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Founder/Director, Integra Middle/High Lead

Marisa Bruyneel has always identified as an educator. By the time she graduated high school, she knew her life’s purpose included opening a school and changing our educational paradigm. She followed her dream and went on to receive her bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and her master’s degree in English Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. While living in New York City, Marisa taught high school English and helped to grow and develop a school from its second year of inception.

For over a decade, Marisa lived her life’s passion as a progressive educator, working with students from diverse backgrounds in various educational settings. When she knew the time had come to transform education, she moved to San Diego. She obtained her California Single Subject Teaching Credential in English and furthered her experience by holding a position as Regional College Readiness Counselor. In this role, she supported high school students at six campuses, helping them design and execute a vision for their future. 

In 2017, Marisa and her founding team successfully gained approval and opened SOUL Charter School. As the Executive Director of SOUL, Marisa carried out the mission and vision of the school which was to ensure a safe, positive nurturing environment, provide a holistic approach to education through Integra (the holistic program), and engage students in project based learning. Although SOUL has since closed its doors, its legacy lives on in the families and students we were incredibly grateful to serve. 

Given the current conditions of our time, Marisa is excited to offer a one of a kind program to the community. She has always believed that there is nothing of greater importance than to invest in our youth. Through the Integra Development Center, Marisa will continue her life’s purpose guiding students towards having a deeper sense of self, helping them to connect to their life’s passions and purpose, and ensuring they gain the tools to thrive, mentally, emotionally, socially, physically, and personally. As our most precious resource, our children will masterfully create a better world for us to live in.

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Integra Elementary Lead

Betsy is a visionary, backpacker, and credentialed (CA Multiple-Subject, K-6) teacher. In 1997, she put herself through college tutoring and teaching fitness classes to earn a BA in Economics (Summa Cum Laude) from CSU, Chico. She went on to obtain a Masters degree and a National Board for Professional Teaching in literacy in 2007 from National University. Betsy has 20 plus years of experience teaching all subjects in public K-5 elementary schools and has created numerous kids’ camps for organizations including the YMCA, Boys & Girls Club, and Mira Costa College for Kids.

Additionally, Betsy holds multiple certifications including: Project Learning Tree, Project Lead the Way, Brain Gym, Gifted And Talented Education, ITI (Integrated Thematic Instruction), DREAM (Developing Reading Enrichment through Arts Method), (TRU) Teaching for Rigorous Understanding (Silicon Valley Math Initiative), California Association for the Gifted (CAG) and more. 

She envisions developing a new kind of school in which we cultivate more harmonious relationships with ourselves, others, and the planet. A place where we dig deeper to recognize our own potential, focus on our unique strengths, gain awareness through embracing challenges, hone our natural talents, and collaborate to make our world a more peaceful place for all.

Betsy LOVES nature and the outdoors as much as teaching, which is her calling in life. Her passion for exploring the wilderness led her to thru-hike the John Muir Trail (230 miles through the Sierras) and 530 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail. When she isn’t teaching or leading meditation classes, you might find her sitting by a river, reading at the beach, climbing a tree, hiking a mountain, or laughing just because there’s always something to laugh about.

Meet the Team: Meet the Team
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