San Francisco Flex Academy's academic team comprises of some of California's leading experts in school management, who are dedicated to making our school an ideal learning experience for all students.
Steve Henderson, Head of School, is a teacher and school leader with 15 years’ experience in both public and private education. Steve first learned to teach at the Non-Commissioned Officers Leadership Academy in the United States Marine Corps. After completing an extended tour of duty in the Gulf War, Steve attended Sacramento State University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in history and political theory. Steve began teaching in the Salinas Juvenile Hall in 1998. He started a new Community School for students on probation and innovated the use of technology in teaching. In 2003 Steve started teaching at Chartwell School, an independent K–8 school specializing in working with dyslexic children. Steve studied learning differences and teaching strategies that used data to individualize instruction. He then earned a Special Education teaching certificate from CSU Monterey Bay. In 2008 Steve was asked to lead the effort to expand Chartwell School and create a high school. He founded The New High School Project, an innovative learning and technology-focused program. He served as Dean of Students and was promoted to Head of School. Most recently Steve earned a Masters in Education in School Leadership at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Sean St. Denny, academic coach, was born and raised in San Francisco, where he enrolled in 1997 as a freshman in the inaugural class of Leadership High School. He was drawn to the school by its fresh approach to education, its beautiful downtown location, and its pioneering spirit. Sean was an active member of the Leadership community as a co-founder of multiple clubs, student teacher, tutor, and captain of the soccer team. After graduating from Leadership, Sean went on to attend Johns Hopkins University, where he studied Biomedical Engineering.
Meghan L. Jacquot, English teacher, was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, and received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. After graduating with honors with a degree in secondary education, she became a high school teacher. A lover of books, Meghan looks forward to starting a book club at SF Flex. She firmly believes in giving back to the community and thinks that a primary way to do this is to teach, and she is particularly interested in SF Flex's melding of technology and classroom instruction. Meghan looks forward to working with this method to further the educational goals of her students.
Charles Hieger, science teacher, completed his undergraduate degree at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. His graduate studies at California State University, Los Angeles, and California State University, Fresno earned him a teaching credential in secondary science education and multiple subjects. His interests and experiences are diverse—he has worked in nuclear medicine, mixed audio for music studios in Hollywood, published original music for commercial use, and taught science in grades K–12. Charles believes in a holistic approach to science education that is exciting, hands-on, and filled with authentic discovery.
Charleston Hasson Brown, counselor, was born in Los Angeles, California. He attended Alcorn State University located in Lorman, Mississippi where he earned his undergraduate degree in general studies while participating in collegiate sports. After graduation, Charleston decided to further his education and received his master's degree in secondary education with an emphasis in guidance counseling in 2010 from Alcorn State University. While earning his master's degree, he was employed with America Reads Mississippi—a national service program—and was voted team leader in his second year with the organization. Charleston worked as a second grade teacher's assistant at Jefferson County Lower Elementary for two years. He also worked with The Boys and Girls Club and was one of two advisors and mentors of Omega Pre, an after-school program at Jefferson County High School.
Jonathan Jacobson, mathematics teacher, graduated from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) with a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering and minors in computer science and philosophy. Making the change from engineering to teaching, Jonathan brings a deep understanding of mathematics and the skills needed for real world application. This combination is meant to give students the knowledge necessary to graduate and hopefully to inspire them to go far beyond.
Megan Hugel, academic coach, grew up in San Francisco and attended The Urban School before moving to Washington where she graduated from the University of Puget Sound with a degree in comparative sociology. For the last two years, Megan has been in Seattle, working with City Year, a non-profit that puts teams of young adults in underserved schools to serve as full-time tutors and mentors. She also ran a community service and social justice-based after school program, painted murals, renovated community centers, cleaned neighborhoods, performed trail restoration, and served at homeless shelters and food banks. During the summers, Megan works with middle and high school students at a leadership camp in Michigan. She creates a positive learning environment that will nurture every student’s abilities, challenge them, celebrate their successes, and spark creativity and love of discovery.
Rob Martinez, resource specialist, double majored in American studies and art history at the University of California Santa Cruz, where he earned his bachelor’s degree. He later moved to Brooklyn and attended The New School for Social Research in Manhattan, New York. While at The New School, he earned a joint master’s degree in political science and historical studies. After living in New York for more than three years, Rob moved to Europe and traveled extensively. As a lifelong learner and traveler, Rob enjoyed living and studying in Berlin, Germany, for a year before returning to California. Rob is committed to social justice leadership in our public schools, and he recently earned a master’s degree in special education from San Francisco State University in order to address inequality in our schools. Rob is determined to provide insight into students’ learning differences, and he hopes to inspire others to follow their dreams and succeed. He believes in the creativity and diversity of SF Flex Academy students and looks forward to seeing their positive contributions to the world around them.
Rick Karicas, academic coach, began working in education in 1997 as the music instructor for various elementary schools in the Salinas Unified School District. During his time in the district he began his work as a child counselor at Peacock Acers Group Home for Boys. This opened the door for him as a mental health worker for Monterey County Children's Mental Health. In 2000 Mr. Karicas left the Central Coast to join the Air Force, where he became a Security Police Officer. He began studies at the Community College of the Air Force, earning his Associate of Science in Criminal Justice. From 2003-2006 he studied Jewish History at Crown College Online. Mr. Karicas ended his active duty military service in 2006, promptly joining the California Air National Guard as a military instructor of Military History, Customs, and Tactics. While in the Guard he studied Music Theory and History undergraduate at California State University–Chico, earning his Bachelor of Art in 2011. That same year he began his post graduate work at CSU Chico's College of Education, earning a Multiple Subject Credential. Mr. Karicas has two children and enjoys writing music in his spare time.
Kim Webster, Academic Dean, is a seasoned educator and non-profit leader with over 10 years of experience in youth development. She attended Cornell University for her bachelor’s degree in anthropology, then moved to Brooklyn where she managed several non-profit programs to support learning in low-income urban middle and high schools. These programs included college access, after-school enrichment, tutoring, mentoring, environmental education, career exploration and leadership development initiatives. After several years in New York, Ms. Webster moved to Boston to work as program director for Playworks Massachusetts, where for six years she led all aspects of programming to improve school climate for 15,000 children. Most recently she worked as a school leader at Phoenix Charter Academy in Chelsea, MA, a high school designed for disconnected students to reengage in their schooling. While at Phoenix Charter Academy she earned her Master of Education degree in school leadership at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Ms. Webster is passionate about building urban schools into safe, rigorous, and, most importantly, engaging learning environments for all children.
Auza Anaya was born and raised in Santa Cruz, CA. Cultivating his academic desires since his youth, he has studied in Spain and received his BA in literature from University California–Santa Cruz. Attracted to new methodologies in education, he is currently helping students at SF Flex Academy achieve their full-potential through one-on-one and small group tutoring interventions. Mr. Anaya helps lead the Argentine Tango Club on campus, which he hopes will help foster self-discipline and empathy in students.
Allie Johnston, an AmeriCorps tutor, was born and raised in Fremont, CA where she attended Washington High School and played water polo and soccer and swam. She attended school at the University of California–San Diego and spent her free time playing club water polo, working at a biopharmaceutical laboratory, and volunteering with youth. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry with an emphasis in biochemistry, then moved to Washington, DC to work as a scribe in an emergency room. A firm believer in giving back to the community that has served her, Allie decided to move back to the Bay Area and join AmeriCorps and the SF Flex team while applying to medical school.
Leticia Javier, Academic Coach and Art and Spanish Tutor, was born and raised in Los Angeles. She began an early artistic path in Fairfax High School’s Magnet Art program, pursuing her affinity for creativity and philosophical contemplations. Inspired by visual culture, music, and fashion in LA, she explored an arts education at Otis College of Art and Design and at California College of the Arts, attaining a bachelor’s degree in fine art. Currently, Ms. Javier is serving with AmeriCorps at SF Flex Academy and is devoted to forming comprehensive connections within the realm of education for the youth of today.
Max Kogut, AmeriCorps Tutor, was born in Meriden, CT. After moving to Oakland, he worked for a non-profit organization focused on creating safe spaces for youth 24 and under, and creating safe schools for all students. Because he loved working in high schools, he decided to join AmeriCorps and the SF Flex community. He hopes to continue schooling to become a Narrative Therapist working with transitional and high school age youth.