Meet the Staff

Ashika Jones, Math/Science Teacher


Ashika is a motivated and ambitious educator who will be teaching math and science at Blooming Grove Academy at the intermediary grade level. She has her B.A in English and Child & Family Studies as well as her M.A in Education. She is also working toward attaining her BCBA certification. Ashika has been working in the field of education for over 8 years and is excited to join a strong team of educators at Blooming Grove Academy.

Mission Statement

To inspire, motivate, and encourage creative minds to achieve their fullest potential both inside and outside of the classroom.

James Salvato, Social Studies/Physical Education Teacher


James is a dedicated and enthusiastic Registered Behavior Technician, teaching Social Studies and Physical Education courses at Blooming Grove Academy. He has a Bachelors Degree from Oswego State University in Political Science with a Minor in Athletic Coaching.  As an avid lover of history and sports, James believes that learning such topics can be fun and engaging. Working with many children all across the autism spectrum, he strives to make the classroom an exciting place, in the hopes that they leave much more interested in academic than they were before. He is part of a great team here at Blooming Grove Academy, where we all work towards molding the best future possible for each and every student. 

Mission Statement

My mission is to empower each student with confidence and wonder in the classroom. I sincerely want to help each child I work with unlock their true potential. It's like solving a puzzle, and there is nothing better than seeing the look on a student's face when they understand something they didn't before. 

Shay O'Leary, Elementary Teacher


Shay has worked for Hudson Valley Licensed Behavior Analysts as a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) for approximately 2 and a half years. She will be the elementary school teacher for grades 1-3 at Blooming Grove Academy. Shay has a B.A. in Psychology and will be working towards a M.A. in Applied Behavior Analysis this fall (2018). 

Mission Statement

My mission at Blooming Grove Academy is to take the time to understand the strengths of each child and teach them to feel empowered by those strengths. At the same time, I hope to encourage them to grow as students and individuals. I hope to enhance their learning experience by tailoring my teaching to their individual differences. I want our learning environment to be fun, engaging, and effective for all children. I hope to collaborate with parents and colleagues to make each child’s learning experience a positive one and to ensure every child is on a path to success. 

Lisa Rinaldo, School Director


Lisa Rinaldo, School Director, graduated from Columbia University's Teachers College in 1996. Lisa is a lifelong educator and has been a Board Certified Behavior  Analyst since 2002. Lisa was introduced to Applied Behavior Analysis in 1995 in her role as teaching assistant for the first ABA class in Rockland County, NY. Lisa has been fortunate enough work with the top experts in the fields of behavior analysis and education. She continues daily to refine her craft as every child is entitled to the most recent, evidenced based teaching strategies available.