Nicholas Stage

Nick has been with Bradford since 2011 as the Special Education Supervisor and resource room teacher, and has recently joined Choice Schools Associates’ team under the same role in 2023. He graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a bachelor’s degree in special education and earned his master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Grand Valley State University. Nick’s commitment to student development is unparalleled, and we look forward to seeing his passion for supporting students and staff to reach their highest potential this school year. Nick is intentional in focusing on relationships among staff, students, and stakeholders within the educational community. Nick’s wife, Jessica, also shares his passion for education and focuses on technology integration in the classroom setting. They have a five-year-old son Jonathan who is starting Kindergarten this fall, and a two-year-old daughter, who melts his heart every day. In addition, the Stage family stays busy creating memories outside and enjoying nature as much as possible. A fun fact about Nick is that he was ranked #1 in the Midwest in Rock, Paper, Scissors. He accepted sponsorship and was sent to Las Vegas to compete in the national championship and has competed seven times in the world championships (world ranking #65). If you want to challenge him, feel free to ask, but he will most likely tell you that he “only plays sanctioned matches”.

Sarah VanderBaan

Sarah VanderBaan started with Choice as the Special Education Supervisor and is now the Chief of Specially Designed Instruction and Student Services. Previously, Sarah was at National Heritage Academies as a middle school Resource Program Teacher and West Michigan Special Education Content Leader. She also worked for Benton Harbor Area Schools and Wyoming Public Schools. Her teaching experience includes early childhood through high school general education and special education. Sarah received her bachelor’s degree from Aquinas College in Learning Disabilities and Early Childhood Education. Sarah received her Master’s degree in Specific Learning Disabilities from Grand Valley State University. Sarah also received her Educational Leadership-Special Education Administrator endorsement from Grand Valley State University. Sarah lived in Hong Kong for three years and taught at The American School there. She has traveled all over Asia, including Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam.
Free time for Sarah includes traveling, yoga, and spending time with her family relaxing in Northern Michigan. West Michigan is where Sarah calls home. Volunteering is important to Sarah as she serves on the Executive Board of Family Hope Foundation.

Sarah is excited to work at Choice and collaborate with general education and special education staff to meet the needs of all students.

Nicole Tuinstra

Department: Special Education
Nicole Tuinstra started with Choice Schools as the Elementary Special Education teacher at West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science and is now the Special Education Supervisor at Choice Schools Associates. Nicole received her bachelor’s degree from Grand Valley State University in Group Social Studies and Elementary Education and also received her Master’s degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Learning Disabilities and Cognitive Impairments. Nicole also has approval to be a Teacher Consultant.

Nicole likes to bowl in her spare time with her family. She also has participated in the Shadblow Theater summer concert for the past 2 years. Nicole also likes to spend time with her husband and 2 daughters as well as her extended family.

Nicole is excited to make the transition to Choice Schools Central Office. “I am excited to work with the Curriculum and Instruction team and the Special Education team. My new role will allow me to work with both general education and special education teachers, which will benefit all of our students.”