Staff

We are very excited about the 2020-2021 school year at The Branch Academy. Although we each have specific job responsibilities related to our positions in the office or in the Pre-K and Pre-K3 classes, we all look forward to caring for and getting to know each child as part of one “Branch Family”.

Sue Popp– PreK Teacher/After the Bell/Director

This year will be Mrs. Popp’s twenty second consecutive year teaching. She spent eleven great years on the Mitchell Elementary School campus, and this is the eleventh year of The Branch Academy. At Mitchell, Mrs. Popp taught Art through the Art Enrichment Program for four years prior to joining the PreK team, and she enjoyed seven years developing the preschool program and incorporating her love of art into the early childhood curriculum. Sue was born in Charlotte, North Carolina and moved to Georgia with her family during her elementary years. She and her husband of twenty-eight years, Mark, moved to Tampa in 1993. Mrs. Popp is a graduate of the University of Georgia and obtained her State of Florida Professional Teaching Certificate for PreK3 through third grade. She also holds a National Director’s Credential and recently received her ten year renewal certificate for the Florida Director’s Credential. Mrs. Popp’s Staff Credential Certificate was achieved through a formal education qualification from the Florida Department of Children and Families, and is a member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (“NAEYC”). Sue and Mark have two children. Their son Dustin, 25, has a degree in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Florida. He works for IBM in Austin, TX where he and his wife, Haley, a UVA alum, have happily begun married life together since their wedding in March 2019! Gardner, their 23 year old daughter, is no stranger to The Branch Academy as she has been helping out on campus since her family established it in 2010! She graduated from the University of Florida last year and is continuing her work in recreational therapy at the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center, a nationally recognized non-profit foundation that provides adaptive sport experiences to individuals of all ages with cognitive and physical disabilities. Gardner has contributed to our graphic design needs and also has other related experiences including a position at the local preschool in her Colorado community. Mrs. Popp is grateful for the staff and students who make up her “school family” and feels that the establishment and success of The Branch Academy has been one of her greatest blessings. She looks forward to sharing the beginning of the school’s second decade with the families of 2020-2021!