Our Education Support Coordinators (formerly Program Coordinators) are the faces our students and tutors see each day. They not only oversee tutoring each week, but they are also working behind the scenes with teachers, social workers, and the parents of the kiddos we serve to build education plans and overcome educational obstacles the families we serve are facing.  They are digging deep each day to meet the unique needs of every student in our program — that’s a lot of kids and a lot of impact!

We have lots of returning ESCs as well as some new faces, plus an Education Manager we’re excited to introduce you to!

Gina Burks, Education Manager, has served as an educator for twenty years in various capacities; teacher, dean, assistant principal, principal, behavior specialist and special education coordinator. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Indiana State University in Special Education, Masters of Education from Cambridge College in Curriculum and Educational Specialist Degree from Fielding Institute in Special Education. Gina serves as the Education Manager for School on Wheels at the Salvation Army Barton Center and Colonial Park. Additionally, she supervises three of School on Wheels Emergency Shelter tutoring programs; Dayspring, Julian Center, and Salvation Army Center for Women and Children.

Brittany Bayles, Education Support Coordinator, earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana State University in Marketing with a minor in public relations and a Masters of Public Affairs with a focus in Nonprofit Management from IUPUI. Before joining the School on Wheels team she completed an AmeriCorps Education term with the John Boner Neighborhood Centers working with K-2nd grade on math and literacy skills. She has also been active in the community in previous years volunteering with organizations like Girls Inc, Patachou Foundation, Indianapolis Zoo & Gleaners Food Bank. Brittany is the Education Support Coordinator at Family Promise and Wheeler Mission – Center for Women and Children.

Jennifer Meeks, Education Support Coordinator, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education with a focus in Early Childhood Education and a Master of Arts degree in Education with a focus in Reading.  Before joining School on Wheels, she worked for 15 years as an elementary school teacher in Ohio.  While teaching full-time, she spent two of those years working as the Site Administrator for a YMCA School-Age Child Care program.  While living in Ohio, Jennifer taught Zumba classes and was responsible for bringing the Soaringwords + Zumba program to Nationwide Children’s Hospital.  As Lead Volunteer, Jennifer coordinated local Zumba instructors to visit the children at Nationwide Children’s Hospital once a month – this program is still in place and making a difference today!  Jennifer serves as the Education Support Coordinator at URBAN ACT and Brookside Elementary.

Sierra Masuda, Education Support Coordinator, has a bachelors degree from Sonoma State University in Santa Rosa, California. Prior to joining the team at School on Wheels, Sierra served as an HR Manager at a corporate company, delivered anti-bullying speeches across schools in the US for Disney, worked with undocumented families at the border of Arizona, lived and taught on a permaculture farm, worked as a facilitator at an international development non-profit, taught English in Colombia, and served as a program director at an overnight summer camp. As a fairly recent transplant to Indiana, Sierra is incredibly excited to get more involved in the Hoosier state and build relationships at Coburn and Project Home.

We can’t wait for you to meet our new ESCs and we’re thrilled to welcome back our returning ESCs. Some will be covering new sites so they may be new faces to returning tutors. Here’s a refresher on the friendly faces who are returning this year.

Tiffany Dow, Education Support Coordinator, holds a Bachelors of Arts in Sociology and Afro-American Studies from Indiana University and a Masters of Arts in Executive Development for Public Service, concentrating in Adult and Community Education and Business from Ball State University. Tiffany has spent the majority of her career in the nonprofit field, managing programs and events. Tiffany is the Education Support Coordinator  at the Julian Center.

Amy Gardner, Education Support Coordinator & Curriculum Specialist, earned a degree in Elementary Education with a Kindergarten Endorsement from Illinois State University.  Amy has been an Elementary Classroom Teacher, Tutor, Developmental Therapist, and Pre-K Teacher.  Amy builds relationships with students & their families, volunteer tutors, and school staff as the Education Support Coordinator at Cold Spring School. As the Curriculum Specialist, she evaluates curriculum and develops new academic resources to strengthen and support tutoring and other educational programs.

Ieva Grundy, Education Support Coordinator, graduated from Ball State University, with a Bachelor of Social Work. As the ESC at Salvation Army Center for Women and Children, Ieva manages the tutoring hour, volunteer tutors and the children coming for tutoring. Ieva is also the Case Manager and Parent Educator with the ROSE Project. ROSE: Restoring Our Sisters Environment Project provides Home-based Services, Parent Education and Batterers Intervention.

Amy Kellams, Education Support Coordinator, graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Elementary Education. She has over 20 years teaching experience. She has taught at Sycamore School, Traders Point Christian Academy, and for the last 11 years at Shepherd Community Center of Indianapolis. Amy is the Program Coordinator for Fox Hill and Greenbriar Elementary.

Latrice Watson, Education Support Coordinator, has worked in human services for over 10 years. Latrice enjoys serving others no matter where she been in her career. Latrice has been in many different roles over the course of her career but the most common theme that has followed her is helping others in whatever that may be for those she serves.  Latrice is a proud Boiler, graduating from Purdue with a degree in Sociology and Criminology. Latrice supports her fellow ESCs at all of our partner sites.

Our staff of educators, social workers, and dedicated youth workers help us break the cycle of homelessness through education every day!