Girl smiling on couch with laptop

Nicole Rider

Nicole Rider

Nicole Rider is an elementary school special education case manager at Colorado Connections Academy (ColoCA). Ms. Rider began teaching in 2013 and joined ColoCA in 2016. She received her bachelor’s degree in exceptional student education from Indian Rider State College. She is also certified for ESOL endorsement for elementary K–6. Learn more about her story below.

"My brother is autistic. I watched him struggle in the general education classroom because inclusion was very difficult for his teachers. I wanted to be a teacher to make sure all kids were learning and felt loved and safe in their classroom.

The benefit of teaching at ColoCA is the flexibility. All students need to finish their lessons by the end of each semester, but with the online setting, that looks different for each student. I love that my students have a chance to learn and be successful because they can work at their own pace and master the curriculum without the strict guidelines of a curriculum calendar.

I frequently communicate with my students and their families through the phone and online. I love that ColoCA teachers support each other and work hard to make sure all students are thriving. Although parents serve as their student’s Learning Coach in a home classroom environment, Learning Coaches always have a team of excellent teachers they can reach out to when they have questions or need help.

At ColoCA, there are many opportunities for Learning Coaches, students, and teachers to meet each other in person by attending social events and field trips. I’m able to build close relationships with my students and their families, and the students get to interact with their classmates outside of the virtual LiveLesson® classroom."

In her free time, Ms. Rider enjoys spending time with her husband and children. Her family loves going to the beach and visiting Disney World frequently!

I love that my students have a chance to learn and be successful because they can work at their own pace.
— Ms. Rider