Specialty Faculty

Ms. Spencer

Ms. Karle Spencer
Visual Arts & French Specialist

Ms. Spencer earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, majoring in visual arts, at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops BC.  She completed the Bachelor of Education program at the University of British Columbia in Art Education and was awarded the Leon Tuey Scholarship in Art Education for academic achievement.

She is excited to find ways to bring bilingualism into the classroom, as well as provide students with opportunities to create personally meaningful art that explores avenues of their own cultures. Ms. Spencer is particularly looking forward to the exciting things this year will bring working with the students, parents, and teachers at Urban Academy.



Ms. Petrovska

Ms. Jovana Petrovska
Music Specialist

A passionate music educator who loves working and sharing her love of music with her students, Ms. Petrovska remains dedicated to the joy of inspiring young musicians.

She holds a Bachelors Degree in Music Theory and Education from the Faculty of Music Arts at St. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Macedonia.  Since moving to Canada she has also earned a Diploma from the Jazz and Contemporary Instrument Program at Vancouver Community College with a Major in Jazz Piano.  

In addition to her twelve years of experience teaching all types of music from choir and recorder through ukulele and mandolin orchestras to private piano lessons and concert band, Ms. Petrovska has continually upgraded her skills through studies and numerous workshops.

Ms. Petrovska is honoured to become a part of the Urban Academy community.

Ms. MacLeod

Ms. Suzanne MacLeod
Director of Unique Learners

Ms. MacLeod has worked in the education field in various capacities.  She worked in the Delta School District for five years and the Vancouver School District for twelve. Most recently she was employed at Kenneth Gordon Maplewood School as a behaviour specialist, as well as a math and language arts support teacher.  While at Kenneth Gordon she was part of the Social Responsibility team and places a great deal of importance on the social and emotional development of youth.

Ms. MacLeod has a passion for working with students of all ages and abilities, and working in a resource capacity allows her the opportunity to interact with the entire school community. Supporting students with unique learning needs has been a focus for Ms. MacLeod over her many years in the education field. Assisting students in developing to their individual potential and advocacy skills has been her objective.  Her hope is that by guiding students in understanding their individual learning styles, building confidence and providing opportunities for students to meet individual goals, they will develop a love for learning and find value in their efforts and accomplishments.

Currently, Ms. MacLeod is continuing her studies at SFU, completing a minor in counselling with the goal of eventually completing a Masters in Counselling.   She feels honoured to be able to contribute to the Urban Academy community.

Mrs. Brooke

Mrs. Patricia Brooke
Drama Specialist

Mrs. Brooke has a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and History from Simon Fraser University and a Bachelor of Education from Brock University. Before becoming a teacher, she worked as an arts administrator for Bard on the Beach, the Vancouver Playhouse and the Ford Centre for the Performing Arts. She spent four years teaching at Aldergrove Community Secondary School, before starting her family. Since 2010, she has worked as a drama teacher for the city of Burnaby, where she continues to teach classes for ages three through adult. 

She believes that drama class should be a fun and educational experience with applications across the curriculum. When not teaching, Mrs. Brooke works with Shadows and Dreams Theatre Company, directing and acting in Shakespearean and modern productions.


Ms. McKnight

Ms. Casey McKnight
Junior French Specialist

Born and raised in Vancouver, Ms. McKnight completed her primary and secondary schooling in the French Immersion program. She then moved to Victoria, earning a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in French, and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Victoria. Upon her return to the mainland, she enjoyed a one year teaching internship with Crofton House Junior School as a Grade 6/7 teacher and French specialist.

Ms. McKnight, known to the students as Mademoiselle McKnight, joins Urban Academy as the Kindergarten to Grade 3 French teacher. She is passionate about bringing a sense of fun into her classes by developing creative and interactive lessons that awaken the curiosity and love of learning in her students. Ms. McKnight looks forward to sharing her enthusiasm for learning and love of the French language.

In her spare time Ms. McKnight enjoys league beach volleyball, snowboarding, practicing yoga and spending time with family and friends. She looks forward to an exciting career with Urban Academy.


Ms. Liddle

Ms. Cecilia Liddle
Special Education Assistant

Ms. Liddle is a compassionate individual, who takes each child’s unique goals, needs, and interests into account. She is a strong believer of inclusion; she believes that any child regardless of their strengths or weakness in any area can become a part of the school community.

Ms. Liddle has a certificate in Early Childhood Education, Infant Toddler and Special Needs from Vancouver Career College. She has worked with children, from infant to 12 years of age over the past fourteen years. Some of those experiences include parent participation preschool, kindergarten assistant, after school programs and respite care.

As an SEA, Ms. Liddle has the opportunity to make a significant difference in the world each and every day.  It gives her satisfaction to constantly learn, research and improve her own skills.  She is very excited and delighted to be a part of the Urban Academy.


Ms. Prokop'ev

Ms. Misty Prokop'ev
Special Education Assistant

Ms. Prokop'ev has been working at Urban Academy since 2007 and manages the Out of School Care Program.  She has completed training in the Orton Gillingham method of learning and uses these skills when supporting students in the classroom.  Ms. Prokop'ev works with all of our students, from JK all the way to Grade 12, and has an amazing ability to meet students where they are at and to take their needs into account with the loving support she provides.

Outside of school, Ms. Prokop'ev enjoys camping and the outdoors and spending time with her dog Charlie.



Ms. Thompson

Ms. Chelsea Thompson
Special Education Assistant

Originally from Edmonton, Ms. Thompson graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Alberta in 2006, where she majored in Drama and minored in Spanish. Throughout her university career Ms. Thompson worked with children in various capacities including out of school care programs, summer camps and community recreation programs. After moving to Vancouver she began to shift her focus to special education and disability support, completing the Behaviour Interventionist Foundations Course presented by the Behaviour Intervention Training Partnership (BITP) at Douglas Collage.  She has since had the opportunity to work with and assist amazing and unique individuals from age 3 to 33 as an out of school care programmer, behaviour interventionist, special education tutor and mentor, among many other roles.  Ms. Thompson continues to seek professional development opportunities in the field of special education as she is passionate about growing her skills to help provide the best support possible to the students she works with.



Ms. Bourget

Ms. Nicole Bourget
Out of School Care Staff

Ms. Bourget, known as Ms.B, was born in Victoria BC and raised in New Westminster/Burnaby.  After graduating from New Westminster Secondary School Ms. Bourget completed a diploma in Early Childhood Education from Sprott Shaw College. 

While in high school Ms. Bourget volunteered at the Burnaby Heritage Museum, where she set up art activities and games for children.  She has worked in both Montessori preschools and centers using the Reggio Emilia approach with various age groups.

She enjoys learning more everyday from her colleagues and the children at Urban Academy.




Ms. Haywood-Farmer

Ms. Jaclyn Haywood-Farmer
Out of School Care Staff

Ms. Haywood-Farmer is currently finishing her undergraduate degree at SFU, majoring in psychology and minoring in counselling and education while specializing in child development.  She has been working and volunteering in after school childcare settings for over four years, and in the summer she was employed at a summer camp for the city of Vancouver.

Ms. Haywood-Farmer enjoys the creativity and adventures that come from working with children, and most of her experience is with children age 6 to 12.  Originally from the Okanagan, Ms. Haywood-Farmer moved to Vancouver for school and has lived in the lower mainland since 2010. 

Outside of work Ms.Haywood-Farmer enjoys playing on her recreational soccer team, volunteering at a local women’s shelter and being outdoors.



Ms. Sterndale-Bennett

Ms. Kaitlin Sterndale-Bennett
Out of School Care Staff

Miss. Sterndale-Bennett joined Urban Academy in 2015 as a member of our Out of School Care team.  She came to us with extensive experience planning and delivering memorable activities for children at Kinder Kampus, Cedar Drive Preschool Society, SFU Childcare Centre, North Vancouver Recreation Commission, Coquitlam Recreation and Girl Guides of Canada.  Whether playing games, leading science experiments, helping with homework or taking students on adventures in the community, Miss.S-B (as the students call her) is always energetic, kind and playful.

Ms. Sterndale-Bennett is passionate about building strong relationships with the students in her care, and their parents. In her spare time, Ms. Sterndale-Bennett enjoys playing dodgeball.  Ms. Sterndale-Bennett is currently an undergraduate student at the University of British Columbia working towards becoming a pediatric occupational therapist.


Mrs. Carvallo-Salas

Mrs. Joahna Carvallo-Salas
Out of School Care Staff

Mrs. Joahna Carvallo-Salas was born in Lima, Peru.  Before coming to Canada, she worked as Educational Assistant for an elementary school and an Out of School Program at a Research Institute in Cambridge, United Kingdom.  Since moving to Canada, she has worked in ECE settings for Burnaby Family Life, MOSAIC and PIRS for the last 5 years

Mrs. Carvallo-Salas is a dedicated ECE Assistant whow has vast experience working with children.  Skilled in cultivating positive relationships with students and colleagues, communicating with clarity and diplomacy to individuals from diverse cultural and backgrounds.

Mrs. Carvallo-Salas recently graduated as a Behavior Interventionist (BI) from Douglas College.  As a part of her training, Mrs. Carvallo-Salas had the opportunity to work one-to-one with children with special needs.  Mrs. Carvallo-Salas strongly believes that every child has a unique personality and they are full of talents and abilities that need to be stimulated and directed.  She is very delighted to be a part of Urban Academy School.

Ms. Beaumont

Ms. Jill Beaumont
Out of School Care Staff

Ms. Beaumont, known by the students as Ms.Jill, is a recent graduate of Kwantlen Polytechnic University earning an undergraduate degree in Applied Psychology.  Currently attending Douglas College, Ms. Beaumont is studying a degree in Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis, with the goal to one day become a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst.

Ms. Beaumont has a background in social services working with children and families.  She enjoys sharing in the natural curiosity and enthusiasm children have for the world around them.  Ms. Beaumont is thrilled to be part of the Out-Of-School-Care team at Urban Academy.

Outside of school and work Ms. Beaumont loves spending time with her two big, orange cats Milo and Shilo.


Ms. Hagerty

Ms. Ali Hagerty
Out of School Care Staff

A native of New Westminster, Ms. Hagerty is a member of Urban Academy’s Out of School Care team. After volunteering at Queen’s Park Daycare and an art group for children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Ms. Hagerty knew she wanted to be an educator. Having completed her Early Childhood Education – Special Needs diploma at Douglas College Ms. Ali, as the students know her, is currently completing her undergrad studies in Education at Simon Fraser University.

Ms. Hagerty believes it is important for children to learn about and experience the outdoors as well as being able to express themselves in unique ways. When not sharing her passion for art and creativity with the children in her care, Ms Hagerty can be found exploring the great outdoors of BC by hiking, camping, snowboarding and walking her dog in the many trails and mountains at her disposal.