The next installment of our “New Faces of GJSD” campaign features staff members the at Johnstown Jr./Sr. High School who have recently joined the district. Even more exciting is the fact that two of our new teachers are GJSD alumni!
Megan O’Connor is an eighth grade English teacher at Johnstown Jr. High School. She graduated from Niskayuna CSD and received her undergraduate degree from SUNY New Paltz and her master’s degree from the University at Albany. Ms. O’Connor is interested in starting an Anime Club at Johnstown. Outside of school, she likes to cook/bake, read, swim, sing, spend time with friends and family, travel and walk/jog.
John Paris teaches history at Johnstown Jr. High School. He graduated from the Greater Amsterdam School District. He received his undergraduate degree from Binghamton University, where he was also a member of the school’s division I wrestling team! His master’s degree was obtained at Hofstra University. Paris was recently named as the new head coach of the wrestling team at Johnstown. In his downtime, Paris said he likes to golf and cook. He and his significant other Leah have a dog named Finn.
Jillian Scofield joined GJSD as a special education teacher this year. She graduated from nearby Schoharie CSD and received her BS in physical education from SUNY Cortland and her MS in special education at Niagara University. Scofield loves the outdoors and loves to fish, hunt, hike and kayak. She said she loves to watch, participate in and coach sports and she admits to binge watching “The Office.” At Johnstown, Scofield coaches the modified girls soccer team. At home, she has three mini Australian shepherds named Buddy, Bera and Koda, and a cat named Pebbles.
Thomas Horning is a new special education teacher at Johnstown Jr. High School, where he works with students in seventh grade. Horning is a graduate of Johnstown High School, received his bachelor’s degree at Hartwick College and his master’s degree at Grand Canyon University (GCU) in Phoenix, AZ.
Bianca Liverio is an ELA teacher at Johnstown Sr. HS where she teaches eleventh grade English. She is a graduate of the Greater Amsterdam School District and earned an associate’s degree locally at FMCC and her bachelor’s degree from the University at Albany. She is currently working towards her master’s degree from the University at Albany and will finish her studies this month. At Johnstown, she serves as the coach for the cheer team. She enjoys cooking/baking, reading, writing, travel, hiking and DIY projects around the house. She just celebrated her one-year anniversary with her husband Connor.
Jack Fitzgerald is a science teacher at Johnstown Sr. High School where he teaches several different classes, including physics. He is a graduate of Johnstown, received his bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Delaware Valley University and will soon be completing his master’s degree in science and secondary education from the University at Albany. He works at Hydro Pros in Johnstown during the summers, but also enjoys fishing and walking his dog with any down time that he has. Fitzgerald says he “dabbles in some gaming” and has found some fun ways to incorporate gaming concepts into his physics elective class. Fitzgerald’s entire family graduated from Johnstown, including his parents Susanne and Michael and his sister Grace.
Sarah Kraemer is a teaching assistant at Johnstown Jr./Sr. High School. Prior to joining the district, she spent nearly 15 years working with local youth and empowering them to become youth leaders in their community. She also sat on the Montgomery County Youth Board for over a decade. Kraemer grew up in Amsterdam and graduated from Bishop Maginn High School, where she had her dad as a math teacher. She earned a BA in psychology from the College of St. Rose. At GJSD, she is an active member of the PTA and enjoys attending athletic events to cheer on the Sir/Lady Bills. Kraemer is married to Warren Street principal, Bob Kraemer. They have two children, Maddy (age 12) and Mick (age 11). “Between my two kids, you will often find me at the field – whether it be field hockey, football, baseball, softball or basketball,” she said. The Kraemers are proud Yankees and Giants fans. They have a yellow lab named Torre (after Joe Torre from the NY Yankees!)
Paul Furman is a special education teacher at the Sr. High School. He is very involved with Johnstown athletics, serving as the head varsity football coach and as the JV boys lacrosse coach. Additionally, Furman helped to start a youth wrestling program at Johnstown. He studied criminal justice locally at HVCC before earning his bachelor’s degree in the major at American International College. He received his master’s degree in special education from Grand Canyon University. Furman said he loves the summertime when he is able to spend time on a boat with family and friends. He is engaged and has three children – Layla, Asher and Maximus.
Amber Rumrill is a familiar face to students and visitors to the Johnstown Jr./Sr. High School, serving as the secretary for the Junior High School. She is an active member of the district’s Parent-Teacher Association and is a member of the 1185 Johnstown Moose club. She graduated from nearby Fonda-Fultonville. Outside of school, Rumrill enjoys spending time with her family, which consists of her fiance Ivan and her son Noah. She also loves camping and baking.