Jennifer Murdock-Smith is the Director of Polaris Charter School, Jen will be entering her tenth year at the school. Ms. Murdock-Smith obtained both her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Psychology at Niagara University and Connecticut College respectively. Following this, she spent ten years working in the hospital setting developing systems to evaluate program performance and implement improvement. After taking a hiatus to spend time at home with her three children, she returned to the classroom and earned her certification as a school counselor as well as her Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Counseling at Rivier University. Her role at Polaris combines her ten years of experience in healthcare with her thirteen years working in education. Ms. Murdock-Smith is committed to working toward meeting children’s social, emotional and educational needs.
Paula BiskadurosAdministrative Assistant
Administrative Coordinator - OperationsCoordinator - Building Operations
Administrative Coordinator - OperationsCoordinator - Building Operations
Darlene Timlin is our new Administrative Coordinator for Operations. She comes to us from a paraprofessional background for the last several years. Prior to that she was an administrative assistant for a real estate company. She loves interacting with the children and helping them with any of their needs. She believes all children are special and should be celebrated as such. In her free time she likes to go to the beach, crafting, and going on family bike rides.
Stacy is going into her third year at Polaris as our Business Manager. Stacy was born in New Jersey and lived in Georgia, New Hampshire, and Texas before her family finally settled in Londonderry. Stacy has been a resident of Manchester for the last 34 years. She left restaurant management after 14 years to work for a local professional photography lab as an office manager. When the lab closed seven years later in 2005, Stacy became a mom for the third time (and then a fourth) and made the choice to stay at home with her kiddos. During this hiatus, she continued to do work for various non-profits, including Boy Scouts, parent-teacher groups, work-groups at the school district and, even sports leagues, which is how she fell in love with the non-profit sector. Currently, Stacy serves on the board for Manchester East Soccer League as Treasurer.
Stacy loves spending time with her family, taking photos, and doing her volunteer work. She also loves sports photography and photojournalism and is a freelance photographer shooting for Manchester Ink Link, a local online news media site in Manchester, NH.
Lea Fesh is entering her tenth year at Polaris as one of our five Primary level teachers. This year she's taking on a new challenge and moving down to one of our K/1 Primary classrooms. Mrs. Fesh holds a Bachelors's degree in English from UNH and a Masters's degree in Elementary Education from Southern New Hampshire University and has done some post-graduate work as well. She loves anything to do with school, whether it's being a teacher or being a student!
Learning is a lifelong adventure, and everyone is accepted and valued in her classroom. She has worked as a Reading Interventionist, Health Teacher and, assistant before finding her home at Polaris. Mrs. Fesh resides in Londonderry with her husband Randy and 5 children, Rodney, Hayley, Alexander, Elizabeth and, James. In her spare time (which is a bit limited!) Mrs. Fesh is an avid reader and writer and enjoys spending family time with her littles and drinking coffee. And of course, she is still very excited to be a teacher at Polaris!
The 2021-2022 school year marks Alyssa Young’s eighth year teaching at Polaris as one of our primary teachers. Mrs. Young is a certified and highly qualified teacher in the state of New Hampshire for grades K-6. She received her B.A. in Psychology and her M.Ed in Elementary Education from the University of New Hampshire. She teaches in one of our two 2/3 Primary classrooms.
Mrs. Young believes in teaching the whole child. Her classroom addresses the social, emotional, physical and, intellectual needs of the children she works with. Mrs. Young likes to build relationships with her students to develop projects that align with their interests.
Her students know her likes include owls, the beach, reading and, wandering around Target for cute finds. In her free time, she enjoys running and hiking with her husband and snuggling with her orange tabby kitten, Pumpkin.
The 2021-2022 school year marks the second year Alexis Mugica will be teaching at Polaris - as one of our K/1 Primary teachers. Prior to this, Miss Mugica taught Preschool for three years. She received her B.A. in Elementary Education with a Certification in Special Education from Southern New Hampshire University.
Miss Mugica believes that social and emotional needs are crucial to allowing students to succeed. She strives to create a positive and safe classroom environment for all students, as well as building strong relationships,
When she’s not working, Miss Mugica loves spending time outdoors going to the beach or on a hike, and spending time with her family. She also enjoys snuggling up with her two cats and reading a book.
Amy AlexandrouPrimary Teacher
Mrs. Amy Alexandrou will be teaching in one of our 2/3 classrooms. She is originally from Massachusetts, and recently moved to NH with her husband. She received her BS in Elementary Education from Salem State University and her M. Ed in Early Childhood Education, as well as a graduate certificate in TESOL from Lesley University. Amy most recently taught in Manchester Public Schools as a remote first grade teacher, and then transitioned to Title 1. She fully believes students learn best by integrating the arts into the classroom with all subjects to make the experience more memorable. When not teaching, Mrs. Alexandrou enjoys spending time at home, going out to restaurants, and playing with her puppy, Hank.
Brianna WilsonPrimary Teacher
Mrs. Brianna Wilson will be entering her first year at Polaris Charter School teaching in our Grade 1/2 classroom. She is a new resident of New Hampshire, having recently moved here from Washington state. She received her B.A. in English from Southern New Hampshire University and most recently assisted a multi-age group of seven students who were fully remote due to Covid-19. Mrs. Wilson believes that teaching is more than just delivering information to students. Rather, it is about supporting students in their individual journeys by giving them a safe and exciting environment where they can grow academically as well as socially, emotionally, and academically. She believes in community and connection within the classroom and strives to create this amongst her students. In her free time, you will likely find Mrs. Wilson reading, hiking, enjoying a good movie or game night, and spending time with her husband, family, and new puppy.
Heidi LanglaisIntermediate Teacher
Mrs. Heidi Langlais, one of our three Grade 4/5 Intermediate teachers brings over 15 years of experience in education. She graduated from Grand Canyon University with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and Special Education, as well as a Master’s degree in Reading Instruction with an Emphasis in Elementary Education. Building a fun, positive classroom culture conducive to learning is of utmost importance to Mrs. Langlais. She takes extra care to build relationships with each of her students in order to meet their individual social and emotional needs within the classroom setting. When Mrs. Langlais isn’t teaching or learning, she loves to spend time with her family, read, bake, travel, and ride ATVs. She delves into various creative arts such as sewing, crafting and painting. She absolutely loves hanging out with her five goats (Winifred, Mary, and Sarah Sanderson, Thadeous Binks, and Cleatus) and with her dog Ella.
Katherine SavoyIntermediate Teacher
Mrs. Katherine Savoy, is our second Grade 4/5 Intermediate teacher. She has worked as a paraprofessional for 16 years while simultaneously raising her four children and obtaining her bachelor’s and master’s degrees. She is dually certified in elementary education and special education and her hope has been to find a position where students come first and she feels that she has found that at Polaris. She believes that students thrive with diversity, love, compassion, and empathy as well as high expectations that coincide with their abilities. When she is not working or continuing her education, she loves reading, crafting and, spending time with her family including her three cats.
Sarah MerrickArt Teacher
Miss Sarah Merrick, is entering her first year teaching at Polaris Charter School as our Art teacher. She has resided in New Hampshire her whole life. Sarah has taught a variety of ages in gymnastics for over 5 years. Guiding children with a positive attitude, and always encouraging them to work in the most efficient way they can toward reaching their individual goals is very important to her. Growing up Miss Sarah has always had a passion for art. She would like to guide more children to get in touch with their creativity, as she believes that it can be a very useful outlet for them! Her goal as a teacher is to create a fun, exciting and supportive environment for our students to get the best care and education as possible. Miss Sarah believes in kindness, growth and patience with each individual child, as well as goal setting. Outside of the classroom you may find her enjoying quality time with her friends and family as well as working on art projects. Or enjoying the outdoors!
Mike StockbridgeMusic Teacher
Mike Stockbridge, brings to Polaris, a 25 year history of teaching music to students both privately and in the classroom. In the mid nineties he attended Berklee College of Music, leaving the school to work with touring blues artist Richard Roquemore. After his time with Roquemore had come to an end, he returned to his native New Hampshire and began teaching privately in the Mount Washington Valley. During this brief time he was mentored by seasoned jazz musician Charles Toor - a retired pianist from New York who had worked with a long list of luminaries in the NYC jazz scene during the 50’s and was an active participant in the loft scene of the 70’s. In 2000 Stockbridge relocated to central Maine and enrolled at the University of Maine at Augusta to focus on following through with his education in music.
Dawson DicksonPhysical Education
Melanie ButlerYoga / Mindfulness Teacher
Mrs. Melanie Butler has just joined us at Polaris as our Yoga/Mindfulness Teacher. After receiving her bachelor’s in science at Bridgewater State College, she went on to work in classrooms for over 15 years, as a paraeducator, a one-on-one therapist, and a teacher, with children of varying ages. Melanie fell in love with yoga 5 years ago and knew she needed to share it with the world. She received her 200 Yoga Teaching Certificate from JOY Wellness in Salem, NH and began teaching yoga classes to the adult population. When she was home during COVID, she became acutely aware of how stressed the children of the world were becoming. Melanie decided to take a Children's Yoga Teacher Training so she could mix the two worlds that mean so much to her. She cannot wait to make a positive impact in your Children's lives. When not in school, Melanie resides with her husband, teenager and her mother. She has several animals that she enjoys cuddle time with. Melanie loves kayaking and taking nature hikes, learning new things and of course, yoga!