Our Consultants

Susan Nations is an author, national literacy consultant, conference presenter and school-based intervention teacher with more than 20 years of experience. She is the co-author ofIntermediate Literacy Stations, Primary Literacy Centers: Making Reading and Writing STICK!, More Primary Literacy Centers:  Making Reading and Writing STICK!  and So Much Stuff, So Little Space: Creating and Managing the Learner Centered Classroom all published by Maupin House (www.maupinhouse.com).  She co-authored 40 Literacy Center Flipbooks for Teaching Resource Center. Susan has also written over 250 teacher's guides for the Weekly Reader Early Learning Library.As an Intervention Teacher at Gocio Elementary School in the Sarasota County School System, she currently works with students and teachers in K-5 at the school site to implement and improve literacy instruction and assist with the RtI (Response to Intervention) process. She conducts model lessons in classrooms and arranges for staff development to help meet instructional needs at Gocio. She also helps facilitate workshops and book studies on her campus and throughout the district. Susan received National Board Certification in Early to Middle Childhood Literacy in 2005. Also in that year, Susan was selected as Sarasota County’s District Teacher of the Year. In 2009, Susan was thrilled to represent her school as Literacy Teacher of the Year.
In addition to her site-based job, Susan is highly requested to speak and present at local, state, and national conferences. Most recently, she has presented for the North Carolina Regional ASCD Conference, Florida Reading Association Conference, The International Reading Association National Conference and the Staff Development for Educators (SDE) National Conferences. She has also provided customized literacy training for schools and districts around the United States.

Debra Voege is currently a fifth grade teacher at Gocio Elementary school in the Sarasota County School District. She has also served as a Data Coach and Math and Science Curriculum Resource Teacher at the elementary school level.  Debra has more than twenty-five years of experience in the field of education and has taught students from early intervention programs through the doctoral level, as well as serving as an elementary school principal for nine years.  She co-authored “Integration of children with attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity into youth sport,” published in PALAESTRA, a professional journal for physical educators.  She has also participated in district and state level committees contributing to documents and publications that have been widely used by educators.  Over the years, she has provided workshops on a variety of topics to thousands of students and parents, as well as educators in the fields of education and social services.Debra provides in-service opportunities on initiatives in math and science instruction and is a district trainer for Marzano’s High Impact Instructional Strategies the Work and Project CRISS: CReating Independence through Student-owned Strategies (www.projectcriss.com).   Debra also coordinates the school’s extended learning opportunities for students which includes Go-Getters, a before and after school intervention program and serves as a tutor for students in reading and math strategies.
Outside of her duties at school, Debra serves a math, science, and social studies curriculum consultant for a variety of educational publishing companies.  She has also written over 75 teacher's guides for the Weekly Reader Early Learning Library division.

Sandy Waite, M. Ed., is an author and literacy consultant from Sarasota, Florida. Sandy’s first book is Intermediate Literacy Stations, which she co-wrote with Susan Nations. This book represents much of the literacy instruction that Sandy has used in her intermediate classrooms. She has presented workshops at the district, state, and national level.Sandy is currently part of a team implementing a small group and one-on-one reading intervention program for students in grades K-5. Sandy works closely with classroom teachers to plan instruction for the students she serves. She has taught nearly every grade from preschool through fifth grade in Connecticut, Kentucky and now in Florida for more than 20 years.
Sandy received National Board Certification in Early to Middle Childhood Literacy in 2005 and continues to mentor teachers who are seeking their National Board Certification. Sandy is a literacy consultant for a variety of educational publishers where she serves as a book leveling consultant and writes teachers' guides for guided reading texts.  She is also a Kagan Cooperative Learning trainer for the district. She helps conduct workshops and models lessons in the district and in her classroom.  Sandy regularly mentors teachers to give them support in literacy development and to assist with classroom management. She is passionate about implementing reading best practices to help maximize student learning. 

Mellissa Alonso is an author, national literacy consultant and conference presenter. Mellissa is the co-author of Primary Literacy Centers: Making Reading and Writing STICK! and More Primary Literacy Centers: Making Reading and Writing STICK!  She worked with Susan to develop the Literacy Procedure Flip Books for Teaching Resource Center.  She was also featured in Newbridge Publishing’s Professional Development Video Program: Guided Reading:  A Focus on Informational Texts. Mellissa is currently the Supervisor for Reading First in Hillsborough County Public Schools. She been an assistant principal, district resource teacher for Elementary Reading and Language Arts in Hillsborough County, the twelfth largest school district in the nation. Mellissa writes and delivers literacy training in her district. She has been an integral part of the team that initiated the Reading Coaches Project in Hillsborough County. Teachers and Reading Specialists are trained as Reading Coaches to provide site-based follow up to district level training. Mellissa has been involved in a number of district projects including: K-1 Reading Inservice Course, K-1 Centers Video Projects, 2-3 Reading Inservice Course, 2-3 Centers, Oral Reading Records, K-2 FCAT and DRA training. Mellissa is also a trained Developing Literacy First facilitator. She has presented at several local, state and national level conferences and workshops.
Mellissa has received many acknowledgements and awards for her work.  She received the Celebrate Literacy Award from the Hillsborough County Council of the International Reading Association. This award honored her exceptional contributions to literacy for the school district.  In 2005, she was selected as Hillsborough’s District Teacher of the Year.