Educators for Quality Alternatives

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The Bridge

Trisha Botello, Principal
"Some problems feel too big to handle, and we are here to support you through those challenges!"
 
Trish
Ms. Trish is a counselor and creative arts therapist who most enjoys working with adolescents because of their energy, expressiveness and resilience.  She was the school counselor at The NET Central City before branching out to help start The Bridge.  She loves working at EQA because of the holistic approach to helping students learn and grow.   When she's not at work, Ms. Trish enjoys baking, being outside, practicing yoga, and getting involved in her daughter's arts & crafts projects.   
Mindy McConnell, Principal 
Ajo

Ms. Mindy is a passionate special education leader who is committed to ensuring that all students with exceptionalities receive a high quality and individualized education. When she is not geeking out on reading laws and policies, Ms. Mindy can be found on a fun adventure with her son or planning her fantasy football line-up. She is a native New Orleanian and alumna of Northwestern State University and Thomas Cooley Law School.  Ms. Mindy is honored to be a founding member of the Bridge Middle School and looks forward to providing a safe, caring, and meaningful educational experience for our students.

Corey Allen, Enrichment Teacher 
"To be a soldier you must maintain composure at ease, no life is complicated, only what you make it to be."
Corey
Mr. Corey is a Southern University graduate. He is married with a family of 3 sons, and he enjoys seeing young people grow to become successful adults in life.
Audie Cerrato, Classroom Counselor
"The teacher is no longer merely the-one-who-teaches, but one who is him/herself taught in dialogue with the students, who in turn while being taught also teach. They become jointly responsible for a process in which all grow." --- Paulo Freire
Audie
Mr. Audie is passionate about reading, Arsenal football club, and Saints football. He wants to travel the world and someday get a PhD in psychology.
Logan Crowe, Dean of Students
"Education must not simply teach work - it must teach LIFE." - W.E.B. Dubois
Logan
Mr. Logan went to school for many years to become a teacher and finally received his M. Ed. in school leadership from UNO in 2006. He is now entering his third decade in the realm of education.  Mr. Logan strongly believes in restorative practices and loves working with EQA because of the dynamic team and their dedication and belief in the EQA Mission.
Cortland Henry, Dean of Students
Ajo

Mr. Cortland holds a BS from Mississippi Vally State University and in his spare time is a professional football player with the Louisiana Lightning.  He enjoys the opportunity to build relationships with students and help them reach their goals.

Amy Karr, Classroom Counselor
"Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity." -Pema Chodron
Amy
Ms. Amy has lived in New Orleans for about 5 years and initially moved here for Americorps service as a Construction Project Manager with St. Bernard Project. She graduated with her Masters in Social Work in May 2020 and has most enjoyed working with and helping kids in schools. She is extremely passionate about helping kids work through their current challenges as well as pursue and achieve their highest dreams!
Benjamin Lamport, English and Social Studies Teacher
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Mr. Ben grew up in Colorado and moved to New Orleans to attend Tulane University.  He loves sharing his interest in English and History and enjoys supporting his students in becoming their best selves.

Kristin McConnell, Special Education Teacher 
"My hope emerges from those places of struggle where I witness individuals positively transforming their lives and the world around them. Educating is a vocation rooted in hopefulness." - bell hooks
Kristin
Ms. Kristin has taught 7th & 8th grade since 2014, in Panola County, Mississippi and New Orleans. She has a Masters in Biology from Northern Illinois University and in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Mississippi. Her favorite part of her job is listening to her students and helping them recognize and embrace their own greatest qualities. She's known for living with a lot of animals, her dramatic storytelling, and her love of Little Richard.
Rachel Rachlinski, Therapist
"Helping one person might not change the whole world, but it could change the world for one person."
RAchel
Ms. Rachel received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Community Counseling as well as her Post Master’s in Play Therapy at John’s Hopkins University. She received a second Post Master’s from University of Denver in Animal-Assisted Therapy. Her work has been primarily spent focusing on child-focused family counseling, including all members of the family unit. Her expertise includes working with young adults transitioning to new stages in life. In her work, she incorporates her trained therapy dog, Trinity. She has also been a teacher for 4 ½ years at Carroll Community College in Westminster, MD.
Christina Spann, Classroom Counselor
"Working with children is my passion."
Spann
Ms. Christina has been working with children and families since 2006. Ms. Christina has a masters degree in social work. What Ms. Christina loves most about working for EQA is the warm family feel from co-workers.
Shante' Wise, Math and Science Teacher
Shante'
Ms. Shante' graduated from Southern University at New Orleans with a Bachelor's Degree in Education concentration in Math. She taught for the Department of Corrections, helping inmates obtain their HiSET. She enjoys building relationships with students and seeing the wall break down.