Ann Scott Hanks serves as the Principal for CAA. Coming from a long lineage of teachers, Ann Scott’s own journey in education was birthed out of a desire to serve the community. She has a deep passion for helping students learn joyfully, and her heart is to cultivate environments where students can discover their unique, God-given gifts. For Ann Scott, the goal of school will never be for students to learn mere facts, but for them to learn to create and be minds-on problem-solvers. Her desire is to help students grow to their God-given potential and to feel seen and celebrated along the way.
Ann Scott believes that the mind and the heart are intertwined, and she has seen that positive attitudes toward learning will lead to higher achievement. Scripture tells us we are all created in the image of God and that we do our work for the glory of God. This Truth informs Ann Scott’s approach to both teaching students and coaching teachers. She helps those within her sphere of influence to discover their talents and improve themselves through goal-setting, questioning and encouragement.
Ann Scott carries with her a breadth of academic and vocational achievements. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Virginia, a Master’s in Education from Stanford University, a Master’s in Teaching from Mary Baldwin College, and an Educational Specialist degree in Teacher Leadership from the University of North Georgia. In addition to being certified in Georgia for grades K-5 and Middle Grades Social Studies, she also holds endorsements in ESOL, Gifted instruction, Teacher Support, and Instructional Supervision.
Originally from upstate New York, Ann Scott moved to Atlanta in 1998 and served in Fulton County public schools for 20 years. She has a breadth of experience within education, with positions including 2nd grade teacher, Talented and Gifted Program lead teacher K-5, Math teacher 4-5, Testing and Eligibility Specialist for Advanced Studies, Problem-Based Learning Coach, and STEAM Lab instructor. Ann Scott received the high honor of being Teacher of the Year for her school in 2009. She has spearheaded a Lunch Book Club, Science Olympiad team, Family Science Night, and Discovery Kits for science and social studies units. She has presented at state conferences, led professional learning courses for teachers across Atlanta, and has facilitated many parent workshops with particular emphasis on increasing critical and creative thinking for all learners. Ann Scott cherishes her role as the Academic Advisor for Canopy Life Academy, a boarding school in Kenya growing Godly entrepreneurs.
Leah came to the City Academy family first as a parent, and now serving as our administrative coordinator. The Lord led their family to CAA as their oldest daughter was entering first grade, and they have enjoyed being part of such a unique, Gospel centered community. Leah has a deep passion for systems, processes, organization and administration. Her sweet spot is serving those with a larger vision, and executing the details behind the scenes. Leah brings experience in process development and system management from multiple start-ups in the Atlanta area.
Leah and her husband Chris live in East Lake with their 3 children, where Chris serves as the lead pastor at their church. They have a heart for discipleship, specifically through hospitality and living their life with an open door.
Leigh has a unique perspective as a parent, teacher and administrator at City Academy of Atlanta. The Lord brought her family to City when her oldest was entering 1st grade as a parent, who helped with training for both teachers and parents. The second year, she taught Math for both 4th & 5th grades and by the third year, she entered into her current role as Assistant Principal and 6th grade math.
After graduating from the University of Virginia with a BS in Commerce, Leigh spent a few years in corporate banking. Having always desired to teach, God fulfilled that desire when she completed the Teacher Institute through the University of North Georgia and a partnership with Galloway. Professionally she has taught and tutored Math from the elementary level through Pre-Calculus in DeKalb County public schools, Whitefield Academy and The Lovett School. I also served as the Director of Community Service at Whitefield Academy for 6th - 12th grade students.
Leigh loves having the opportunity to be in the classroom a few hours a week, as well as serve in the office. No two days look the same! She would tell you that one of the best parts of my role at City Academy is that she is always learning new things and can encourage students to be passionate about learning for life.
LaTonya Wiggins joins the City Academy family with more than 20 years of teaching experience, having studied early childhood education at Mercer University. For as long as she can remember, teaching has been a dream and passion of LaTonya’s. She carries with her a wealth of knowledge, a deep love for students and their families, and a confidence that the Lord has placed her in the CAA community to highlight the gifts and strengths He has placed within her.
LaTonya has been married for 19 years and is the proud mom of 6 children. She and her family live in Marietta, where they attend Church of Christ.
Ashley Mayfield is the 1st grade teacher at CAA. She is a native of Georgia, is certified with 7 years of teaching experience in grades Pre-K-3, and holds both a Bachelors and a Masters degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of West Georgia.
Ashley’s passion for children led her to teaching — she loves to watch the magic of learning happen in the classroom. She believes that every child is unique and deserves the best, and she holds high expectations for each and every student: “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6 NIV). When Ashley is not teaching, she loves to be outdoors hiking with her husband, cheering on her favorite sports teams (Atlanta Braves, Georgia Bulldogs, and Atlanta Falcons), serving at her church, and spending quality time with friends and family.
Marilyn Lorick is City Academy’s 2nd grade teacher. Marilyn is one of those rarest of breeds: a true native-Atlantan, having been born and raised in Decatur before leaving for Athens, where she became a Bulldog while earning her Bachelor of Science, Early Childhood Education. Her 30- year teaching career has taken her from the now-long-gone Newton Estates School at the end of one of the Hartsfield-Jackson runways to Fairfax County, VA, and back to an extended stay at Dolvin Elementary in John’s Creek.
Marilyn wants everyone to know that she is not a teacher who happens to be a Christian. Rather, she is a Christ follower who chose teaching as a pathway to touch the lives of children in their formative years. Mrs. Lorick’s teaching philosophy centers on creating a safe, positive environment that is stimulating and encouraging, and environment that gives children the educational and spiritual foundation to excel in life.
Liz Joyner is the 3rd grade teacher at City Academy of Atlanta. She grew up in the suburbs of Atlanta, and always knew that she wanted to be a teacher. She attended UGA (Go Dawgs!), where she earned her B.S. Ed. and met her husband, Trey. Liz and Trey have two beautiful daughters, Caroline and Blakely, and they love investing in their home community of Smyrna as well as leading married groups through Buckhead Church.
Liz has taught for 10 years, spending her time in 3rd and 4th grade classrooms. Her goal is to create a learning environment that feels safe for all children, where students are encouraged to celebrate their strengths and find new ways to grow. She considers it such an honor to spend time with children during their most formative years, and she prays that her students feel the love of Jesus each time they step into her classroom.
Christina Cook serves as City Academy’s 4th grade teacher. She graduated from UGA with a degree in English and spent the eight years after graduation as a professional wedding photographer. In that season, she knew something was missing from that work. She began to search her heart and God’s will on where He would have her go. Coming from a long line of educators (stretching back to my great-grandparents!), in that season of searching Christina discerned that God had put teaching on her heart!
Christina is an adventurer at heart, and loves finding the next daring and exciting thing to motivate her and keep her curious. Whether it's hosting my own children's film camp, coaching volleyball, translating for medical mission trips, or performing in musical theater, God keeps calling her to stretch out of her comfort zone. She loves sharing her curiosity with students in the form of things like hands-on STEM and art design challenges or music-smart learning like creating our own songs as a memory tool. She firmly believes that God has gifted us each uniquely and that one of her roles as a teacher is to equip her students to use their unique gifts well!
Jenny Carruth is our 5th grade teacher and Admissions Director. She is entering my 25th year teaching! She holds a Bachelor's in Elementary Education from Morehead State University in Kentucky. Jenny has taught grades K-5, but she would tell you that upper-elementary is her sweet spot. She believes that children learn best in a safe and nurturing environments where they have the opportunity to explore, ask questions, and work collaboratively. Her life and work's mission is summed up this way: "to GATHER a community of children, INVITE them into the bigger story of how Jesus is at work in the world, EQUIP them with what they need, so they can LAUNCH into their God-given purpose and passion.” Jenny believes that education centered and grounded in Christ is essential, and that there is no greater privilege than to be a partner with parents in helping children discover who God is and who He has made them to be.
Jen Greven serves as City Academy’s Middle School Language Arts, Science, and 6th grade Life Skills teacher. She graduated Cum Laude from Belmont University with a Music Education degree and brings 18 years of teaching experience to CAA-ranging from public school, homeschool hybrid and homeschooling her own children. Jen is excited to return to the classroom setting this year at CAA!
As an educator, Jen’s goal is to combine her range of experience with her ability to be a compassionate, understanding, enthusiastic and intelligent teacher who will make a positive contribution to the school as well as the greater community. Above all, she wants her students to see God and honor him in all that they do, and realize that they were created to do GREAT things!
Jen and her husband Reid live in Alpharetta with their three children, Ella, Cooper and Parker, and their dog, Rosie Mae.
Jeff Lorick teaches middle school at City Academy of Atlanta. He graduated from the University of Virginia where he majored in Religious Studies. He completed his Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary. Jeff has a heart for students and looks for opportunities to help students not just learn math, but also learn to appreciate math as God’s language in Creation.
Additionally, Jeff spent seven years pitching in the minor leagues for the Atlanta Braves and the Chicago Cubs. After baseball, he focused on his love of connecting with people by volunteering at Princeton University’s Campus Ministry, serving at North Point Community Church’s high school ministry, and facilitating numerous Bible studies. Jeff’s passion is learning about God and God’s Creation and inspiring others to find that same joy.
Jan joins CAA as the 8th grade algebra instructor. She holds a Bachelor’s in Accounting from Texas Tech and a Master’s in International Business from Florida Metro. She is a retired CPA. However, her favorite accomplishment is the education of her 3 sons.
Jan and her husband Chris homeschooled Chris Jr., Matt, and Jimmy for 10 years until they all transitioned to Whitefield Academy. She served there 12 years as the 6th-9th grade math teacher, chaired the Middle School Math Department, and headed the Registrar office her last 3 years.
Her role as a homeschool mom and a classroom teacher make her an ideal fit for CAA's model. Her love of Jesus, the master teacher, makes her a motivated educator.
Chris LeCraw, Sr. graduated from the Unites States Air Force Academy where he majored in Mechanical Engineering, and later completed his MS in Aeronautical Sciences at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He served his country for 20 years as an Air Force pilot, and retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Shortly after retirement, he answered God’s call to serve at Whitefield Academy as the Dean of Student Life and Middle School Principal. He left Whitefield after the 2007 school year to pursue his love of aviation with Delta Air Lines. While at Delta, he was an flight instructor in the Training Department, and recently retired as a 717 Captain.
While in the Air Force, the Lord starting developing a passion for serving in various ministries. Chris became very involved in Christian education, to include serving as Director of Children’s Ministries at his family’s church in San Antonio. At Whitefield, he took great joy in focusing on those very exciting Middle School early adolescent years, when there are changes and challenges around every corner. Chris is an elder at Christ Church Presbyterian, and continues to serve in children’s ministry.
Chris is married to CAA Algebra teacher Jan, and they have three sons and three grandchildren. They homeschooled their sons through Middle School, and all three graduated from Whitefield. Chris and Jan enjoy hiking, biking and playing golf together in their spare time.
Cris Jackson loves to see the life-changing truths of the Bible make an impact in the lives of students. This is what he prays for and seeks after in CAA's Middle School Bible classes.
Cris has been the Director of Student Ministries at the Church of the Apostles for two years. He comes to CAA having previously taught Middle School Bible for five years, and served as the Middle School Bible Department Chair for three years, at North Cobb Christian School in Kennesaw, GA.
Cris hopes to help students dive deep into the Word of God and show them helpful Bible-study practices that will aid students in being life-learners of the Scriptures. He hopes that hearts will grow in their love for the great God of the Scriptures as students learn and study God's Word faithfully.
Cris and his wife, Aly, have 5 young children and are expecting their sixth in May. .
Becky’s love of teaching actually began in childhood. She vividly remembers taking great pleasure in teaching children how to write their name, tie their shoe, or even ride a bike. Her vast elementary education degree spans 3 states, 7 grade levels, and 30 years of teaching experience with 27 as the teacher and 3 as a teacher's aide.
Becky will tell you that children, with their uninhibited, honest ways, are fun and refreshing. She’s observed they learn best by doing..by using multiple senses… seeing, hearing (the teacher talking or the child verbalizing), sometimes tasting or smelling, touching (forming a challenging word in play dough for example). School and homeschool are safe places to practice, make mistakes, practice some more and grow. We don't become good at skiing by starting at the top of the highest mountain, pushing off, and going full-speed ahead. We learn little by little, sometimes experiencing some mistakes, but getting back up and trying again and experiencing little successes along the way.
Becky’s favorite thing about City Academy is being at a school where Truth is spoken, displayed, and taught throughout the day! Knowing that Jesus loves and accepts each unique child, is a great starting point for great learning!!
Rita Bechara is our 1st grade teacher’s (Mrs. Ashley Mayfield) assistant. She was born in Lebanon (Middle East). She went to college in Lebanon and earned a diploma in Insurance and Financing studies. Afterwards she moved to Paris to pursue her education and lived there for 10 years, where she developed her career in the banking world. When she moved to Atlanta, she worked for Haggai Institute in the accounting department for 5 years.
Rita’s passion for education and being with young students grew when she started volunteering as a Sunday School teacher and when she became a substitute teacher for FCS. She felt the call from the Lord to impact the students’ lives by sharing her faith, and pointing their attention to their Creator-who Loves and cares about them finding their peace and joy in Him, even more than their education. Rita also has a passion for cooking and baking. She loves reading and spending time with family and friends.
Leslie received her BA in General Visual Art from Dallas Baptist University in 2007 and is passionate about using the arts as a vehicle for learning, personal growth, connecting with God and discipleship. She fostered her love for aesthetics, creativity and ministry through the retail industry, interior design and various youth and homeless ministries before beginning her teaching career in art and discipleship in 2015. Her personal artwork is an extension of her own journey of faith and freedom through Jesus Christ. It is one of her favorite things to share this process, both artistically and spiritually with others in hopes of encouraging them on their own journey.
City Academy is looking for qualified teachers who are passionate about educating minds and cultivating hearts of children. CAA does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origins in its admission or hiring practices. Apply for employment here.
If you would like to contact the board, click here.
Supplements student and teacher experiences throughout the year. Money raised is used to provide additional technology, books, teacher appreciation gifts and lunches, and events like family picnics, grandparent’s day, mother/son & father/daughter events.
Provides opportunities for community building and fellowship through monthly events.
Group of parents who intentionally shepherd new families, as well as those experiencing difficult times. Help may come in the form of prayer requests, meal support, transportation and play dates.
Organized monthly prayer groups for both moms and dads. Focus is on praying for City Academy staff, families and students, as well as our impact on the city and any other pertinent requests.
Every effort is made to love and serve our staff. This includes providing food and drinks for the teacher lounge, special lunches, remembering birthdays, and Christmas and end of year gifts.
Serve as a point of contact for the class. This includes interfacing with the parent council, teacher and parents in their respective grade, to simplify communication so everyone is informed and not overwhelmed.