Academic Leaders

Education Director

Bob is a native of Connecticut who grew up in the Fair Haven neighborhood of New Haven as a member the first generation in his family born in America. His father came to this country at age 12 and his mother’s family immigrated to the US from Italy.  During the 1920s Bob’s parents only had access to an elementary education to become literate before joining the workforce, which helped Bob gain a perspective on the impact committed teachers can make even with limited time and resources.

Bob’s first experience in teaching was as a classroom assistant helping students challenged by severe Autism (BenHaven School). That experience gave him a belief in the intrinsic value in each student’s potential to learn, whether typical or exceptional. Bob earned his BA from the University of New Haven and his MS and 6th year Professional Diploma from Southern Connecticut State University, where he has served as an adjunct professor in Special Education since 2003.

Bob was a general education middle school teacher for four years, but has spent most of his career working in special education. He holds CT education certificates in Elementary Education (1-8), Special Education (K-12), and School Administration, including a Superintendent’s certificate. Most of his professional experience has been in residential settings with children and young adults who have impairments that affect learning. He came to Grove School in 2005, first as a consultant and was charmed by the gentle campus atmosphere, the students’ potential, and the caliber of the people who come to Grove to teach. Six months later he assumed the role of school administrator to participate in a Renaissance of facility building and program development that has yet to recognize an end point.

Among his related professional activities Bob has been co-chair of the CT State Council on Vocational Education (SCOVE); chaired the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce Business/Education Council; served as Accreditation Team Leader for the National Commission for the Accreditation of Special Education Services (NCASES), and as a member of several New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) review teams.   Bob has also served eight years on the Madison Board of Education (two as vice-chair); two years as a member of the Board of Directors for LEARN, and two years as a member of the Board of Directors for the CT Association of Boards of Education (CABE).

Bob enjoys being an educator, working with Grove students directly taking on the responsibility of helping to develop, organize and monitor their academic success. Bob is quite confident that his next 40 years in Education will be even more fun than the past forty.

Bob and his wife live in Madison and have two grown sons.  

Principal

Sean’s interest in education was sparked when he tutored in the Hartford school system during his undergraduate years. He graduated cum laude from the University of Hartford with a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education and Social Studies. He completed his Master of Science Degree in Special Education at Southern Connecticut State University in 2006. He completed the certification components of his Educational Leadership program at Southern Connecticut State University in 2008. Sean holds a Connecticut teaching certification in History/Social Studies and Special Education and also holds his Intermediate Administrator Certification.

He is a District Facilitator and Mentor for Connecticut’s TEAM certification process and is a trained Cooperating Teacher for student teachers. He is trained as an instructor in Nonviolent Crisis Intervention from the Crisis Prevention Institute. Sean is also Grove’s SSD (Services for Students with Disabilities) Coordinator for the College Board.

Sean began working at Grove in the summer of 2001. He has fulfilled several different roles on campus including Teacher/Counselor, Residential Administrator, Mentor Teacher and Assistant Principal, and Principal, his current role. He serves as a Student Advisor and is the Head Basketball Coach.

Sean takes great pride in watching students graduate from high school and begin the next stage of their lives after coming to Grove at a time of vulnerability and uncertainty. He loves facing new challenges each day while being surrounded by dedicated professionals who enjoy their work.

Sean is a Connecticut native and currently lives in Durham, where he and his wife are kept busy raising their two sons. He is a sports fan and enjoys coaching his son’s teams and watching his beloved Red Sox.

IEP Coordinator

Melissa brings extensive Special Education experience to her role at the Grove School. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Special Education and her Master’s degree in Remedial Reading/Remedial Language Arts Specialist from Southern Connecticut State University. She holds a CT Professional Educator Certificate, is trained in the Wilson Reading Program, is a Cooperating Teacher for Student Teachers, and is a Member of the Coodinating Committee for CTTEAM, a teacher training program, along with a CTTEAM Mentor and Scorer.

Melissa joined the Grove School staff in 2004 after spending many years as a Special Education, Career Education and Life Skills teacher at a residential school in CT. In 1997, she was honored as the WalMart Teacher of Year and earned the CAPSEF Golden Apple Award.

Melissa is Grove's IEP coordinator responsible for overseeing and managing student IEP's. She administers standardized and achievement assessments, provides CEU certificates and serves as an Academic Case Manager as well as Grove's AP Coordinator. She loves being able to guide new teachers and encouraging students and staff to grow in whatever they choose to do. At Grove, she has the opportunity to watch students form friendships among different grade levels, when they have previously felt alone.

Melissa is a Connecticut native currently living in New London County.  Hobbies include reading, shopping and enjoying the shoreline.

Greg Mackey
Core Teacher

 

Gregory Mackey graduated cum laude from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania with degrees in Secondary Education and Chemistry. Prior to coming to Grove, Greg taught Chemistry in his home state of Pennsylvania and in Honolulu, Hawaii, where he taught in the largest public high school in the state. While he loved his time in Hawaii, Greg made the decision to return to the east coast in 2010 when he joined the Grove team as a Mentor Teacher.

Teaching Chemistry at Grove has helped to evolve his teaching methods as well as increase his repertoire of classroom management strategies. Greg was honored as staff of the month in his first year and now leads the Science department.

The closely connected community of Grove has opened up his interests and has allowed Greg to branch out and try different activities and roles such as leading Grove’s first Robotics Team as well as learning how to long board from some of his students. Greg feels that this community fosters the ability to try something new and that is what he cherishes most about working at Grove. Greg’s other personal interests include hiking, mountain biking, and music. Greg taught himself guitar as a teenager and currently writes and records his own hard rock/metal music and videos which he enjoys sharing with the Grove community.

Though he misses the aina of Hawai’i and the ohana he left behind, working a Grove has helped fulfill his teaching role and it often reminds me of why he chose this career. He is passionate about his courses and uses an active, hands on approach to spark curiosity and interest in the students that he teaches. Greg’s energy and enthusiasm is contagious to the students and community and he is always looking forward to the next school year.

Core Teacher
 
Bryce attended Denison University, playing lacrosse and graduating with a B.A. in History.  He originally entered the legal sector and spent time working in corporate litigation and product liability as a paralegal before gaining acceptance to law school.  At that time he decided to pursue an alternate career in education.  He obtained a M.Ed in Secondary Education with a focus in social studies from Franklin Pierce University and began working at Grove in 2013.  He is currently working towards his special education certification from Southern Connecticut State University.

While at Grove he has taught classes in U.S. History, Civics and been involved with the Golf Club, Soccer Club, and the National Honor Society.  Bryce has a strong passion for athletics and engaging in an active lifestyle.  He is a CT State Certified Athletic Coach and before coming to Grove spent time as a Varsity Soccer Coach at The Williams School and an assistant lacrosse coach at Lyme/Old Lyme High School.

He grew up outside Philadelphia but has spent time living in Ohio, New York, Colorado, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Florida, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.  Growing up his family spent their summers along the Connecticut shoreline and this was a large factor in deciding where he wanted to live.  He and his wife currently reside in Niantic with their young son.