Licensed and Tenured to teach grades 7-12 in Mathematics and Science. Samara holds both a B.S. undergraduate degree and a Masters in Education. She specializes in high school level Math and Science. Providing instruction in numerous subjects, up to and including Calculus and Advanced Placement Physics and Chemistry, Samara has over a decade of experience in both the classroom and private instruction.

As the lead instructor and owner of both Resource Room locations, Sam regularly delivers the highest quality instruction in all academic subject areas. In addition, Sam is the preeminent SAT Math tutor at Resource Room and regularly has students achieving vast improvements in their math scores with many students breaking and exceeding the 700 mark each year. Sam has years of classroom experience and has been consistently rated a Highly Effective teacher under the current evaluation system. Having worked for many years as the Regents Testing Coordinator at the high school level, Samara brings a depth of knowledge in regards to high school level testing requirements and procedures to Resource Room. With a record of academic distinction behind her, and years of classroom and instructional experience – Sam works with students on all levels helping them reach their full academic potential.


Licensed and Tenured, Joe holds a B.S. from Lafayette College, an M.P.A. from American University, and an MSEd from Brooklyn College. He specializes in instruction from the Elementary through the High School levels. As owner and lead instructor of both Resource Room locations, Joe specializes in general and special education instruction for all students. Additionally, Joe has an impressive track record working with students in A.P. World History, A.P. U.S. History, Regents based exams, K – 12 ELA, SAT Verbal, TACHS, and SHSAT.

When students first come into Resource Room, Joe will often be the first person they meet with.

Joe works with incoming students to evaluate their academic level and to create a tailored individualized tutoring program that benefits their specific needs.

A large contingent of students seek Joe’s advisement and assistance as they work through the College Admissions process each year. With over 10 years of classroom and individualized instructional experience, Joe has and continues to work closely with students on all academic levels as they move through their academic careers.


Deric is one of the owners of the Resource Room on Forest Avenue. He is an Assistant Principal and a licensed teacher with over 25 years of educational experience. Deric brings a unique skill set and a plethora of educational experience that has helped him guide students and parents on a path of success in a number of academic and educational areas.

With years of experience running STEAM programs, Deric coordinates and runs all of our STEAM programs with an emphasis on creating a fun, educational, and inviting atmosphere. With a focus on team building and communication, his STEAM programs have engaged thousands of students over the years and brought them to a new and greater understanding of Science, Math, and Engineering.

Deric Borrero is available to provide expert educational support and guidance to help students and parents plan for the future and to help them gain a much greater understanding of the academic requirements of the NYC school system and the Common Core curriculum.

Resource Room is proud to have had Deric join our team as he brings an unparalleled level of experience and expertise to our Forest Avenue location!

Dr. Gerry Nadal

Dr. Nadal completed his pre-medical studies at Columbia University and holds two Masters Degrees and a Ph.D. in molecular biology and microbiology from St. John’s University. He has spent years teaching pharmacy and nursing students at St. John’s University and at Manhattan College. He continues to teach math, chemistry, biology, and physics and has over 25 years of experience delivering instruction in these subjects. Gerry is a highly experienced teacher and a valuable member of the Resource Room staff. With a wealth of knowledge and experience, he is a highly sought after teacher for students of all academic levels.

Laura Hynes
Orton Gillingham Reading Specialist

Laura graduated from New York University with her Master’s Degree in Social Work in 2005.  Since then, Laura’s career has always been in the area of education, ranging from early intervention through high school and young adults.  Laura has worked with children and families living with multiple different disabilities.  She has been certified in Relationship Development Intervention and in DIR/Floortime.  Laura has most recently become a Certified Orton Gillingham Practitioner, often referred to as the gold standard for dyslexia and related reading disorders.  As an Orton Gillingham Practitioner, Laura can provide a unique, individualized and multisensory experience to teaching literacy to students who have been struggling to reach their full potential with traditional methods of reading instruction.

Kristyn D’Andrea
Handwriting Specialist

Kristyn graduated with her Master’s in Occupational Therapy from New York University in 2006. Since then, she has focused her career on working with school-aged children in a variety of capacities while gaining certifications in Handwriting without Tears, The Print Tool and DIR Floortime. She has also received training in Orton Gillingham, Wilson’s Fundations and a variety of sensory processing/self-regulation programs including Zones of Regulation and The Alert Program. Kristyn’s professional and personal background provides a unique tutoring experience which builds on students’ strengths and empowers them to not only gain academic skills but also self-confidence.

Gavin Siewers

Gavin Siewers is one of our Office Managers, as well as one of our longest tenured tutors here at the Resource Room on Forest Ave. Gavin graduated from the University at Buffalo in 2017 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Sciences, as well as a double-minor in Education and Counseling Psychology. Upon returning home to Staten Island, he then completed his Master’s Degree in Special Education, 7-12 with Touro College, Class of 2020. Gavin specializes in all of our intermediate and high school math and science curricula, as well as teaching SAT prep, SHSAT and TACHS exams. He is West Brighton, he looks forward to continuing to give back to the Island community that helped raise him!


Brittany is a licensed and practicing teacher at a middle school in New York City. Brittany holds two Master’s Degrees; one in childhood special education and one in adolescent special education, both from Hunter College. She has an impressive track record of success with both students at the Elementary and Middle School levels.

As our reading specialist at Resource Room, Brittany conducts all the reading evaluations for new and currently students. She delivers instruction in ELA, Math, TACHS, and SHSAT. Brittany continues to be a rising star in our organization and is highly sought after. Brittany has extensive client base and works with students on all academic levels and students of all ages.


With a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from New York University, Shivam specializes in High School and College level math and science. Shivam holds over six years of experience in tutoring a wide variety of topics such as Calculus, Trignometry, Geometry, Algebra, Physics, Chemistry, and SAT/ACT Math. He enjoys working with students on all levels of academic standing and exploring how the Resource Room team can best help students. Shivam quickly adapts to the student’s needs and is always ready with tips and tricks to help his clients excel in academics.

Crescendo Smalls
Foreign Language Specialist

Possessing 10 years of classroom experience, Crescendo has been an instructor of the Spanish language at both intermediate and high school levels. He holds a Master of Science degree in Adolescent Education grades 7-12 and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish from Wagner College. Crescendo is also the founder of En Camino Language Group, providing tutoring and small group instruction to those looking to increase their knowledge and use of world languages.

Crescendo has traveled to four continents and understands the importance of being able to communicate effectively. He brings energy, passion, and charisma to the classroom and individual students.  Moreover, he takes great care and interest in each student’s overall well-being. As the demand for being multilingual arises in our society, Crescendo stays abreast to innovative teaching tactics to provide students with a fun, interactive learning experience. We are very happy to him as a part of our team.

Abby Petrassi

Abby is a licensed 7-12th grade teacher currently practicing at the middle school level with a specialization in general science and biology. She works with students mainly at the middle and high school level on a variety of subjects including Algebra and Chemistry. With her motivating and well received personality, Abby has proven to be a strong asset to the Resource Room Team.


Erik specializes in high school math and science. A high achieving student, Erik was awarded a significant scholarship to NJIT and has worked with Resource Room for many years. He is highly sought after as his personality and strong academic background in both Math and Science make him a highly sought after instructor. He works with students on a variety of levels and his clients always show vast improvement in both their academic subjects and SAT. Erik works with students seeking assistance with AP Physics, AP Chem, Calculus, and SAT/ACT Math. Erik’s years of success with so many clients has made him a top choice for many of our students.   


Smyth is a licensed practicing Math teacher at the high school level. Smyth joined our team and immediately had a significant impact on our students. Smyth holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering and an MSEd in Education. With over 20 years of experience providing technical training to engineers and over 10 years of classroom experience in the NYCDOE Smyth has a unique ability to deliver instruction for all levels of high school math. With a focus on Algebra I and II, Geometry, and Trigonometry Smyth maintains a consistent client base and students continue to request to sit with him as they move through their high school years. He is a valued member of our team who brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table.