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Faculty & Staff

Cindy Marler

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CHEC Director

The Director of CHEC oversees all aspects of the program. They set the schedule, seek counsel and make decisions that align the offerings each year with the Mission and Vision of the community.   
 
Born and raised in South Florida, Cindy had the privilege of attending one of the finest private schools in the state for 9 years. At that institution she developed a passion for learning that is never satiated. As an adult, she realized how much of that was due to the environment cultivated at school.  When your passion collides with your gifts and talents you have found your place. Children, education and homeschooling are her passions and organizational leadership is her gift.  

“I pray for God’s guidance over CHEC and firmly believe that He is our true leader.  I strive for CHEC to maintain a standard of excellence in all we do and that everything we do bring as much value to the students as possible on a part time basis. It is very special to be part of a group where everyone is committed and focused on what is best for their children and their families.”

Contact: info@checacademy.com

Jessica Figueroa

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Director of Operations

The Director of Operations manages the school budget, assists in the admissions process and coordinates the master school schedule. Preparing students to be competitive in the college admission process starts well before high school; our Director of Operations oversees the school’s role in assisting families through this process. 

Jessica and her husband, Javier, are from Puerto Rico and met in college on the island. After graduating from University of Puerto Rico as engineers, they both left Puerto Rico and headed to California to pursue their master’s degrees in engineering at California Polytechnic State University. Jessica worked as an engineer moving around the country for different opportunities until they made their home in Lake Worth shortly after welcoming their daughter.  Jessica oversees CHEC's STEM program and ensures our students are preparing themselves for STEM careers if that is their area of interest.

Contact: info@checacademy.com

Lorianne Porcelain

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Artistic Director

CHEC’s view of Fine Arts is that it is fundamental to a whole education, which distinguishes us in Palm Beach County homeschool communities. Our artistic director teaches an array of subjects and classes to the students and coordinates the yearly schedule to guarantee exposure to as many skills as possible in the arts.

Lorianne graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.S. in Theatre from Union College in Kentucky and received a 2nd bachelor’s degree from PBA in Ministry. She has been a professional actress for over 30 years working in New York, abroad and all over Palm Beach County. She lives in Lantana with her husband, Daniel, and their 2 children.   

Contact: info@checacademy.com

Justina Costandi aka Tina

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Scholarship & Registration Processor

Justina graduated with a bachelor's degree in Biochemistry and a Master's in Medical Science. She has a passion for learning and teaching about God's creation. An active member in her Church community, Justina has been teaching children for over 15 years. She is a proud mother of 3 beautiful children and devoted wife of a pastor. She also shares her love with her sweet canine Kenya. In her spare time, she loves to train for races and bake (and eat) yummy cookies. 

Contact: info@checacademy.com

Giuliana Sisk

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Junior High/High School Math Teacher

Giuliana has had a passion for working with children since a young age! She attended the University of Florida where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in Special Education (Go Gators!). She is Endorsed in Reading, ESOL, Teacher Leadership, and Instructional Coaching. 

After graduating from the University of Florida, Giuliana wanted to experience “big city life” and moved to Atlanta, GA where she was a First Grade Teacher for 3 years and then a K-5 Math Interventionist for 3 years. During her time teaching in GA, she took on numerous leadership roles and learned that she also has a passion working with teachers. After moving to Palm Beach in 2021, Giuliana became an Instructional Math Coach for grades K-7. 

Giuliana lives in West Palm Beach with her husband—Zach, their girls—Giada, Liliana and their dog—Ty! She feels so welcomed into the CHEC Family and is enjoying every second learning more about the world of homeschooling and the positive culture it holds!

Contact: giuliana.sisk@checpalmbeach.com

Jennifer Weiler

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Junior High/High School Science Teacher

Jennifer graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Communications. Always desiring to work with young adults, she pursued a career in teaching, achieving her goal via the Alternative Certification route. Jennifer began with the Palm Beach County School District in 2007, and over the course of her 14 year career, she received her teaching certifications in k - 6 elementary and 5 - 9 middle grades Sci, SS, Math and ELA, with endorsements in Gifted teaching and Reading. While with PSCSD, Jennifer taught all 3 middle school grades, including Social Studies, Intensive Reading, Language Arts, and Science. She left the PBCSD in June of 2021, and started homeschooling her 3 children. Jennifer has been with CHEC as the Junior High/ High School Science teacher since September of 2022, and had loved continuing her teaching career in this hybrid setting. 
 
Jennifer, Sean, Caden, Adalyn, and Bryce live in Wellington, and love the community and fellowship they have found within their CHEC family!

Contact: jennifer.weiler@checpalmbeach.com

Kristi Lane

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Junior High/High School Writing Teacher

Kristi attended Lee University where she received her bachelor’s degree in education and later a
master’s degree in curriculum and technology from the University of Phoenix. As a prior public-
school teacher, and in homeschooling her own three children, she learned very quickly that
meeting students where they are is necessary to help them find their path to success. She
especially learned this in homeschooling her own children as she has one child with ADHD and
one with Dysgraphia.

Her teaching experience includes both special education and general education with 7 years
spent in the classroom. She taught 5th -8 th grades in Reading, Writing, Social Studies, and Science.
In recent years, she has been homeschooling her children and is very active in the homeschool
community. Over the last several years she has gained experience in classical education and
tutoring in writing and assisting and judging formal debates, among other things. Kristi is in her
9th year of homeschooling and successfully graduated her oldest son in 2023; he now attends
Palm Beach Atlantic University.

Kristi lives in Loxahatchee with her husband—Nathan, their two sons (19 and 17) and one
daughter (13).

Contact: kristi.lane@checpalmbeach.com

Carissa Werder

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Junior High/High School  Teacher

Carissa Werder is a versatile educator with 20 years of experience in Broward County Public Schools, teaching middle grades with a Masters in Math Education and mentoring PreK-8 teachers. She is passionate about her faith, family, and good food, and loves an impromptu dance party or karaoke singalong. In her second year at CHEC, as at home with her 3 energetic students, Carissa looks forward to nurturing a classroom environment marked by learning and laughter. 

Contact: carissa.werder@checpalmbeach.com

Laura Ghislandi

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Junior High/High School History Teacher

Laura is in her fourth year teaching at CHEC and has nine years of experience working with a government watchdog organization. A homeschool mom of two, she is passionate about preparing kids for real life through hands-on learning. Laura has developed a love for young minds, recognizing the importance of providing a well-rounded education and fostering a loving, supportive learning environment. She combines practical insights with a passion for nurturing informed and engaged students.

Contact: laura.ghislandi@checpalmbeach.com

Patty Giacomino

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Kindergarten Teacher

From a very young age Patty dreamed of being a teacher and working with children. Following that dream, she graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a Bachelors in Elementary Education. She worked as an elementary school teacher in Palm Beach County until she had children of her own. Patty is passionate about teaching Kindergarten because she sees the benefits teaching children from a young age has such as social, emotional, problem-solving and collaborative skills.

Contact: patricia.giacomino@checpalmbeach.com

Hilary Kozikowski

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Elementary Art Teacher

Hilary was born and raised in Missouri and went to college at Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA where she met her husband Aaron.   After getting married in 2008 they moved to northern Virginia where Hilary worked for George W. Bush’s administration.  Later she worked at Virginia International University as an Admissions Counselor and a Program Manager for the School of Business.  Hilary and Aaron had their daughter Taylor in 2018 and their daughter Bailey in 2020.   Soon after Bailey was born they moved to Florida to be closer to Hilary’s parents. 

Hilary first learned about CHEC from a fellow homeschool mom.  Her passion for art, homeschooling, and equipping the next generation with life skills landed her at CHEC. 

Hilary and Aaron live in Delray Beach and she enjoys playing tennis, traveling, and going to the beach.

Contact: hilary.kozikowski@checpalmbeach.com

Christy Garnett

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Elementary Core Enrichment Teacher

Christy is originally from Michigan.  She made the move to Florida in 1997 to attend Palm Beach Atlantic College. Theatrical and dance productions played a major role in her studies.  In 2001 she graduated with a major in Biblical Studies and a minor in Dance Arts. 

Christy and her husband Bob were married in 2002 and have since raised 4 children.  All of her children have been homeschooled at some point in their education and all of them were involved in CHEC during its inaugural year!

Teaching CHEC kids in creative ways is one of her greatest joys.  Providing a safe space for kids to engage, take risks and practice important life skills is such an honor!


Contact: christy.garnett@checpalmbeach.com

Kerstyn Pacillo

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Elementary Core Enrichment Teacher

Kerstyn has been with CHEC since 2020. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Palm Beach Atlantic University with her Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership. Before determining her major, she was a substitute teacher for the School District of Palm Beach County. While attending PBA she spent time in Guatelamala with a group of colleagues. Their mission was to share God’s word through songs and stories in a newly established and constantly expanding school in Escuintla. She has a passion for having a hand in developing young human minds and being a strong supporter to them in the process. She was born and raised in Palm Beach County and now lives in Lake Park. She is dedicated to her students, plants and animals and in addition hopes to have children of her own in CHEC one day. 

Contact: kerstyn.pacillo@checpalmbeach.com

Amanda Spore

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Elementary Physical Education Teacher

Born and raised in Miami, Amanda has  been passionate about health and fitness since adolescence. She studied exercise science at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville and then became a personal trainer and a fitness competitor. She worked with several other competitors and athletes as well. Amanda feels very strongly about teaching kids the importance of learning healthy exercise and nutrition habits when they are young that will lead to lifelong fitness and health. She is also currently working towards receiving her CrossFit kids certification in order to adopt a wider range of knowledge and experience to teach her own children and her community.

Contact: amanda.spore@checpalmbeach.com

Lauren Wilt

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Elementary Science Teacher

Lauren has a Bachelor of Biological Sciences degree from Florida Atlantic University and a Master of Biomedical Sciences degree from Nova Southeastern University. Along with her love of science, Lauren has a passion for working with children and has been a Religious Education Teacher and a Substitute Teacher since 2018. She also enjoys the arts and helping to encourage children to find the special talents that make them who they are.

Contact: lauren.wilt@checpalmbeach.com

Margie Richards

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Music Teacher

Chec's elementary students take a traditional music class following a curriculum. Here they learn to read music, learn music combinations, learn traditional school songs and children's music, study classical composers, musical history and musicals, learn beat, rhythms and more. Junior High students learn to play the ukulele while learning to read music.

Melissa Dragone

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Little CHEC'ers Coordinator

While their older siblings are at “school” little CHEC’ers have options to stay and play with their family in our great preschool rooms. They can spend time together playing and getting fresh air and, at times, even go on adventures around the school to see their big sisters/brothers in class. 

Melissa has been volunteering and working with nursery and preschool children for over 10 years.  Her welcoming smile radiates warmth and love from your first interaction with her. Her family has been at CHEC for 4 years and she loves her role in our preschool rooms and can often be seen taking the young children on “field trips” around campus to see their siblings.  

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