About Our School
Meet Our Staff
Leverage the Support of Expert Staff and Licensed Teachers
Carolus Online Academy (COA) has a hand–picked expert staff and licensed teachers, ready to help your family succeed with online school. We meet your student where they're at and help them accomplish their goals.
Mike Ames | Executive Director
Mr. Ames is deeply committed to fostering a vibrant and inclusive online educational environment that empowers students to excel academically, socially, and personally. Equipped with a master's degree in education from SUNY Cortland and an administrative certificate from a specialized training program in New York, he boasts a 24-year tenure in the field of education. His dedication to fostering the growth of young minds has driven his passion throughout his career. Mr. Ames's educational leadership skills and curriculum development background allow him to provide a dynamic and innovative learning experience for students at Carolus Online Academy. Overall, he is dedicated to personalizing the learning of every student so they can hone their abilities and achieve their dreams.
Amy Bennison | Elementary Teacher
Ms. Bennison is excited to teach on the elementary level for Carolus Online Academy. She lives in Tega Cay, South Carolina with her dog. She has a Master of Education in elementary education and creative arts in learning from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Ms. Bennison has taught for more than 25 years as an early childhood, elementary, and middle school teacher. She believes a positive teacher-student relationship is the most essential factor in student learning and engagement. She aims to know and connect with all her students. Ms. Bennison loves to take her dog to Windjammer Park and play on the beach of Lake Wylie on the weekends. She also enjoys getting together with friends to go shopping or share a meal (or both).
Jo Blanding | Elementary Teacher
Mrs. Blanding is excited to be working for Carolus Online Academy this school year as an elementary teacher! This will be her seventh year teaching 1st grade. She enjoys impacting the littles and laying the foundation of their education. Her philosophy is to differentiate her instruction to meet every child's needs and make learning fun. Mrs. Blanding has a bachelor's degree in early childhood education from Lander University and a master's degree from Clemson University in teaching and learning, emphasizing experiential learning for early childhood. She is certified to teach grades pre-kindergarten to 3rd grade. Mrs. Blanding looks forward to getting to know her students and their families this school year! In her free time, she likes to travel and spend time with her family and friends.
Tamika Cleckley | Registrar
Mrs. Cleckley is from Columbia, South Carolina. She registers students and obtains any records for student success at COA. She began working in education in 2015. This school year will be eight years of working as a school registrar. Mrs. Cleckley enjoys watching and playing sports, spending time with her family and friends, and traveling. Her favorite saying is: Only Believe.
Lacy Daniel | Academic Administrator
Ms. Daniel is the academic administrator of Carolus Online Academy. With more than 20 years of teaching and coaching experience, the past five years have been dedicated to excelling in a virtual school setting. Her journey in education began with earning her undergrad degree at the University of South Carolina and later pursuing her master's at Clemson. Throughout her career, she has held roles as a literacy coach, math coach, and data coach—always striving to help others succeed academically. When she's not working, you can find Ms. Daniel lost in a good book, enjoying coffee with her partner, or chauffeuring her children and dogs around Rock Hill. Here's to a fantastic year ahead at Carolus Online Academy!
Olivia Durant | Elementary Teacher
Mrs. Durant is an elementary teacher this year at Carolus Online Academy. She received her Bachelor of Science in elementary education from William Woods University in Fulton, Missouri. This will be her ninth year teaching and her fourth year teaching in the virtual community. Mrs. Durant looks forward to learning alongside your student and providing support and encouragement to help them reach their goals. She recently moved to Greenville, South Carolina, with her family and dog. She can usually be found running when not spending time with family, traveling, or getting outside.
Ashley Floyd | Elementary Teacher
Ms. Floyd will be a teacher this year at Carolus Online Academy. She attended Francis Marion University and obtained her Bachelor of Science in early childhood education. This school year marks her fourth year teaching. Her vision is to challenge students to reach their full potential and build a foundation for lifelong learning. Ms. Floyd believes that every child deserves an education that facilitates academic, developmental, and social growth in a variety of experiences. She plans to motivate, encourage, and support students while identifying areas of growth and development. She's looking forward to a fun school year full of new experiences, passions, and discoveries in our virtual classroom! Ms. Floyd enjoys traveling and spending time with her family and dog outside of school.
McKenna Ford | Testing Coordinator
Mrs. Ford will manage all school and state-mandated assessments and ensure the team is adequately trained and prepared to administer these assessments. This school year will be her fourth year in education. She earned a Bachelor of Science in elementary education from the College of Charleston. Since then, she has worked as a 3rd grade teacher in the Charleston area. Mrs. Ford is looking forward to applying her experience as a teacher to her new role as a testing coordinator. She's excited to work and communicate with the entire team at COA, as well as COA families to ensure that students feel equipped to tackle the required assessments. When not working, Mrs. Ford enjoys reading and spending time outdoors with her husband and dog.
Heather Fultz | Elective Teacher
Mrs. Fultz is a proud graduate of the University of Florida, where she earned her degree in music education. This is her 14th year in the teaching profession. Throughout her career, she's been privileged to teach various subjects, including instrumental music, general music, and choral music. Switching from brick-and-mortar school to online will allow for more dynamic and engaging content integration. Mrs. Fultz is excited to share her passion for the arts with all her students to enable them to express themselves through different creative outlets. She's also looking forward to tailoring her teaching approach to meet the individual needs of each student, fostering personalized learning and growth. Music is her passion; she plays many different instruments, but her principal instrument is French horn. Mrs. Fultz also loves riding and showing horses and shares a passion for travel with her husband.
Marci Garcia | Early Childhood Teacher
Ms. Garcia is excited to be an early childhood teacher for Carolus (COA). She cannot wait to meet her "sweet school babies," their families, and their Learning Coaches. Ms. Garcia's undergraduate degree is in art and mass communications. Not long after graduating college, she found herself in a teaching assistant position, where she discovered her passion for educating young children. She now has a master's degree and initial teaching certification in early childhood education. Ms. Garcia has more than 16 years of experience as an educator, and this will be her fourth year teaching virtually. Her first "school babies" have already graduated college and started careers and families of their own. It means the world to her that she feels like she was a part of that.
Tracey Holden | Middle School Social Studies Teacher
Ms. Holden is the middle school social studies teacher. Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, she graduated from the University of Baltimore at Maryland with a bachelor's degree in political science and later earned a master's degree in educational technology from Lesley University. Ms. Holden's goal this year is to help students achieve their best in every possible way. She feels that social studies is an amazing way to explore the stories of our past. It takes students on a journey to different times and cultures, and Ms. Holden enjoys presenting these stories to the class. She hopes that students will find their purpose and passion in the real world by understanding history.
Angela Jones-Howze | Operations Manager
Mrs. Jones-Howze is a veteran educator with 28 years of experience ranging from tutoring to teaching to administration. Her professional experience includes serving as a classroom teacher and an administrator in a brick-and-mortar environment. Mrs. Jones-Howze has also worked as a virtual educator in various capacities for 10 years. She has a bachelor's degree in elementary education, a master's degree in early childhood education, a second master's in education administration, and a doctorate in organizational leadership. She is excited to be a part of the awesome Carolus family!
Niki Kayser | Community Engagement Specialist
This is Mrs. Kayser's seventh year in education, and she cannot wait to connect with you and your family. Mrs. Kayser obtained her bachelor's degree in psychology from West Virginia University and her master's degree in school counseling from Capella University. She is excited to transition into this new role as a community engagement specialist and use the skills that her previous experiences in counseling have given her. Mrs. Kayser's goal is to help foster a sense of community and act as a liaison between COA and families. Her mission is to continue building positive relationships and ensuring everyone feels heard and supported. Outside of work, she enjoys making memories with her family!
Becca Lewis | 6–8 Special Educator
Ms. Lewis provides academic support to help students with disabilities reach their full potential in an online educational platform. Her philosophy is that every student is capable of success and deserves the opportunity to be successful in their own way. This school year marks Ms. Lewis's eighth year in education and a return to teaching on a middle school level after spending the past several years at the high school level in a traditional brick-and-mortar setting. She earned her bachelor's degree in special education from USC Upstate. Her mission is to provide students with the strategies needed for independence and success in an ever-changing world. Ms. Lewis enjoys travelling with her husband and playing video games outside work.
Demi McGloin | Career Exploration Teacher
Mrs. McGloin is a dedicated career exploration teacher. This is her 10th year as a teacher and her third year as a career exploration teacher! She is excited to teach at COA this school year because she will have the unique opportunity to inspire and empower students to reach their full potential. Mrs. McGloin believes that learning should be a journey of discovery, and she's eager to guide her students. She looks forward to building solid relationships with her students this upcoming year and cannot wait for their adventures together. During her free time, she enjoys reading, watching TV, and spending time with her family.
Patricia Miles | Middle School ELA Teacher
Ms. Miles is COA's middle school ELA teacher. She's going into her fifth year of teaching, and she's excited to be teaching at COA! Ms. Miles earned her degree from the University of South Carolina. She is certified to teach English and social studies, and teaching ELA is her passion. She loves to read, and her goal is to help her students find their love of reading too. Ms. Miles is looking forward to meeting all the new middle school students, and she thinks it will be a fantastic year of virtual learning!
Kimberly Stallings | Middle School Math Teacher
Mrs. Stallings is excited to join this new adventure with COA this school year! This will be her 15th year as an educator. She received her bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of South Florida and her master's in counseling and psychology from Troy University. Mrs. Stallings is certified in both middle-level math and special education. She is passionate about helping her students grow—not only in math but in life. She enjoys spending time with her family and traveling to see the world in her spare time.
Nadine Trimble | Academic Administrator of Special Programs
Ms. Trimble serves students receiving special services, including Individual Education Plans, 504s, English/Multi-Language Learners, and students impacted by homelessness (McKinney-Vento Act). She has been a special education and English language arts teacher in traditional and virtual settings, a corporate learning and development trainer, and a school principal. Ms. Trimble believes schools should be interactive, relevant, and safe spaces that allow students to feel confident, explore, and take risks in their learning. She's a true foodie and has been a caterer, meal prepper, and an eating-for-wellness consultant. Ms. Trimble also enjoys riding her mountain bike and thrift store shopping.
David Williams | Middle School Science Teacher
Mr. Williams is a giant nerd and doesn't care who knows it. He's excited to be teaching at Carolus Online Academy. He loves science and hopes his students will, too, by the end of the year. He is originally from Connecticut but moved to South Carolina when he was young. Mr. Williams attended Furman University for his BS in earth and environmental science, and, after 10 years in the engineering and manufacturing fields, he became a teacher with his science background before earning his master's degree in education. Mr. Williams is most excited about changing from a brick-and-mortar school to an online school. He appreciates technology and looks forward to seeing how this year will differ from his past 20 years. Mr. Williams lives with his wife in Greenville, South Carolina, and his 3 kids are off in college.
Amanda Wilson | School Counselor
Mrs. Wilson's role at COA includes counseling and providing preventive services to promote students' academic, career, and personal and social development. This school year marks her 17th year in the field of education. She earned her master's degree in school counseling from East Carolina University and a master's in leadership from the University of South Carolina. Mrs. Wilson's education and experience have taught her the value of advocating for students and collaborating with teachers, parents, and administrators to support the success of all learners. She aims to empower students with the tools and resources they need to succeed while fostering an inclusive learning environment where every student feels respected and supported. Outside work, Mrs. Wilson enjoys spending time with her family and their rescue dog.