindergarten Instructional Assistant
Karen Tucker
First Grade Teacher | Karen Tucker rejoined the Valley Catholic Community in 2022 and is excited to be the first grade teacher at VCES. She was previously a teacher at VCELS. Karen has a bachelor’s degree in child and adolescent development from San Jose State University and an MEd. in curriculum and instruction from George Fox University. She has taught kindergarten, third grade, and PS-2nd English at a Mandarin immersion school. When Karen is not at school, she enjoys traveling, reading, cooking, baking, and spending time with her family and friends....
First Grade Teacher
Jessica Walther

Administrative Assistant | Jessica Walther joined the front office staff at Valley Catholic Elementary School in August 2014. As a graduate of Valley Catholic High School (1998), she enjoys being back on campus and being a part of the Valley Catholic community. Prior to this, Jessica was a stay at home mom, then moved into billing for the medical field once her children entered school. Jessica’s interests include spending time at the beach and at the barn, golfing, watching her son compete in Drum Corp, her daughter compete with her equestrian team and spending time with her husband, Jason.

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Administrative Assistant
Kathryn Welsh

Math Specialist | Kathryn Welsh joined Valley Catholic Middle School in December 2016 as a part-time math teacher. Currently, she is the math specialist, providing support for Kindergarten through Fifth grade. Previously, she has taught at Mt. View Middle School and substituted for both the elementary and middle school. She completed her master’s degree in 2013 at George Fox University earning a master’s degree in education. Outside of teaching, Kathryn enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling to see her children, attending sports events, and crafting.

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Math Specialist