Core Knowledge Licensed Professionals (CKLPs) have a great deal of experience and knowledge of both the Core Knowledge approach and the Core Knowledge Sequence. Only individuals that are designated as CKLPs are permitted to offer on-site Core Knowledge training for a fee.

Contact a Licensed Professional

Please see each CKLP’s profile for training and support services they may offer. 

Susan S. Smith - Arkansas (PreK)

licensedbycklogoSusan is an educational consultant who has been a trainer with the Core Knowledge Foundation for 16 years. Her experience spans 42 years in the field of education, including Kindergarten, second grade, and college-level work. Susan has earned a BS in Elementary Education, MS in Elementary Education, and is certified K–6 and as an Assistant Principal K–12. She has trained all modules of the Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence and for the Core Knowledge Language Arts program for preschool–grade 2.

As the project director for the Walton Preschool Initiative for eleven years, she led service for over 125 schools implementing the Core Knowledge Preschool Program, training and mentoring teachers twice monthly. As the pilot coordinator for the Core Knowledge Language Arts Pilot Program, she trained and observed teachers in the pilot schools in Florida, Massachusetts, Arkansas, Georgia, and North Carolina. She trained and mentored teachers with school visits in the Arkansas Delta who were implementing the CKLA Preschool program for a four-year period. She has also conducted school visits, providing feedback, advice, and guidance to schools implementing Core Knowledge.

Susan’s areas of expertise:

  • Preschool
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Parochial Schools
  • Specific Preschool Content Areas, including
    • Science
    • Mathematics
    • Oral Language
    • Phonological Awareness, ABCs, and More!

Susan is located in Arkansas and is willing to travel anywhere to support Core Knowledge educators.

Request support from Susan       Visit Susan’s website

Jennifer Sorey - Arkansas (PreK)

licensedbycklogoJenny Sorey has worked with the Core Knowledge Foundation over the past 18 years assisting in the development of several Core Knowledge preschool training modules, as well as facilitating trainings both nationally and internationally. She has worked with schools both in the private and public sector, leading early childhood educators in gaining a better understanding of both the skills and content found in the Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence and how to implement both in their classroom settings. Successful implementation can also be enhanced through a school diagnostic visit and the resulting feedback provided to teachers and schools.

Jenny has previously taken part in these types of visits with the Core Knowledge Foundation, providing feedback to the participating schools regarding opportunities for improvement, next steps in implementation and recommendations for future professional development. Jenny says she very much enjoys “taking part in the education of young lives through working with early childhood educators in these ways.”

Jenny’s areas of expertise:

  • Preschool
  • Preschool CK Diagnostic School Visits and ACAP
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, & Private Schools
  • Preschool Assessment
  • Specific Preschool Content Areas, including
    • Visual Arts
    • Coordination, Music, & Movement
    • Science
    • Mathematics
    • Oral Language
    • Autonomy & Social Skills

Jenny is located in Arkansas and is willing to travel across the U.S. as well as internationally to support Core Knowledge educators.

Request support from Jenny

Keith Churchill - Colorado (K–8)

licensedbycklogoKeith (Casey) Churchill has a long history with Core Knowledge and its curriculum, serving as a classroom teacher and administrator, as well as offering consulting services for schools. He first used the Core Knowledge curriculum as a third and sixth grade teacher in Rochester, MN. After teaching in Rochester Public Schools for six years, he moved to Liberty Common School in Colorado, where he taught sixth grade. Casey has taught a total of twelve years in the classroom at both the elementary and middle school levels. In 2009, after completing his principal licensure from Colorado State University, he became and remains principal at Liberty Common School. Casey has worked with the Core Knowledge Foundation since 2000, traveling the country to help start schools and analyze their curriculum implementation after adoption.

Casey’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • Public & Charter Schools in Urban & Rural Settings
  • Assessment & Response to Intervention (RtI)
  • Special Education
  • Doug Lemov’s Teach Like A Champion
  • Common Core State Standards

Casey is located in Colorado and is willing to travel anywhere to support Core Knowledge educators. As current principal of the Liberty Common School, Casey is best able to support others during the summer months, but can make arrangements during the school year.

Request support from Casey

Elie Gaines - Arizona/Oregon (K–8)

licensedbycklogoElie Gaines has served as a Core Knowledge (CK) National Consultant since 2001, training teachers, administrators, staff and specialists in public district, charter and private schools. She has worked with schools serving students of diverse economic background, racial and ethnic diversity, and ELL populations.

Elie has supported Kindergarten–12th CK schools across the country. She has provided CK professional development to over 60 schools nationwide, covering 14+ States, including on-site visits to provide feedback regarding Core Knowledge Sequence implementation and full staff and administrative leadership workshops. She has led or co-led all CK K–8 workshop offerings and has presented or attended all but a few of the Core Knowledge National Conferences.

Elie encouraged the Foundation to develop and deliver workshops related to the CCSS in January of the year the new standards were released to pre-empt concern on the part of CK schools regarding alignment with the Core Knowledge Sequence. She invited the Foundation to pilot these workshops in Arizona, inviting all Western States. She also initiated and assisted with the organization of the CKF Leadership training in two local school districts.

Elie’s background includes the following experience:
M.Ed. – Principal; M.A. Elementary Education – Math and Science
B.A. Dual Degree: Special Education – LD and ED; Core Knowledge National Consultant – 15 years; K, 1, 2 CK teacher – 13 years; CK Curriculum Coordinator – 9 years/2 Official CK Schools; CK Assistant Principal – 1 year; CK Principal – 3 years; adopted CKLA Listening & Learning K-2 and grew the school to PK-6 (two tracks, one campus: single and multi-age).

Also, primary charter writer for Hirsch Academy: CFA which opened 2013 in Scottsdale, AZ. Elie initiated and was a co-founder of the Arizona Core Knowledge Network (AZCKN) and, as a 2004 Milken Educator Award recipient, the Arizona Milken Network (AZMN). Elie works with families and schools as an educational consultant in her own business.

Elie’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Parochial Schools
  • Leadership, Curriculum, & Assessment
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Special Education & ELLs
  • Danielson Framework for Teaching & Doug Lemov’s Teach Like a Champion
  • AZ DOE Standards Setting Committee (Social Studies) and AZ DOE Core Reading Review Committee
  • American Board for the Certification of Teacher Excellence, A+ Schools of Excellence

Elie is located in Arizona and Oregon and she is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators. Elie is available to offer support anytime, subject to other commitments.

Request support from Elie
Visit Elie’s LinkedIn profile

Dianne Hamilton - Virginia (K–8)

licensedbycklogoDianne Hamilton has an MS Ed in Administration & Supervision and over 40 years of experience in education. Dianne currently works as an educational consultant supporting schools in general and Core Knowledge schools in particular. She supports administrators and teachers with the implementation of the Core Knowledge Sequence, sustainability of the intended curriculum, and professional development for increased student engagement, rigor, and learning. Additionally, she conducts comprehensive school improvement visits with feedback on implementation.

In her work with one of the nation’s largest public school systems, Dianne served as a teacher, department chair, instructional coach, central office curriculum specialist, school improvement specialist, project manager of New Teacher Training, State Department Liaison, project manager of ELA Assessment Training, system-wide staff developer, and coach for administrators learning observation, supervision, and evaluation skills. She has been an adjunct professor for Clinical Supervision in the Hood College Educational Leadership Program and has supported Research- into-Practice initiatives through Professional Learning Communities. D

Dianne has taught reading, English, theatre and inter-related arts in urban, rural, and suburban settings. Additionally, she served as the Director of Professional Development and School Consultation for the Core Knowledge Foundation, writing and delivering training modules as well as developing tools of support for schools. Dianne continues to stay engaged with students and classroom practices through part-time teaching.

Dianne’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • K–8 CK Diagnostic School Visits and ACAP
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Parochial Schools
  • Leadership & School Improvement
  • New Teacher Training & Instructional Coaching

Dianne is located in Virginia and is willing to travel across the U.S. as well as internationally to support Core Knowledge educators.

Request support from Dianne

Krystal Hearne - Colorado (K–8)

licensedbycklogoKrystal has taught in Core Knowledge schools since the late 90s, and has worked as a Core Knowledge National Consultant since 2005. She describes herself as “passionate about Core Knowledge, having seen her own students benefit tremendously from this curriculum.” In addition to teaching Core Knowledge, Krystal has served as a Curriculum Director, Assistant Principal, and Principal in schools that fully implement Core Knowledge. She describes one of her favorite administrative roles as mentoring and training new teachers, as well as using data to drive instruction and facilitate student growth.

In her consulting work for Core Knowledge, she has traveled to many different Core Knowledge schools all over the United States and has seen Core Knowledge implemented in every setting imaginable – from rural to urban schools, as well as private, public, and charter schools. Over the years, she has also written and presented several Core Knowledge units at state, regional, and national conferences. Krystal says she very much enjoys “sharing her passion for Core Knowledge with other teachers and administrators.”

Krystal’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • K–8 CK Diagnostic School Visits and ACAP
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, & Private Schools
  • Assessment & Data-driven Instruction
  • Response to Intervention (RtI)

Krystal is located in Colorado, but is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators.

Request support from Krystal

Cathy Kinter - North Carolina (K–8)

licensedbycklogoCathy Kinter has a robust history with Core Knowledge in a variety of capacities, and works passionately to help schools around the nation implement Core Knowledge effectively. She served as a second grade teacher in a brand new charter school that created and implemented original lessons that met the Core Knowledge Sequence guidelines. Later, she participated in the Core Knowledge Language Arts (CKLA) pilot program, in which her feedback directly influenced the continuing development and implementation of the CKLA program. As part of the TeamCFA network, she assisted teachers in creating Core Knowledge lesson plans and projects. As her school’s curriculum coordinator, she trained new and veteran teachers in Core Knowledge and CKLA, conducted Teach Like a Champion book studies, monitored the implementation of the Sequence in kindergarten–grade 8 and CKLA in kindergarten–grade 5, instituted and oversaw suggested improvements in practice made by the Core Knowledge Foundation, and guided staff toward achieving status as a Core Knowledge School of Distinction.

As a result of the successful and effective implementation of Core Knowledge practices, and by the recommendation of the Foundation, she facilitates and hosts visitors from her school and other schools inside and outside the TeamCFA network interested in the program(s), to help foster an understanding of Core Knowledge and CKLA implementation and practice. To help guide other Core Knowledge professionals with their implementation, she has served on panels, presented a session at the Core Knowledge National Conference, and served as a TeamCFA Curriculum Advisor.

Cathy’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K-8
  • Rural & Charter School Settings
  • Assessment
  • Direct Instruction
  • Doug Lemov’s Teach Like A Champion

Cathy is located in North Carolina and is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators. Cathy is available to offer support anytime, subject to other commitments.

Request support from Cathy

Kimberley Marchisotto - Arizona (K–8)

licensedbycklogoKimberley Marchisotto has worked as a consultant with the Core Knowledge Foundation since 2001. She has delivered Getting Started, Meaningful Instruction, Curriculum Mapping for Continuous Improvement, Domain-Based Unit Writing, School Diagnostic Visits, Analysis of Curriculum and Practice Visits, and New Teacher Orientation workshops to schools across the United States. She has experience teaching Core Knowledge at the primary and intermediate level (10 years at 2nd grade and 8 years at 6th grade).

Kimberley has been the Core Knowledge Coordinator at Grayhawk Elementary School (a CK School of Distinction) since 2002. She has worked at the state and district level to guide schools and districts in best practices for Core Knowledge implementation. Kimberley is currently completing a Masters in Educational Leadership at Grand Canyon University with plans to move into school administration in 2016.

Kimberley’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • K–8 CK Diagnostic School Visits and ACAP
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Pariochial Schools
  • Special Education & English Language Learners
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Assessment & Direct Instruction

Kimberley is located in Arizona and is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators. Kimberley is available to support schools anytime, subject to other commitments.

Request support from Kimberley

Debra Mentzer - Texas (K–8)

licensedbycklogoDebra Mentzer has been working with Core Knowledge for over twenty-five years. Her school was the third in the nation and the first in Texas to adopt Core Knowledge as their curriculum. In addition to teaching the curriculum, and for the same amount of time, she created and conducted professional development for the Core Knowledge Foundation. She has conducted staff development across the United States and in London, and has presented and attended all of the Core Knowledge Conferences. Recently, she served as principal of a school implementing the Core Knowledge Language Arts program in kindergarten–grade 5 and helped insure its success. Assisting schools getting started and mentoring with follow-up visits and professional development has, she says, “enriched my life and professional career.”

Debra’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • K–8 CK Diagnostic School Visits and ACAP
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Parochial Schools
  • Direct Instruction & Assessment
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Danielson Framework for Teaching

Debra is located in Texas and is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators. Debra is retired and available to offer support anytime, subject to other commitments.

Request support from Debra
Visit Debra’s website

Tim Quiroz - California (K–8)

Since 2001licensedbycklogo, Tim Quiroz has enjoyed being a National Core Knowledge Consultant. He has trained administrators, classroom and special area teachers at all grade levels PreK-8 at public, private and charter schools in rural, urban and suburban neighborhoods both nationally and internationally. Tim has delivered all available CK presentations and professional development workshops at school sites, (student demographics including: Title 1, ELL, high-low SES, various ethnicities), district offices, and CKF National and Regional conferences, as well as participated in on-site visits to schools to provide feedback regarding Core Knowledge Sequence implementation.

In 2010, after 31 years in the classroom and 3 as a principal, Tim retired from the day-to-day demands of schooling and founded PTQ Consulting, LLC. Its philosophy:

MISSION – to provide peace of mind to teacher
VISION – to allow learning to flourish
VALUES – people first, gratitude, care, diligence
APPROACH – share questions, listen, plan, implement

Tim currently serves with Amplify Education (exclusive publishers and PD providers of Core Knowledge Language Arts), CK Foundation, and SMARTTraining LLC (Singapore Math). Please visit Tim’s LinkedIn profile page (linked below) for further professional background information.

Tim’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • Urban & Rural Settings
  • Public, Charter, Private, & Parochial Schools
  • Direct Instruction & Assessment
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Special Education & ELLs
  • Danielson Framework for Teaching & Doug Lemov’s Teach Like a Champion

Tim is located in California and is willing to travel across the U.S. and internationally to support Core Knowledge educators.

Request support from Tim
Visit Tim’s LinkedIn page

Yolanda Van Ness - Texas (K–8)

licensedbycklogoYolanda Van Ness has been affiliated with the Core Knowledge Foundation since 1992. She served as the CSR Coordinator for eight years and as a Core Knowledge National Consultant for over 15 years. Yolanda has delivered Core Knowledge workshops in schools across the United States and she has presented and led sessions at Core Knowledge National and Regional Conferences. Yolanda also conducted on-site visits to provide schools with feedback regarding Core Knowledge Sequence implementation.

Yolanda has experience teaching Core Knowledge at the primary and intermediate level (Kindergarten, second grade, and third grade) in various school settings.

Yolanda’s areas of expertise include:

  • Grades K–8
  • Public, Charter, & Private Schools
  • Doug Lemov’s Teach Like a Champion

Yolanda is located in Texas and is willing to travel across the U.S. to support Core Knowledge educators. Yolanda is available to support schools during the summer months.

Request support from Yolanda