Faculty and Staff

The Grauer School was founded in 1991 by Dr. Stuart Grauer, a noted educator and strong proponent of the nation’s highly-acclaimed Small Schools movement.  YouTube Preview ImageFor two decades, Dr. Grauer and faculty have continually advanced the school’s college prep mission on the belief that students will be most successful when they are intrinsically motivated to learn. They have seen great success with this unique school model. Grauer students are attending the nation’s finest colleges and universities.

The Grauer School has over 30 certified, highly-qualified personnel, including Dr. Grauer, Principal Dana Abplanalp-Diggs,  and school counselor Tricia Shemwell.

All of our faculty members here at The Grauer School demonstrate extensive coursework in the content area in which they teach, a strong commitment to humanitarian service, and either international or intercultural immersion experience. The majority of our faculty members also graduated from their collegiate programs with Honors.

Leadership Team

Stuart Grauer, Ed.D.Dr.StuartGrauerjpg-1
Founder and Head of School
Bachelors Degree: Syracuse University
Masters Degree: Long Island University
Doctoral Degree: University of San Diego (Leadership Studies)
Credentials: English and Social Studies
Roles at The Grauer School

President of The Grauer Foundation for Education
Founder of the Coalition of Small Preparatory Schools

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Dana Abplanalp-Diggs, M.Ed.GS Principal Dana Abplanalp-Diggs
Principal, Science Department Chair

Bachelors Degree: DePauw University (Biology)—Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa
Masters Degree: University of San Diego (Educational Leadership)
Credentials: Single Subject Biology and Preliminary Administrative Services
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Leadership Studies
Sponsor: High School ASB
UNESCO ASPnet School Coordinator

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Clayton Payne, M.S.clayton
Dean of Students, Director of Independent Studies, Summer School Principal

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Cultural Anthropology)
Masters Degree: National University (Mathematics)
Credentials: Math Fundamentals (MS); Certified Recording Engineer
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Math (all levels), Music, and World Religions

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Tricia Shemwell, M.EdShemwell_Tricia
Director of Guidance and College Counseling

Bachelor’s Degree: Arkansas State University (Speech and Drama)
Masters Degrees: University of Houston (Education K-13 and Guidance Counseling)
Credentials: College Counseling, Guidance Counseling, Reading Specialist, Single Subject English
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Leadership Studies
Sponsor: National Honor Society and High School ASB

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Isaac Langenisaac
Visual and Performing Arts Department Chair

Bachelors Degree: UCSD (Music)— Magna Cum Laude
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Music, Performing Arts, Recording Arts
Sponsor: Rainbow Coalition

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Patricia YoungYoung_Patricia
Educational Mentoring and Expeditions Program Director

Bachelors Degree: UCSD (Animal Physiology and Neuroscience)—Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa
Roles at The Grauer School

Middle School Friday Expeditionary Learning Coordinator
Teacher: Physical Science and American Sign Language

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Faculty

Chelsea ArrighiArrighi_Ms_Chelsea
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of San Diego (Liberal Studies: Math)
California State Teaching Credential: Multiple Subjects and Math
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: Math, Science, and Learning Lab
Assistant Coach: Girls Volleyball

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Victoria Belanger
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: Brandeis University (East Asian Studies, minors in Art History and Anthropology)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Social Studies 6, Global Insights 7, World History

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Jillian BourdonBourdon_Jillian
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of Massachusetts
Credentials: English and ESL Specialist
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: English as a Second Language, Educational Mentoring, Learning Lab
International Center Coordinator

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Morgan Brown, MSBrown_Mr_Morgan
Teacher, Math Department Chair

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Physics)
Masters Degree: University of California, San Diego (Physics)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Physics, Calculus, Algebra 1, Robotics, Guitar Building
Director of the Robotics Team
Coach: Boys' High School Soccer

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Christina Burress, MABurress_Christina
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of California, Berkeley (Rhetoric)
Masters Degree: Naropa University (Creative Writing)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: English 7 and 9
Educational Mentoring
Mindfulness Training

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Kathleen Donnelly Bober, MADonnelly_Kathleen
Teacher
Bachelors Degree: Santa Clara University (Psychology)
Masters Degree: University of San Francisco (Education)
Credential and CLAD: Multiple Subject Teaching
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Math and Learning Lab

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Fariba Farah, MAFarah_Fariba
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Pure Mathematics)
Master’s Degree: University of Southern California (Mathematics Education)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Math (all levels), Learning Lab
Educational Mentor

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Sean HauzeHauze_Mr_Sean
Teacher, Technology Coordinator

Bachelors Degree: University of Colorado at Boulder (Environmental Design in Architecture) – Cum Laude
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Multimedia, Computer Applications, Guitar Building, and Music

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Johnny King
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: Sonoma State University - Cum Laude
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Studio Art, Photography, Athletics Coach

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Erin LangenLangen_Ms_Erin
Teacher, Theatre Arts Program Director

Bachelors Degree: University of San Francisco (Theater Arts)
Teaching Credentials: English and Theater Arts
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: English and Theater Arts
Clubs: Drama Clubs
Middle School ASB Sponsor

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Sandra Merten
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of California, Los Angeles (Political Science) - Honors
Masters Degree: Pepperdine University (Education)
Credentials: California Social Science Credential
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Economics, US History 8 and 11

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Sophie Oller, M.Ed.Oller_Sophie_Kr
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Chemistry)—Cum Laude
Masters Degree: University of California, San Diego (Education)
Teaching Credentials: Chemistry and French
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: Chemistry, Environmental Science, French
Green Grauer Co-Chair

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Trevor OlsonOlson_Mr_Trevor
Teacher, Athletic Director

Bachelors Degree: University of Arizona (Physical Education – Minor in Coaching and CSET in Health Science)
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: Health and Physical Education
Coach: Volleyball and Archery

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Sean Preci, MAPreci_Sean
Teacher, English Department Chair

Bachelors Degree: California State University, San Marcos (Literature and Writing) – Cum Laude
Masters Degree: San Diego State University (Rhetoric and Writing with emphasis in Teaching of Writing)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: 8th and 11th grade English, Film Studies, Surf Physical Education, Cooking Class
Coach: High School Surf Team

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Mimi RobinsonRobinson_Mimi
Teacher, 3-5 Program Coordinator

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Human Development)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Spanish 1 and 3, American Sign Language, Kung Fu Physical Education, Learning Lab
Educational Mentor

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John RubioJohn
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of Redlands (Johnston Center)
Credential: California State Teaching Credential (English)
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: 12th and 10th grade English, Creative Writing, Speech and Debate, and Film Studies
Educational Mentor
Rainbow Coalition Sponsor

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Nick Scacco, MAScacco_Mr_Nick
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: Northwestern University (Biology)
Masters Degree: University of Hawaii (Educational Foundations)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Life Science, Biology, and Environmental Science
Educational Mentor
Assistant Coach: Flag Football
Green Grauer Co-Chair

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Brendan WallaceWallace_Mr_Brendan
Teacher

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Biochemistry)
Roles at The Grauer School

Teacher: Algebra 2, Advanced Biology--Marine Biology, and Physical Education
Educational Mentor

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Jessi YoungYoung_Ms_Jessi
Teacher, Community Service Coordinator

Bachelors Degree: University of California, Davis (History and Political Science)
Masters Degree: San Diego State University (Spanish with an emphasis in applied linguistics)
Credential: TEFL Certification
Roles at The Grauer School
Teacher: Spanish, ESL Humanities, and U.S. Government
YMCA Youth and Government Coordinator
Educational Mentor

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Staff

Tracy AhrensAhrens_Tracy
Assistant to Head of School
 
Chris AhrensChris A
Teacher, Surf Team Coach
 

Shelley Boniwell
Assistant Counselor

Bachelors Degree: Mount St. Mary's College (Liberal Studies and Religious Studies)
Masters Degree: University of San Diego (Counseling)
Credential: Pupil Personnel Services
Roles at The Grauer School
Assistant Counselor
Advisory Program

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Elizabeth BraymenBraymen_Elizabeth
Registrar, Admissions

Associates Degree: Foothill Community College (Sociology)
Bachelors Degree: Santa Clara University (History)
Juris Doctor (JD): Santa Clara University
Roles at The Grauer School
Registrar
High School and International Admissions Counselor
Scholarship Coordinator

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Simon ChecaCheca_Simon
Facilities Management

Stephane Deuvaert
Programmer

Bachelors Degree: UC Santa Cruz (Psychology)
Roles at The Grauer School

Gradescape Programmer

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Sally Grauer, MS, CCC-SpLSally
Middle School Admissions

Bachelors Degree: University of California, Santa Barbara (Speech & Hearing Sciences)
Masters Degree: Utah State University (Communicative Disorders)
California State License/Certification of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology
Certificate of Bilingual, Crosscultural, Language, and Academic Development (BCLAD)
Roles at The Grauer School
Chapter Leader of Kids Korps Tennis Team Coordinator

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Bill Harman, ThM
Teacher Ambassador, Community Relations
Bachelors Degree: Wittenberg University
Bachelors and Masters Degrees (BD, MDiv): Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Doctoral Degree: Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley
Hartford Seminary Foundation--Certificate in Islamic Studies & African Culture
Roles at The Grauer School
Part-time teacher for World Religions, History & English
Global Expeditions
Teacher Ambassador in Advancement Office/Community Relations

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Theresa HernandezHernandez_Theresa
Accounts

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Sara HuntHunt_Sara
Communications Associate

Bachelors Degree: Chapman University (Creative Writing with minors in Women’s Studies and GLBT Studies) -- Magna Cum Laude
Roles at The Grauer School

Newsletter and Social Media Editor
Educational Mentor

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Traci Kitaoka, M.S. Traci
Marketing and Development Specialist

Bachelors Degree: University of California, San Diego (Distinction in Biochemistry and Cell Biology) – Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa
Masters Degree: University of California, San Diego (Biology)
Roles at The Grauer School

Event Development, Marketing
Advertising
Yearbook Adviser

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Libby Lievers
Bookkeeper

Bachelor's Degree: University of San Diego (Business, International Relations)
Master's Degree: University of San Diego (International Business)

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Lorin West Portlorin
Controller
Bachelors Degree: San Diego State University (Business Administration)

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Sheila Wiricksheila
Alumni Relations

Bachelors Degree: University of Oklahoma (Interior Architecture)
Roles at The Grauer School
Advancement/Development Committee: Co-Chair
Grauer Board of Trustees

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