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Fremont Open Plan’s Upper Department consists of our 4th, 5th & 6th Graders. They are assigned a homeroom, but rotate between the three teachers for ELA, math, art and other studies. Check out our Upper Department Website for department wide updates.

Our Upper Department staff includes:

Todd Brownell, Teacher

Todd Brownell

Todd Brownell, Teacher

I attended Chico State University and received a degree in accounting. After several years, a strong, continuing desire to work with kids took over, and I returned to school to become a teacher. Both of my parents were teachers as well. My dad was actually an elementary principal for 35 years.

I worked as a bilingual teacher at the Glenn County Office of Education for 4 years and then taught 5th grade for 9 years in a small rural school in northern California before coming to Open Plan.

My wife, Janet, is a high school science teacher in Waterford. She teaches Chemistry and Physics. She also teaches AVID. We have two terrific kids, Adria and Adam. They both attend school in Hughson.

I played volleyball in college and then officiated college volleyball for 35 years. I even had a chance to officiate many International exhibition matches between the United States Olympic team and many other countries. (Just ask me!) I retired from officiating in 2009. I was losing too much hair. I like camping, traveling, woodworking, and I also enjoy playing the organ and cello. I love working with all the terrific families in Open Plan. This is how education should work for everyone!


Dorene Arnold, Teacher

Dorene Arnold

Dorene Arnold, Teacher

I believe everyone should find what they are passionate about and pursue it. As a teacher in Open Plan, I feel that students can find what they are truly passionate about.

I have been teaching over 17 years and I love working with kids! My experience and love has been in grades 3-6, teaching with enthusiastic students, teachers and staff. I taught three years at Paradise Elementary, nine years at Stroud Elementary and now in the Upper Department at Fremont Open Plan. I am thrilled to be working in such a strong community that thrives to enrich children’s lives.

I grew up in San Jose, California and graduated from San Jose State University. My husband, Tom, and I settled in Modesto in 1993 to achieve all of our dreams. We’ve enjoyed the relationships we’ve built throughout the community through our restaurants, Appetez and Buddy’s BBQ. We have been blessed with two amazing children, Maya and Noah. I am so pleased that Noah is able to attend FOP and be a part of this educational journey.

Personally, I enjoy traveling with my family. A special tradition of ours is that my husband and I renew our vows each year in a new state. We’ve been married a lot! Some of my other loves are reading, computers, painting, venturing out to Yosemite and bike rides with the family.

Levi Hanzel-Sello, Teacher

Levi Hanzel-Sello

Levi Hanzel-Sello, Teacher