Key School Staff

A Dedicated Team of Professionals


From researching physics in a nuclear laboratory, teaching English in Malaysia, developing a math dictionary, working in children's publishing, reporting on television, being foster parents, to running the Boston marathon in record time, our faculty brings a variety of valuable experiences and insights to Key School.

With a commitment to professional development, our highly trained teachers use a unified, intentional, cohesive approach. Dedicated and caring, Key's teachers are committed to helping children become successful students.

Every teacher at Key School is Orton-Gillingham-trained. Each language teacher has completed a rigorous, supervised clinical teaching experience to ensure a high level of compentancy with multisensory structured language instructional principles. Math teachers are trained in the multisensory math principles and approach. Both language and math teachers use a five-step Orton-Gillingham-based lesson plan which includes visual, auditory, and kinesthetic teaching and ample review and reinforcement in a teaching-for-mastery environment. 

Key School provides its own teacher training to all faculty, under the supervision of a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE). Key uses the curriculum standards of AOGPE and is accredited by the International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council (IMSLEC). Teachers are in the mindset of continuous improvement and lifelong learning. Two-thirds of the faculty have passed a national certifying examination and are credentialed at the Certified Academic Language Practitioner level or the Certified Academic Language Therapist level.

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Matthew Buchanan

Faculty Information
Location(s) Key School
Title(s) Key School Grade 5
Contact Information
School Email
School Phone
(828) 274-0758   x149
Degree(s) B.A. in Mathematics, University of North Carolina- Asheville 2005
Other Information
Matthew Buchanan is a fifth grade mathematics/core teacher in the Key School. He joined CDS in 2006. He is trained in Orton Gillingham Multisensory Language Training & Multisensory Mathematics. Matthew has presented at a Saturday Seminar for Multisensory Mathematics in April of 2014. Topics included multisensory approaches to decimals and fractions.
Get to know Matthew Buchanan:
In what ways can you teach/engage children at CDS that you couldn't at other schools? “At CDS I feel a level of freedom to explore a diversified curriculum including more multisensory and application driven approaches to traditional topics.”
What do you like most about your job at CDS? “My happiness with my position at CDS stems from the supportive and driven faculty, the helpful and dedicated parents, and most importantly the respectful and determined students.”
In your opinion, how does the CDS community inspire students to be courageous and curious, wonder about things that they don’t understand, try new things, and develop individual passions? “The CDS community inspires students through creative and exploratory curriculum design and the follow through application of such.”
How would you describe your classroom? “My classroom is one in which each student feels free and comfortable to express appropriate ideas and theories without the fear of judgment.”
What books and authors inspire you? Zero and Alpha and Omega by Charles Seife are two of my favorite books which describe the origin of the idea of the number zero and the possible beginning and end of the universe, respectively. These inspire me in my teaching by allowing for questioning of everything and providing a possible answer to all.”
How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less? “I would describe my approach as systematic yet exploratory.”
Which classroom projects/events are you known for? My most influential classroom project is the creation of a math dictionary which provides a valuable resource for each and every student as they move through their educational journey.”
What personal passion brings balance to your life? “My personal passion is fly fishing.”
How is CDS different from what you experienced as a child in school? When I reflect on CDS compared to my own education, I see a more dedicated, compassionate, and caring faculty that truly cares for and takes an interest in each individual student. The ability to give this individualized attention with great expertise sets CDS apart from any educational institution that I have ever experienced.”
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