Director of Student Support Services

  • Dr. Saskia Brown’s professional commitment reflects her conviction that quality education is a right that belongs to all students.  Her vision as an administrator in Sparta is to catalyze change in the district by helping to create authentic learning environments that provide direct support, resources, access and opportunities to students, along with their families and district staff.  Her goal is to cultivate a natural passion and ownership for both teaching and learning.

RTI Coordinator (K-2)

  • Thurmeka Ward is an educator who is invested in the academic and social emotional well being of all students. Thurmeka received a B.A. in Psychology from St. John’s University, a M.S. in Childhood and Special Education from Bankstreet College of Education, and a M.A. in Educational Leadership from the College of Saint Elizabeth. She began her career in education as a Teach For America corps member and has experience as a Special Education teacher, Learning Specialist, Academic Program Director and an Executive Function Coach.Thurmeka is elated to be apart of the Spartan community!

SMS Guidance Counselors

  • Blair Scrudato is a School Counselor at Sparta Middle School. Blair received a B.A. in Psychology from Ramapo College and a M.A. in School Counseling from Centenary University. She began her career in education at Vernon Township High School prior to starting at Sparta Middle School. Blair is beyond excited to be working in her hometown and continues to strive to support all students with social, emotional, and academic needs.

    Jenna Mathesius is a Sparta Middle School School Counselor and has been in the district for eight years. Ms. Mathesius received her B.A. in Psychology and M.A in School Counseling at Centenary University. In addition, she received her Student Assistance Coordinator Certificate (SAC) from Centenary University. Her personal goal as a school counselor is to assist students and their families in the development of academic and personal excellence. She loves being a school counselor and every day feels thankful to have the opportunity to interact with her students. In her free time, she loves to play tennis, run, hike, and spend time with her two dogs, Stitches, and Minnie. 

HMS Guidance Counselor

  • Toni Ann Labar is the School Counselor at Helen Morgan School and an educator with 23 years of experience. Toni Ann began her career as a second grade teacher in Hudson County, NJ, and relocated to Sussex County in 2001. Toni Ann received a B.A. in Elementary Education from William Paterson University, and a M.A. in Counseling as well as a Supervisor Certification from New Jersey City University. Toni Ann is fully invested in the social and emotional well being of all students and strives to ensure they have skills to succeed in and out of the classroom. Becoming a School Counselor fulfilled her lifelong dream.

MAS Guidance Counselor

  • Katy Szatkiewicz is the School Counselor at Mohawk Avenue School. She was born and raised in Sussex County and currently lives there with her husband and two kids. Katy received her  B.A. in Elementary and Early Childhood Education from Arcadia University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and her M.A. in Counseling from William Paterson University in Wayne, NJ.  She began her professional career working with Project Self-Sufficiency in Newton, NJ for two years and then became a classroom teacher. Katy taught grades 3-5 for seven years in Bergen, Morris and Sussex County school districts. She is proud to be a part of the Sparta Township Public School District and loves to serve students as the school counselor. Katy is currently working towards obtaining her professional license in mental health counseling. 

AES Guidance Counselor

  • Heather Yanoff is the School Counselor at Alpine Elementary School. She has worked for Sparta Township Public Schools for 14 years. Heather received her B.A. in Elementary Education from Bloomsburg University, and a M.A. in School Counseling from William Paterson University. Heather's role as a school counselor has been truly rewarding. Her belief is to always encourage all students to strive to achieve their goals.

Image of Dr. Saskia Brown


Image of Thurmeka Ward


Image of Blair Scrudato
Image of Jenna Mathesius


Image of Toni Ann Labar


Image of Katy Szatkiewicz


Image of Heather Yanoff

Expectations of Student Support Services Staff

  • As student support professionals, expectations of staff are listed below.

    • Understand the mission, vision, goals and values of the school district.
    • Advocate for the wellbeing of all Sparta students and serve as role models.
    • Adhere to Sparta’s Policies and Procedures.
    • Maintain a positive and respectful attitude, particularly in challenging circumstances.
    • Demonstrate flexible and efficient time management and ability to prioritize workload.
    • Consistently report to work on time and prepared to perform duties as workload necessitates of position.
    • Work collaboratively with all members of the school community.
    • Maintain positive, cooperative, and mutually supportive relationships with the administration, instructional staff, students, families, and other community stakeholders.
    • Engage in appropriate studies and activities to improve professional competence.
    • Participate in school-wide events.