Our Staff

Rachel Conner is the director of NEXT Education.

Rachel has been involved in homeschooling since 1989 when she became a homeschooled child. She believes in the uniqueness of every child, every family, and every reason to homeschool. Rachel does not receive monetary payment for her service to NEXT Education. However, she receives a rich reward through serving families, as Christ serves the church.

She is also a devoted follower of Jesus Christ, who has graciously made Rachel more than a conqueror.  Her favorite admonition is, “See something beautiful!” Many people are surprised to learn that Rachel has a child who made a complete recovery from ADD (yes, she has lots of tips to share), and that she has incredible compassion for people who have a variety of challenges, because she has had a lot of them.

Rachel is married to her best friend, Brett Conner. She is proud to support him as a military veteran (go Air Force!), as a Youngstown State University professor (go Guins!), and as an entrepreneur. Brett and Rachel are pursuing a patent together, for an invention that they hope will help people who suffer from the aftershocks of trauma.


Lee Ann Shaffer teaches math, science, and logic.

Lee Ann is a brilliantly poised and articulate person who inspires children to want to study math and science. She holds a degree in electrical engineering and is a dedicated Christian believer.

Before coming to NEXT Education, Lee Ann worked at Heritage Academy in Hudson, Ohio, offering similar services to students in the Akron area.  She has a passion for classical education, but also for providing practical education so that students are prepared to choose a career at the end of their homeschool career.

Lee Ann homeschooled her four grown children, all of whom were academically prepared for college. She knows what it takes!


Ginny Taylor teaches science, history, writing, and classical studies.

Ginny has the eternal curiosity that all the best tutors share. She is warmly enthusiastic about everything she does, and allows her positive warmth to rub off on all the students she meets.

Before coming to NEXT Education, Ginny was a private tutor for local students who were struggling with math. She also volunteers as a 4-H leader, coordinating many educational events for young people. She is a dedicated follower of Jesus Christ.

Ginny homeschooled her grown daughter, and has continued to be very involved with homeschooling even after her daughter’s graduation. We are grateful to have her support!

Homeschool support for Youngstown Ohio