Staff

About Our Staff

The teachers and staff at Hidenwood Presbyterian School dedicate their time, patience, passion and knowledge to the developmental growth of each child. Teachers and staff are required to particulate in at least 16 hours of professional development each year as part of our participation in the Virginia Quality rating program. The teaching staff members have completed coursework in early childhood development while earning their Child Development Associate credential (CDA), have a degree in Elementary or Early Childhood Education or they have tremendous experience working with preschool aged children. Each staff member is certified in CPR and First Aid to ensure safety in the classroom and on the playground. All staff members are finger-printed and background checked by the Virginia State Police and Virginia Department of Social Services. The average years of service among the teaching staff is 16 years.

Meet Our Staff

Cathy Huemer

Director

A native of Newport News, Cathy joined our school in January of 2018. She holds a BA in elementary education from Roanoke College and a MA in curriculum development from George Washington University. She also has an endorsement as a reading specialist from Regent University. Cathy has dedicated her life to the education and growth of children. She spent 30 years with Newport News Public School System as a teacher, reading specialist and curriculum supervisor. Cathy has two children – Sophie and Max. In her spare time you can find Cathy and her husband Ingo at the beach or playing with their labradoodle, Winnie.

Becky Kraxberger

Assistant Director

Brenda Dent

Lead Teacher, Two-year-olds

Brenda holds a CDA credential. She was born and raised in Newport News. Brenda has two children – Cassie and Ryan; and two grandchildren Addison and Andrew. Both of her grandchildren are HPP alums.

Lauren Adams

Assistant Teacher, Two-year-olds

Lauren joined the staff of Hidenwood Presbyterian in August of 2023. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish & Business from East Carolina University. Prior to coming to our school, Lauren worked in corporate Finance, before becoming a stay-at-home Mom to her three daughters. Her twins, Peyton & Hunter, went through the 2s, 3s, & 4s at Hidenwood, & they are now in Kindergarten at Newport News Public Schools. Lauren’s youngest daughter, Charlotte, is currently in the 4s at Hidenwood. In her spare time, Lauren enjoys reading, exercising, doing activities outside, & spending time with her family & friends. 

Jennifer New

Lead Teacher, Three year olds

Jennifer was very excited to join the HPP&K family in 2020. She was born and raised in Newport News. She has three teenage children and her youngest attended HPP&K. Jennifer is currently finishing her Early Childhood degree at TNCC. She loves teaching and seeing the smiles of the children every day. She especially loves teaching science. In her spare time Jennifer enjoys boating, fishing and spending time with family.

Kristin Shelton

Lead Teacher, Three-year-olds

Kristin is thrilled to be part of the HPP family! She was born and raised in Newport News. She and her husband, Ryan, have a daughter-Elizabeth, who is an East Carolina University Pirate and a HPP alum. 

Kristin holds a B.A. in Sociology from Christopher Newport University, a Pre-K through 3rd grade teaching license from Old Dominion University and has continued her education through William and Mary. Prior to coming to HPP, she taught Pre-K, Kindergarten, 1st Grade and 2nd Grade in Newport News Public Schools for 18 years.

In her free time, Kristin loves spending time with family and friends, going to beaches, traveling, walking her dog Luna and reading.

Martha Bott

Assistant Teacher, Three-year-olds

Martha holds a CDA credential. Two of her three sons attended preschool here at HPP. Martha loves teaching and her favorite thing is to witness a child’s eyes light up when they finally understand a concept for the first time. Martha’s favorite subjects include math and reading. When she is not in the classroom. Martha loves to spend time with her family.

Cynthia Nobles

Assistant Teacher, Three-year-olds

Cynthia  holds a B.S. in Education. She has 3 children, the youngest of whom attended HPP beginning in the 3 year old class. She loves reading, spending time with her family, and hiking.

Amanda Wood

Lead Teacher, Four year olds

Amanda grew up in the Newport News area. She holds a B.S. in Business Administration from ODU and both an M.S. and Ed. in Early Childhood Special Education from ODU. Her favorite subjects include science and literacy. Both Amanda and her son Parker attended HPP as children. HPP holds a special place in her heart. She loves working with preschool age children and watching them explore and grow. When she is not in school, Amanda loves to read, read, read!!

Megan Christopher

Lead Teacher, Four year olds

Megan grew up in Ohio and went to college in South Carolina. She holds a BA from Coastal Carolina University. Her husband joined the military and that decision brought them here in 2010. Megan first became involved in HPP when her daughters attended –Ciearra with the 4s and Caelin with the 2s. A year later Megan joined our fabulous team of teachers. Her favorite subjects include science, STEAM and art. When she is not creating a beautiful classroom environment, you can find Megan spending time with her family, reading, exploring the outdoors and watching her children play sports.

Barbara Daniels

Lead Teacher, Four year olds

Prior to coming to Hidenwood Presbyterian School Barbara taught 2nd grade at St. Andrew’s and was a Reading Interventionist for NNPS. The majority of her career, however, was spent in Kindergarten classrooms. She loves teaching reading and helping children explore new adventures through books. Barbara holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from CNU and a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from ODU. In her time off, she likes to spend time with family which includes, 3 children, 2 sons-in-law, 5 grandchildren, two dogs and a cat.

Jessica Gaboury

Assistant Teacher, Four-year-olds

Jessica was born in Newport News. She and her husband have two children. Jessica, her son Tyler and daughter, Reese have all attended HPP throughout the years. Jessica has been with HPP for five years working as a carpool helper, Extended Care worker and now Assistant teaching in the 4 year old class. She enjoys the beach and spending time with family and friends.

Carol Burke

Assistant Teacher, Four-year-olds

Carol grew up in New Jersey and moved to Newport News in 1991 with her husband. Carol’s husband (Bill) and son (Connor) both attended preschool at HPP. Carol has been the school for many years and loves all the families she has met over the years. She still keeps in touch with many of them and enjoys seeing how they grow over the years. In her off time Carol loves to read, watch movies, visit with friends and visit Charlottesville to see her son.

Tracy Clark

Assistant Teacher, Four-year-olds

Michelle Shea

Assistant Teacher, Four-year-olds

Born and raised in the state of Wyoming, Michelle and her husband relocated to Newport News in 2014.  Since their arrival in Virginia their family has expanded to include two school-aged daughters, both of which have attended Hidenwood Presbyterian School beginning in 2019. Michelle has worked in a variety of educational settings, beginning with teaching undergraduate courses at the University of Wyoming as part of her graduate work in Public Administration (MPA) and later in Higher Education Administration at Syracuse University. As her children entered school her attention shifted to primary education, where she began substituting in the NNPS system and at Hidenwood Presbyterian School. This experience led her to joyfully pursue her current position at HPS. When she is not at school, Michelle and her family love traveling and enjoying outdoor activities together. 

Marsha White

Lead Teacher, Kindergarten

Marsha is a native of Newport News, and she joined Hidenwood Presbyterian Preschool and Kindergarten in August 2019 to serve as the Kindergarten teacher. Marsha has both a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from James Madison University. She taught Kindergarten and 1st Grade in Newport News Public Schools for 25 years. She then served as an instructor at Old Dominion University in the Early Childhood Department for 4 years, after which she taught full day 4 year old Preschool at Walsingham Academy for 10 years. Marsha has a son named Zachary and she loves to read, write and garden.

Cassie Wright

Assistant Teacher, Kindergarten

Cassie grew up in NN graduating HS from Denbigh Baptist Christian School. Her love for Jesus led her to HPP where three of her four children attended. She had the privilege to serve as an HPP board member prior to her transition as a staff member. She began her career at KinderCare Learning Center until she became a parent herself. Cassie has a heart for children and serves her church as the preschool ministry leader. 

Martha Tereska

Lead Teacher, First Grade

Martha was a teacher with NNPS for 35 years. She was only retired for one year before she felt the calling to come back to teaching first grade. Martha was born and raised in Newport News. She graduated from Denbigh High School and Christopher Newport University. Her favorite subjects are reading and history. In her free time she loves to spend time with her four children, read, go to beaches, and visit museums. She is also an avid dog lover!

Megan Cole

Lead Teacher, Second Grade

Megan grew up in Pennsylvania and moved to Newport News after college. She has a B.S. in Elementary Education and a Masters of Education as a Reading Specialist, both from Liberty University. Megan spent the last 9 years working for Hampton City Schools, first as a classroom teacher and then as a Reading Specialist. Her favorite subject is reading, and she loves helping students grow as readers and learners. Megan and her husband, Scott, have 3 children – Nora, Emmy, and Owen – and a golden retriever named Milo.

Rebecca (Becky) Slaydon

Assistant Teacher

Becky was born and raised in Newport News. She has two adult children, Justin and Ashley. Becky has been a teacher’s assistant for 20 years. Her favorite subjects are History and Science. When she is not in the classroom, Becky enjoys spending time with family and friends.