Thrive Academically
with Confidence
and Joy


We are here for you to discuss your current needs for educational support across subject areas including live tutoring, virtual tutoring, homeschool consultation, and special needs.

My student

Whatever your student's needs are, we can help.

“I believe play, joy and confidence are crucial to the learning process.  I also believe learning happens most successfully with a meaningful, compassionate, and positive relationship between students and their family with their tutor and teacher.  These beliefs are our focus.”


– Karen French, Founder & Director

What We Do

We provide tutoring and private teaching services to public school, homeschool and private school students across grades K-10, ages 5-16, and all subject areas.



One-to-one guidance in learning that can provide a deeper instruction, extra practice, and preparatory study. We address all elementary/middle school subject areas including math, reading, writing, study skills, SSAT test preparation, honors courses and more.

One-to-one interactions surrounding learning will boost a student’s joy and confidence, thereby resulting in greater achievement.


“Our daughter has flourished through her work with Karen. Karen brings such joy and love into her tutoring! Not only has my daughter’s academic performance skyrocketed, she LOVES her sessions with Karen. Karen’s combination of joy and learning is exactly what we were hoping for!”

· Meghan T. West Hartford

Support Services
for Special Needs

A tutor can provide instruction using specialized programs to train learners in accommodating for their personal learning challenges. These challenges might include dyslexia, below grade level reading or math achievement, ad(h)d, anxiety, and more.

Addressing specific weak areas allows students to integrate their personal best methods for learning over the course of a lifetime.

“… Mrs. French is so FUN and KIND and knows how to teach her … Almost immediately after her work started we noticed how fast she was learning and improving and at the same time happier and very very proud of herself and her work. Karen French is one of the most creative, knowledgeable and professional teachers we know.

· Yahel G. West Hartford

Homeschool Teaching
or Consult

A teacher can deliver instruction in one or multiple subject areas for students learning at home OR an educator can provide guidance to parents in curriculum choices and planning instruction for their students learning at home.

Whether we are teaching your children or informing your choices, homeschool consulting can provide direction and comfort toward your greater homeschooling goals.

“Karen has been an invaluable part of our kids’ education, and their lives as a whole! She has helped us, as parents, navigate the daunting task of structuring a homeschool curriculum. She has flexibly adapted to the unique learning styles of our two children, helping each to maximize their learning … Without Karen’s efforts, we simply would not have been able to offer them this deeply personalized opportunity!”

· Jamie M, Avon

Our teaching approaches and practices emerge from the premise that positive, compassionate, and playful emotional connections with children and their families result in creative, playful and artistic circumstances giving way to the most effective teaching and learning. 

OUR MISSION is to help students (and thereby their parents) thrive in their academic endeavors with confidence and joy.


Karen French

Founder & Director

When I started Inspired Academics in 2015, I had served 11 years in public school teaching with a special love of working in middle schools. I had two young children, and felt a better balance in my family life by stepping away from the demands of the classroom and accommodating a few unique requests made by parents to work with students privately in one-to-one settings as a supportive bolster to their schooling.


As parents spread the word amongst themselves that I was available for tutoring, I began to experience the greatest joy of my life as a teacher in promoting student success more quickly, more joyfully, and with fewer constraints. Today, in conjunction with a team of tutors who share my philosophies, we currently serve 30-40 families at any given time, following these same playful and joyful practices in learning. It is an incredibly rewarding and effective endeavor!


I live in West Hartford, CT with my husband and two children. Our free time is spent playing in nature, exploring art and music, spending time with extended family and friends, cooking healthy food, and engaging with lots and lots of kids. There is no better job for me than the one I have! 

Our Tutors

We provide tutoring and private teaching services to public school, homeschool and private school students across grades K-10, ages 5-16, and all subject areas.


Lynn Fay

I have had the distinct pleasure of teaching students from the U.S., Poland, Russia, India, and other amazing countries. In addition, I have taught elementary, middle, high school, and college.
On a personal note, if I won the lottery, I would continue to do exactly what I am doing now.


Trisha Dahlquist

I have been teaching and tutoring for 15 years. My teaching experience has ranged from grades K-12 in both special education and general education. I pride myself on making learning hands-on and engaging for my students. In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my own 2 boys, either playing sports or reading books.


Marcy Boyd

I have been teaching Elementary and Middle School students for over ten years. I get great satisfaction seeing the “aha” moment when material clicks for a student and I work thoughtfully to get to these moments. Besides teaching, I enjoy hiking, camping, playing games and spending time with my family and friends.


Alison Manaresi

I have been teaching and tutoring for over 20 years. In this time, I have discovered a passion for upper elementary and middle school math. I love helping students build a foundation for higher level math work, along with the confidence to believe in their abilities. In my free time, I enjoy running and being outdoors.


Gaby Blazquez

I am a dental student at UCONN with a passion for helping children find joy in learning. My interest in teaching began many years ago, when I helped my little brother learn to read. Since then, I have tutored classmates, worked with professors to develop course material, and helped teach an introductory course at my dental school. I enjoy working with parents and kids to find personalized ways to engage with challenging material. Nothing compares to seeing that spark when a child grasps an idea for the first time! On the weekends, I enjoy hiking with my two dogs, Loch & Nessa!


Michaela Matos

I have been tutoring for over 7 years, and especially enjoy building confidence in mathematics. Being a lifelong learner myself, I focus on study strategies, thinking skills, and test taking tips. While I'm not tutoring I love seeing my patients in the dental clinic and spending time outside with my dog, Gus!


Nicole Gosselin

I am a literary specialist for students in grades K-9 with 10 years experience in teaching elementary school, and 4 years providing intensive reading intervention for students in elementary and middle school. I have over 15 years of tutoring experience. I have been recognized by many families for my breakthrough work with their childs’ academics as well as building a strong relationship that encourages all students to succeed.


Kristen Horrigan

Over the years I have been a classroom teacher, a paraprofessional, and a tutor. I am currently a math and instructional tutor at Smith STEM School. Being a tutor allows me all the best parts of teaching on an individual basis. I so enjoy getting to know the student and being able to tailor lessons to his or her needs. I encourage a fun, low-pressure environment for learning.


Corinne Daly

I am a 17 year old junior at Hall High School, and I've lived in West Hartford my whole life. I loved helping my friends with school work and eventually extended that joy to tutoring younger students. Math and science have always been my favorite subjects. In my free time I play soccer, run track, and I love to sail.

Heather Bankoff

After teaching fourth and seventh grade students for a few years, I took a break from education to stay home with our four children, who continue to keep me busy today! I have been back in the classroom as a West Hartford elementary math interventionist for 5 years and love working with students individually and in small groups. I enjoy helping students find the confidence to challenge themselves in and out of of the classroom. And I truly believe math can be fun! I also coach girls’ soccer and lacrosse and love reading, playing games and taking our dog on family walks.

Julie Barbash

I am a current 3rd grade teacher and have been teaching for 5 years in Manchester, CT. I have expertise in servicing students in early and intermediate elementary reading, writing, and math. My main priority, especially in tutoring, is to build trusting and meaningful relationships with all students. If we do not trust each other to learn and grow, then working through challenges in academics can be difficult. Outside of teaching, I love to golf and spend time with family and friends.

Cathy McKenna

I adored my amazing first grade teacher, Mrs.Dyer. She was so kind, compassionate and wise. She inspired me to become a primary educator. Since 1988, I have been able to witness the exciting world of learning, through the eyes of beautiful children, in both Portland and West Hartford Ct. Having the pleasure of teaching grades K - 2 over the last 30 years has made my career so meaningful. Each year, I continue to grow as a learner as I watch my students bloom and develop a love of learning of their own. Each day, I strive to make a memorable impact on my students, just like Mrs. Dyer.


Amy Fernandez

There is nothing I love more than instilling a love of learning in a child. I firmly believe that teaching a child to read is the best gift you can give. Over the past 8 years, I have served as a special education teacher for Granby Public Schools, teaching elementary age students in reading, writing and mathematics. When I am not teaching, I am being mom to my daughter. We could spend hours reading together!

Meghan Sheehan

I have been teaching students from Pre-K to middle school for 10 years. I love working with children and discovering their interests and talents. I really enjoy helping students learn to read and making learning fun! When I am not teaching, I love to read books and play with my daughter and spend time with my family.

Danielle Drozd

I am currently a 6th and 7th grade math teacher at King Philp. I have been teaching for 23 years. Throughout my career, I have taught and tutored 6th grade through Algebra 1. My areas of expertise in tutoring are all levels of middle school math as well as Algebra 1. I believe that building a trusting relationship with families and students is a key component to successful tutoring. I love helping students see math from a different perspective, as well as building confidence in their math education!

Join the Inspired Academics Team

We are always looking for experienced tutors who share our philosophy to join our team!

Click the button below to submit your resume to Karen!

Our Students & Parents


Contact Us

Karen’s Inspired Academics is based in West Hartford, CT and serves the surrounding towns.

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