Rock Solid Academy 570-696-(LION)5466
President/ Head of School
Lauren Dennis received both her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in English as a Second Language from King’s College. She has teaching experience in Physical Education, Spanish, English as a Second Language, Technology, and Swimming from a variety of local schools, including Wyoming Valley Montessori, Wyoming Seminary, Wilkes-Barre Academy, Dallas Elementary’s Foreign Language Academy, and the United Hebrew Institute. She joined the Rock Solid Academy family last year as Associate Head of School under mentorship from William Norwig. Lauren spends time volunteering abroad as a “house-mom” and ESL teacher in a rescue home for abused and neglected girls in Managua, Nicaragua. She is also the owner and director of Rock N’ Roll Gymnastics Academy located in Dallas. Lauren enjoys spending time with her family and traveling. It is her goal to let the love of Christ shine through her and to make a difference in every life she encounters.
Dean of Students
William Norwig has 36 years of classroom and teaching experience. He has 5 years of administrative experience. He was the High School Principal at Lancaster Christian, has 15 years experience teaching in the New Jersey Public School System, and taught in other Christian Schools. He has been a Home School Evaluator for 26 years. William has experience coaching flag football, baseball, basketball, and hockey. He has been married for the past 49 years to Carol, the love of his life. She now resides at The Meadows. His main desire is to make Christ “real” in the heart and lives of the young people at Rock Solid Academy.
English and History
Tara DiMarco earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre Arts from Wilkes University and her Master’s Degree in Teaching from Marywood University. She is a state-certified Secondary English teacher with a history of working with diverse student populations. In the past, she has worked at Marywood University, assisting students in GED Language Arts and Social Studies instruction. Most recently, she spent a year and a half working for the Department of Labor’s Job Corps program, where she taught Language Arts to underprivileged youth ages 16 through 24. Tara is an enthusiastic educator who uses her theatrical background to help bring literature and history to life. She loves working with the adolescent population and is excited to help young adults grow spiritually, intellectually, and artistically. She is humbled to join the Rock Solid Academy faculty and believes that it is God’s will for her to be a
part of the RSA family. Tara lives in West Pittston with her husband, Anthony, and their cat, Speaker. She loves a good cup of coffee, thinks that life should be a musical, and feels blessed to have found her calling as a teacher.
Michelle Coe is the Rock Solid Academy Middle School Teacher. She is a devoted wife and mother of four children. She attends Back Mountain Harvest Assembly of God with her family. Her formal education was obtained at the University of Scranton where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Math Education, and Master’s Degree in Developmental Education. Over the years, she has taught all subjects in a Christian school setting, and also Math for grades 7-12 in the public schools. Michelle feels God has brought her to Rock Solid Academy to teach the middle school students, which is an honor. She looks forward to teaching the students and learning from them as well. She anticipates working together with families to help students grow academically and spiritually, and be on their way to becoming the person God desires them to be! Michelle is Rock Solid Academy’s classic book and movie club director.
3rd - 6th Grades
Science and History
Jared Vedro graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Bloomsburg University. He is currently working towards his Master’s Degree in Reading Education from Southeastern University. He is a current member of the NEA (National Education Association) and of Kappa Delta Pi (honor society in the field of education). Jared coaches Rock Solid Academy’s Football Club and facilitates their Sports Club. God has provided Jared with opportunities to teach young children at Harvey Cedars Bible Conference in Harvey Cedars, NJ, a local learning center, and at Evergreen Behavioral Services as a Therapeutic Support Staff worker. He has also had the privilege of working in ministry as a youth leader, Sunday school teacher, and volunteer for VBS. He also spends time doing street ministry in Camden, New Jersey. When he is not teaching, he enjoys spending time with his wife and kids. Jared looks forward to helping the students develop a genuine love for God, others, and learning, so that they can develop a strong educational and spiritual foundation for years to come!
3rd - 6th Grades
Mathematics and Language Arts
Barbara J. Welch received her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education from Bloomsburg University and her Master’s Degree from Wilkes University. Before beginning her teaching career, she was employed at Wilkes University as the Associate Dean of Admissions. Prior to teaching at Rock Solid Academy, Welch taught second through eighth grades at the United Hebrew Institute. While at UHI, she wrote and received language arts grants which enabled her to develop ongoing university partnerships for the purpose of enhancing the language arts and social studies curricula. She co-authored an article which was published in the Social Studies Journal: Best PCSS Practices and co-presented at conferences in Denver, Bloomsburg, and Cape May. Welch lives in Dallas with her husband, Dean, and son, Jim. Barbara is the Board Game Club Leader at Rock Solid Academy.
1st and 2nd Grades
Robin Gaitano grew up in the Dallas area and moved back 10 years ago with her husband of 23 years after living in other states for several years. She had the privilege of graduating from a Christian school in this area. She has been teaching since graduating from Oral Roberts University in 1987 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education. In 1991, she went on to graduate school to complete her Master’s degree in Education at Regent University. Her experiences are varied and include: teaching elementary school in a multi-grade classroom, teaching music and piano lessons, teaching classes for gifted/talented students, and a few years as a school librarian. She also spent 13 years working as a homeschool teacher for her children. She really enjoys seeing children grow in learning new skills such as reading, writing, and math, but most of all she desires to see them grow in maturity and wisdom as they learn God’s Word and how to apply it in daily life. Robin is the Legos Club Leader at Rock Solid Academy.
Jessica Ann Hotz
Jessica received her Bachelor's Degree from Misericordia University, and is in the process of earning her Masters in Education and Certification as a Reading Specialist. Jessica has taught kindergarten readiness for the past 9 years at Adventures in Learning, a private learning facility in Dallas. While there, she also organized family reading nights and the kindergarten and pre-k summer camps. Jessica has experience teaching Children’s Church, Missionettes, Sunday School, VBS, Crosswalk (an intercity children’s ministry), BGMC, Upward Cheerleading, kids quilting classes, kids craft classes, and tutoring. She has been the director of Kid’s Church at Huntsville Christian Church, and at Back Mountain Harvest, and is currently on the curriculum planning team at BMHA. Jessica resides in Beaumont with her husband Mike, and 2 crazy canines. She has a love of Christ and a love of learning that she hopes to pass on to herstudents. Her goal as a teacher at Rock Solid Academy is to see her students grow both academically and spiritually. She is also excited to share her love of cheering, as she starts our first cheer squad this year!
Anne Marie Mulligan
Anne Marie Mulligan worked for the Federal Government for nearly 30 years and then decided to take early retirement to pursue her passion of serving her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She has been involved in many children’s ministries including teaching Sunday school, AWANA, and Vacation Bible School. Anne Marie has volunteered at Rock Solid Academy for two years and has worked with children there in Pre-Kindergarten-Fourth Grades and Seventh/Eighth Grades. She is excited and considers herself blessed to be part of the Rock Solid Academy family as an Educational Aide. She enjoys studying God’s Word with tea and her kitty cat Gabriel, which in Hebrew means “God is my strength.” Anne Marie looks forward to working with the students, faculty and families to help further the students spiritually and educationally.
Secretary/ Art/ Culinary Arts/ Theater Teacher
Laura Kudey is a valedictorian graduate of Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts in New York City. Upon completion, she was an intern at two high-class restaurants in New York City. Before Culinary school, at the age of 16, she started her own Baking/Catering business, “Laura’s Sweet Gourmet”, which she continued after becoming a Chef. After 11 years in the business, she felt led by God to close its doors to spend some time with her newborn son. She has a deep love for cooking, baking, painting with all mediums, performing on stage, DIY work, and creating. She grew up surrounded by the arts, having involvement in several acting and theater programs, and completing Bloomsburg’s Theater Ensemble School. She is very excited about using these gifts and talents to teach children how to create and love all of the different arts and beauty in God’s beautiful world. She believes God has brought her to Rock Solid Academy for such a time as this. When she’s not working, Laura enjoys spending time with her loving husband, Andrew, of six years, their 3-year-old son, Riker, and helping out with Youth Fine Arts, Worship team, and Children’s and Women’s ministries in her church, Back Mountain Harvest Assembly.
Music/ Chorus Teacher
Born and raised in Northeastern, Pennsylvania, Anne Chairge has studied and pursued music continuously since the age of 4. She completed her M.M. in Flute Performance in 2009 at the University of Texas, and received her Bachelor of Music degree in 2007 at SUNY Purchase College Conservatory of Music. During her four years in New York, Chairge held the Principal Flute position in the New York Youth Symphony under the baton of Paul Haas, and regularly performed with the group in Carnegie Hall. She was also an active participant in the New York Youth Symphony Chamber Music Program. She has participated in numerous summer music festivals, including the Lake Placid International Flute Seminar, Julius Baker International Master Class, Ransom Wilson Master Class in Tuscany, Bowdoin Chamber Music Festival, and the Banff Centre for the Arts Summer Festival, where she also held an orchestral flute residency. Past ensemble performance opportunities have taken her to various parts of the world, such as Switzerland, Austria, Luxembourg, England, and Spain.
For two years in Austin Texas, Chairge was flute instructor at Canyon Ridge Middle School. Her current pursuits include frequent visits to Annapolis, Maryland to offer instruction to students of the Maryland Tri-State area through “Flute Fever”, run by Gail Vehslage. Chairge operates her own music studio at full capacity in Kingston, PA, where she is an instructor of flute and piano. At Rock Solid Academy, Chairge’s teaching techniques are inspired by the Zoltán Kodály approach to musical literacy. Her classroom practices include but are not limited to ear-training, sight-singing and rhythmic and melodic dictation, as well as choral singing with advanced part-work and harmony singing.
Physical Education Teacher
Ed was raised in a Christian home. He attended Lancaster Christian Academy where he accepted Christ as his Savior. He played soccer and basketball, scoring over 2,000 points in basketball during his high school career. Ed credits his basketball knowledge to his high school coach, Dennis Moran, who played for providence college. In 1990 ,He met his wife Gail while traveling with the Encounter Life Singers. They were married in August of 1991. In 1992, he took over as Boys’ Varsity Coach at Ebenezer Faith Christian School. He Coached there until 2001 with over 100 wins. In 2001, Ed and Gail welcomed their first child, Kurtis Edward, and Kara Elizabeth was welcomed into the family in 2010. He has coached Upward Basketball and was involved in getting Rock Solid’s sports program off the ground. Ed is a member of New Life Community Church where he serves on the board and is the Men’s Fellowship Coordinator.