Ocala Preparatory Academy
OPA Staff Biographies:
Dean of Students / Science, Grades 6 -12 / Social Emotional Skills Grades 6-12 and Government & Economics Grades 10-12
Jeremy (Mr.S) is a long time resident of Ocala having lived and worked here for over 25 years. Jeremy earned a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from St. Leo University in 2000 and a Master's of Social Work from the University of Central Florida in 2002. After working several years in the Marion County school system, Jeremy caught the vision of personalized education in development by the founding team at Ocala Preparatory Academy and came along side as their Dean of Students for their inaugural year. Jeremy enjoys working with students in academic pursuits such as Chess, Science club, and Math Counts.
AnnMarie has been teaching in the state of Florida for over 30 years. In that time she has worked in public, private, and online schools as well as participated in the local home school community as a teacher, evaluator and as a parent. She has operated several businesses in the Ocala area including music instruction and tutoring services. AnnMarie has had a passion for the struggling learners since the beginning of her career and has continually worked to the best of her ability to support students who need a helping hand to access age appropriate instruction.
Ms.Lori is the "Wonder Woman" of OPA and our parent company, OaSN Inc. She was born in New York, but spent her childhood in Rhode Island. In 1974, she graduated from Sawyer Academy as an executive secretary. She worked as an executive assistant for a few years before moving to Florida in 1979. After spending some time in other professions, Lori found her niche building her own business in auto sales for 11 years. She later ran a multi-corporate business in the auto industry, successfully managing a salvage yard, used car lot and other related businesses. After raising a family, Lori decided to go back to school and graduated with honors from Rasmussan College in Ocala with an associate of science degree in Health Information Technology. Soon after, Lori was appointed to the board as the secretary of our parent company, OaSN Inc. As the organization grew, Lori became the first employee of OaSN Inc. and later, OPA. She now wears many hats while serving as our School Administrator at OPA, as well as, Executive Administrator for OaSN Inc.
Security/Safety Coordinator, IT (Information Technology) & Web Development Teacher
Cynthia Ladkani, P.H.D
Rhetoric Homeroom Teacher/Language Arts Grades 6-12
"Dr. Cindy" (our affectionate nick name for Dr. Ladkani) taught English in public schools for both Citrus and Broward Counties for 30 years. She has also taught as an adjunct professor at Central Florida College. Dr Cindy has a BA in English Literature from Stetson University, her Master of English Curriculum and Instruction as well as a Doctorate in Philosophy, Educational Leadership and Research from the University of Southern Mississippi. She holds a current Florida certificate to teach English reading, English as a second language and educational leadership. This year, Dr. Cindy will be teaching language arts grades 6-12 and our dual enrollment students in English 1101. Her love for teaching is evident to OPA Students!
Catherine P. Martin
Phronetic Homeroom Teacher/Social Studies/History Grades 6-12
Cathy recently retired from 25+ years as a teacher with Volusia County School Board. Cathy received her B.S. Degree in Political Science & Business from the University of Southern Mississippi and a Master degree in varying exceptionalities from Nova Southeastern University. She is Florida certified in Political Science, Social Sciences Exceptional Student Education and is ESOL endorsed. Her teaching experience includes elementary & middle grades, all academics, general education, at-risk and exceptional student education. She is an exceptional teacher beloved by her students.
Logic Homeroom Teacher/ Math and Science Grades 6-12
Lavern is an enthusiastic advocate of personalized and holistic education. She has fifteen years of experience teaching in various locations including the island of Jamaica, New York City, and at Shores Christian Academy in Ocala, where she also served as the Guidance Counselor. She has taught elementary and middle school grades as well as various high-school classes such as biology, anatomy, physiology, physical science and health. A graduate of the University of the West Indies with a Bachelor of Science degree in Natural Sciences, she has also enjoyed previous employment in the fields of health care research, nursing, and aquaculture. This will be Lavern’s second year teaching at OPA.
Dialectic Classroom Teacher
Samantha started college in 2013 with plans on becoming a physician's assistant. While interning with our parent company (OaSN Inc.), she developed a love of working with children with different learning needs and found that her unique talents and creativity allowed her to meet the individual needs of children, causing them to blossom into their own talents and gifts. She received her Bachelor of Science from the University of South Florida in 2016 and is currently working towards a Masters in Exceptional Student Education at the University of West Florida. She interned for OaSN Inc. for two summers before coming to work at the Active Minds Summer Camp and then for Ocala Preparatory Academy in 2016. She is now in her third year of teaching at OPA. She is excited to continue using hands-on experiments, projects, and games to teach the Dialectic class at Ocala Preparatory Academy.
Grammar Teacher Grades 3-5/Math Teacher Grades 9-12
Nicole has lived in the Ocala area for the majority of her life. As a high school student, she dual enrolled at the College of Central Florida (then Central Florida Community College). While there, she tutored through the college's Trio Program. After earning an Associate Degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Nicole attended the University of Florida and earned a Bachelor of Sciences in Mathematics. For the last 2 years, she has been teaching Math for Osceola County Public Schools. She recently moved back to Ocala to accept this teaching position. We are thrilled to have her join our team!
Alphabetarian Blended Learning Teacher
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Jocelyn moved to Ocala 2 years ago. She has a BA in Early Childhood and Primary Education as well as a MBA in Business Administration. She previously worked as an Educative Assistant. Jocelyn loves working with kids. This will be Jocelyn's second year working at OPA.
Nicole is originally from Chicago, Illinois and relocated to Ocala in 2004. She has a BA in Early Childhood Education with a concentration in Special Needs. Her experience includes teaching children birth to high school in Marion County Public Schools and through her church ministry. She loves working with children of all ages and looks forward to working with the students at Ocala Preparatory Academy.
Sarah Fiske is in her third year at OPA. She has been involved in helping children learn since her early teen years.
Her love of working with youth began when she started volunteering at her church to help with the Sunday School program. Later, she became the assistant Christian Education Director working with children from preschool to high school.
She also worked for a local tutoring company for many years. She graduated from Citrus High School in 2003 and attended CFCC.
Frances was born and raised in Puerto Rico but has called Ocala home for the past seven years. She interned at OPA for the 17/18 school year and will start on staff as a paraprofessional for the 18/19 school year. She discovered OPA after searching for a school for her son who struggled in public school. She fell in love with OPA and it's way of teaching students wholistically. She is thrilled to have found a place for both her and her son to grow and thrive. She recently graduated from the Inter American University of Puerto Rico with a B.A. in Education and is really excited to continue working with OPA students!
Sheila Ramos, owner of the Artist Hub of Ocala since 2004, has worked in several private schools in Marion County. Sheila has a BA from St. Leo University and was the Coordinator of Art & Cultural Programs at CF Institute for ten years. She also was an instructor for Early Childhood classes for the CDA credential and instructed renewal classes for childcare owners for their National Credential from Washington DC. Now at OPA for her third year, Sheila believes that art is a language without boundaries; it crosses barriers of socio-economics, race, religion, geography and time.
Ocala Preparatory Academy
7634 SW 60th Avenue
Ocala, Florida 34476