Our Faculty Team

Academic Leadership

April Kelley
April Kelley

Dean of Academic Administration

April is an experienced education administrator with 20+ years of experience in the field. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Supervision and Management, with a specialization in Project Management. April is passionate about helping students achieve their academic goals and succeed in life. As an education administrator, she has a range of responsibilities, including evaluating transcripts, assisting students with course selection, accreditation, and providing guidance on academic matters.

Maria Cristina Burgos
Maria Cristina Burgos


María Cristina earned a master’s in education with a concentration in Biology from the University of West Alabama. Maria Cristina is a Puerto Rican native and has taught for 18 years. Throughout her career, she has taught ESL, Life Science, Earth Science, Physics, and Comprehensive Science. Mrs. Burgos is passionate about education and the opportunities that it can provide to her students.

Elaina Johnson
Elaina Johnson


Elaina is a local from New Smyrna Beach, Florida. She has a master’s degree in sustainability from Arizona State University. Elaina taught for seven years in the fields of art, business, hospitality, tourism, ESOL and fashion technology. She currently works as the school registrar.

Brandie Scheu
Brandie Scheu

Administrative Assistant

Brandie, a seasoned professional in the school and behavior therapy sectors, brings over 10 years of educational experience and 6+ years in Behavior Therapy and Special Education to the table. Rooted in Florida, her passion extends beyond the classroom to the sports field, where she enjoys watching her son play baseball for DME. Brandie's commitment to fostering a nurturing and positive educational environment shines through her work. She specializes in developing tailored educational pathways for students with special needs, ensuring they have the support required to achieve their academic and personal aspirations.

dave Swebilius

College Counselor

Dave is a University of Central Florida alumnus with over 15 years of experience teaching Science, English and Social Studies, from middle school to AP- and IB- level classes. This summer, Dave transitioned into his new role as Xceed DME's College Advisor. Dave's strong bonds with our students, , thoughtful advising, and tenacity and work ethic will help all Xceed DME students find their perfect fit for the next step in their academic and athletic careers.

Academic Staff

Gary Gunkle
Gary Gunkle

High School History and Economics

Gary serves as one of the History/Economics teachers and as HS Lead Teacher at DME. With 40+ years of experience in the teaching profession, Gary began working with young people in the mental health profession and shifted his focus to education where he served as a teacher, Dean of Students, and both Middle and High School Principals. As a teacher, Gary has taught Social Studies, Middle and High School History, and Economics for students from 5th grade through high school.

Vanessa Graulich (2)
Vanessa Graulich

High School Math

Vanessa Graulich is a math content developer from Caracas, Venezuela. She has published over 5 math books and 1000 online tutorials in statistics, economics, and calculus AB/BC. She graduated from Florida International University in Business Finance. She has taught English and Math in China. In her spare time, she loves to practice and compete in Taekwondo.

Elizsabet calderon

High School Spanish

Elisabet earned her B.A. in Education from the University of Puerto Rico. A Puerto Rican native, Elisabet has worked in the Daytona Beach area as a teacher for 15+ years. She loves teaching and helping her students achieve their dreams and goals.

kellie sprague
Kellie Sprague

High School English

Kellie is from West Palm Beach, Florida and has been teaching for over ten years in both private and public school. She graduated from Florida State University with a degree in Communication and Advertising, and a minor in Creative Writing. Kellie is passionate about creating a safe and inclusive learning environment for her students and helping them reach their full potential. Kellie has a daughter, Willow, and two sons, Wyatt and Sawyer, and a rescue pup named Sophie.

Alisha Miller
Alicia Miller

High School Math

Alicia Miller earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics Education from the University of South Florida. She has experience teaching in public schools with courses such as Probability & Statistics, AP Statistics, and AP Precalculus. She is devoted to helping students learn to love math. Alisha will always be one of the biggest supporters for our students in the classroom and on the field/court.

Diana Pena-Perez
Diana Peña-Pérez

High School English as a Second Language

Diana boasts 20+ years in U.S. education and a background in Journalism. She holds a master’s in TESOL/Bilingual/Multicultural Education from Southern Connecticut State University, where she was a Program Manager for the Training for All Teachers Program. Raised in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, she taught Spanish in Connecticut and New York public schools. In 2023, Diana fulfilled her dream of contributing to a diverse community, by joining DME Academy.

Allison Duff.jpg (English Teacher)

High School English

Allison earned her B.A. in English & Secondary Education and M.Ed. in Exceptional Student Education from Stetson University. She has also earned her Reading and ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) endorsements. Allison is a nineteen-year veteran educator who strives to create an inviting atmosphere of mutual respect to foster student learning.

Dillon Simmons
Dillon Simmons

High School History

Born in Jacksonville, Florida, Dillon is a graduate of the University of Central Florida with a Bachelors in History. He has always loved history from a young age, studying everything he can to learn more about people and their cultures, from all over the world. Dillon teaches and focuses on United States history, but has also studied European, African, and Asian history, and has studied and taught U.S. Government and Economics.

Dale Papineau
Dale Papineau

High School Science

Dale, a seasoned science educator at DME Academy, brings 32 years of teaching expertise. Passionate about math and science, he excels in creating hands-on labs for students to apply theoretical concepts. Dale's academic journey includes a BS in Chemistry with minors in physics and mathematics, and an MA in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation from Adams State University. Certified in Chemistry, Physics, and Mathematics, he has also taught AP courses in Chemistry, Calculus, and Physics.

Aaron chipman
Aaron Chipman

Middle School Math and Algebra I

Aaron is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University. He has been teaching for twenty-six years at the middle and high school levels. His favorite part of teaching math is seeing his students’ confidence increase as they grasp difficult concepts.


Middle School English

Hugo earned both his undergraduate and master’s degrees (in Foreign Languages and Comparative Literature) by the Federal University of Pernambuco, Brazil. Teaching for 25+ years, in 2017 he got his PhD degree in Education by Auburn University. Over the past 11 years he has been developing his activities in schools and universities, as a teacher and advisor. He's also the author of the awarded Brazilian short story book “Um Céu Imenso”.

David Brownyard
David Brownyard

Middle School History

David, the middle school history teacher at DME Academy, is thrilled to be part of the DME family. Born and raised in Central Florida, he has a deep passion for history. Having earned his Bachelor's degree in American History from Stetson University, David values teaching as a means of investing in the youth and passing down knowledge to the younger generations.

Will Kuehne

Middle School Science

Will Kuehne Jr is a first time teacher with a background in tutoring and coaching. He graduated from the University of North Texas with a degree in Mechanical and Energy Engineering with a minor in mathematics. Will is currently the middle school science teacher and also works with multiple basketball teams at DME. He plans to continue to grow into both roles and offer a hands on approach to learning and coaching.

allison levi

Exceptional Student Education

Allison Levi graduated from Stetson University with a degree in Elementary Education and a Masters in Reading Education. She has taught in both public and private schools for 17 years.  She loves supporting students and watching them grow to reach their fullest potential. In her spare time, she loves to watch her three boys play baseball for DME!

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