Founder & Head of SchoolMicaela was a 2e kid from the get go, skipping preschool when she learned to read at three and failing kindergarten when she couldn't memorize the alphabet. Throughout her studies, teachers and peers told her she had too many questions and too many answers (years later, something teachers would say about her first son). In high school, she once skipped classes for a month, because the local library was more interesting. She kept an A average throughout college, despite her distractibility, and attended class when it interested her. Micaela received her Honors BA in English and MA in Journalism from The University of Maryland, then worked as the managing editor of a city magazine and freelanced arts coverage, including for “The Wall Street Journal Europe.” Her plan to return to journalism after giving birth to her first son was a non-starter, as the little guy wouldn’t stop crying – for a year.
So began a long journey of searching for a tolerable daycare, a supportive preschool, and a good-fit elementary school for her 2e boy. Following forays into Montessori, public G&T, public special education, ICT, and private special ed., she concluded that a good-fit school didn't exist for her (by then) two 2e boys, one of whom she pulled out of a citywide gifted program (because they kept asking her for advice on how to keep her restless, inquisitive son engaged). She started taking education courses at Bank Street College of Education and Columbia University’s Teachers College; she received certification training from SENG (Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted) and in Ross Greene’s CPS (Collaborative & Proactive Solutions).
In 2009, Micaela created The Lang School, using her journalistic skills to vet experts in their fields and collaborating with education leaders to open the school’s doors. As a social entrepreneur, she works hard to conceive and create opportunities for unusual learners and passionate teachers to partner in innovating education daily. As an educator, she is a member of the National Association for Gifted Children's (NAGC's) 2e Special Interest Group, is a NAGC lifetime member, was named a 2017 Educator of the Year by "Education Update," and teaches writing to loquacious, articulate, but reluctant writers at the school she started.
And she, her ADHD children, her ADHD husband, and their four cats are living happily ever after in Brooklyn.
Director for Systems & EducationAndreas was born in Stockholm and lived in Paris and Munich as a teenager. His early years were characterized by serial, voracious commitments to master a wide variety of subjects that didn’t necessarily correlate with what he was being taught at school. In class, he was that kid who could never find his half-done homework but always had plenty to say, not always directly on topic (“Yes, but when is a chair no longer ‘a chair’?”). While studying film in Stockholm, Andreas immersed himself in the newly invented World Wide Web. He rediscovered his childhood passion for linguistics and programming, which naturally led to mastering object-oriented techniques and ontological concepts used in sophisticated database designs. He is the founder and CEO of AI^n, a software engineering company specializing in smart databases that aggregate, consolidate, and correlate big data.
Since joining forces to help his wife found The Lang School in 2010, Andreas has been teaching and developing curricula for G&T students. Leveraging his deep knowledge of a wide variety of subjects across multiple domains, he developed a framework called MESH™. MESH takes STEM and STEAM education to a new level, reintegrating all of the humanities -- literature, history, philosophy, and the arts -- back into a curriculum organized around the question: how does what we do serve core human ends? Andreas is studying at Rutgers University’s graduate gifted education program to partner with academics in further refining this framework.
Like many 2e kids, Andreas has a hard time sitting still both literally and figuratively. When he’s not at school, he spends his time engaged in his passions: engineering virtual systems, thinking of ways to teach Universal Questions, tinkering with robotics, modeling in 3D, creating languages, and pondering ethics, artificial intelligence and our amazing evolution from a tiny single-celled organism. He is also a board member at the Center for War/Peace Studies.
Co-Director for PedagogyAnne works collaboratively with the Director for Systems & Education, as well as the school's learning specialists, to support the professional development of teachers and supervise the nuts and bolts of curriculum planning and implementation. Anne has a BA from Bard College in dance and an MS from Hunter College in special education with a focus in behavior disorders. She was a classroom teacher for 10 years, teaching grades K through 5 in both self-contained and inclusive co-taught classrooms.
Eight years ago, Anne left the classroom to work for the Teachers College Inclusive Classrooms Project where she designs full-day workshops for teachers, paraprofessionals, and administrators, coaches staff in schools, and works as the coach at two of NYC DOE's Demonstration Schools. Anne has worked closely with the Lang leadership team since before the school opened, then supported staff in a variety of ways when the school opened doors; her role continues to grow and evolve as the school itself does. She is thrilled to be splitting her time now between Lang and TCICP and looks forward to more years of collaboration and learning with the Lang community.
Erika Hughes Hooper
Co-Director for PedagogyErika received her undergraduate degree in dance from Bard College and holds a master’s degree from Hunter College in special education with a concentration in learning disabilities. She has spent more than 20 years working with students of all ages and teachers in classrooms around New York City. At Lang, she partners with the Director for Systems & Education and the learning specialists, with a particular focus on mathematics and systems development; she also works for TCICP as an instructional coach. Like Anne, Erika has played a pivotal role in Lang’s development since its inception. It is her mission to support teachers in designing curriculum and classroom experiences that unleash student potential and bring joy to school-based learning. She is eminently grateful to spend her work life thinking deeply about how students and teachers learn and exploring ever more innovative ways of maximizing both.
Lauren Barkwill, M.S. CC-SLP
Associate Director for Systems & CommunicationThis is Lauren’s second year at The Lang School. During the prior two years, she worked as lead SLP with 56 children from Pre-K through 8th grade at The Barnum School’s Autism Spectrum Program in Bridgeport, CT. Before that, she worked as an SLP at a Connecticut middle school with students who had diagnoses of intellectual disabilities, LDs, or ADHD. She also worked with the Connecticut Autism Training Initiative (CATI) on the launch of a transdisciplinary team approach to autism programming in public schools.
Lauren holds a BA in speech language hearing sciences from Hofstra University and an MS in speech language pathology from the University of Rhode Island, plus professional licenses in both Connecticut and New York. She is particularly inspired to help students work on social language and language organization. She decided to become a speech language pathologist after watching home movies of herself as a young child.
When not working, Lauren loves to read, watch movies, travel and, more recently, train for marathons.
Katie Dempsey, M.S.Ed.
School PsychologistKatie is a certified school psychologist who came to Lang in 2016 from a Brooklyn-based charter school where she provided individual and group counseling, psychoeducational assessments, crisis intervention, and school consultation. She received her BA in psychology from Villanova University, then entered Fordham University's school psychology doctoral program. She is writing her dissertation on school psychologists-in-training and their ability to effectively consult in schools and partner with teachers. She has trained in both independent and public schools, serving students with diverse learning profiles ages preschool through 8th grade. Katie is Lang’s reigning Connect Four champion.
Audrey Lubin, Psy.D.
School PsychologistAudrey is a licensed clinical psychologist and certified school psychologist who joined the Lang team last fall after working in alternative school settings in North Carolina. Originally from New Jersey, she is excited to be at Lang and back in the NYC area. Audrey has previously worked in school-based mental health programs, alternative schools, and in programs designed for students who need additional emotional and behavioral support. She has experience providing individual and group counseling, testing and evaluations, and behavioral consultation for students in grades K through 12. Audrey received her B.A. in psychology from American University and her Psy.D. in psychology (school psychology track) from the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology at Rutgers University. Her dissertation focused on academic self-regulation strategies, and her oral specialty was in school refusal. On weekends, Audrey can often be found hiking with her husband and friends.
Adrienne Frumberg, M.A.
Guidance CounselorAdrienne Frumberg is the founder of Lighthouse Guidance, co-founder of Teenz In The City, and a passionate educator and counselor. She has 10 years of experience in the field of college counseling, with particular expertise in colleges offering support for students with LDs and other special learning needs. She has toured more than 100 colleges and universities in the United States and abroad. Adrienne also works privately as a college counselor to assist students and families with the college process, as well as to support students with the transition from secondary school to college and work life. She has worked as a college guidance counselor at independent schools including Loyola School, Aaron School, Fordham Preparatory School, and Academics West. When she is not working in college guidance, Adrienne focuses her energy on Teenz In The City, a social skills program for adolescents and young adults with a history of social challenges or learning differences. She has a master's in counseling from NYU, a Bachelor's Degree in psychology from Lafayette College, and completed the Harvard Summer Institute on College Admissions. Though she is married and has a toddler at home, Adrienne is a cat lady at heart.
Michael Ryan, M.S. OTR/L
Occupational TherapistMichael was awarded his MS in Occupational Therapy from NYU and is now in his eleventh year of professional practice (and second year at Lang). Before joining the Lang team, he was an outpatient pediatric OT at Charleston Pediatric Rehabilitation in SC. Prior to moving south, he was the senior therapist at The Gateway Schools and Createabilities Occupational Therapy. He has extensive experience in clinical and school-based practice, exclusively in pediatrics, and he specializes in sensory integration treatment. Michael is a Certified Exercise Physiologist through the American College of Sports Medicine. When he is not providing OT, he manages a private practice promoting fitness, exercise, and wellness to pediatric and special populations; over the summer months, he is the Head Counselor at a children’s weight loss camp in the Poconos.
Michael is an avid runner and regularly competes in “ultra” marathons ranging in distance from 50k to 100 miles.
Associate Director for the Dramatic ArtsMichael was born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland. He graduated from the University of Glasgow in Arts and Law (M.A and LL.B.). After spending two years as a trainee lawyer, he took a break from the profession and moved to Chicago, where he joined a band, started a theater company, and worked in film production and dance. He was cast as a performer in the Chicago production of Blue Man Group, and relocated to New York to join the cast of the off Broadway production. He performed in the show for six years, at which point his parents finally accepted that he was not returning to Scotland to become a lawyer.
At Lang, Michael can be found wherever drama, art, music, engineering, or film are being taught or tinkered with -- and wherever a good story is being told. Prior to landing in the Lang community five years ago, he worked as a paraprofessional in NYC public schools.
Associate Director for Technology / Engineering & Logic TeacherAfter moving to New York from New Mexico, Jim worked as a web designer before becoming a New York City Teaching Fellow. He earned his master’s in teaching mathematics while teaching in NYC public schools, and he has been teaching technology and math for the last 15 years. Now in his fifth year at Lang, he teaches our students formal logic, applied logic (programming/software engineering), and engineering in our make space. Jim believes that by the time his son becomes a father, programming will be as essential a part of every student’s education as math or a second language.
Upper School Math SpecialistMatthew earned his master’s degree from Teacher's College in 2010 and has been teaching mathematics in New York City ever since. This is his fourth year teaching at Lang. He is drawn to the beauty and simplicity of theoretical mathematics. He is slowly warming up to application and engineering problems, but he will probably never truly love statistics. He enjoys well-made cups of coffee, bicycles, and late-in-the-week “New York Times” crossword puzzles. He does not enjoy being photographed.
Lower School Homeroom TeacherErin earned her bachelor’s degree in theater and visual arts ("Interarts"), her master’s in counseling psychology (with an emphasis in art therapy), and has worked with special needs students for over a decade. In Colorado, Erin founded an art therapy and counseling program for ASD students at The Joshua School, then worked as an art therapist and therapy-team lead at Adam’s Camp. After moving to New York, Erin started working in Applied Behavioral Analysis, first as a SEIT, then as an ABA instructor, then became a supervisor who managed teams of providers to behaviorally challenged children. She has also worked as a language arts and writing instructor with elementary through high school students for the last four years at The Florentine School, including preparation for the Common Core Exams, SHSAT, SAT, and ACT. On a personal note, Erin has beloved twin boys of her own who are both on the autism spectrum. Erin understands 2e students from the perspective of a teacher, parent, and student (as she was a 2e student herself growing up). She feels blessed to be surrounded everyday with the wonderful students of The Lang School.
Lower School Homeroom TeacherMichele co-teaches sixth grade at Lang. She received her BA in Natural Sciences from the University of Durham (UK), and her master's degree in Elementary Inclusive Education and Teaching Children with Disabilities from Teachers College, Columbia University. She also holds a Gifted and Talented Education Certificate from the University of California, Irvine. Now in her Fifth year at Lang, she feels fortunate to work with such intriguing and inspiring students in a very supportive and forward-thinking environment.
Originally from Hong Kong, Michele spends most of her school breaks traveling around the world to see family and friends. She also enjoys skiing, swimming, playing field hockey, and attending music performances.
Upper School English Teacher & AdvisorElizabeth is a graduate of William Paterson University, where she obtained a BA in Secondary Education with a concentration in English Writing and an endorsement in Teaching Students with Disabilities. In May of 2015, she received her MFA in Creative Writing from The New School with a concentration in Creative Nonfiction. She is currently enrolled at Rutgers University in their graduate-level program for Gifted and Talented Education. This is her fifth year working as an upper school ELA teacher.
Upper School Science TeacherRey was born and raised in Queens and now calls Brooklyn home. Rey received an M. Ed. in Secondary Science Education from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst after graduating with a B.S in Environmental Science from Antioch College. Rey has taught high school science for over fifteen years, including at one of the city’s specialized high schools, and at Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth summer program. Rey was awarded a Master Teacher fellowship with the first cohort of science teachers by Math for America.
Lower School Homeroom TeacherJoe is excited to join The Lang School this year as a co-teacher for fourth and fifth grade. He holds a BA in psychology from Earlham College, an MA/MBA from the University of Cincinnati, and MS in Elementary and Special Education from Touro College. He previously taught elementary and middle school and managed special education programs at a Harlem charter school. Prior to that, he worked as an actor, teaching artist, and arts administrator and continues to be a passionate advocate for arts in education. He is thrilled to work with such a talented, curious, and diverse community of learners. They teach him something new every day.
Lower School Homeroom TeacherCara grew up in small-town New Jersey, where she was usually hiding in the library or trading comics with my friends at recess. From an early age, she knew that she wanted to become a teacher. Her commitment to learning and lifelong love of reading eventually brought her to Skidmore College, from which she graduated with a degree in Childhood Education and English Literature. Since then, she have made it her mission to empower all of her students to use their words as tools to communicate and to share their stories with the world. As a teacher, she sees it as her job to help each of her students grow as a learner and as a person in their own way.
Organizing / Efficiency ExpertDawn has been working for 10 years with busy NYC families and businesses to clear clutter, overwhelm and streamline operations to increase productivity.
She works with the Lang staff on classroom set-up, function and helps create overall school efficiency systems. Dawn loves the yearly challenges that Lang brings her way.
In her spare time she likes to read, write, dance and hang with her boys in their PA house in the woods.