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Team Leader: Biology

Ms. Amy Cote earned her B.S .from The University of Texas at Austin and a M.Ed. from Texas A&M University – Commerce. She has 23 years of teaching experience including on-level, Pre-AP/ AP® Biology and Anatomy & Physiology at the high school and community college levels. She is a consultant for the College Board® and has trained teachers across the United States. Ms. Cote was the recipient of the Siemens Award for Advanced Placement in 2005.

Ms. Audrey de la Cruz earned her B.S. in Biology as well as her M.Ed at The University of Texas at Arlington. She taught high school science for over 6 years at Skyline High School in DISD before working as the Science Coordinator for the district's Alternative Certification Program. She is currently the Associate Principal for North Dallas High School in DISD.

Ms. Maya Jackson earned her B.S. from Prairie View A&M University. She is the lead Biology teacher for the Samuell High School Academy of Marketing and teaches Biology and Pre-AP Biology. Ms. Jackson has participated in the UT Southwestern research program for STARS and Texas A&M at Galveston Talented and Gifted Sea Camp.

Ms. Debra Jones earned her B.S of Science from East Texas State University and her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth Texas.  She has been an educator for thirty years, teaching all levels of science at the secondary level including Biology, AP® Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, Chemistry, IPC, and Physics. She was a member of the Dallas Independent School Science Department as an instructional coach for 7 years.   She has been a writer and presenter of staff development training, focusing on instructional tools and content in the biological sciences for 10 years.

Mr. Ben Jones received his B.S. in Biology from Baylor University and is currently attending Liberty University for his M.Ed. in Administration and Supervision. He taught Biology (on-level, Pre-AP, AP®), Chemistry (on-level, Pre-AP), and Physics for 4 years. He currently directs STEM outreach programs as the Academic Initiatives Director for Destination Imagination, Inc. ® and conducts professional development workshops in Challenge-Based Learning across the United States and Canada.

STAAR® is a registered trademark and service mark owned by the Texas Education Agency.