Alison Celmer, SCS PreK-4 Co-Principal
Alison Celmer is heading into her sixth year as the proud PreK-4 Principal at Shelburne Community School. Alison is excited to continue her work with Katie Novak on learning and implementing Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Inclusive Practices this year. Alison has a background in Interior Design from The Ohio State University (Go Bucks!) which is what brought her to Vermont (from upstate New York) in 2004 - to pursue a career in residential interior design in Stowe. Alison has always enjoyed working and connecting with kids. Nannying (while designing) is what inspired her to go back to school through Johnson State College (remotely) to pursue a degree in Elementary Education. In 2011, she began her next journey as a Kindergarten Teacher, when she was honored with UVM’s Teacher of the Year. She was encouraged to take on more leadership roles, and after four years of teaching Kindergarten, she became a sixth grade literacy teacher and a K-8 Literacy Coach. She continued this work while she completed her Masters in Educational Leadership and Curriculum & Assessment Development through Southern New Hampshire University. In 2017, she accepted her first administrative position at Champlain Valley School District. She is grateful for this opportunity and her creative and collaborative SCS Leadership team colleagues and her CVSD LEaD team. Her knowledge and excitement for bridging the design process with curriculum development and instructional delivery models to create inclusive practices for all is what really energizes her as a leader, mentor, and colleague. When she is not reading (or listening to) books about leadership, instructional practices, inclusive practices, design, and organization, she also enjoys listening to great music, dancing, hiking, walking, cruising on her bike, shopping, or dining around town.
Brett Cluff, SCS 5-8 Co-Principal 5-8
Brett is thrilled to be stepping into the role of grades 5-8 Co-Principal at SCS this year. A Shelburne resident and graduate of CVSD schools, Brett comes to SCS after a year spent teaching 6th grade math and science at A.D. Lawton Intermediate School in Essex Junction. Prior to that, he spent 15 years working in the New York City Department of Education, most recently as an Assistant Principal at M.S. 74 in Queens. Brett’s journey in public education began as a member of Teach for America, teaching 5th grade in the Bronx. His other roles included instructional coaching at the district level and co-leading a teaching residency program. Brett graduated from Middlebury College and has master’s degrees from Pace University and Teachers College, Columbia University. When not at SCS, Brett can usually be found walking around town with his wife and two kids, helping to fix up their old farmhouse, or pulling weeds in the garden.
Emily Cogan, SCS Special Ed Director
Emily is excited to join CVSD as the Director of Special Education for the Shelburne Community School. Emily has 15 years of experience as a Special Educator in Franklin County, Vermont, and most recently served as a Special Education Coordinator for the Burlington School District. Emily obtained her Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in 2022, completing the St. Michael’s College School Leadership program. Emily also attended St. Mike’s as a graduate and undergraduate student and earned her MEd in Special Education in 2010. Emily’s core values are authenticity, belonging, and connection. Her passion is supporting inclusive educational practices.
Emily loves live music, travel, and has an adventurous spirit. She volunteered for a semester in Peru, has taken students on a trip to China, climbed Denali, and completed a solo hike of the Long Trail. She lives in Jeffersonville with her 5 year old son and can sometimes be found popping up at concerts to hear her favorite band.