Dr. Bradley King

Dean of Middle and Upper Schools, Middle and Upper School Language Arts, Literature and AP Literature

B.A., English & History, Oklahoma Baptist University

M.A., English Literature, University of South Carolina

Ph.D., English Literature, The University of Texas at Austin

Dr. King came to Kirby Hall School after completing his Ph.D. in English at the University of Texas and teaching American literature and writing classes there for almost a decade. The reading, writing, and discussions in his classes are always aimed at helping students grow in confidence, awareness, and understanding. Born in Altus, OK and raised there on a small farm, Dr. King went to college at Oklahoma Baptist University, where he initially studied to become a minister, but switched to English and Philosophy after his Freshman year. He quickly developed an interest in how reading can lead us to cultivate richer, more reflective relationships with ourselves and the people and spaces around us. In graduate school, he studied the radical, visionary literature of Transcendentalism, Romanticism, and Abolitionism, specializing in writers such as  Emily Dickinson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, and Frederick Douglass. Dr. King continues to read deeply in recent and contemporary poetry, and he consistently writes and publishes his own work, organizes poetry, music, and visual-art events, and serves on the board of trustees for Cuneiform Press. He is very happy to be teaching at a school that makes holistic growth and scholarly rigor a priority as Kirby Hall does. In his new role as Dean of the Middle and Upper School, he serves as a sort of academic mentor as students transition between grades at Kirby Hall and  prepare for success in college. For Upper School students, Dr. King will guide them through essay-writing and entrance exams, as well as serve as their main advisor during the college selection process.

Paige Arnell

Lower and Middle School, Language Arts and Literature

B.A., English, University of Dallas

M.A., English, Middlebury College

We are grateful to have welcomed Paige back to Kirby Hall School for her second tenure teaching. She taught Upper School English here several years ago prior to staying at home with her four young children — Althea, Ella, Wren, and Whitman — who are now all students at Kirby Hall as well. Paige received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in English and has been teaching for nearly ten years. What she enjoys most about Kirby Hall is the loving and supportive atmosphere and that students are academically challenged within a community that honors and recognizes them as individuals. When not in the classroom, Paige can be found exploring the outdoors with her children or sneaking in a few quiet moments to herself reading and writing.

Joe Rumrich

Lower and Middle School, History

B.S., Restaurant Management, Purdue University

Teaching Certification – Elementary through Eighth Grade History

Joe has been sharing his passion for many topics and eras throughout our country’s great history with Kirby Hall students since 1994. He graduated from Purdue University with a degree in restaurant management and earned his teaching certificate from The University of Texas at Austin. When not at school, Joe enjoys watching his two nephews play sports, reading, cooking, exercising, and rooting for the NY Yankees. During each summer, Joe can be found kayaking, biking, and hiking near his family’s home, 300 yards from the scenic Niagara River.

Chinmaya Sheth

Lower, Middle and Upper School, Mathematics and AP Mathematics

B.S., Physics,  University of Texas at Dallas

M.S., Applied Mathematics, University of Texas at Dallas

Kirby Hall welcomes Chinmaya to the faculty as an instructor for various levels of mathematics. Chinmaya is originally from Dallas where he earned both his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at the University of Texas at Dallas in Physics and Applied Mathematics respectively. He was most recently teaching math at the collegiate level for the Dallas Community College District.  Outside of the classroom, Chinmaya enjoys listening to music.

Teresa Zinda

Upper School, Honors and AP History

B.S., History, The University of Texas at Tyler

Education Master’s courses for Texas State Teaching Certificate, Stephen F. Austin University

Born and raised in Texas, Teresa has a deep desire to help mold tomorrow’s next leaders in government, business and society.  She believes each child has great potential that should be nurtured. After starting a family and business with her husband John, she embraced education, teaching regular, Honors, and AP Social Studies courses for nearly ten years at Longview High School in east Texas and five years at Ellison High School in Killeen.  Teresa found opportunities with a plethora of different students and discovered a knack for lesson specification as well as classroom management. Spurred by an adventurous spirit, Teresa later taught Social Studies and English in Costa Rica and Beijing at International schools. Then after four years abroad, she returned to the U.S. to be near family in the  Austin area, teaching at Bastrop High School for three years. The mother of three, Teresa knows the importance of a stellar education in the lives of today’s children. Teresa comes to Kirby Hall School with great enthusiasm, determination, and experience. She has attended several AP seminars, consistently embraced new teaching tools and ideas, and served on a state-wide committee on testing. She believes that each new day is an opportunity to discover and learn for her students as well as herself.

 

Joseph Parsons

Lower, Middle and Upper School, Physical Education and Athletics

B.A., Criminal Justice, Texas State University

Teaching Certification – Physical Education

Born and raised in suburban Austin, Joseph excelled in high school sports where he played football, basketball, track and weightlifting. He was even named the number one running back in the state of Texas while at Leander High School. He continued his football career playing at West Texas A&M and Abilene Christian Universities before graduating from Texas State. Joseph has been teaching and coaching at area schools for more than ten years and helped lead Cedar Park High School to win a state championship in football in 2012. Joseph has an identical twin brother, loves to hang out and play sports with family and friends, and enjoys spending time with his wife Jenna and their menagerie of pets–including a potbelly pig.

Martha Peters

Third Grade through Upper School, Spanish and AP Spanish

B.A., Spanish, University of Missouri, Kansas City 

M.A., Romance Language & Spanish Literature, University of Missouri, Kansas City

 

Martha is a native Spanish speaker, originally from Mexico, with over twenty years of language instruction. She comes to Kirby Hall School from Headwaters School (formerly The Khabele School) where she was an Instructor and Director of the Foreign Languages Department.  In addition to teaching introductory levels through Spanish V, she taught Spanish B, Standard Level and Higher Level, of the International Baccalaureate program. Señora Peters’ experience in language instruction encompasses a diversity of ages and settings, which also includes teaching adults in continuing education programs offered by community colleges, as well as private instruction to business executives. Moreover, her experience is not limited to classroom instruction but includes several examples of curriculum development for Spanish programs newly- begun or requiring complete overhauls. Señora Peters and her husband have a daughter, son, and two grand cats.  She is excited to join the Kirby Hall community, and share the rich cultures of Latin America and Spain through cooking, art, music, literature, and dance!

Michelle Escuder

Lower, Middle and Upper School, Drama and Music

B.A., Theater, Florida State University

Michelle joined Kirby Hall School in 2007 and is thrilled to be teaching music and drama to all of our students for her 13th year! At Florida State University, she was active in the university’s theater, music, and opera programs. Michelle has been a performer in both theater and opera for the majority of her life and is currently very active in the Austin musical theater scene. Most recently she performed with City Theater and maintains an active audition and performance schedule. While at Florida State, in addition to performing on stage, Michelle held the Theatre Seat in the fifty-fourth Student Senate and performed technical duties in numerous theatrical productions. Her students benefit from Michelle’s extensive and varied performance and technical theater experience as well as her ongoing training at the Actor’s School and through Austin Shakespeare. When not teaching or performing Michelle enjoys spending time with her rescue dog, Red, and volunteering as a foster for multiple animal rescue organizations.

Paul Schumann

Middle and Upper School, Science and AP Sciences

B.S., Geology, The University of Texas at Austin

M.S., Geology, The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

Teaching Certification-Science

Paul was born and raised in the Mid-Hudson Valley of New York. He studied Geology at both the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, later earning his teaching certificate from LeTourneau University. Paul worked for 15 years in the Environmental Consulting field for several firms across the country before discovering that he loved to teach. Prior to joining Kirby Hall School, Paul was a science teacher at Connally High School in Pflugerville ISD for 12 years. During his time there, he taught a variety of courses including Chemistry, PreAP Chemistry, IPC and Astronomy. Paul and his wife of 30 years have three children. He enjoys all kinds of music and regularly attends the Austin Symphony Orchestra. Paul also writes online reviews for a popular website on high-end audio equipment.

Vincent Paul Martinez, Jr.

Lower, Middle and Upper School, Art

B.F.A., Studio Arts – Painting, Texas State University

Vincent is a local artist, art teacher, and central Texas native. After graduating from Texas State with a degree in studio art, he moved to Austin to collaborate with the vibrant creative community here. While working as an Americorps mentor and tutor with Communities in Schools in east Austin, Vincent developed a new passion for sharing the creative process with youths and fellow community leaders. He would continue this new found passion by building art curriculum for the Austin Parks and Recreational ‘Totally Cool Totally Art’ teen outreach program, the Mexican American Cultural Center, the Asian American Resource Center, and as an art teacher at Hernandez Middle School in Round Rock. Outside of teaching, he can be found painting, reading, writing, and practicing yoga. Vincent enjoys teaching at Kirby Hall School and sharing the magic, rich history, varied mediums, and foundations of art with his students.

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