Special Education


 The vision of the Learning and Academic Disabilities Department is to develop and empower students to become good self-advocates and independent learners through utilizing technology, building personal toolboxes of strategies, and accessing all available resources. We will achieve this through fostering positive relationships and open communication with staff and parents.


  SPED 2017

Elizabeth Joachim – Resource Teacher/Chair of Department - email 

I am immensely fortunate to be a part of the Briggs Chaney Special Education Team.  I have taught at a number of grade levels including both elementary and high school students. I have a Master's degree in Special Education from George Washington University and a Bachelor's degree from UMUC. In addition, I successfully completed an Administration and Supervision program through Hood College.  I am also a proud graduate and a parent whose children attend Montgomery County Public Schools within the Northeast consortium. This year, I look forward to fostering collaborative partnerships with students, parents, and guardians, to prepare our students to become contributing members of our global community.

Evelyne Awundaga, Science -  email 

My name is Evelyne Awundaga and I am so excited to be your son or daughter's teacher this academic year. I am a former parent of BCMS and I'm glad to be back here. I've been teaching as a special educator for 10 years. This year, I am co-teaching  Investigation to Science 8  and Math 7. I look  forward to working with your student and you in order to make this school year the best ever in your student's quest for academic excellence. 

Martha Ball, Paraeducator - email 

Hello and welcome back to school! It is going to be an awesome year and we are going to learn a lot together. I really enjoy working with our young people and feel their positive energy and enthusiasm every day. I am a Special Ed. Para-educator with fourteen years working in MCPS and this is my eleventh year in Briggs Chaney Middle School. I’m bilingual English/Spanish and I am extremely glad to serve as a person-to-person connection between the Hispanic community and our school staff. I have a certificate in Administrative Support in Technology and I’m a member of the Supporting Services Training Corps at MCPS.  I am currently working toward getting teacher certification in Secondary Education in Spanish.  I love dancing and working with students on choreography for Latin, Middle Eastern and Asian dance. I like exercising, playing the piano, painting, gardening and traveling. 

Kimberly Bet, Resource - email  

I grew up in Northern NJ with four brothers and extended family members as my neighbors. I completed my undergraduate Bachelors of Science degree in Elementary & Kindergarten Education from the Pennsylvania State University and my Master’s degree in Special Education with Towson University. I started my career teaching first grade in Baltimore City for four years before transferring to MCPS. I have spent all of my 22 years in MCPS teaching at Briggs Chaney MS. I have had the opportunity to co-teach with many different talented teachers in all three grades and in all the major academic courses. I sponsor three different after school activities, girls’ Softball team, Chess & Board games Club, Tennis Club) because I believe it’s important to give our young people an chance to have a variety of experiences and activities outside of academics, that may help them grow as well rounded individuals.

Sarah Chapman, Paraeducator - email 

My name is Sarah Chapman and I have been working as a Special Education Paraeducator for the last three years here at Briggs Chaney Middle School. I graduated from MCPS and went on to further my education at Towson University. I graduated from Towson with a BS in Psychology. I will be returning to school to work towards getting a MA. I also coach the cheerleading team here at Briggs Chaney and love doing so. I have greatly enjoyed my time here at Briggs Chaney and look forward to continuing to build great relationships with the students.  

Deirdre Coyoy, English -  email 

Na’Shea English, Reading -  email  

Entering my 3rd year as a Briggs Chaney Bear and my fourth year teaching overall,l I couldn't be more excited. Originally I am from North Carolina. I hold a Master’s Degree in Special Education. This school year, I am the Intensive Reading Needs classroom teacher; which is a self-contained reading intervention class. I also teach a Special Activity class for Mindfulness. Finally, I am the coach of the Briggs Chaney Middle School Spirit Squad, a co-ed dance team! As always, I look forward to helping my students grow either through increasing their independent reading skills, becoming more mindful individuals or showing school spirit through dance!   

Cierra Harris, Paraeducator  email 

My name is Cierra Harris, I am a proud graduate of MCPS, and currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in biology at the University of the District of Columbia. I have tutored children grades 3 through 5 for two years. I specialize in math and science, and taken courses in child development, and early childhood education. I am so excited to be a Para-educator this year, I look forward to helping the students learn and grow.

Greg Jaeger, Paraeducator - email 

Mr. Jaeger is coming into his third year as a Special Education Para-Educator. After graduating from Frostburg State University with a BS in Music with a minor in Business Administration, Mr. Jaeger entered many clubs and music groups as a drummer/percussionist and manager. After being here at Briggs Chaney Middle School for a year and having recently found a passion for fitness and spreading this love of fitness, Mr. Jaeger has since become a certified personal trainer (CPT) through the National Council for Certified Personal Trainers in 2016. He is currently working on his specialty in strength training and becoming certified in the methods taught by Coach Louie Simmons at Westside Barbell. 

Wanda Johnson, Math - email   

My name is Wanda E. Johnson.  I have been working for the Montgomery County Public School system for 16 years.  I have been a teacher at Briggs Chaney Middle School for seven years.  This school year, I will be co-teaching Math 8 (2.0) for our special education students. I am looking forward to another fantastic year of working with your child.

Lindsay Jones, English  -  email 

My name is Lindsay Jones.  I have worked in Montgomery County for six years and this is my fift year at Briggs Chaney Middle School.  I have my bachelor's degree from Utah State University and a Master's Degree from The George Washington University both in Special Education.  I co-teach one seventh grade English class four sixth grade English classes.  I look forward to working with all of my students to make this a successful year for everyone! 

Daniel Legacki, World Studies and Math -  email 

Born and raised in Anchorage Alaska, Daniel sought out warmer climates and attended the University of Arizona and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science and History in 2007.  Daniel taught in Los Angeles from 2007-2010. Afterwards he attended Brandeis University and attained an M.A. in Conflict Resolution in 2012.

In the spring of 2012 Daniel moved to the DMV and spent some time working for the National Education Association.  He decided in the spring of 2013 that he missed the classroom and decided to attain a teaching license for the state of Maryland. He is eligible to teach Special Education, History, and Social Studies. 

Susan Martin, Paraeducator -  email 

I have been with Montgomery County for 21 years and at Briggs Chaney MS for 18 years. I love providing instructional support for student success. I lives in Montgomery county and my two children are proud graduates of MCPS. Previously I served as the Executive Director of a women's political group. I have a business degree and I attended University of Maryland. In my spare time, I'm involved in several service organization and love my work serving homeless veterans and Wounded Warriors.

Lanez McCann, Paraeducator

Hello, my name is Lenez McCann (pronounced Lenay) and I'm thrilled to be joining Briggs Chaney Middle School as a paraeducator. I have two children who are products of Montgomery County School System and believe that the quality of instruction in our school system is of the utmost importance. I hold a bachelor's degree in Special Education and am dedicated to seeing our students reach their fullest potentials. It is my pleasure to be part of the Briggs Chaney community working with your youth and I look forward to a partnership to ensure their academic success.

Linda Morris, Paraeducator -  email 

My name is Linda and this is my second year at BCMS.  I studied environmental science, earning a Bachelor of Science in Biology.  I enjoy supporting so many great students at BCMS.  My own four children attend MCPS schools and participate in theater and marching band.  I take my trained reading therapy dog to visit with children at a local library once a month.  I also enjoy bird watching, cooking, cycling and reading.

Loraine Palmer, Paraeducator -  email 

This is my 16th year in MCPS and I have been at BCMS for 14 years in Special Education. Not only have I provided instruction to our students, I can truly say that I have also learned a lot from our students. I hope to continue to positively impact and enrich their learning for life, or until I retire back home.

Erica Roberson, Speech Pathologist  

Hey everyone! I am a speech-language pathologist and a Northern California native. I earned by Bachelor's degree at Alabama A&M University, Master's degree from Howard University, and I'm currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Communication Sciences & Disorders at HU as well. I am passionate about working collaboratively to create an optimal learning environment for our students, while providing them with the skills and tools they need to be successful. Particularly for students with communication challenges, I aim to empower and equip them with functional strategies that they will be able to use across multiple environments for the rest of their lives. I look forward to working with you and your children and will do their best that I can to provide them with the highest quality of support and service. 

Carthell Russell, Alternative Teacher -  email  

Jeanne Taylor, Paraeducator -  email 

I am so excited to be at Briggs Chaney Middle School! This is my tenth year working in special education. I also have three children with special needs. I am passionate about helping kids of all ages learn and be the best they can be. I have a BS degree in Health Care Administration and I enjoy helping in all subject areas. My husband and I are very active in our church. I’ve lived within a few miles of school for the past twenty plus years and I love being part of the local community. 

Sonya Walters, Paraeducator -  email 

My name is Sonya Y. Walters and I have a master’s degree in school counseling. This year, I am a para-educator in the Special Education Department. I have been working in education since 1998 and own a local mentoring and tutoring service.  I love children, animals, motorcycles, and cars. Plus, I am a great on roller skates. I look forward to working here at Briggs Chaney Middle School. 


Parent and Student Resources

 Special Education Parent Guide


 Free Online Text Reader


 Cool Math


 Cool Math 4 Kids

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