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!"
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 

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.

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
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
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.
Dominique Elphage, Therapist
"Education is not preparation for life, education is life itself."  
Mrs. Elphage studied psychology and school counseling, and she has the pleasure of helping our students grow academically and focus on their social emotional needs. She enjoys spending time with family, traveling, and playing board games.
Carshanda Goffner, Classroom Counselor
"No amount of money will ever be enough, pick something you like to do and do that."  
Ms. Goffner was born and raised in the lower 9th ward. She graduated from L. E. Rabouin Career Magnet High School with a high school diploma and a License in cosmetology. While working in a salon after high school, she enrolled in SUNO and graduated with a degree in Criminal Justice. Upon graduating she began working full time in the court system, where she developed a relationship with many youths in the community.
Cortland Henry, Dean of Students

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.

Kristin McConnell, Lead 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
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.