Melissa Purdy: Health
Headshot of a woman in a red top and a half smile.

Melissa started working at the Bethel Elementary and Middle school in 2015. She teaches Preschool through 5th grade outdoor education (known as ECO). She also teaches 6th-8th grade Health at the middle school. Melissa has two children. She loves to be outside all year long. In the winter, she snowboards and in the warmer weather, she paddle boards and mountain bikes. She is also an author and artist. Melissa  grew up in Pennsylvania and now lives in the Mad River Valley. You can reach Melissa at

Josh Pauly: Band
headshot of a man with a blue pullover

A transplant from Waconia, Minnesota, Joshua Pauly attended the University of Minnesota-Morris, the Conservatório Dramático e Musical de Tatuí in Brazil, and the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, receiving degrees in music education.  He has served as the past president of the Vermont Association for Jazz Education, earned honors as the Vermont Outstanding New Music Educator of the Year, and is frequently called upon as a conductor, clinician, and trumpet performer.  He is happy to live and teach in the Upper Valley with his wife, Libby, and son Alastair. You can reach Josh at

Malia Timmerman: Art
headshot of a woman with grey/blonde hair.

Since 2015, Malia has taught on the Bethel campus, where she is the K-8 visual art teacher. She loves inspiring and being inspired by students of all ages and . She was born in Hawaii and lived in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and California before settling in central Vermont in 2005. Malia is also the parent of an awesome middle school kid who was born in Randolph and is usually willing to try out random art projects, go for long walks, and attempt cross-country skiing. You can reach Malia at

Bonna Wieler: Outdoor Education
Photo of a half-smiling woman hiking outdoors.

Bonna Wieler offers learners/explorers of all ages connection with the natural world, while aiming to help folks gain self-assuredness and skills. She teaches Outdoor Education at the Bethel Middle School, and develops programming for middle through high school. As an American Canoe Association kayak instructor, Bonna teaches paddling, outfits and guides trips,  and runs summer camp sessions. She also develops environmental/ outdoor education programming for grades pre-K through high school, is a river curriculum teacher and consultant, networker/ organizer/ coordinator of environmental activities, cross country ski instructor for special events, program specialist for after school programs, and teaches fiber arts and other nature-based art forms. You can reach Bonna at

Amber Leavitt: Choral Director, WRUD
Amber singing

Amber Leavitt is joining the Wildcat community as a first time teacher for the 2022-2023 school year. She is very excited to be the choir director for  4th and 5th grade at Bethel and SoRo, Middle School, and High School.

Amber has an extensive background in vocal performance, conducting, and choral singing. She has a Bachelor's degree in music therapy and Master's degree in Mental Health Counseling. Amber also has experience working with children and teens as a mental health counselor. She is excited to combine her love of working within schools and helping kids and teens, and her passion for choral music.

In her free time, Amber enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, hiking, baking, crocheting, playing piano and of course, singing.

She can be reached at

Mary Schell: Community Connections
mary schell

Mary Schell currently serves as the Community+School Coordinator for White River Valley Supervisory Union. She teaches Community Connections at WRVMS. Mary moved to Vermont in the early 1990's because of the vision of progressive education in Vermont. It was a time of excitement to remove barriers and create systems to empower students to become agents of change in their own learning. Vermont was leading the national dialogue and practice for this revolution in education. Mary sees the current commitment to Community Schools through Act 67 as an evolution of Vermonters seeking to create systems for equity, learner agency as well as establishing reciprocal relationships between our schools and communities. She believes our community schools not only characterize who we are but can mobilize what our schools and communities can be. Mary had the opportunity to serve as a secondary social studies teacher at Windsor High School, Twinfield Union School, and to collaborate with youth and adult leaders as a Rowland Foundation Fellow and the Director of UP for Learning and Youth and Adults Transforming Schools Together.  Mary is grateful for the time she can spend with her family, friends, dog, and horses. You can reach Mary at