La Costa Canyon High School
English Department


Janet Berend

Room 460, Ext. 6273
English 10 CP & English 11 CP

Thea Chadwick

Room 431, Ext. 6268
English 10 Honors, Introduction to IB

Thea Chadwick loves teaching!  She also loves her family and thoroughly enjoys her five (soon to be six) beautiful grandkids!!!!!

Matt Cunningham

Room 441, Ext. 6270
AP Language and Composition

Chalise Farr

Room 1302, Ext. 6394
English 9 Honors, English 12 CP
LCC Cheer Coach

I am elated to be part of this incredible Maverick faculty and family! I'm excited to be starting my second year at La Costa Canyon and my 12th year teaching. I teach English and have been a head cheer coach for 11 years and an assistant track and field coach for 7 years. My family and I feel so fortunate to be living our dreams by the beach! Our two incredible kids are the joy of our lives and have already been enveloped so lovingly into the LCC community (with our 3rd baby on the way)! GO MAVS!

Jill Lax

Room 461, Ext. 6274
English 10 Honors, Senior College Seminar

Jill Lax was born in South Africa. She received her BA degree in English Literature at the University of the Witwatersrand, with minors in psychology, history, and Film. She moved to Bophuthatswana (an African homeland) and  received her teaching credential from the University of South Africa. Jill  taught English as a Second Language at Batswana High School, before relocating to Oklahoma with her husband. After passing the National Teachers Exam in English, she moved to Encinitas and taught English and Theatre Arts at Oak Crest Junior High School. During that time, she earned a Master of Arts Degree from the University of San Diego. Jill began teaching at LCC the year it opened. Over the years she has taught several levels of English, creative writing, senior college seminar, and has served as English Department Chair. She currently teaches Eng. 10 HP and Senior College Seminar, a course she initiated at LCC to guide students with their college paths and future careers. Jill's two children are graduates of LCC.  Jill lives in Encinitas with her veterinarian husband and besides her obsession with literature and reading, enjoys the beach, writing, walking (especially with her dogs), skiing, music (she is somewhat of a concert junkie), and traveling anywhere and everywhere.  

Lizzy McNally

Room 430, Ext. 6267
English 9 CP , ELD

Lizzy McNally teaches English and is a Torrey Pines High School Alum. She graduated from CSU San Marcos with a BA in Literature and Writing and completed her Masters of Education in Cross Cultural Education. When she is not teaching, she enjoys traveling, the outdoors, and spending time with her family.

Speed Farris

Room 410-411, Ext. 6272
AP English Literature, Video-Film 

Mr. Farris graduated from UCSD where he studied English Literature and Film. He has a Master's Degree in Education and is credentialed in English, Technical Industrial (Video-Film), Art (Supplemental), and Multiple Subjects (K-8). He has been teaching at LCC for over 14 years and was the English Department Chairman for 6 years. When he is not grading essays, he plays guitar with the LCC teacher band The Dollar Bill Band.

Michelle Challis

Room 420, ext. 6108
English 9 CP and 11 CP, Jounalism

Sarah Steele

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Room 1301, Ext. 6393
English 10 CP, English 12 CP

Happy 2017-2018 school year LCC community! I'm very excited to start the new school year teaching both English 10 & 12 College Prep. I’m a proud UCSD alumni where I studied both Human Development and Literature. I later attended SDSU to earn my teaching credential. I've previously taught English 8 at both Earl Warren & Carmel Valley Middle Schools, English 11 & 12, as well as AVID Senior Seminar at Torrey Pines High School, and English 10 & 12 here at LCC. I'm a proud dachshund dog-mom, and I'm looking forward to a great school year! GO MAVS!

Cameron Martin

Rooms 1311 & 1312, ext. 6495
English 10 CP and Speech and Debate

Hi folks! I am a proud Triton, having received my Bachelor’s in Communications, English credential, and most recently, my M.Ed. from UCSD. I have been a part of the speech and debate community for nearly a decade and have been coaching for the past 5 years at Helix Charter, Mount Miguel High School, and Carlsbad High School. Speech and my love of literature have led me to the classroom, and now I can never imagine leaving. Helping students find their voice, both in and out of the classroom, is my passion in life. Go Mavs!



Nicole Housen

Nicole Housen
Room 440, Ext. 6269
English 12 CP, ELD
Links for each class:

Lauren Monahan

Room 400, Ext. 6214
English 10 Honors, AP Literature, Senior Seminar

Lauren Monahan was born and raised in La Costa, CA, and had the great honor of training under some of her own favorite teachers (including Catherine Close). When she is not enjoying every minute in her classroom, she enjoys writing, traveling, and stand up paddle boarding.

Cielle Summy

Room 412, ext. 6219
English 11 and 12 CP, Creative Writing

Hi LCC family! I am so excited to be teaching English this year with so many fabulous teachers and students. I was born and raised in Australia and moved to California 19 years ago. I have a BA, LLB, and Single Subject Teaching Credential in English, Social Science and Physical Education from UCI. For the last two years I have been teaching English and History in the Bay Area of Northern California. Outside of school I also teach yoga, dance and group exercise classes. I also have a daughter and two crazy cats that occupy most of my free time.

Kathryn Stevens

Room 421, ext. 6107
English 9 CP and 11 CP

Mrs. Stevens was raised in northern California (Placerville) and has lived in San Diego since 1987. She has a Master of Education degree in Cross-Cultural Teaching from National University, and is credentialed to teach health and English. She has been teaching since 2001, most recently at Oak Crest Middle School. Mrs. Stevens loves everything about school, especially teaching and students. When she is not at school, she enjoys her favorite things: tacos, Halloween, and spending time with her family. Go Mavs!

Erika Wanczuk

Room 450, Ext. 6271
English 9 H, AP English Language and Composition

Ms. W. earned her B.A in English and her M.Ed. from UCLA . She taught in L.A. for four years before coming to LCC in 2002. She loves teaching, reading, writing, crafting, and playing word games. She lives in Valley Center with her son, husband, dog, pigs, and various feral rodents.