English Language Development Teacher
Response to Intervention Team Lead
Phone: 720-383-4519 ext. 3225
Sarah Harrell is a Colorado native and received her B.A. from the University of Colorado. After working with students of all ages for several years in a variety of settings including residential treatment facilities and charter schools, she decided that she most enjoyed working with struggling students. Sarah received her Literacy Intervention Specialist certificate from Colorado College in 2010. She then received her M. Ed in Special Education and ELD endorsement in 2014. She works as one of the Learning Specialists as well as the 504 Coordinator and ELD teacher.
In her free time, Sarah enjoys spending time with her family. She and her husband, David, have two boys, D.C. at Utah State University and Xavier at Arapahoe High School. They enjoy movies, snowboarding, traveling, and watching the boys play sports. Sarah also loves to read, hike, and spend time with her big extended family in Colorado.
Special Education Team Lead
Speech Language Pathologist
Sarah Russell is an accomplished Speech Language Pathologist who graduated with her Masters degree from the University of Colorado and Undergraduate degree from Miami University. She has always wanted to work with children and help them improve their communication skills. Sarah’s experience covers many settings including schools, hospitals, rehabilitation facilities and Purdue University as an associate professor. After taking a few years off from her career to spend time with her three amazing young children and wonderful husband. Sarah is excited to be part of the BFA team!! As a fun fact, Sarah attended school in Michigan as a child, and for 8 years wore the same plaid as the students at BFA! What a coincidence!!
I am so excited to be joining the BFA family as the Middle School Counselor. I have been working in education for over 15 years in teaching, counseling and coaching. As a licensed school counselor I have worked in middle schools and high schools and now with the students at BFA! When I am not at Ben Franklin I am coaching the Varsity Cheer team at Dakota Ridge HS, watching my son play hockey, or enjoying beautiful Colorado! I have been married for 16 years to a wonderful man we have a 10 year old son named Jack and four fur babies, two dogs, Bruin and Penny, and two cats, Cinder and Ashby.Faculty Favorites
- Website: Link
Gifted and Talented Specialist
I am a Texas Native, but I have lived in Highlands Ranch for 15 years. I have an amazing husband and two awesome sons. I love the mountains, the 4 seasons, and all of the outdoor opportunities that living in Colorado provides. In my free time I enjoy traveling, spending time with my family, and reading for fun or to learn something new.
I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and a Masters Degree in Teaching from the University of Northern Colorado. Before becoming a teacher, I worked as a Software Consultant with Deloitte Consulting and as a Project Manager at a small start up software company in Austin. I was also lucky to be a stay-at-home mom when my sons were younger.
Gifted and Talented SpecialistEmail
Katie completed her sixteenth year of teaching this past year. She has worked with students in grades three through five for the majority of her career and taught fifth grade for thirteen years. This upcoming year will be her third year as the gifted and talented teacher at Ben Franklin Academy. Teaching is her passion, and she loves every minute she gets to spend with students helping them meet their academic potential.
Katie has a Bachelor’s degree in Painting from the University of Missouri Kansas City, a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Denver, a Master of Science in Special Education from Western Governor’s University, and her gifted and talented specialist certification from Regis University.
Originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Katie moved to Colorado in 1999. She lives with her husband, Patrick, their three children, Lillia (8th grade), Aidan (5th grade) and Charlie (2nd grade), and their dog in Castle Pines. Katie spends most of her free time keeping up with her very active children. She also loves to spend time knee deep in a great book or running the beautiful trails throughout Colorado. Katie and her husband also enjoy gardening–she takes care of the flowers and he’s in charge of the vegetables. As a family, they enjoy being outdoors, family game and movie nights, trips to the mountains, and visiting her family in Wisconsin.Faculty Favorites
- Website: Link
Speech Language Pathology AideEmail
My name is Courtney Young, and I’m excited to be a part of the BFA team this year! I finished my leveling certificate in speech-language and hearing science and completed my SLPA internship from Metropolitan State University in May of 2018. While I’m working as an assistant to Sarah Russell, BFA’s speech-language pathologist, I will also be taking online courses at the University of Northern Colorado to receive my Master of Arts degree in Speech-Language Pathology. When I’m done with my degree, I would love to work as either a school-based speech therapist and/or provide in-home intervention for young children with communication disorders.
I live in Parker with my husband, Chris, and our two energetic daughters – Sophie (age 9) and Aria (age 7). Our children attend Global Village Academy in Parker where the classes are taught in English and Spanish. I used to be a teacher of English as a Second Language to refugees and asylum seekers – in the USA and abroad- so travel and learning about different languages and cultures are my life-long passions. I also LOVE to garden and spend time outdoors with my family.Faculty Favorites
MS Student Support SpecialistEmail
Katie Frisbie is excited to be working at Ben Franklin for her second year. She is a graduate from MSU Denver with her degree in Speech, language, hearing sciences. She is a certified Speech language pathology assistant and is currently working towards her Master’s in Special Education from Grand Canyon University online. Katie loves to hike and run with her two standard poodles. Aside from working with kids, Katie’s passion is traveling the world and tackling new, exciting adventures. She is an avid reader and very involved in the community as a mentor for a nonprofit and leader at her church. She is excited to invest into the students at Ben Franklin for another year!Faculty Favorites
READ Act Coordinator
This past school year Ellen completed her tenth year working with elementary-aged students in the Douglas County Charter School system. Prior to her Charter School experience, Ellen began her career working for a major test-prep company, where she prepared students for college, grad school, and medical licensure. When not on the sidelines watching her kids play sports, Ellen can be found hiking, biking, snowboarding, or READing!Faculty Favorites
I am currently working towards getting my teaching license in physical education for k-6. Growing up I was very active in playing sports. I have a passion to teach kids about physical education and health. I have my bachelors degree in communication and I studied at the university of Colorado, Boulder. I’m originally from California. I moved to Colorado for 2 years in 1997-1999 and then came I back to Colorado permanently in 2001. Some of my hobbies include hiking, camping and snowboarding. I love being outside! I look forward to being a team player here at Ben Franklin Academy!Faculty Favorites
Life Skills and SPED AideEmail
Having been a part of Ben Franklin Academy since the first year, Janet has worn several hats for the school. As the Life Skills teacher, Janet enjoys teaching the sixth, seventh and eighth graders what is necessary for success above and beyond what is learned academically. This will be Janet’s seventh year as a part of the middle school, as she loves working with the young adults of the age group. Janet will be taking on a new role in the afternoons working with the Student Support Services team. This new role is something Janet is looking forward to. During the summers, Janet is also the co-director of the successful BFA Summer Camp program and during the school year is an active teacher for the BASE program. Janet enjoys the constant connection with a large number of students, and you can find her with several students around her as they communicate their day.
Janet has earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Phoenix and enjoys implementing the knowledge gained throughout her studies into the classroom. Janet is a single mom, of two. Her daughter works full-time in the management field and is out of the house, while her son is a Corporal with the United States Marine Corps. As an empty nester, Janet enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and her new additions, Harper and Tulo the cats. Janet has lived in Colorado since 2006, after many years in Texas. As Wyoming native, she enjoys the wide-open spaces and the mountains. She enjoys drawing, painting, and reading. She loves watching sports: baseball (the Colorado Rockies being her favorite), football, and basketball.Faculty Favorites
- Website: Link
Special Education ParaprofessionalEmail
Jackie has worked as an ISS para for several years in Douglas county. She received her college degree from University of Northern Colorado. She has worked with various special needs populations over the past 30 years. Jackie lives in Highland Ranch with her husband and her dog Layla. She has two adult children, a son and a daughter. Jackie calls herself an energizer bunny; she enjoys yoga, weight lifting, and speed walking. She has a unique passion for working with students, and receives tremendous joy from working with BFA students.Faculty Favorites