Scott Galson
Department Chair

You may want to know these facts about me: B.A. in Economics and Psychology with an emphasis in Statistics from Colby College; Worked as an econometric forecasting analyst, and then made what everyone warned me as a risky move: to become an educator; Before moving out to Illinois in 2003 from New England, my wife and I lived for two years in Suriname, South America as volunteers in the Peace Corps. M.S. in Mathematics Education from Northwestern University; Achieved National Board Certification in 2008; Received the Siemens AP Teacher of the Year award for Illinois in 2009; Golden Apple Award in 2013 Math Team coach; My wife, three sons, and I enjoy the outdoors. We love to bike, hike, ski, fly fish, and generally travel North America throughout the summer.

Email: sdgalson@cps.edu
Phone: 773.534.0034 Ext. 25006
Website: https://sites.google.com/cps.edu/paytonmath/home

Michael Aaron Caines
Teacher

I obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Physics from the University of Chicago in 2001, and, after succumbing to my affinity for math, went on to earn a Master of Science in Teaching Mathematics degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2008. After a year of teaching at Lane Tech High School, I eagerly joined the team at Walter Payton. I enjoy coaching math team, and I am involved in the Chicago Junior Mathematics League, the City of Chicago Math League, and the Payton Citywide Math Circle. My other interests currently include: CrossFit, trivia, watching good TV shows, and sleeping when possible.

Email: macaines@cps.edu

Byron Espinoza
Teacher

I earned my B.A. in physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I joined the Walter Payton team in 2005 where I have helped with math team, after school tutoring, and sponsored the Gaming Club. I enjoy tinkering with new technology, and routinely use software such as Geometer's Sketchpad and Mathematica in my classes.

Email: bpespinoza@cps.edu

Sara Heiberger
Teacher

I proudly joined the Payton faculty in 2014. Prior to teaching at Payton, I taught at two charter high schools on Chicago's South and West Sides. I graduated from the University of Chicago with an B.A. in Sociology in 2009 and an MAT for Secondary Math Education in 2012. I also had the privilege during college and graduate school to work as part of the editing team for the third edition of the UCSMP high school mathematics textbook series and a teaching assistant for the University of Chicago SESAME Program. Outside of math, I love to cook and spend quality couch-time with my two dogs. (Fun fact: I graduated from WPCP in 2005.)

Email: slmahoney@cps.edu

Ben Hyman
Teacher

Hello! I joined the Payton faculty in the 2011-2012 school year. I teach one section of PCBC, and also serve as a school technologist, working both behind the scenes and with teachers. I earned a B.A. in mathematics from the University of Chicago and an MSEd in Secondary Teaching from Northwestern University. I help coach the Math Team, and also enjoy reading, exercising, and a certain long-running British sci-fi TV series.

Email: bjhyman@cps.edu
Website: https://sites.google.com/cps.edu/paytonmath/home

Adyna Jackson
Teacher

I was born second in a family of four and raised on the west side of Chicago. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a Master of Education in Instructional Leadership. As a student in the first graduating class of Payton, I am excited to work in the environment that helped cultivate my passion for learning. I have been a teacher for 8 years (3yrs-Bogan, 3yrs-Westinghouse, 2yrs-Uno Rogers Park). I have a love for math that I want to spread to every student I meet. Each year I have seen at least one student change their mind about how hard, or easy, they think math might be. I hope to do the same at Payton. I have an infectious enthusiasm that permeates the atmosphere and draws others near. I love dancing, singing, and sports, so I look forward to spending time at different events here at Payton.

Email: agjackson1@cps.edu

Kevin M. Lee
Teacher



Email: kmlee@cps.edu

Ginna Roach
Teacher

I grew up in a suburb of Washington, DC and loved working with students from a young age. Whether I was helping friends with homework, tutoring my younger siblings, or being a camp counselor, teaching and mentoring were always a part of my life growing up. I graduated from Dartmouth College in 2012 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Math and Spanish, and went on to earn my Master of Arts in Teaching through the University of Chicago Urban Teacher Education Program. I worked at Kenwood Academy for three years, and then proudly joined the staff at Payton in the 2017-2018 school year. Besides teaching, I also love learning new things, playing softball, doing Crossfit, making memes, and rooting on the greatest baseball team of all time: the Washington Nationals. I consider myself somewhat of an expert in Harry Potter and The Office trivia.

Email: vroach@cps.edu

Jill Tani
Teacher

I joined the Math Department at Payton in 2008. After starting out as an actuarial and benefits analyst for Mercer Human Resource Consulting, I left the corporate world and spent several years as a classroom assistant at Near North Montessori School. I hold degrees in Mathematics and French from Grinnell College and have a Master of Arts in Teaching from National Louis University. Aside from shaping the minds of young mathematicians, I enjoy laughing at my own jokes and spending time with my dogs.

Email: jtani1@cps.edu

Georgia Tolias
Teacher

I joined the Payton faculty in 2005 after having spent the previous 12 years as a full-time mathematics professor at Purdue University Calumet and DePaul University. I completed my doctorate in mathematics education from the University of Texas at Austin in 1993 and my B.S. degree in Mathematics from Loyola University Chicago with a minor in Linguistics. In my spare time, I enjoy cooking, cycling, being an ambassador of our great city, and overseeing the construction of my new home in Greece where my husband and I plan to live permanently someday. Payton students generally refer to me lovingly as "Doctor T".

Email: gtolias@cps.edu

Benjamin Walker
Math Teacher

Benjamin loves learning and teaching, and spends a lot of his intellectual energy figuring out how to foster co-accountable, team-oriented learning communities. He constantly asks, "How can I best utilize all the assets that my students bring to the classroom? How can I create meaningful opportunities for students to build agency and authority? How can I appropriately challenge all students?" He enjoys teaching students the art of questioning, and generally frames the study of mathematics as the study of creative problem-solving. Above all, Benjamin strives to build positive relationships with and among his students that support their learning. He likes bowties, books, and persuasive arguments that convince him to change his mind. Benjamin also loves developing his practice and contributing to the professional learning community. Outside of school, Benjamin loves crossfiting and climbing with his partner, biking around the city, enjoying good coffee, and seeing plays.

Email: blwalker3@cps.edu