Holly, chief education officer (ceo)
Core focus: middle school through college-level, certified Academic Life Coach, trained in Orton-Gillingham methodologies for students with dyslexia, general homework + organizational support, study skills + workload management
For over twenty years I've spent my entire professional career as a classroom educator, private tutor and academic coach. I taught at the renowned Hamilton School in Providence, Rhode Island and was a proud founding educator at The Sally Borden School at Friends Academy in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts, two schools known for their pioneering work with children having language-based learning differences. In 2003, I helped spearhead the implementation and administration of the No Child Left Behind Act in Palm Beach County, Florida, a massive federal educational initiative that demanded detailed reporting and close oversight of educational programs for hundreds of underprivileged youth. Prior to founding Academic Ascent, I enjoyed ten years as a classroom instructor at Oakwood School in Annandale, Virginia, where I came to deeply appreciate their small classroom format and innovative ways to individualize instruction. I am certified as an Academic Life Coach by Coach Training EDU and actively utilize these skills with many of our older students. In 2019, I started Academic Ascent to develop meaningful partnerships with students and their families, and illuminate the idea that with the right strategies and approach, school doesn't have to be a struggle. Academic Ascent is my life’s work realized!
'Four Years In'...... April 2023
'Welcome, Erika'...... January 2023
Core focus: 1st to 6th grade, trained in Orton-Gillingham methodologies for students with dyslexia, general homework support across all subjects
I am so excited to bring my skills and teaching experience to Academic Ascent! I graduated from Penn State University in 2003 with a BA in Special Education, then went on to earn my Master’s Degree in Special Education/Learning Disabilities at American University. In my professional experience I taught at McLean School in Potomac, MD and Oakwood School in Annandale, VA, two schools specializing in educating students with learning differences. I have been extensively trained in Phonographix and Brainspring, both Orton-Gillingham based programs. My passion is seeing my students grow and show pride in their accomplishments! When I am not in the virtual classroom, I love playing with my happy and energetic two-year-old son and my six-year-old dog, Wiggles. I also love to travel! When I was four months old, after being adopted I made a transcontinental flight from South Korea to the US and I've loved visiting new places ever since!
Core focus: elementary & middle school, social studies + visual arts, study skills + organization
I'm so happy to be working with Academic Ascent! I am a former social studies and literacy teacher with a Master of Arts in Teaching from Southern Oregon University. Before joining Academic Ascent, I earned a credential to teach multiple subjects at the middle school level and taught in the classroom for five years. During the COVID lockdown, I homeschooled my son through second grade (while also doing countless art projects with my preschool-aged daughter!). I am a volunteer educator in both of my children’s schools, managing the art program and substitute teaching. I'm also a hobby potter and love to make mugs and planters in my spare time. My favorite place to be is outside hiking in the Redwoods with my family and my pups. I'm thrilled for the opportunity to help others break out and reach their potential!
Core Focus: Executive function coaching, reading &writing, study skills + workload management, general homework + organizational support
I'm Shara Tipton, a professional educator with over fifteen years of experience serving as a paraeducator, teacher, tutor, mentor, and faculty department head. My passion for education lies in working through learning and executive function challenges with a strength-based approach and a focus on nervous system regulation. My approach is based not only on professional experience and extensive research of best practices—it is also guided by a philosophy rooted in mindfulness principles and the disability justice movement. I believe in creating an inclusive and empowering environment that respects the diverse identities and experiences of my students. Beyond academic success, I'm committed to empowering students for better lives, leveraging their strengths while navigating challenges. When I’m not working, I’m reading, making playlists, drinking coffee and enjoying life with my partner and cat.
Core focus: client support, marketing, business development, finance
I absolutely love hearing when our students make break-throughs and achieve a desired goal or crush an exam they've been preparing for. It's the ultimate high when all the hard work comes to fruition and we can celebrate the success together! Much of what we do at Academic Ascent is like climbing a big mountain: nobody can carry us to the top but ourselves, but with a little determination and the right guide everyone can achieve great things. We believe in you!
Academic Ascent LLC