Our team of BC-certified teachers works with families to create individualized student learning plans that fully support flexibility and parental leadership in the educational process. Their expert guidance, support, and professional curriculum advice empowers students to meet or exceed provincial learning standards.

TLA Online’s administrative staff serves parents and students of all faiths and backgrounds, working with staff, teachers, parents and students to build an effective learning community.

Gabe Linder

Principal

Gabe Linder

Principal

Gabe takes great joy in spending time with and supporting TLA families on their educational journeys. He joined TLA in 2006, and after several rewarding years of serving as an online teacher, took on the position of Vice-Principal in 2011, moving on to become Principal in October 2015. He is humbled to be serving as leader of such a dedicated and professional staff, and feels abundantly blessed to be an educator in a unique and wonderful community of students and families.

Gabe enjoys collaborating with other Independent Distributed Learning School principals, and acting as an advocate for Independent School education in British Columbia. In October 2017 he was elected to the Board of Directors of the Federation of Independent Schools Association (FISA) as an Associate Member Group (AMG) director. He currently serves as the AMG representative on the FISA iGroup that supports MyEdBC usage in independent schools, and is a member of FISA’s DL committee.

An active member of Holy Family Parish in Vancouver, he loves spending any spare time with his family, playing basketball, and reading.

Virginia Hooper

Learning Support Services Vice Principal

Virginia Hooper

Learning Support Services Vice Principal

Virginia joined the LSS department at TLA in 2013. Her previous work was in post-secondary education, teaching in psychology, counselling, Bible studies, and Christian History. She transitioned to K-12 education and has found her work with students who need learning support to be deeply satisfying. She has also been a teacher in a BC provincial prison, where she also volunteers with the chaplain’s office; has worked in children’s ministries; and provides pastoral counselling within her local congregation.

Her educational journey includes degrees in Christian education, theological studies, counselling, and educational leadership. She views participation in Christian education and pursuing excellence for our students as a privilege.

Virginia is married to Ralph. They have two adult children, and three delightful grandchildren. They share interests in reading (biographies of historical persons), music (Ralph is a vocalist and Virginia is a flutist), hiking, camping, kayaking, and taking road trips with their grandchildren.

Mary-Anne VanderHorst

Grades 10-12 Vice Principal & Grad Counselor

Mary-Anne VanderHorst

Grades 10-12 Vice Principal & Grad Counselor

Mary-Anne VanderHorst lives in Langley with her husband Burke (who is also a teacher) and their four children.

Mary-Anne earned her BBA from TWU and her BEd from UBC. She first taught for 4.5 years in an independent Christian school in Langley and then joined the TLA team in 2008. She is thrilled to be leading the Grad Program as Vice Principal.

In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family, camping, running and playing soccer.

Steve Borley

Grades K-9 Vice Principal

Steve Borley

Grades K-9 Vice Principal

Steve has taught in Christian schools in Richmond, White Rock and Comox; he has homeschooled his own children at different times; and he firmly believes in the rights and responsibilities of the family to help govern the educational process.

Steve believes that an education is very important for every individual, and an individualized education promises more success than a cookie-cutter education. Schooling should fit into life rather than fitting life around schooling, and absolutes only apply to the Divine. Success can be measured more accurately by looking at one’s joy and contentment than at one’s bank account or trophy cabinet.

Steve hopes to succeed in providing good service that meets people’s needs and encourages them to enjoy all that the Good Lord brings our way. No better example of joy and contentment exists than the life of Jesus, for he knows his Father can handle things just fine.

Michelle Johnson

Assistant K-9 Vice Principal, Home Teacher

Michelle Johnson

Assistant K-9 Vice Principal, Home Teacher

Michelle loves working for TLA as a home teacher and assistant Vice Principal as it allows her to combine her passions – helping families be successful in their educational endeavors through support and encouragement, and having the flexibility to be at home with her family.

Michelle lives on a small acreage just outside Armstrong, BC with her husband Wayne and her three beautiful girls, Morgan, Madelyn, and Livia. Before moving to Armstrong, she lived in Calgary, AB, where she taught for 5 years at a Christian school. While staying home with her young girls, she was a private tutor and became certified as a reading therapist.

Currently she keeps busy with checking out new curriculum and websites, hanging out with her girls, reading new books whenever she has time and of course, working with her wonderful TLA families!

Emily Woelders

LSS Teacher

Emily Woelders

LSS Teacher

Emily resides in Langley, B.C. with her husband Adam and her two sons Lucas and Samuel. She joined the TLA team in 2008 and appreciates the flexibility her career offers to raise her boys at home. She enjoys working with DL families, helping to meet the unique needs of each child.

Emily and her husband spent their first year of marriage in Korea, coordinating and instructing English Language training programs for teachers. After returning home, Emily taught Learning Assistance and ESL in elementary and middle schools in the Abbotsford and Langley school districts.

In her spare time she enjoys gardening with her boys, adventuring in the local outdoors with her family, reading a good book, and enjoying a hot coffee with a good friend.

Judith Zandbergen

Curriculum and Instructional Coordinator, Online

Judith Zandbergen

Curriculum and Instructional Coordinator, Online

Since lining up dolls in her play classroom, teaching has been Judith’s passion. Judith is a BC-certified teacher who has taught both primary and intermediate grades in the independent schools, home schooled her own eight children, and worked as a home teacher for a number of years.

Presently Judith works with online students in the humanities area as she encourages interactive opportunities among students and connects learning to the real world. Being part of online learning in the twenty-first century is an exciting challenge for Judith.

She lives in her hometown New Westminster with her Dutch-born husband, still homeschools her youngest, and gardens her unusual ravine plot.

Ada Tsang

LSS Teacher

Ada Tsang

LSS Teacher

Ada received her BA and BEd at University of British Columbia eons ago, and has taught grade 1 through 7 for more than 8 years in independent schools.

She took a year off and completed the Special Education diploma program and feels it’s God’s blessing and plan that she began her LSS teaching career at TLA. Ada has been enjoying her fun roller coaster ride without walls in her classroom.

She loves all kinds of food and her pets are 1 or 2 daddy long legs hiding in corners of her house.

Aili Patterson

Home Teacher

Aili Patterson

Home Teacher

Aili has been a teacher for more than a decade, earning her Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Science at the University of Lethbridge.

Aili grew up in the Peace Country region on a mixed grain/cattle farm. She grew up loving school and being in 4-H. She returned to the Peace Country when her post-secondary education was complete and has resided there ever since. She lives in Dawson Creek with her husband, Stirling, and their three children, Hunter, Marley and Briar. Winters are filled with hockey and figure skating while summers are filled with camping, planting and relaxing. She enjoys playing games, reading, listening to music and baking in her spare time. They are active members of the Dawson Creek Alliance Church with Stirling leading the worship ministry and Aili volunteering in the children’s ministry.

Aili is excited about the possibilities and flexibility homeschooling brings to families. As the most northern TLA Home teacher, she is looking forward to helping TLA support even more families face-to-face.

AmandaEve Slattery

LSS Teacher

AmandaEve Slattery

LSS Teacher

AmandaEve holds Bachelor degrees in Music and Biblical Scholarship from Rocky Mountain College (Calgary), a Masters of Applied Linguistics from Charles Darwin University (Darwin AUS) and became a BC certified teacher in 2018.

She has taught at Long & McQuade (Abbotsford), Harmony Music School (Calgary), Encore Music Studio (Calgary), Providence College (Otterburne MB), Rocky Mountain College (Calgary), Ziegfeld School of Dance (Winnipeg), Doreen Bissett School of Dance (Winnipeg) and also worked as a Teaching Assistant at CanIL @ Trinity Western University (Langley). She has extensive experience with children’s programming in church and camp settings.

Musically, she has enjoyed performing with various choral and instrumental ensembles across Canada and the USA. She has also been involved in choral composition, arranging, and directing in various contexts.

Her approach to education is to learn through play, topics of interest, exploring the world, and for each child to grow based on their level of ability. She believes strongly in the flexibility home education offers to families and is honoured to be part of helping other families achieve their goals.

She is navigating the diversity of LSS from both sides of the coin because autism is also part of her daily family life.

Amy Jones

Home & Blended Teacher

Amy Jones

Home & Blended Teacher

Amy Jones lives in Cloverdale with her husband, Marty, and her 3 children, Judah, Myah and Joshua. She and her husband are also foster parents.

Amy graduated from university with her Bachelor of Education in 1998 and specializes in teaching French as a second language. She is currently part of the K-9 Home Program serving families in the Lower Mainland.

Amy loves spending time with her children, going to sporting events, visiting family and friends and working on the odd DIY project. She is very thankful to be a part of the TLA team.

Ann Vanderloo

Home Teacher

Ann Vanderloo

Home Teacher

Ann brings 10 years of experience in homeschooling 3 of her children to the team at TLA. She also has six years of experience teaching at both the high school and elementary levels.

She appreciates the flexibility and creativity offered by the DL program and fully enjoys supporting families and students in blending the offerings of the DL program with the gifts and talents each brings to the setting.

Ann lives in New Westminster with her husband and youngest son Simon. Gardening, hiking, and canoeing activities are high on her priority list.

Cara Lozowchuk

Home Teacher

Cara Lozowchuk

Home Teacher

Cara lives in Langley with her husband and three lovely children: Kolya, Julitta and Jovan. Cara graduated with a Bachelor of Education from the University of Regina but moved immediately to Montreal to teach at a private school while her husband pursued his Graduate studies. They have now lived in BC for 10 years, and Cara spent 7 of those years having the pleasure and joy of homeschooling her own children.

Recently, Cara was certified in the Orton Gillingham approach to teaching children struggling with reading and writing and has spent time privately tutoring children in their literacy skills. Cara considers herself a lifelong learner and loves sharing information she has learned with those around her.

Cara fully believes in homeschooling as a wonderful choice for families and is excited to blend her experience as a classroom teacher, and dedication as a homeschool parent to address the unique needs of all learners in creative, effective and caring ways.

In her spare time, Cara is usually driving her sons to soccer or her daughter to horse riding, but she also loves reading, cooking, taking dance classes, and enjoying a good cup of coffee.

Charles McKaig

LSS & GAP Teacher

Charles McKaig

LSS & GAP Teacher

A desire to help children reach their potential is what drew Charles to education. He enjoyed working in various Christian schools throughout the Lower Mainland.

Previous to that he worked supporting adults with physical and mental challenges in the community. After graduating from Simon Fraser University, he went on to complete a master’s degree in education at the University of British Columbia.

He and his wife Nicole (also an educator) live in White Rock, where they spend their time adding to their substantial film collection or taking photographs of family members.

Chris McGrath

Home & Blended Teacher

Chris McGrath

Home & Blended Teacher

Chris has worked with TLA before in 2003-2005 as a DL teacher before moving to Kelowna where he continued his work in Distance Learning, classroom teaching, curriculum development, career planning for high school students, and even dabbled in administration work and was excited to return to the DL environment.

Before working at TLA, Chris taught grades six and seven before moving into teaching a variety of humanities courses in high school. Chris enjoys working with the TLA program, and assisting families as they meet the challenge of educating their children by blending the British Columbia’s curriculum into their home environment and online education.

Chris lives in Kelowna with his wife Karen. They have 4 grown children.

Christina Shyong

Blended Teacher

Christina Shyong

Blended Teacher

Christina was born in Victoria, BC and has lived with her husband and two children in the Metro Vancouver area for over 20 years. She enjoys gardening and taking long walks. At church she has been a bible study teacher, a member of the choir, and a craft leader for the Sunday morning children’s program.

Christina graduated from the University of Victoria with a Bachelors of Science and taught with the Surrey School District for over 10 years. After that, she chose to be a stay-at-home mom for 8 years before joining TLA in 2013. In her classroom, one can expect to participate in hands-on activities, games, project-based learning, presentations, and discussions.

Amy Wilkinson

Home & Blended Teacher

Amy Wilkinson

Home & Blended Teacher

Amy lives in Prince George with her husband, Clayton and their four fantastic children, Josiah, Faith, Levi, and Luke.

Her journey into home education started in 2013 when she left the classroom on maternity leave with her youngest child and decided to try homeschooling her oldest who was entering grade 1 at the time. She brings her experience as a home educator to her role as DL teacher. Amy helped pioneer the One Day Blended Program in Prince George in 2017 and thoroughly enjoys spending time working face to face with her students and their families.

Deanna Van Dyke

Online Teacher

Deanna Van Dyke

Online Teacher

Deanna earned a Science degree with a major in Math. Since then, she has enjoyed passing along her love for math to her students. She has been teaching Math and other subjects for over 8 years, and continues to enjoy the challenges it brings. Her goal is to work with students in collaboration with their parents as they tackle the later years of high school mathematics.

In her spare time, she is an avid volleyball and tennis player, and enjoys reading a good book, although spare time is not easy to come by with four children in her home. She thoroughly enjoys the time she gets to spend with them every day.

Debi Ronneseth

LSS Teacher

Debi Ronneseth

LSS Teacher

Debi has worked as a classroom teacher for 35 years in the public school system. She taught K-2 in the classroom and was a learning assistance teacher for students in K-7. Debi has also worked privately on teams supporting children with autism.

She graduated from SFU with a Bachelor’s Degree in General Studies and then completed the PDP program with a concentration in Early Childhood Education and Learning Disabilities. Debi has also completed a diploma in Law Education at UBC.

Currently, she is very happy to work at TLA with families of students with special needs! She enjoys travelling, sailing, running, yoga, reading and spending time with her friends and family.

Erin Philps

Online, Home, & LA teacher

Erin Philps

Online, Home, & LA teacher

Erin joined TLA in 2011 after teaching at two other distributed learning schools as well as in the classroom. Originally from Victoria, she moved to Prince George after she graduated from the teaching program at University of Victoria. After five years in the north she moved back to Victoria in 2013, closer to family and the west coast life she loves.

Erin is passionate about empowering families to be successful in their home education journey. She enjoys sharing her ideas and creating connections with students and parents. To this end, she has three roles when working with students: as a Home teacher, working with students in grades K-9, as an Innovations program teacher pioneering online project-based learning, and as an Online course teacher in a variety of disciplines.

Using a variety of technology-based approaches, Erin teaches families how to use Google Drive, Docs, and Hangouts to enable live interactions for editing work, receiving feedback and planning projects. Preferring to interact in this way at least once a month, families have been able to benefit from “real-time feedback” and maximize on their learning. “I believe that work samples are one of the most powerful tools when I am working with a student. They help me gain insight into their thinking process and where their abilities are ‘in the moment’. That way, I can make suggestions that will help launch their skills to the next level.”

Gareth Howell

Online Teacher

Gareth Howell

Online Teacher

Gareth Howell is a Math teacher living in Kamloops, BC. He has taught in the Kamloops district for many years, teaching everything from Math 7 to AP Calculus and has been tutoring math for over 12 years.

He enjoys spending time with his wife, Arlee, and his 2 children, Ephraim and Nathan. He enjoys playing piano, drums, and ukulele and writes a lot of music at home.

He has a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Mathematics from Thompson Rivers University, and a Bachelor of Education with a specialty in Secondary Math Education from Simon Fraser University.

Heidi Hanawalt

GAP Coordinator & Online Teacher

Heidi Hanawalt

GAP Coordinator & Online Teacher

Heidi joined the TLA staff in the fall of 2010, and is currently the Grad Adapted Program coordinator. She feels very blessed to have the opportunity to work from home and continue teaching.

Heidi lives in Langley with her husband, Ryan, and her two sons, Braeden and Nathan. In her spare time Heidi enjoys visiting with family and friends and spending a great deal of time outdoors.

Jaime René

Home & Online Teacher

Jaime René

Home & Online Teacher

Jaime is a veteran homeschool mom of three beautiful children – Lily, Gabriel, and John – who brings a love of home education to her role as DL teacher.

Having received a Bachelor’s degree in history and music from Trinity Western University, Jaime returned to school later in life to enhance her education skills by attaining a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of British Columbia.

Jaime loves exploring the innovative educational opportunities that are enabled by blending online learning with homeschooling. In addition to a love of learning, she enjoys reading, music performance, directing her church choir, and the art of homemaking.

Janice Poehnell

Blended & Online Teacher

Janice Poehnell

Blended & Online Teacher

Janice is excited that God has brought her to TLA. She has been a teacher for a number of years, teaching a range of subjects and grades. Having spent many years in South America as a missionary, Janice is fluent in Spanish and works with the online Spanish students in addition to her Two-Day Blended program.

In her spare time, Janice likes to go to the movies, to the beach, and out for coffee. She also enjoys the doodle craze called Zen Tangle.

Jessica Kotanen

Home Teacher

Jessica Kotanen

Home Teacher

Jessica Kotanen lives in Mission, BC with her husband Jonny and daughters Olive, Fern, and Juniper. She has worked as a Home Teacher for TLA since 2012. Jessica was raised traditionally homeschooled through her elementary years, and although she obtained her teaching degree with the goal of being a public school teacher, her heart was eventually drawn back to the world of homeschooling as something she deeply believes in and loves.

Jessica particularly enjoys working alongside enthusiastic families of young children who are new to DL.

Kim Thomas

Online Teacher

Kim Thomas

Online Teacher

Kim Thomas is a Humanities teacher living in Vancouver, BC. She graduated from the University of the Fraser Valley with a degree in Sociology, Geography, and History. She received a Bachelor of Education from UBC in 2012 and has been working with TLA ever since.

As a teacher, Kim is passionate about connecting with students and families to form meaningful relationships. Her ultimate goal is to instill a lifelong passion for learning in her students.

Although she grew up in Langley, Kim now loves living in Vancouver so that her husband, an animator in the film industry, can be close to work. Working for TLA online means that she can work from their small city apartment with her two young children, Lucy and Jack. In her spare time, Kim enjoys reading, cooking, watching movies, and going on sweet adventures!

Mary Joan Visscher

LSS Teacher

Mary Joan Visscher

LSS Teacher

Mary Joan joined the TLA LSS teaching team in August 2013. She has been passionate about this area for the last 15 years. She has taught a range of students from Elementary to High School in the private school system and has spent the past 10 years as a Student Support Coordinator. Throughout her years of teaching, Mary Joan has also coached Senior Girls volleyball teams in a variety of high calibre tournaments, earning an undefeated season 5 years in a row, Fraser Valley Zone Champions 7 times, and at the Provincial level earning Bronze and Silver medals.

Mary Joan has been married for 18 years and has 3 children. Their family enjoys many sports like volleyball, hockey, soccer, figure skating, skiing and snowboarding. They also love to enjoy the beauty of God’s creation through hiking, backpacking, kayaking and camping.

In her spare time, Mary Joan really enjoys scrapbooking, photography and making cards. If she is unable to find time to do that, she values spending time with each one of her family members individually and is blessed by the bonding time it affords.

Mary Joan is excited to be part of the TLA LSS department where she is values the team expertise.

Marilyn Hahn

Blended Teacher

Marilyn Hahn

Blended Teacher

Marilyn Hahn has been teaching since 1993 and came back to teaching at TLA after 5 years of being away from students (read: wandering in a desert wasteland). She married a BC “boy” in 2011 and moved here from Calgary, Alberta!

Now that the new house has been repainted to her liking and the garden in the back has survived the slugs, the rains of winter, and the heat of summer, she’s ready for another year of Blended classes. Marilyn brings to TLA a love of writing and creative/critical thinking, as well as a passion for helping kids learn. She has been a teacher, conference speaker, author, curriculum designer, workshop leader, writing coach, and therapist, and well – let’s just say she’s a rock that gathers no moss.

Maureen Krump

Home Teacher

Maureen Krump

Home Teacher

After completing her Bachelor’s Degree in Education, Maureen worked in the Catholic school system for two years before starting her own family. Since then, life has been an exciting and rewarding adventure of learning along with her nine children whom she has home-schooled “since the beginning”. Learning is an adventure that begins with birth and never ends!

Maureen was a member of the TLA community as a parent for many years before joining the K-9 Staff as a Home Teacher in 2013. She feels privileged to assist other families in their own homeschooling journey while still homeschooling her youngest child.

Maureen lives in Burnaby where she is a member of St. Michael’s parish. She finds her Catholic faith central to all aspects of her life. In her spare time Maureen is an avid gardener, loves music, playing board games, sewing, and spending time with her husband and their children.

Megan Mackenzie

LSS Teacher

Megan Mackenzie

LSS Teacher

Megan Mackenzie is an actor, director, writer, teacher and all around lover of the arts. She holds her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Creative Writing and Theatre from the University of the Fraser Valley and her Bachelor of Education with a minor in Secondary Teaching from Simon Fraser University.

Megan had the pleasure of teaching within the Abbotsford School District before making the shift to DL Education. Megan worked three years in the Blended Program at TLA teaching Humanities and Drama before taking a leave of absence to work on a passion project: writing her first novel! Now that the novel is almost complete, Megan is thrilled to be back with TLA, this time working within the wonderful LSS Department.

Megan fills her limited spare time reading, writing, creating, travelling, dreaming and baking all kinds of desserts … which she tries not to eat … but always does, anyway.

Mylana Goheen

Online Teacher

Mylana Goheen

Online Teacher

Mylana Goheen is both a teacher and a musician who has been fortunate enough to blend these two passions into a single career for over a decade.

She completed her B.A. in music at McMaster University – with a concentration in violin performance – and at the same time, began her education degree. Since finishing her Masters in Education (D’Youville College, NY), she has worked in both public and private schools, teaching a wide range of ages, abilities, subjects, and methods.

In 2006, along with her husband, Ben, Mylana started a music teaching school, Studio G Music, which now provides musical instruction to over 200 weekly students. She also founded and directs SCStrings – a strings program offered to students at Surrey Christian School and community members.

Mylana thoroughly enjoys being able to combine her love of people and her enthusiasm for good music-making as a part of the team at TLA.

Peggy Smart

Home Teacher

Peggy Smart

Home Teacher

Peggy joined TLA in 2008. She enjoys seeing students develop to their full potential in their home setting with the ultimate goal of a lifelong joy of learning. Peggy loves working with the limitless resources in curriculum and studying techniques and learning alongside her families.

Peggy’s interests includes sailing, kayaking, and enjoying numerous outdoor activities in beautiful British Columbia.

PJ Reimer

Home Teacher

PJ Reimer

Home Teacher

PJ is an avid outdoorsman. He has been an educator/administrator for over 28 years in public, First Nations, and Christian Schools.

In his spare time PJ enjoys soapstone sculpting and painting houses. He has two grown children and resides in Kamloops.

Rebecca Shulba

Teacher Librarian

Rebecca Shulba

Teacher Librarian

After being a classroom teacher for 5 years then a Home teacher with TLA for 4 years, Rebecca joined the library team in January 2016. She works every day from 8am – 2pm at TLA Hawthorne. She orders, catalogues, organizes, then ships all the non-consumable resources for all K – 9 students at TLA.

Rebecca looks forward to keeping the teacher portion of her new teacher-librarian title as she has plans to host Makerspace events, online reading clubs, and develop various cross-curricular units for the families of TLA. When she’s not in the library, she’s spending time outside with her family, reading children’s literature, and documenting her own story through photos and journaling in a scrapbook format.

Sarah Stolz

LSS Teacher

Sarah Stolz

LSS Teacher

Island raised, LSS Teacher Sarah Stolz and her young daughter Emily live in Victoria, B.C. Sarah joined the TLA team in July 2014 and is thoroughly excited to be working with families to ensure their child’s program is as individual and unique as they are.

Sarah’s interest in family focused education comes naturally from her background which includes 10 years as a nanny, behavioral interventionist, respite worker, summer camp leader, and educational assistant. She completed her BA in Psychology and Business early in 2010 and finished her Bachelor of Education (K-12) with an emphasis on Special Education later that fall.

Communicating regularly with families is one of the things Sarah enjoys most about her position with TLA. In person visits to the home or extracurricular activities, home videos of learning experiences, email and skype sessions are ways in which Sarah is able to really connect with the students. Phone calls, emails and online document sharing allow Sarah to communicate effectively with parents and educational team members weekly.

Susanne Munro

Home Teacher

Susanne Munro

Home Teacher

Susanne Munro enjoys working with some of the Catholic homeschoolers in the TLA family.
Susanne taught for a number of years in the Catholic school system before starting a family. As the kids kept coming, she kept her hand in teaching by TOC-ing and working with some homeschool families to support their learning in English and Literature.

She and her husband, Harold, have six children and live in Surrey. Susanne thrives in the world of wonder and learning through the Home program.

Suzanne Uher

Blended Teacher

Suzanne Uher

Blended Teacher

Suzanne was a high school Social Studies teacher in Richmond before homeschooling her two girls, Mary and Abigail from K-12. She is passionate about Canadian history and encouraging teens to be proud, responsible Canadians. Suzanne has a BA in History from TWU, and studied for a term at Oxford. She is excited to be sharing her love of history and investing in the lives of our TLA teens.

Always on a hunt for great historical moments, Suzanne has spent 24 years dragging her husband Jason around the globe. When trips are not in the cards, they hop in their kayaks in Point Roberts and go for a spin.

Val Lymburner

LSS Teacher

Val Lymburner

LSS Teacher

Val comes to TLA from the Surrey School District, where she was a teacher of all grades from primary to secondary, as well as Special Education. She has her Master’s Degree in Supervision of Instruction and was a Vice-Principal with the Surrey District.

She has a passion for students who require the extra support and understanding to feel successful in learning. Val is also very supportive of the important role that teachers play in partnership with parents in the education of their children.

Val and her husband have two daughters and two beautiful grandsons. Family is very important to her and she is very pleased to be a part of the family of TLA.

Alison Wiebe

LSS Financial Administrator & Office Manager

Alison Wiebe

LSS Financial Administrator & Office Manager

Alison has been with TLA since March 2014, and currently works as the LSS financial administrator and office manager.

She lives in Surrey with her husband, Murray, and their three boys, Nathan, Daniel & Joshua. In her “spare” time, you will find her reading, making cards and spending time with friends.

Gemma Bonner

LSS Office Assistant

Gemma Bonner

LSS Office Assistant

Gemma has been with TLA since April 2018 working in the Learning Support Services department.

When she’s not spending time with her family or friends, she enjoy watching movies, reading fiction, and crocheting.

Gemma also has an appreciation for the smaller things in life, like good food, good tea, and better coffee. After all, life is too short to drink bad coffee!

Sarah Hewlett

Financial Manager

Sarah Hewlett

Financial Manager

Sarah was born in Vancouver, and grew up on a hobby farm in Surrey with her 6 siblings who were all homeschooled. There she maintained a large menagerie from hamsters to horses, and ran a few small businesses including a horse riding school.

She went on to work with a renowned dressage coach, training horses and students and became the Riding Director for Intervarsity’s horse camp in Harrison Mills, BC.

She married Edward Hewlett, the tech guy, and moved to New York for three years, where she earned certification as a Birth Doula with Doulas of North America, and started her rewarding passion of helping mothers enjoy satisfying birth experiences.

While working on her Bachelors in Business Administration at Kwantlen University, she studied business and French culture in Paris for 6 months as well as backpacking around Europe with her 3 home-schooled children who were 11, 7, and 4 at the time.

Sarah has been a homeschooling mom and TLA parent for over 10 years, and is thrilled to be part of the TLA team.

Jacqueline McLean

Bookkeeper

Jacqueline McLean

Bookkeeper

Jacqueline has been with TLA since August 2017 as the bookkeeper and is super happy to have found such amazing people to work with!

Jacqueline lives in Langley with her husband Brian and son Barry. Her interests are supporting Barry in his Ukulele Ensemble activities, camping, golf, gardening, shopping, scrapbooking, and spending time with her large extended family, AKA the Hessels Clan.

Jacqueline is a member of St. Joseph’s Parish in Langley where she has been an RCIA team member since 2005.

Caitlin Wiebe

SIM Clerk

Caitlin Wiebe

SIM Clerk

Caitlin started working at TLA in November 2013 as part time help, and later happily accepted a position as an office assistant. She currently enjoys answering questions, troubleshooting, and working in the Student Records department.

Caitlin was homeschooled from K-12 and wouldn’t have had it any other way! Being homeschooled allowed her to pursue her interests, including sports, photography, and piano. She loves the ocean, reading, travelling, and her truly fantastic coworkers.

Sydney Halladay

K-9 Office Assistant

Sydney Halladay

K-9 Office Assistant

Sydney was homeschooled from K-12 and she’s passionate about the homeschool philosophy. She’s blessed to be working at TLA and joined the staff team in Spring 2013 as a summer student, but quickly accepted a position in the K-9 department and enjoys being full time in the office.

Sydney is the oldest of 8 children. She spent 2 years at Capernwray Bible School on Thetis Is., B.C. and completed a year of study at Trinity Western University. She enjoys spending time with her family & friends, playing piano and going to the beach.

Esther Breviere

Registrar & Student Records Clerk

Esther Breviere

Registrar & Student Records Clerk

Esther has been with TLA since June 2013. Some of her favourite parts of the job are keeping student records organized and talking with people on the phone.

Esther loves to spend quality time with her family and friends, and during her free time you will find her either hiking, running, going outside to the ocean, or enjoying a cup of coffee!

Sonia Taplin

Secretary

Sonia Taplin

Secretary

Sonia started working at TLA in July 2018. You may hear her answer when you call the main office, ready to tackle your questions.

Sonia has a passion for ultimate frisbee, having played competitively for a few years and coaching both adults and high school students. She also loves to rock climb, visiting the local gyms and heading to Squamish from time to time. A self professed biology nerd, she also loves to read fantasy and science fiction.

Alisha Deddens

Blended Teacher

Alisha Deddens

Blended Teacher

Alisha Deddens is an installation artist currently living and working in the Vernon area. She also works with a range of other media including painting, drawing, sculpture, video and sound.

In 2014, Alisha graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of the Fraser Valley. She has been involved in several juried group shows, installations, murals and community engagement pieces including Buy One Get None: Conformity, Consumerism and The Collective Voice, exhibited at The Reach Gallery Museum and the 2015 Fraser Valley Biennale. Alisha was recognized at the 2015 Abbotsford Arty Awards and won the Christine Caldwell Arts Advocate Award.

Alisha’s projects often focus on specific themes including her personal experience with epilepsy, the fear of losing control, and the fragility of self. She has had the opportunity to teach and engage with students in various workshops and classes, sharing her knowledge of and passion for the arts.

Allan Garneau

Founder

Allan Garneau

Founder

Allan has devoted his working life to education, having spent the first 25 years of his career in the public school system, and since 1991 as founder and principal of the Traditional Learning Academy. An advocate for the family, he strives to ensure that parents have access to a wide range of options for educating their children.

He and his late wife, Moira, raised five sons. He cherishes his five granddaughters and two grandsons. Those of school age are learning in the home setting, and already the older ones are at college. In 2010, he remarried, Teresa, and knows that retirement and travel are not too far off. In the meantime, he still spends most of his working day overseeing the incredible opportunities for students at TLA (main school, online and homeschooling).

Allan has presented several practical seminars for parents at conferences, many of which have assisted homeschooling parents to plan and teach their own children. He manages to take educational “jargon” and put it into plain English, while assuring parents they can offer a quality program for their children.

Cara Lee Buzza

Home Teacher

Cara Lee Buzza

Home Teacher

Cara Lee lives in Mission with her husband, David and her three amazing children, David, Connor, and Emily.

Cara Lee has been working with TLA families since 2002 as a DL teacher for students living in Maple Ridge and Port Coquitlam.

David Buzza

Online Teacher

David Buzza

Online Teacher

David had a long history of teaching in the Independent school system before transitioning into the role of pastor of a church in Maple Ridge. As life often goes, he has come full-circle back to teaching at TLA while continuing to pastor.

David married Cara Lee in 1994 and 5 addresses, 3 kids, and a dog later – they’re still going strong!

David Depner

Operations Officer

David Depner

Operations Officer

David Depner was born and raised in the Lower Mainland. Before coming to TLA, David was in the property management industry where he was Accounting Manager and Controller for a few local property management companies. His beautiful wife Christine is also in the property management world as a strata manager.

He is a typical bean counter, stickler for the rules, quotes accounting principles and CRA, but don’t let that cloud your image of him. Outside of work he enjoys skiing with Christine and their two children, Cameron and Elizabeth, on the many ski mountains in BC.

He is also known to tell a few fishing stories so don’t get him started.

Elda Egan

Home & Blended Teacher

Elda Egan

Home & Blended Teacher

Elda has lived and taught in Prince George for the last 28 years. Her teaching experiences range from being a Teacher-Librarian to being an elementary and high school classroom teacher to being a Special Education teacher. She is passionate about teaching and finding ways to reach all learners.

Elda homeschooled one of her own sons while he was in high school. She enjoys her role at TLA as a Home teacher.

In her free time, Elda is very involved with her church where she leads Bible Studies, teaches Sunday School, and is part of the Pastoral Care group. She also likes to jog with her dog, and bike, kayak, and do crosswords with her husband.

Jen Duncan

Home Teacher

Jen Duncan

Home Teacher

Jen lives in Fort St. James with her husband Steve and four children. Her homeschool journey began in 2008 with the entry of her eldest, Aidan, into kindergarten. Having taught English at high school prior to having children, she was excited to start her journey as a support teacher. Connecting parents and combating isolation are two ways that Jen helps improve the experience of homeschooling for Northern families.

In her “free” time, Jen loves to scrapbook, play with clay, and spend time outside with her family. Summer is one of her favourite times as she gets to spend it at Echo Lake Bible Camp, which her husband directs.

Jennifer Boessenkool

Blended & Online Teacher

Jennifer Boessenkool

Blended & Online Teacher

Jennifer Boessenkool is a high school Math and Science teacher living in Port Moody, BC. She has recently taught in the Calgary School Board in math and science, in addition to being a “city champion” basketball coach.

She enjoys spending time with her husband, Derek, and her children Alexienna – born in Sept. 2008, and Levi – born Oct. 2011. She enjoys going for walks with her dog Nash, swimming, hiking, and reading.

Jenn holds a Bachelor of Science in Animal Biology, and a Bachelor of Education from the University of British Columbia. She also spent time living and teaching in the UK.

Jessica Ens

Home Teacher

Jessica Ens

Home Teacher

Jessica Ens joined the TLA team in 2013 as a Home Teacher and enjoys helping TLA families find the flexibility they need to meet their educational goals for their children.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Victoria and a Bachelor of Education from Simon Fraser University, and has taught in both independent and public schools.

Having grown up in Northern BC and lived on Vancouver Island and in Surrey, Jessica now resides in Kamloops with her husband and three adorable children. She likes coffee, knitting, public libraries, her vegetable garden and writing letters.

John Emmons

Online Teacher

John Emmons

Online Teacher

John is a man of many experiences! Over the years he has been a firefighter, a marine biologist, a pastor, and a teacher. He believes life should be lived with passion. One of his passions is science… and anything science-related.

His motto? SCIENCE ROCKS! He has combined his passion for science with his love of working with his students.

When he is not contacting students or grading papers, he enjoys hobbies such as woodworking, exercising, visiting different cultures and, especially, riding his motorcycle. John is the proud parent of four children and two wonderful grandchildren.

Julie Chetty

Home Teacher

Julie Chetty

Home Teacher

Julie Chetty has been part of the TLA team since 2008. She is a Home Teacher for students living in Vancouver, Burnaby, the North Shore and Richmond.

Prior to joining TLA,  Julie spent 9 years teaching English and Home Economics at a high school in West Vancouver. She has also taught in Lithuania and Zambia where, among the world’s least privileged children, she learned the value of using nature’s tools as a powerful resource.

Julie holds a Bachelor of Education in English and a Bachelor of Home Economics from the University of British Columbia. She is an avid photographer and enjoys traveling the globe with her family.

Kara Bisschop

Home Teacher

Kara Bisschop

Home Teacher

Kara lives in Smithers, BC with her husband James (who is also a teacher) and their three young children. Kara has been working as a Home Teacher with TLA for many years and appreciates being able to stay at home with her children while working with families to pursue an excellent education for their children.

Kara enjoys cross country skiing, and the family built a skating rink in the backyard. Kara looks forward to summers and spending time at the lake camping with family and friends.

Karen Effa

Blended Teacher

Karen Effa

Blended Teacher

Growing up in Kelowna, Karen’s love of learning was kindled by a childhood full of books and outdoor nature studies.  When her first child was still a pre-schooler, she was introduced to homeschooling by a friend. The sampling of kindergarten curriculum she discovered to support constructive play launched her on an annual search for the best educational materials and into almost two decades of homeschooling. Presenting at Heritage Christian Home School Conferences allowed her to share with other parents what she had learned, encouraging them in their journey. With the end of the homeschooling season in sight, Karen went back to school, completing a Bachelor of Science in Education through Liberty University.

With her children pursuing careers in law, accounting, and nursing, Karen launched an education services company, Able Now Learning, which offers pre-school enrichment support, homeschool consulting, tutoring, and conference speaking. Teaching part-time at TLA has been a perfect match with her interests and background. Always striving to become a better teacher, Karen started a Master of Education: Imaginative Learning in 2017 at Simon Fraser University on a part-time basis.

As a devout Christian, Karen gives God praise for the many blessings in her life, and trusts Him to see her through the very difficult circumstances. In her leisure time, Karen enjoys catching up with her children and spending time with her husband of 29 years. Reading, hiking, kayaking, and tennis are also at the top of her list.

Melissa Friesen

Home & LSS Teacher

Melissa Friesen

Home & LSS Teacher

Melissa Friesen has been a part of the TLA team since spring 2014. Melissa loves working for TLA and partnering with families to educate their children at home. She enjoys building relationships with families, and the wonderful opportunity to create customized learning plans for every child.

Melissa grew up in Langley and graduated from TWU in 2002 and SFU in 2003. Prior to working for TLA, Melissa taught in several schools in the greater Vancouver area. She also had the wonderful privilege of homeschooling her own children for three years.

Melissa has been married to Corey since 2000 and they live in Langley with their three school-aged children. They love to travel, especially to their favourite sunny destination – Maui!

Pauline Bekesza

Home Teacher

Pauline Bekesza

Home Teacher

Pauline and her family live in Cobble Hill on Vancouver Island. She has been involved with TLA for over 15 years as a homeschooling parent, and on the ‘other side’ as a Home Teacher. Pauline’s real passion is for close and healthy families, as well as for fostering the opportunities homeschooling offers for students to develop their own unique gifts and interests in the way that best works for them. Pauline has experienced these benefits through the homeschooling of her own children, and her goal is to be an encouragement and support to other families.

Prior to receiving her Education degree, Pauline had a B.A. in Psychology as well as her Early Childhood Education Certificate and her Montessori teachers diploma.

During her spare time Pauline enjoys the outdoors, hiking, reading, and painting. She continues to develop her family’s property into a fruitful endeavour.

Libby Voth

Blended Teacher

Libby Voth

Blended Teacher

Libby Voth lives in Abbotsford with her husband and two children.

Originally from the UK, Libby earned her BA from the University of Stirling. Several years later, she took the teacher education course at SFU part time while working as an EA with special needs students. She taught for 6 years in an independent Christian school in Abbotsford before joining the TLA team in 2017. She is passionate about connecting with students and is excited to be part of facilitating their learning and growth.

In her spare time she enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading, taking photographs, and drinking chai.

Trina Séne

Home Teacher

Trina Séne

Home Teacher

Trina was originally born and raised in Terrace, BC but currently lives in Langley with her husband and son.

Trina has been teaching since 2007 in independent schools but was excited to embark on a new journey starting with TLA. She began working with TLA in 2018 as a home teacher and is currently also a part of the LSS department.

Abby Sei

Home Teacher

Abby Sei

Home Teacher

Abby lives in Richmond with her husband, Vic and their three bright and beautiful girls Michaela, Livia, and Ava. She enjoys connecting with other moms over coffee and a playdate for the children. She is also involved in her church’s care group and young adults group and strongly believes in community-building.

Abby was born and raised in the Lower Mainland and earned her Bachelor’s of Education and Bachelor’s of Arts from UBC. She has experience in both the public and independent school system. For the past ten years she has taught in a Christian school in Vancouver.

Joyce Froese

Blended & Learning Assistance Teacher

Joyce Froese

Blended & Learning Assistance Teacher

Joyce Froese is a high school Math and Science teacher. She has considerable experience teaching Math and Science at all levels, as well as teaching students with various challenges.

She enjoys exploring, creating, growing and learning.

She holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and Physics, and a Bachelor of Education from the University of British Columbia.

Merissa Ang

LSS Teacher

Merissa Ang

LSS Teacher

Merissa Ang lives in Vancouver with her husband Mark and their two children, Abigail and James. She enjoys reading, sewing, kayaking and spending time in nature with her family. Merissa holds a B.A degree in Geography and Biology and a B.Ed degree specializing in high school education from Trinity Western University.

Merissa taught high school in the lower mainland before moving to a rural First Nations community (2011-2016) where she taught students in grades 2-11 in multi-grade homeroom classes at the local community school. In 2017 she returned to the Lower Mainland and began working as an LSS teacher with TLA.

Edward Hewlett

Tech Team Lead

Edward Hewlett

Tech Team Lead

It was the joy of helping other students in his computer class in high school that convinced Edward that he might enjoy teaching – enjoying computers was a given.

Edward obtained his BA in History and his BEd in SS-History from UBC, spent time in Japan and New York, then returned to the Lower Mainland with his family.

In his first year at TLA, Edward served as the school’s English and Social Studies Specialist, Grad Coordinator, and Tech Guy. As TLA has grown and others have stepped in to take over some of those roles, Edward has been blessed with the opportunity to focus once again on one of his first loves: helping others utilize computers!

Kyler Johnson

Tech Support

Kyler Johnson

Tech Support

Kyler is a graduate from the University of Regina where he received his Masters of Science in Mathematics. Since his time in Regina, he has pursued a course of self study relating to web development. He is now employed in the tech department at TLA where he assists people with tech related questions and helps improve the TLA web services.

In his spare time, you can find him shooting hoops up the street at the local school, or playing mind bending puzzle games such as Portal or Antichamber.

Richard Croft

Systems Administrator, Tech Team

Richard Croft

Systems Administrator, Tech Team

Richard is a graduate from the University of the Fraser Valley with a degree in Computer Information Systems. With a love of Linux, it is not uncommon to see him in front of a desk with a Linux computer or server.

Matthew Grice

Tech Support

Matthew Grice

Tech Support

Matthew is an ever curious man with a passion for technology of all kinds. Whether it’s programming, building and repairing computers, or just managing the HelpDesk, Matthew can be found at his desk surrounded by computer parts and laptops. Even in his free time, he’s always hard at work on creative projects, such as writing his next book, and making melodic music.

Sandy Lang

Online Teacher

Sandy Lang

Online Teacher

Originally born in Washington State but raised in Canada, Sandy married her husband Don in 1993 and now lives in the Okanagan. They have 4 grown children whom they homeschooled for most of their education.

When Sandy is not working online, she enjoys being outdoors, hiking, kayaking, or doing some landscaping work. She also enjoys doing home improvement projects, sewing, and baking. However, the most important part of her life is continually learning about her Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, and studying His Word.

Joanne Bueno

LSS Teacher

Joanne Bueno

LSS Teacher

Joanne has been a part of the TLA LSS teaching team since 2008. She has been extremely blessed learning from her talented colleagues and working with students and families to create and implement educational plans that cater to their individual strengths and needs.

She studied English and History in her undergrad years and then completed her Bachelor of Education in Secondary English and Socials Studies. She has always known that her passion was in educating special needs children, and so she continued on and received a post-graduate diploma in Special Education at UBC. She has taught a range of students, from kindergarten to grade 12, in both the public and private education systems.

In her spare time, Joanne loves to laugh, relax and read, and simply be with her family and friends.

Katie Hay

Online Teacehr

Katie Hay

Online Teacehr

Katie comes to TLA with 20 years of teaching experience. She has a BA (Math, Econ), a BEd (Secondary) and a Masters (Educational Technology).

The best parts of her life are raising two incredibly thoughtful kids and spending time with her husband. Katie is an avid competitor in the horse arena and could spend countless hours at the barn.

Jenny Kuo

Online Teacher

Jenny Kuo

Online Teacher

Jenny graduated from UBC with Bachelors in Science and Secondary Education. She has taught for the Vancouver School Board and independent schools. She is passionate about learning and helping students achieve their potential and become well-rounded individuals.

During her spare time, Jenny enjoys cooking, gardening, and playing guitar. She is also fluent in Mandarin and would like to learn another language and travel the world.

Rebekah MacEwan

Blended Teacher

Rebekah MacEwan

Blended Teacher

Rebekah MacEwan lives in Surrey, BC with her husband Jonathan and children Robbie and Annie. She brings a variety of experience acting and directing in local plays and musicals, along with extensive RCM singing and piano training. Rebekah has also led worship teams for many years, and plays the occasional jazz gig. She is thrilled to guide student actors into the rewarding and empowering world of theatre arts.

With family, Maui is her happy place – but she is planning a long-awaited trip to NYC someday. Rare down-times find her with coffee in hand on a hunt for bargains.

Rita Lago

Blended Teacher

Rita Lago

Blended Teacher

Rita has been a part of the TLA community for over a decade as a homeschooling parent. For the past seventeen years, she has dedicated her life to educating students, from her own three children as well as other children, in a variety of settings. In addition to homeschooling, she worked as an Education Assistant in the Catholic school system and as a volunteer catechist at her parish. Her own passion for learning fueled her desire in nurturing and teaching her own children, with the goal of imparting a life-long love of learning and with the idea that learning can take place anywhere.

Prior to having children, Rita taught university-level students as a Teaching Fellow while pursuing her graduate studies in Economics in the United States. She was excited to come back to TLA, this time as a Blended Teacher, entering a new chapter in her life.

When she’s not busy with all her commitments, Rita enjoys the outdoors with her husband and children, kayaking, hiking, and camping.

Darren Stoltz

Home Teacher

Darren Stoltz

Home Teacher

Darren enjoys quiet time, walking somewhere/anywhere and sitting under the clouds and trees next to water.

Darren relishes time at home playing intensely with his kids. He loves his wife’s hugs, his eldest’s ideas, his middle one’s playfulness and his youngest’s eyes.

He appreciates competition, the predictability and unpredictability of sport, the life illustrations found in chess and the making something out of nothing in the game of backgammon.

He’s amazed at the fingerprints of God throughout nature and is humbled by the voice of Yahweh on the Page and in his heart, learning His ways are perfect and his aren’t, the precious gift of repentance and a broken heart.

Darren is thrilled by learning about history and that Solomon was right, the alphabetical symbols and all their permutations of combinations of meaning and playing board games with friends.

And yes, he salivates over wholesome-rich-thick-nutritious-tasty-mmmm toxic-and-gmo-free grown yourself food, as well as savouring three shot espressos in the morning.

Finally, he anticipates “the-lights-came-on” look in the eyes of his students and the search for truth, working in a professional field where what he does makes families stronger and children more confident and creative.

Lael Rombough

LSS Teacher

Lael Rombough

LSS Teacher

Lael Rombough joined the TLA team for the 2013-2014 school year. Having been homeschooled himself, he genuinely understands its needs and benefits.

Since childhood, Lael knew he wanted to be a teacher and help raise up students to be all they can be. Having achieved his education degree from Redeemer University/College in Ontario with History and Science as teachables, Lael worked towards gaining experience in a wide range of subjects. Due to his desire to understand and help students with exceptionalities he took additional Special Needs certification. Lael has had classroom experience with all ages and specific experience with students with Autism.

He loves pursuing a plethora of hobbies with his wife in his spare time. These hobbies can include, but are not limited to: a good game of road hockey, singing, playing a variety of video games, or messing around on the guitar.

Shelley Sikma

Blended Teacher

Shelley Sikma

Blended Teacher

Shelley has always loved anything active and athletics related. She has years of experience playing
a wide variety of sports and volunteering as a coach for various teams and sports camps. She is
excited to be able to share this passion with the students of TLA in the blended PHE program.

Shelley lives in Langley with her husband Paul. She feels blessed to spend the majority of her week at
home managing her active household of five sons and one daughter. She also loves to volunteer for
activities at her church.

Mylene Dayrit-Kubicek

Blended Teacher

Mylene Dayrit-Kubicek

Blended Teacher

Mylene enjoys working at TLA and is proud of her students learning new things in her Blended Visual Art classes. She graduated with a Bachelors degree from UBC and possesses education from Langara College in Graphic Design. As a working artist, she also enjoys being a member of Art Focus Artists’ Association (AFAA) in Port Coquitlam. She’s displayed her art work in group art shows with AFAA for several years in their fall and spring shows. Mylene served as Secretary on their Executive Committee but is now in charge of designing and creating the society’s new website and print ads for their art shows.

Mylene also enjoys providing art lessons to students out of her home studio and provides after school art programs to elementary to middle school students in the Tri-Cities area through a leading art centre in Coquitlam. She lives in Coquitlam with her husband and son.

When Mylene is not working, she enjoys volunteering at her son’s school by hosting art parties as a fundraiser, attending mass at church, reading, exercising, and spending time with family.

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