Meet Our Staff
Principal, South Side Academy
I have spent the majority of my educational career with the same students and families of South Side Academy. I have been at the school for nearly nineteen years, in various capacities. Although South Side Academy has changed management companies and recently moved to a different building, many of the same families have been here all along. I have taught second, fifth, and sixth grades. I have been the Curriculum Director, Dean of Students, Assistant Principal, and I am now the Principal of some children whose parents sat in my classroom. I am the proud mother of two wonderful daughters, 19 and 16, and have a wonderful husband. I enjoy reading, bike riding, crafts, being a “dance mom,” and learning new concepts to enhance the achievement of my students.
I attended Youngstown State University. Upon graduation, I stayed in the area for my teaching tenure. I have been teaching for 16 years; 15 of those years have been in the urban Youngstown setting. During my time in Youngstown, I have taught a variety of subjects and grade levels and held numerous leadership positions within the school. I have found my heart belongs to the betterment of these students and the city of Youngstown as a whole.
Prior to entering the field of education, I was employed with the Federal Government. I have been an educational assistant for 17 years. I am currently a one on one classroom assistant in third grade. I enjoy working with students and using my creative abilities to enhance the classroom environment.
I graduated from The University of Mount Union (Alliance, OH) in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. During college, I worked as a preschool teacher. Since graduation, I spent 5 years in a Pennsylvania public school system as a K-5 instructional aide, and have been teaching Kindergarten at South Side for the past 2 years. I have a deep-rooted passion for early childhood development as I believe in the utmost importance and responsibility of molding our youth into capable, caring, and successful human beings.
My name is Nickie Boles and I have been with South Side Academy for three years. I started as a one-on-one aide and I am currently an instruction aide for second grade. Mydegree is in Science of Education: Early Childhood from Youngstown State University. I also teach Sunday School and Vacation Bible School at my church. I am a single mother of one who enjoys reading and spending time with my family and friends.
I am the first grade teacher at South Side Academy. I graduated in 2014 from Kent State University with a degree in Speech Pathology and Audiology, but my passion for teaching led me back to school to become a teacher. I graduated from Slippery Rock University in 2016 with my degree in Early Childhood Education. I come from a family of educators, which is where I gained my passion for teaching. It is my goal to positively impact my students by creating a classroom environment full of respect, confidence, and creativity.
I am the School Nurse at South Side (6 years) and the lead nurse for Education Empowerment Group (2 years). I love working with children, and being a South Side Warrior! I have been a nurse for 10 years and in the health care field for over 17 years. My specialty is pediatric nursing. I am originally from Youngstown, OH and attended The University of Akron for sociology, Brown Mackie College, and Eastern Gateway Community College for Registered Nursing. I am a mother of two beautiful girls. The health of my students is important in their development and progression in education. I strive each day to ensure a healthy and proper maturation of their bodies and mind.
My name is Lindsay Holsopple and I am the 4th grade math and language arts teacher. I also teach 5th and 6th grade math. This is my second year at South Side Academy, but prior to this, I spent two years working as an AmeriCorps member. I am currently working to obtain my masters degree in Special Education from Slippery Rock University.
This is my 15th year teaching in Youngstown. I was born and raised here in the Youngstown area. I taught high school and then moved to middle school. I teach English Language Arts. I graduated in 2003 from Kent State University with a BA in English and a minor in Journalism. In 2009, I graduated from Grand Canyon University with a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education. I am a certified yoga/aerial yoga and Pilates instructor. I have a dog and three cats; I LOVE animals! I love teaching! It is my absolute favorite thing in the world. It is who I am. I am thrilled to be a part of South Side Academy!
My name is Elaina J. Pierce I’m an Instructional Assistant and have been for almost 20 years. I grew up in a family of educators which is why helping children is natural to me. My passion to help children become successful and know that they do not have to be a product of their environment. I want to be a positive person that they can look up to and a person of understanding. In some cases school is a child’s place of peace and I want to be the one to help educate and give them the peace, confidence, and state of reasoning that they need. I love the job I do.
My name is Ms. Deborah Reed. I am the proud mother of three wonderful children. I received a Bachelors in English and history from Mount Union College. I earned my Masters of Special Education in Reading from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. Throughout my teaching career I have taught 6th-12th grades of all levels and abilities. I feel every child can be successful with support and encouragement.
I have 2 BAs one in Elementary Education and one in special education, I also have a Masters in Reading and Administration. I began my teaching career in 1999 teaching in Special Education in a resource room 4-8 for 10 years. I switched to 5-6th grade Science for 2 years. I then received my certification in Administration and worked for four years. I retired in 2015, then returned as a reading tutor for 1 year. Then returned to the Special Education Classroom as an inclusion teacher. I have joined South Side Academy as a K-5 Intervention Specialist.
This is my first year at South Side Academy. I grew up in Euclid, a suburb east of Cleveland, and now I live in Ashtabula County. I am married to a 4th grade teacher for the Geneva Area City Schools. We have three daughters – Julia (10), Jenna (7), and Joanna (4). I have a Masters’ Degree in Special Education and hold a Mild-Moderate Disabilities Licensure for Kindergarten through 12th grade. I have been a teacher, a tutor, an aide, and a substitute in several different situations. I also currently work for an in-home provider who provides assistance for adults with disabilities. I enjoy the outdoors (especially camping), spending time with my family, sports card collecting, and writing inspirational quotes. I believe that all children are able to learn. I am not a quitter and I will try and do anything possible to make your son or daughter successful this year. My belief of success is that “Progress is one small step in the right direction.”
My love for reading lead me to become a librarian with the Youngstown Public Library. I left this position and started in education in2003, as a Library Aide and remained in that position until 2010. In the fall of 2010, I was asked to change my position and become the school secretary. Today I am in the school office with the title of Enrollment Coordinator.
Food Service Coordinator
I am the Food Service coordinator for South Side Academy. I have been in Food Service for 7 years and with Educational Empowerment Group for the last 2 years. I began this position by accident. I moved next door to my Food Service coordinator from high school and she offered me a position. I enjoy providing the students with a well rounded breakfast and lunch. I love to interact with the students and get them to try new things. I have 2 teenage boys that keep me busy. I was born, raised, and still live in Youngstown, which makes me so proud to be a South Side Warrior!
I always knew I wanted to become a teacher. I started in education as an instructional assistant at Head Start while pursuing my Bachelors in Elementary Education degree. After completing my degree, I served a year as an Americorps teacher and became a substitute teacher for New Castle and Union School District in Pennsylvania. I've taught third grade at South Side Academy for two years. I am currently completing my Masters in Special Education degree at Slippery Rock University and will graduate in December 2017.
I’m Allyson Wigington and I graduated from Ohio University with a Bachelors Degree in Middle Childhood Education and a certification in Mathematics and Science. I grew up in the inner city very similar to Youngstown, so teaching students in an urban setting is where I felt I belonged. I long to make a difference in the lives of children at South Side Academy!
I’m Sarah Walsh, and I graduated from The College of Wooster in 2007 with a major in English. I later received my Bachelor of Science in Middle Childhood Education from Youngstown State University. I currently have three dogs (Boo, Bug, and Violet) and three cats (Lily, Scrambles, and Stevie).
2nd grade teacher