J-DHS Welcomes 2 New Staff Members

Photo shows new counselor Mrs. Goad (left) and new teacher Mrs. McNamara (right)

By Contributing Writers Nah’V’Ere Reed (’26) and Savannah Schnorr (’26)

This year J-DHS welcomes a new teacher and a new guidance counselor. New guidance counselor Theresa Goad has taken over for Amy LeStrange who retired after 27 years as a counselor here at Jamesville-DeWitt High School. She is responsible for the last quarter of the alphabet, so students whose last name starts with S through Z.

Though this is Mrs. Goads’ first year in the J-D district, she has been a counselor for over 15 years. Mrs. Goad started her career at Westhill High School, and from 2005-2007 was as a counselor there. She then became a counselor at Liverpool High School from 2007-2015, where she was also a lacrosse coach. Shortly after, her husband’s job moved the family to Virginia. While in Virginia she worked as a counselor at a virtual middle school and high school.

Mrs. Goad was brought to Syracuse to be closer to family in June of 2023. She said that when she started to look into schooling for her children, she recognized J-D’s excellence. Once the counselor position became available here, she was really excited to join the staff as she already knew some of her colleagues because of her children.  

Additionally, social studies teacher Vitaly Yanchuk took a position as an administrative intern, so new teacher Vanessa McNamara has taken his position in the social studies department. The subjects she teaches include global history and practical law.

Mrs. McNamara started her career off at Jamesville-DeWitt Middle School as an eighth grade social studies teacher where she remained from 2004 to 2010. In 2011, Mrs. McNamara took a break to be home with her family, and during that time she was an adjunct professor at Syracuse University where her role was to observe student teachers. Before coming to J-D, she was an eighth grade social studies teacher at Eagle Hill Middle School in the Fayetteville-Manlius district.

Mrs. McNamara spends her time outside of school with her three children who play sports. So far she is loving her new position here at Jamesville-DeWitt High School and getting to know everyone. We welcome Mrs. Goad and Mrs. McNamara to J-DHS and wish them the best of luck in the future!

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