Jackie’s Montessori journey began when she had the opportunity to work as an assistant in a Montessori infant classroom. This experience changed the way she saw education and changed the way she saw the world. She went on to obtain her Infant/Toddler AMS Certification from the Center for Montessori Education of North Carolina while teaching at Your Montessori School in Asheville.
Before working in Montessori education, Jackie worked in the mental health field serving children and teens with severe and persistent behavioral difficulties. Jackie believes that having a strong background in mental health has allowed her to become the intuitive, empathetic educator that she is today.
Jackie grew up in Raleigh, and after spending several years in different parts of the country, she is feeling happy to be back home. She lives with her wife and their pets in the Triangle and loves hiking and camping in her spare time.
A Cary native, Stacey has worked with children since she began babysitting in high school. As a career choice, she’s been 25+ years in the childcare industry in various capacities.
An Assistant Director in an afterschool program in Cary, she cared directly for infants to 16-year-olds. The last 15 years have been spent at the SAS Institute in their in-house Montessori school for employees where a great deal of her time was served in the Infants and Ones rooms.
Stacey was told about The New School’s opening by Sarah Watkins who also just came to TNS the summer of 2021. They both worked at SAS together as Montessori teachers for eight years in the same classroom.
She has a B.A. in music education from Meredith College in Raleigh. During that time, she spent many summers in Nashville at Belmont University studying all phases of music from ear training to sight-reading, composition, and more. She hopes to bring those musical experiences into the Nido room at TNS for the children’s entertainment and enrichment.
In her free time, Stacey is a fervent Disney fan and has been to the Magic Kingdom 14 times, at last count, with her husband and two young daughters. Her favorite attraction by far is “It’s A Small World” and, according to Stacey, it’s tough to beat the Disney dessert specialty, Pineapple Dole Whip!
Michelle received her AMS Infant and Toddler credential from CMTE North Carolina in 2007. She also holds an early childhood associate certificate from Wake Technical Community College.
After serving as a lead teacher in the Ones and Twos for almost 12 years, she stepped aside from this position to explore other opportunities within the school. Michelle helped out with administrative projects and oversaw the pre-Covid snack program. She enjoyed working in the afterschool program and assisting as needed in the Infants, Toddlers, and Children’s House classrooms. For the 2020-2021 school year, Michelle worked mostly as a support teacher in the Nido room.
“Working with infants and young toddlers is a remarkable experience,” Michelle shared. “Because the room does not utilize swings or bouncy seats to ‘contain’ the children, we are able to witness their natural physical development, from rolling over for the first time to taking their first steps. A lot of people think babies don’t really do anything but we see them ‘working hard’ daily.”
Michelle’s daughter started as a student at The New School when she was six weeks old, continued into the Montessori Adolescent Program, and is now excelling in public school. She attributes her daughter’s success in school, personal growth, and creativity to her Montessori education.
As Michelle is now a part-time teacher at the school, she has been taking non-education related courses at Wake Tech and is seeking to make an eventual career transition into IT or accounting. She has been “catching up” with the new technology and loves making spreadsheets.
In her downtime, Michelle enjoys working a side job shopping and delivering groceries for Shipt. She also enjoys streaming movies and TV shows, cuddling with her dog, and reading.
Favorite Educational Quote
Help me to do it by myself. ~ Dr. Maria Montessori
Elizabeth, who goes by the name Liz, is a native North Carolinian and recently graduated from high school in 2019. As the second oldest of eight grandchildren, she was always the on-hand babysitter which explains why she is so good at working with kids. She really enjoys the time she spends around them.
Outside of school/work, Liz is a fan of listening to music, cooking and/or trying new foods, and travel.
Sarah is from England and moved to North Carolina in May 2018 as part of her husband’s work relocation. They live in Holly Springs with their daughters, Millie and Lottie, who both attend our school and love it here.
Sarah has a wealth of experience in early years education, graduating from college in 1999 with a diploma in childhood studies and has worked with children ever since. As well as being a certified Montessori toddler and infant teacher, Sarah also holds a certificate in Understanding Health and Social Care through The Open University and a certificate in Early Childhood Outdoor Learning Environments with the Natural Learning Initiative via NC State University.
Her experience includes managing a nursery that received the highest accolade of “Outstanding” in all areas by the UK schools regulator OFSTED. She’s worked in an orphanage and in a school for children with emotional and behavioral problems as well.
Sarah is a passionate individual, especially when it comes to personalizing your children’s education. Discovering and nurturing a child’s individual talents is vital to her.
She is also a huge advocate of outdoor learning and the benefits it has developmentally for children. Removing the separation between indoors and outdoors allows children to freely and naturally follow their own desires no matter the weather (unless extreme). So if your child is new to the school, investing in what Sarah calls “Wellington boots” (aka rain boots) and raincoats are a must! (Dr. Montessori herself described the ideal environment as having an indoor space with an adjoining garden, allowing the children to flow freely between the two.)
In her free time, Sarah likes to dance, travel, watch musical theatre, and spend time with her husband Dave, her girls, and her super cheeky French Bulldog Teddy. Cooking, shopping, and attending her favorite pop star Robbie Williams’ concerts are also high on her list of favorites.
Favorite Montessori Quote
The environment must be rich in motives which lend interest to activity and invite the child to conduct his own experiences. ~ Dr. Maria Montessori
Michelle is originally from Manila, Philippines. She came to New York City with her parents and three siblings. After living in NYC for eight years, she moved to New Jersey with her husband and two sons, Kevin and Matthew.
She has many years of experience working as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) in a long-term care facility and then in a convent, both in New Jersey.
Michelle loves children and wants to be a part of their learning because she sees them as our future. She enjoys working at The New School around our caring teachers and staff and feels it’s an excellent opportunity to become a great assistant teacher.
“Helping to teach children to learn is my passion. I believe if you give them choices and responsibilities, they will learn to develop their best skills to be good individuals,” Michelle shares.
Michelle loves music and enjoys playing the piano, taking walks in the park, and traveling back to the Philippines.
Dylan has always loved being around kids — her mom had a daycare when she was younger and she believes that’s where it all started. She is new to the Montessori method of teaching, but she’s learning everyday and thoroughly enjoys the process.
She has a passion for music, kids, and animals! In her free time, Dylan is either happily spending time with family or friends.
Joshua was born and raised in Wake county. He and his three younger brothers were homeschooled most of their lives. Josh went to high school and graduated from Southern Wake Academy and is now studying electrical engineering.
In his free time, Josh enjoys playing guitar and piano. He also greatly enjoys playing sports, going to the gym, rock climbing, and roller coasters.
Melody called south Florida home for 16 hot and humid years! In 2016 she and her family decided to live their dream, so they packed up and moved to North Carolina. Not a day goes by that the whole family isn’t grateful for this beautiful place they now get to call home.
Graduating with a dual major in business and marketing, Melody began her career working in an office for some years. It wasn’t until looking into school for her son in 2008 that her whole world was changed in the most wonderful way. While touring a local Montessori school, she saw the beauty of the children working together as a peaceful community and knew that this had to be her life’s calling.
By 2009 Melody had completed her AMS certification for 3 to 6-year-olds and has spent every day since loving the journey of guiding little ones toward confidence and independence.
When not in school, Melody loves to spend time with her husband Patrick, three children, and their sweet Maltese Brutus.
Born and raised right here in Raleigh, Sarah received her B.S. in public history from East Carolina University. She began her Montessori career with a job at SAS Montessori School onsite at the SAS Institute. Within six months, she was made an assistant teacher.
Sarah fell in love with the Montessori philosophy and received her Infant/Toddler certification in 2006 from CMTE. She became the lead teacher in SAS’s Ones class and was at that location nearly 21 years.
She transitioned to The New School in the summer of 2021 and is so happy to be here! Sarah loves watching children discover and learn about their world.
Her favorite thought from Fred Rogers is “Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children, play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.” It reminds her that play is truly important and all play has a purpose which is why Montessori draws her so much. She has hopes to continue her Montessori education in the future.
Outside of school, she looks forward to time spent with friends and family. She loves to read (especially cozy, light mysteries), do some knitting (just picking it back up, so mostly scarves right now), and involving herself in simple DIY projects, like furniture refurbishing and growing her favorite flowers (tulips) and some veggies. She also has a couple of furry pals named Jake (her dog) and Jasper (her cat).
Born in Wilmington, her family moved to Sanford which is where she’s lived since high school. Meg then went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in child development at Meredith College. As an NC Teaching Fellow when the program was active, her thesis was on “The Status of Pretend Play in the Montessori Method.” She chose this to research the myth she had of Montessori not cultivating the child’s imagination sufficiently. What she found was the exact opposite.
“I always loved working with children, and I was happy to discover that Montessori helps us focus on what’s important in child development,” shared Meg about her early education perspective.
One summer Meg studied with the Danish Institute of Studies Abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark, on the Nordic approach to children with special needs. She then taught Pre-K for four year and was Curriculum Specialist at Creative Schools of Apex for almost three years.
After working in the preschool world for seven years, a chance meeting in the park one day of a retired Montessori teacher opened up a whole new understanding of Montessori for Meg. That serendipitous encounter helped her realize that this method was truly the best fit for her.
“I believe that children learn best when they follow their own interests,” Meg says. “Learning is more meaningful when it is done through exploration and discovery rather than simply being taught…which is why I chose Montessori for myself and my daughter.”
Meg accepted a job at TNS in the summer of 2021 and now works with Children’s House where she is excited to learn to be more hands-off and step further back to “follow the child.” Her current goal is to become a Montessori-certified teacher.
Tennis and sports in general are Meg’s interests, and snow skiing in The Canyon just outside Salt Lake City, Utah, is a favorite spot for her downhill endeavors. In her spare time at home, Meg enjoys time with her rescue dog, Norman, and getting to clean in peace. They travel to Wrightsville Beach to relax, be with family, walk all the dogs, play tennis, and chase Ellie for miles down the beach.
Favorite Educational Quote
A mind once stretched with a new idea is forever enriched.
Laurie was born and raised in southeast Virginia by the beach. She graduated from Randolph-Macon College with a sociology degree and two years later with an MSW degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2005.
After working for a few years with older adults in memory care, she and her husband Matthew moved to North Carolina. While their sons were young, she continued her work with older adults through volunteering.
When her oldest son was ready for preschool, she researched and discovered Montessori. The Montessori method quickly became a passion of hers, and she wanted to share it with others. She was drawn to the philosophy’s tenets of respecting and following the child.
Laurie completed her IMC certification through The Center for Guided Montessori Studies in January 2016. She enjoyed being a lead Children’s House teacher at Peace Montessori before joining her sons at TNS as a faculty member in 2020.
She loves watching children learn and thrive within the Montessori prepared environment and encouraging their natural curiosity. It is her goal to help each child in her care to become an enthusiastic lifelong learner.
Outside of the classroom, Laurie enjoys cooking, music, watching movies, and spending time outdoors by the water with her family.
Favorite Montessori Quote
Free the child’s potential and you will transform him into the world.
Susan was born and raised in New Hampshire. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a Bachelor of Science in occupational therapy (OT). After traveling south for her internships, she started her first job in North Carolina and quickly fell in love with this state and has lived here ever since.
Upon working five years in a hospital setting with experience with all ages and diagnoses (primarily pediatrics), Susan and her husband moved to Holly Springs. She was able to explore the area while staying home with her two oldest boys. She returned to the work as a school-based occupational therapist when they started elementary school.
She has worked in a variety of school settings over the past 15 years while welcoming her third son Ben to her family. Susan is excited to apply her love for play, all things fine motor, and sensory-rich activities in her role as support teacher in the Montessori setting.
At home, Susan enjoys hikes, swimming, paddle boarding, gardening, football, watching Ben play soccer, and being outdoors. Life with her husband, three boys, and two crazy pups is never dull!
Starting out in Central America, Iris took the long way round via New Jersey and Pennsylvania to finally settle in the southeast. Honduras is her homeland, but Fuquay Varina, North Carolina, is now her home.
Having earned her degree in business administration in 2002 from San Pedro Sula University, a friend told Iris about a job opportunity at a small Montessori school nearby. She found herself in a preschool classroom and immediately found her calling.
“Learning about Montessori educational methods amazed me, and it is my favorite education training,” Iris shares, “because the Montessori environment has many benefits. Known for individually-paced learning and fostering independence, it also encourages empathy and joy in lifelong learning.”
Iris went on to get her international Montessori teaching diploma in preschool/Kindergarten from the NAMC in 2012. She worked for 16 years at Little Flower Montessori School as a teacher assistant for six years and then as a lead teacher for 10 years.
“I really like and enjoy working with children,” she added. “I have had many (wonderful) experiences with them. It is very satisfying to see them grow, to see how much they learn from the moment they begin to be independent, developing their emotional and social skills, even how to hold a pencil.”
A chance invite to visit friends in Holly Springs led her to learn of an opening at The New School which she promptly applied for and was offered a position. So Iris along with her parents and sister’s family all moved to Fuquay Varina a month later.
Though she loves Spanish music, and played the drums in her school’s parades, Iris is eager to learn more about country music. She loves salsa dancing, romance novels (her favorite movie is “The Notebook”), hiking, and finding new parks to walk in. She is thrilled to be here and can hardly wait to explore our North Carolina beaches and experience all the new adventures waiting for her in the place she now calls home.
Favorite Montessori Quote
A mind once stretched with a new idea is forever enriched.
Jane was born in the Philippines. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in management from the University of Mindanao. After college she worked in Department of Engineering at Panabo City Hall for eight years. Jane moved to the United States in October of 1998.
Her native language is Bisaya. However, she is fluent in Cebuano,Tagalog, and English. She also speaks some Spanish and German.
She completed her early childhood certificate in 2007 at Wake Technical Community College. Jane earned a Montessori diploma in 2010. She joined The New School in 2007 and has taught at the New School for 14 years.
Her interests include travel, singing karaoke, shopping, and Zumba. She has traveled much of the U.S., Europe, and Asia with her family and now lives in Holly Springs with her husband and two children.
Jane’s favorite educational quote below echoes her belief that a clean, beautiful area provides a pleasant environment for children to learn in. She sees a well-equipped learning space as one of those beautiful places.
Favorite Montessori Quote
“The child should live in an environment of beauty.”
∼ Dr. Maria Montessori
Born in New Jersey, Jessica came to North Carolina with her family in 2011. She found her way to The New School in 2016 and settled into CH3 the following year where she loves working in the classroom with the children.
Presently a senior at Campbell University, Jessica will graduate in May of 2022 with a degree in birth to kindergarten education.
Outside of school and work, she enjoys spending time with family and friends the most. Recently married, Jessica and her husband travel when they can and love to binge-watch Netflix series when at home.
Favorite Educational Quote
“A child’s life is like a piece of paper on which every person leaves a mark.”
∼ Robert A. Heinlein
Lina was born in Kenya and moved to the U.K. for further education in accounting and taxation. She then moved to North Carolina in 1998.
Lina has two boys who joined The New School at ages 2 and 4. They stayed in the Montessori environment until they transitioned to other schools for middle and high school.
She decided to pursue her Montessori training after she saw how Maria Montessori’s method of teaching benefitted her own children by using hands-on materials. Lina truly believes that giving her own children the foundation of this special education has paved a path for them to be successful and independent.
Lina completed her training for a 3 to 6-year-olds AMS credential at the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in July 2000 and has taught since 1999 at The New School.
Lina loves to work with the children, watching them develop and seeing how each child, although different from one another, is successful in his own individual ways.
Favorite Montessori Quote
The child has other powers than ours, and the creation he achieves is no small one; it is everything.
∼ Dr. Maria Montessori
Born and brought up in India, Manasvi moved to North Carolina soon after her wedding. She thoroughly enjoys living here with her husband and her treasured fur baby named Max.
With a bachelor’s degree in business, Manasvi also holds a post graduate diploma in human resources. She is credentialed in early childhood education from Wake Tech and is presently working toward her early childhood certification through American Montessori Society (AMS).
“I think it is a privilege that I get to guide these little beautiful souls on their path to independence and success every single day,” Manasvi shares. “Also, I am a firm believer that nature can be a great guide.”
When not in school, she spends time with her husband and Max as they enjoy going on hikes and other outdoor adventures together. As Manasvi is an organic soul who loves to cook, making treats for Max is a favorite project. She especially likes to travel and explore new places, shopping, and crafty DIY’s.
Kristen was born and raised in Clemmons, North Carolina. She graduated from East Carolina University in 2005 with a degree in criminal justice. After graduation, she enlisted in the United States Army where she served for seven years.
Upon leaving the Army in 2012, she returned to school and earned a degree in early childhood development. She earned her AMS Montessori certification in 2015.
Outside of the classroom, Kristen loves reading, watching baseball, baking, and spending time with her family.
Originally from Long Island, New York, Maureen obtained certificates in early childhood education from Stanley Community College and Nassau Community College.
Her teaching experience includes three years as lead teacher at the Seeds of Faith Preschool and as a classroom assistant at Southern Wake Montessori School. She joined The New School in 2010 as a classroom assistant and has continued to be an integral part of our strong teaching team.
Maureen is married, has two boys, and enjoys Korean martial arts, growing her own vegetables, and raising chickens.
Anna was raised in Georgia and attended Emmanuel College where she graduated with a B.S. in early childhood education. She moved to North Carolina after graduation and taught in a public school for two years.
Her family relocated to New Jersey where she worked at a Montessori charter school in New Brunswick for three years and was voted Teacher of the Year by her peers. It was here that her passion for the Montessori method was ignited.
Her family moved back to North Carolina, and she continued work as a 2nd-grade teacher at Lincoln Heights Elementary in Fuquay-Varina where she was once again voted Teacher of the Year.
Deciding to stay at home once she began having children, Anna began researching Montessori for herself so she could transform their home into a place that was truly accessible and engaging. When her oldest of two sons was ready for kindergarten, she began homeschooling him determined to use as much Montessori materials and methods as possible.
Toward the end of his 1st-grade year, she realized that their next step was to find a school at which they could both continue their Montessori education. Caleb and Daniel both fell in love with The New School. Anna completed her AMS Montessori teacher training in the summer of 2019.
Ryan was born and raised in Charlotte, NC, and attended North Carolina Central University. He graduated with a B.S. in family and consumer sciences with a concentration in child development.
Ryan’s Montessori journey began in 2001 at SAS Institute in Cary. Starting as an intern, he worked his way up and became a certified Montessori primary teacher. While there, he received his 3-to-6 years AMS credential at the Center for Montessori Teacher Education (CMTE) in 2007. Ryan then transitioned to Heartwood Montessori School in 2018 to become a lower elementary teacher. As of August 2020, he will hold an AMS certification in lower elementary from CMTE.
Wanting to continue his growth in the Montessori field, Ryan pursued an opportunity to join The New School Montessori Center community. He hopes to make a difference in guiding the youth of the future. Ryan has always had a passion for teaching children and watching them develop.
When not working on his do-it-yourself home projects or playing chess, Ryan enjoys spending quality time with his wife and two daughters, both of whom attend Montessori schools in Durham, NC.
Ashley was homeschooled her entire life and graduated from Wake Tech in the fall of 2019. Her favorite high school subject was biology, taking a major interest in animals and insects and their natural instincts and habitats.
Since she has a large extended family, she grew up watching and taking care of her younger cousins and her little brother. She loves to spend time with them when she can. And when she’s not working or interacting with her family, you can usually find Ashley painting, skateboarding, or playing the ukulele.
At TNS, Ashley hopes she can pass on her passion for the arts and sciences to the students and help shape their bright futures.
Laurel was born in Tallahassee, Florida. From two weeks of age, she grew up in a Montessori atmosphere with her mother as head teacher and director of the school.
Those early years of working in a hands-on, diverse environment left a very strong impression on her. This solidified Laurel’s idea of what school was for her — a fun place to look forward to each day, full of friends young and old who worked together to learn and play.
After nine years in this progressive community, Laurel transferred into public school where assigned desks, blackboards, and textbooks with tests were foreign to her. She then attended a project-based, private middle school and later graduated from a traditional public high school where she sang in a competitive choir and learned American Sign Language. Today, she actively incorporates ASL into her teaching.
Before graduating from Florida State with a B.S. in child and family sciences and a minor in education, she also earned her AMS certification for three to six-year-olds. She felt honored to complete this at her godmother’s Montessori school that was started with her mother before she was born.
From 2004 to 2011, Laurel was lucky enough to teach alongside her mother at Seminole Montessori School in Tallahassee. In 2011, she moved to Woodbridge, Virginia, just outside of Washington D.C., to work at Cardinal Montessori School. Here she received her AMS certifications in lower and upper elementary at the Barrie School where she met her husband Lionel, who had taught for many years in London. They visit Washington often and now enjoy introducing their young son London to all the adventures the city has to offer in and around it.
While creating a cohesive learning community for her classroom, Laurel takes grace and courtesy very seriously and enjoys instilling these qualities into her young learners in both conflict resolution and classroom stewardship. She also loves to incorporate movement, dance, yoga, singing, music, and nature into learning whenever possible.
She enjoys living in the state she used to vacation in each summer on Asheville camping trips. Laurel embraces being part of a large Montessori community and delights in working alongside so many talented teachers and enthusiastic Montessorians.
Krista is the mother of two, a 3-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl. Working with children in some capacity since 2002, she has been a Pre-K teacher, an early childhood STEM teacher, a park aide, a Tinkergarten leader, and a nanny. Krista has a bachelor’s degree in parks and natural resource management from NCSU and is currently pursuing her Lower Elementary Montessori certification.
She was initially drawn to the Montessori method because of its power to support a variety of learning styles and ability levels by following the child. Her love of nature and humanity also drew her because the curriculum promotes peace, community, and the interconnectedness of all living creatures. She is looking forward to helping guide your child on this Montessori journey and hopes to learn and grow with your child for years to come!
Krista is a huge “Doctor Who” fan and used to watch the original show on PBS as a kid. Her interests include hiking, tubing, going to amusement parks, visiting historical sites, nature and environmental education, and reading and watching sci-fi and fantasy. She also loves to learn, explore, and have adventures!
A North Carolina native, James earned his B.A. in history from Campbell University. With that degree, he’s enjoyed work at various historic sites throughout the state as a museum educator where he began working with students in the summer of 2012.
Spending his lower and middle school years at Sterling Montessori himself, James recognized the importance of community and desired to enter into a profession of service. Beginning with firefighting and EMS, he earned his North Carolina Firefighter certification in 2013 and was soon accepted as a cadet in the Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy at Wake Tech.
Once graduated, James was sworn in as a police officer in a local Wake county agency. His duties lead him to serve in diverse capacities as supervisor, investigator, crisis intervention officer, and field training officer. While working on North Carolina Central University’s police department, James was selected as Durham county’s Crisis Intervention Officer of the Year in 2020. He currently holds a North Carolina Intermediate Law Enforcement Certificate as a Sergeant with North State Company Police and is trained in CRASE.
A career opportunity was perfectly timed to transition back into the field of education with his wish to enter the classroom with the same humility and purpose as he had with law enforcement. He received substitute teacher training through the Wake County Public School System and worked as a classroom and intervention teacher at Green Hope Elementary until he was invited to join the TNS teaching team in the summer of 2021.
James also enjoys working with students with academic and physical disabilities and would like to eventually earn his therapeutic riding certification, hoping to “combine” a Montessori approach to equine therapy.
During his free time, James enjoys searching for the perfect historic site with his wife Katherine, along with their dog, cat, and many horses. His favorite is a newly rescued American Saddlebred named Jackson, who’s adjusting happily and hardily to his new forever home.
James attempts to inspire the students around him by encouraging them to replace “I can’t do it” to “ I can’t do it YET.”
Sheldon Clark has been involved in Montessori education since the early 1990s. He has served in administration as well as in the classroom and was the founding Upper Elementary Director of Follow the Child Montessori School in Raleigh.
Sheldon joined The New School in 2011 as its Upper Elementary Director and served in that role through the 2013-2014 school year. He took the AMI/NAMTA Orientation to Adolescent Studies in the summer of 2013 and opened TNS’s Montessori Adolescent Program in the fall of 2014.
Lisa earned her B.A. in advanced technical theatre from SUNY New Paltz. She also holds a nonprofit management certificate. After 12 years of professional work as a costume designer and theatre technician in New York City, Lisa and her husband moved to North Carolina to raise their lovely twins, Milo and Lola.
She joined The New School in the spring of 2012 as an administrative assistant. After subbing in the class many times, Lisa decided to pursue her Montessori training on the Children’s House level and graduated in the summer of 2013. With this firm background in Montessori education, she then decided to pursue training at the lower elementary level, which she completed in the spring of 2014.
Lisa enjoys camping, bread-making, sourdough experimentation, and designing and building costumes for her twins.
Favorite Montessori Quote
A leader, therefore, is not somebody with a sense of great authority, but somebody with a sense of great responsibility.
∼ Dr. Maria Montessori
After moving around much of her adult life from cities such as San Diego, Austin, and London, Alli achieved her life-long desire of moving to North Carolina. Two years ago, she and her family settled down right here in Holly Springs.
For as long as she can remember, Alli always wanted to have a career in education. After receiving her teaching certification from Virginia Tech, she taught 8 and 9-year-olds for four years at an alternative private school and one year of kindergarten before receiving her master’s degree at the University of San Diego.
Her passion for helping students who have reading and learning challenges took her down the next path of her educational career. For 12 years, Alli worked for a private, research-validated educational company called Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes.
Working with students of varying ages and abilities helped her see that with the right individualized intervention, all students can achieve their potential. That same passion she has for helping learners grow and succeed will be brought to The New School. Her own children have experienced Montessori classrooms, and Alli is thrilled to now be a part of that environment herself.
When Alli isn’t working, she enjoys reading, experimenting with gluten-free baking, walking her 2-year-old dog Maisy, and traveling with her husband and two sons.
Chambliss grew up in Raleigh, and with the exception of a semester abroad in Amsterdam, she has been in the Raleigh area her entire life. With three young children, she and her husband are incredibly grateful for the nearby grandparents who rarely go a week without taking a grandchild (or three!) off for an adventure.
Chambliss graduated from Meredith College with a degree in English and quickly went back to school to obtain her middle grades teaching licensure from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She spent the next 10 years teaching sixth grade language arts in Apex, mostly at Salem Middle School. In 2019, Chambliss took a short break from teaching to be at home with her three children, and it was not until her two older children started attending The New School that Chambliss felt called back to the classroom.
It was the individualized approach of Montessori education along with the caring communities that were created within her kids’ classrooms that first caught her attention. As she looked closer at the Montessori philosophy, she had a deep sense that this just felt right. She is thrilled to become a part of such a wonderful community!
In her free time, Chambliss can be found outside walking, running, swimming, or just enjoying the outdoors. One of her other favorite things to do is to travel with family and friends. Whether it’s just to the beach or across the ocean, she loves spending time with those she loves while exploring new places and meeting new people. And, of course, traveling lends itself to one of her other favorite things: good food!
Linda comes to North Carolina from Baltimore, Maryland. After graduating from NCSU with a B.S. in sociology, she began working with North Carolina Teacher Corps to gain her lateral entry teaching license in special education.
Prior to graduation, Linda tutored the student athletes at NCSU, specifically the football and baseball players. She has previously worked for Durham Public Schools at Hillside High School as an inclusion teacher for 9th-12th grade students with disabilities. She is certified to teach K-12 core and content with a focus on special education.
While at Hillside High School, she received the Beginning Teacher of the Month Award on three different occasions as well as Positive Behavior Intervention Support Teacher of the month. Linda volunteers with the Special Olympics in Durham County, and she helped to coordinate an inclusive district-wide prom for self-contained students with disabilities from Durham area middle and high schools.
Linda and her husband live in Raleigh with their sons Milo and Nils and their dog Daisy. In her free time, Linda likes to run, practice yoga, garden, read, listen to a variety of music, and attend live shows, cook, and most importantly, bake. Her favorite activity is baking, so feel free to ask for a sweet treat on occasion!
She also loves to take her sons to the park to swing or on walks around the neighborhood to take in the fresh air and enjoy the sights.
Hailing from Upstate New York, Art grew up in Albany. Upon completion of two years of studies at Ithaca College, Art moved back to Albany to pursue a career in music with the band he co-founded in high school. After scratching the surface of success with a significant amount of airplay, major label interest, and the opportunity to open for some of the biggest rock acts of the time period (Collective Soul, Fuel, Cracker, Gin Blossoms), Art and his wife Beth decided to settle down and start a family.
In November 2006, he and his wife Beth, along with their newborn son Aidan, relocated to North Carolina to pursue new opportunities. While teaching elementary-aged and adolescent students music lessons, Art realized his long-time passion for teaching and decided to pursue a degree in history, obtaining his B.A. in historical studies from SUNY Empire State. Art completed the NCTeach certification program through NC State and began his teaching position at The New School in 2018. He is looking forward to broadening his long-term educational skills and goals within the Montessori environment as well as the influence of TNS in the surrounding area.
Art has taught drums/percussion to hundreds of students over the past 20 years. In addition to his love of playing drums and listening to music, Art enjoys carpentry, gardening, reading, volunteering, and spending quality time with his wife and two children, both of whom have attended The New School.
Born and raised in Raleigh, Nicole spent her youth working as both a lifeguard and swim coach for children of all ages. When she graduated from NC State with a B.A. in communications, she worked as the marketing director for a small local business. She quickly realized that education was her passion and returned to NCSU for her teaching license through their NC Teach program.
Once certified in 6th-9th grade mathematics, Nicole spent the next five years teaching at both Wake county and Durham public schools. She held multiple leadership positions during her time in both districts, including team leader and leader of several math PLTs. She was also the boy’s soccer coach at North Garner Middle School. She helped the math department plan and implement a math night for parents. And she also created a cultural awareness door-decorating contest for classrooms to each research and present a festival or event from a different country around the world.
Nicole and her husband live in Fuquay Varina with their son Orion and dogs Brady and Penny. She likes to craft, run, travel, read, and play board games. She also enjoys listening to and playing music (her favorite, the piano!). Her family travels to the lake and the beach often where she could happily spend all her free time in the water! Nicole loves to take her son to the park and walk the trails. When stuck inside, she introduces her son to music and helps him explore math and science with his favorite STEM toys.