Montessori Center School

toddler through sixth grade since 1965

Department:

All A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Appointed in 2016 About me
Melanie Jacobs
Head of School
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Melanie Jacobs

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m.jacobs@mcssb.org

Title Head of School
Appointed 2016
Melanie Jacobs first came to MCS in 1988. Melanie has a B.A. in psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and holds a Montessori Elementary I credential from the Montessori Western Teacher Education Program.
Appointed in 2002 About me
Birgit Crable
Business and Facilities Manager
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Birgit Crable

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b.crable@mcssb.org

Title Business and Facilities Manager
Appointed 2002
Birgit Crable is the MCS business manager. Before coming to MCS, Birgit worked at the Pacific Oaks College and Children's School in Pasadena as an assistant controller.
Appointed in 2013 About me
Melanie Newhouse
Associate Administrator, Student Support Services Director
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Melanie Newhouse

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m.newhouse@mcssb.org

Title Associate Administrator, Student Support Services Director
Appointed 2013
Melanie Newhouse is the associate administrator and director of student support. Before coming to MCS, she was the executive director of a Washington, DC based non-profit organization and a teaching and research associate in the political science department at UCLA. Melanie has a bachelor's degree in political studies from Pitzer College and completed the honors in government program at Claremont McKenna College. She has a master's degree in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Appointed in 2010 About me
Alyssa Morris
Director of School Admissions
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Alyssa Morris

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a.morris@mcssb.org

Title Director of School Admissions
Appointed 2010
Alyssa Morris is the MCS admissions director. She holds a bachelor's degree and a multi-subject teaching credential in elementary education from the University of Milwaukee. Before coming to MCS, Alyssa had a variety of work experiences in educational settings, including teaching third grade and pre-school as well as teaching ESL in Japan.
Appointed in 2017 About me
Peggy Polos
Director of Development and Marketing
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Peggy Polos

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p.polos@mcssb.org

Title Director of Development and Marketing
Appointed 2017
Peggy Polos is the MCS Director of Development and Marketing. She has a B.A. in English from Mount Holyoke College and a master’s degree in communication from Boston University. Before coming to MCS, Peggy working for the City of Santa Barbara and Cox Communications as a communications specialist.
Appointed in 2017 About me
Annette Morales
Office Manager
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Annette Morales

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a.morales@mcssb.org

Title Office Manager
Appointed 2017
Annette joined our administrative team in the fall of 2017. She brings over a decade of experience working in various administrative positions for the Santa Maria Bonita School District. She has most recently worked at the Cottage Children's Center.
Appointed in 2005 About me
Shereen Ramawtar
Bookkeeper
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Shereen Ramawtar

805-683-9383 X 108

s.ramawtar@mcssb.org

Title Bookkeeper
Appointed 2005
Shereen Ramawter is the MCS bookkeeper. She pursued her undergraduate education in teaching at the University of Natal in South Africa. She has been a bookkeeper in the Santa Barbara area since 1996.
Appointed in 2015 About me
Janelle Ashby
Learning Specialist
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Janelle Ashby

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j.ashby@mcssb.org

Title Learning Specialist
Appointed 2015
Janelle Ashby is the MCS learning specialist. She has a bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a master's degree in education, specializing in reading, from the University of LaVerne. Before coming to MCS, Janelle was the director of the Lindamood Bell Center for learning processes in Santa Barbara. In her almost 20 years at Lindamood Bell, Janelle developed an expertise in learning differences, successful learning strategies, differentiated diagnosis and lesson planning.
Appointed in 1969 About me
Margaret McCleery-Cota
Head Teacher Gold Door
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Margaret McCleery-Cota

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golddoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Gold Door
Classes Gold Door
Appointed 1969
Margaret Cota first came to Montessori Center School in 1969 and is co-head teacher of the Gold Door classroom. Margaret has a B.A. in speech from the University of Illinois and a Montessori primary diploma from the Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Program in Chicago.
Appointed in 2012 About me
Nicole Staska
Co-Teacher Gold Door
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Nicole Staska

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golddoor@mcssb.org

Title Co-Teacher Gold Door
Appointed 2012
Nicole Staska has been at Montessori Center School since 2008 and is a co-head teacher in Gold Door. Nicole has a bachelor's degree in education from Florida Atlantic University and a multi-subject elementary education teaching credential. Nicole has an infant/toddler Montessori credential from the Center for Montessori Education in New York.
Appointed in 2013 About me
Suzuki Contreras
Gold Door Assistant Teacher

Suzuki Contreras

Title Gold Door Assistant Teacher
Appointed 2013
Suzuki Contreras is the assistant teacher in Gold Door. She holds a B.A. in early childhood studies from California State University Channel Islands.
Appointed in 2013 About me
Sandy Gorman
Head Teacher White Door
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Sandy Gorman

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whitedoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher White Door
Appointed 2013
Sandy Gorman has been at Montessori Center School since 2010 and a head teacher in White Door since 2013. Sandy has a B.A. in psychology from Westmont College and an M.S. in marriage family therapy from Fuller Seminary Graduate School of Psychology. Sandy holds an infant & toddler Montessori credential from Seton Montessori Institute.
Appointed in 2011 About me
Yeonwook Uyeno
Assistant Teacher White Door

Yeonwook Uyeno

Title Assistant Teacher White Door
Classes White Door
Appointed 2011
Yeonwook Kim-Uyeno has been at Montessori Center School since 2011. She has a bachelor's degree in home economics from Andong National University in the Republic of Korea and is completing her primary Montessori training.
Appointed in 2011 About me
Dorothy Miller
Assistant Teacher White Door/extended day

Dorothy Miller

Title Assistant Teacher White Door/extended day
Appointed 2011
Dorothy Miller started at MCS in 2011. She is currently an assistant teacher in White Door and an extended day pre-primary teacher. Dorothy has a B.A. in liberal arts from Union Institute and an M.A. in clinical psychology from Antioch University. She has completed of 45 units in early childhood education at Santa Barbara City College and holds a child development site supervisor permit, clinical adoption certification, and domestic violence training certification. Before coming to MCS, Dorothy worked as a child development specialist, medical social worker, substitute teacher and therapist.
Appointed in 2007 About me
Dell Barden
Head Teacher Blue Door
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Dell Barden

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bluedoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Blue Door
Appointed 2007
Dell Barden has been at Montessori Center School since 2003, working as the director of admissions before becoming the head teacher of Blue Door. She has a B.S. in early childhood education and holds a Montessori credential in early childhood education. She also is a credentialed teacher in art, elementary education and early elementary education. Dell is trained in the Lindamood-Bell LIPS and Seeing Stars programs and the Orton-Gillingham multi-sensory reading program.
Sarah Lopez
Blue Door Assistant Teacher

Sarah Lopez

Title Blue Door Assistant Teacher
Sarah Lopez is the assistant teacher in Blue Door. Sarah has a B.A. in theatre with children from Scripps College. She holds a multi-subject teaching credential from Saint Mary’s College and an American Montessori Society credential in early childhood from Montessori Western Teacher Training Program.
Appointed in 2015 About me
Kathryn Parker
Head Teacher Yellow Door
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Kathryn Parker

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yellowdoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Yellow Door
Appointed 2015
Kathryn Parker is the head teacher of Yellow Door and has been at MCS since 2010. Kathryn holds an Early Childhood credential from the American Montessori Society San Francisco Bay Area Teacher Education Center. She also holds a Montessori Certificate of Studies from NAMTA in adolescent studies. In addition, she completed the Montessori Teacher Assistant workshop. Before coming to MCS, Kathryn was the lead house parent and athletic director for Montessori High School at University Circle. She has been involved with Montessori for nearly 20 years, working with age groups from 18 months to 18 years old.
Appointed in 2014 About me
Gabriela Elias
Yellow Door Assistant Teacher

Gabriela Elias

Title Yellow Door Assistant Teacher
Appointed 2014
Gabi Elias has been at Montessori Center School since 2014 and is the assistant teacher in Yellow Door.
Appointed in 2007 About me
Krista Williams
Head Teacher Red Door
805-6839383 ext 220

Krista Williams

805-6839383 ext 220

reddoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Red Door
Classes Red Door
Appointed 2007
Krista Williams has been at MCS since 2007 and is the head teacher in Red Door. Krista has a B.A. in professional photography from Brooks Institute of Photography and holds an Early Childhood Montessori credential.
Appointed in 2004 About me
Sharon Liddy
Red Door Assistant Teacher

Sharon Liddy

Title Red Door Assistant Teacher
Classes Red Door
Appointed 2004
Sharon Liddy came to Montessori in 2004 and is the assistant teacher in Red Door. Sharon has worked with pre-primary and primary children in various childcare settings for the last 25 years.
Appointed in 2014 About me
Kacy Christofani
Head Teacher Silver Door
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Kacy Christofani

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silverdoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Silver Door
Appointed 2014
Kacy has been at Montessori Center School since 2007 and head teacher of Silver Door since 2014. She has a B.S. in art history and education. Kacy holds a Montessori early childhood education credential.
Appointed in 1982 About me
Carla Shapiro
Silver Door Assistant Teacher

Carla Shapiro

Title Silver Door Assistant Teacher
Classes Silver Door
Appointed 1982
Carla Shapiro is the assistant teacher in Silver Door. She has an associate degree in early childhood education.
Appointed in 2002 About me
JoAnne Serpa
Head Teacher Navy Door
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JoAnne Serpa

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navydoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Navy Door
Classes Navy Door
Appointed 2002
JoAnn Serpa has been at MCS since 1989 and head teacher of Navy Door since 2002. She has a B.A. in psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and an Early Childhood Credential from the American Montessori Society San Francisco Bay Area Teacher Education Center.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Paula Ludwig
Navy Door Assistant Teacher

Paula Ludwig

Title Navy Door Assistant Teacher
Appointed 2016
Paula Ludwig is the assistant teacher in Navy Door. Her undergraduate education is in mechanical engineering and early childhood development.
Appointed in 1978 About me
Anne Raiter
Head Teacher Aqua Door
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Anne Raiter

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aquadoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Aqua Door
Classes Aqua Door
Appointed 1978
Anne Raiter started at MCS in 1978. She is the head teacher of the Aqua Door classroom. Anne received her Montessori training as the Montessori Teacher Education Center, San Francisco Bay Area.
Appointed in 2006 About me
Irene Morales
Head Teacher Green Door
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Irene Morales

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greendoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Green Door
Appointed 2006
Irerne Morales has been at MCS since 2006. she is the head teacher of Green Door. Irene has a B.A. in bilingual education from the Instituto Superior Autonomo de Octe in Mexico. Irene completed the Montessori primary teacher training at Brookhaven College. She holds an AMI lower elementary Montessori teacher credential from San Francisco Bay Area Montessori Teacher Education Training Center. Irene is a certified ESL teacher for infants and children and also teaches guitar. Before coming to MCS, Irene was a teacher at a Montessori program in Texas.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Kimberly Sanchez
Green Door Assistant Teacher

Kimberly Sanchez

Title Green Door Assistant Teacher
Classes Green Door
Appointed 2016
Kimberly Sanchez is the assistant teacher in Green Door. She holds a B.A. in sociology with a minor in education, teacher preparation track from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Before coming to MCS, Kimberly worked in education, youth development and after school programming.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Molly O'Malia
Head Teacher Purple Door
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Molly O'Malia

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purpledoor@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Purple Door
Classes Purple Door
Appointed 2016
Molly O'Malia is the head teacher of Purple Door. She holds a bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and and AMS elementary teacher credential from the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New York. Before coming to MCS, Molly was a head Montessori teacher in the Los Angeles area. She has experience with the Reggio Emilio pedagogy and the Lindamood Bell learning process.
Appointed in 2009 About me
Kim Keller
Head Teacher Brown West
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Kim Keller

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brownwest@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Brown West
Appointed 2009
Kim Keller is the head teacher I Brown Door West. She has a B.S. in geology from Northern Arizona University and an AMS elementary I & II credential from the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New York. Before arriving at MCS, Kim worked as a head Montessori teacher in New Mexico, taught middle school math and ran an afterschool math tutor program in Arizona.
Appointed in 2009 About me
Loric Box
Head Teacher Brown East
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Loric Box

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browneast@mcssb.org

Title Head Teacher Brown East
Appointed 2009
Loric Box is the head teacher in Brown Door West. Loric has a B.A. in elementary education with a specialization in science from the College of Santa Fe and an AMS elementary I & II credential from the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New York. He also has an Outdoor Classroom Specialist I certificate form the Outdoor Classroom. Before arriving at MCS, Loric worked as a Montessori teacher in New Mexico.
Emily Stratton
Brown Door East Assistant Teacher

Emily Stratton

Title Brown Door East Assistant Teacher
Emily Stratton is the assistant teacher in Brown Door East. She has a B.A. in theater and dance from Westmont College. Emily has taught youth dance and physical education and works as a personal trainer. Before coming to MCS, Emily was a teaching assistant for a 5th grade classroom in North Carolina.
Appointed in 2018 About me
Erica Yorke
Brown Door Head Teacher
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Erica Yorke

8056839383

e.yorke@mcssb.org

Title Brown Door Head Teacher
Appointed 2018
Appointed in 2016 About me
Alyssa Gonzalez
Art Specialist
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Alyssa Gonzalez

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a.gonzalez@mcssb.org

Title Art Specialist
Appointed 2016
Alyssa Gonzalez has taught in the Santa Barbara area independent and public schools since 2008. She has worked at a pre-school teacher, art teacher, 4th-6th grade GATE teacher and 3rd grade school teacher. Alyssa holds an M.S. teaching credential with CLAD from CSU Channel Islands with an additional credential in art appreciation. She also has a B.A. in art history from Cal State Northridge.
Appointed in 1998 About me
Claude-Lise Lafranque
Music Specialist
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Claude-Lise Lafranque

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music@mcssb.org

Title Music Specialist
Classes Music
Appointed 1998
Claude-Lise La Franque is the MCS music specialist teacher. She has a B.A. with a first prize in performance from the National Conservatory in Bordeaux, France and completed the Orff teacher training certification program. She has performed for the Santa Barbara Symphony for over twenty-five years and is an active member of the Santa Barbara music community.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Anne Curtin
Librarian
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Anne Curtin

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library@mcssb.org

Title Librarian
Appointed 2016
Anne Curtain is the Montessori Center School librarian. She has a B.A. in English and psychology from Loras College in Dubuque, IA. She hold an M.S. in library and information science. Prior to coming to MCS, Anne worked as a children's librarian at the Goleta Public Library and Girls, Inc.
Appointed in 2015 About me
Suzanne Hawtrey
Library Assistant

Suzanne Hawtrey

Title Library Assistant
Appointed 2015
Suzanne Hawtrey is the library assistant at Montessori Center School. She has a B.A. in liberal studies from Antioch University and an associate degree in art and child development. She holds a child development site supervisor permit and an international Montessori teaching diploma from the North American Montessori Center for pre-school and kindergarten. Suzanne also completed the outdoor classroom specialist training and is a certified fitness trainer.
Appointed in 2001 About me
Derrick Curtis
Physical Education Specialist
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Derrick Curtis

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pe@mcssb.org

Title Physical Education Specialist
Appointed 2001
Derrick Curtis has been the physical education teacher at MCS since 2001. Derrick has a B.A. in physical education from California State University, Chico and also completed the therapeutic recreation program. Before coming to MCS, Derrick worked as a recreation therapist and a youth recreation instructor. Derrick also has taught dance in Santa Barbara for over 25 years. In 2009, Derrick was the recipient of Santa Barbara Dance Alliance's 12th annual Lifetime Achievement Award for contribution to dance in Santa Barbara.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Garrett Blair
Drama Specialist

Garrett Blair

drama@mcssb.org

Title Drama Specialist
Appointed 2016
Garrett Blair is the Lower and Upper Elementary Drama Specialist. He has been working in youth theater and youth theater education since 1991. He holds a B.A. in theatre arts from Columbia University. He also is the programming artistic director and co-founder of Collabreations, a youth theater arts program in Santa Barbara devoted to youth-driven collaborative creation processes.
Appointed in 2014 About me
Francis Cosworth
Computer and Technology Specialist

Francis Cosworth

computerlab@mcssb.org

Title Computer and Technology Specialist
Appointed 2014
Francis Cosworth is the Montessori Center School computer specialist. He has a bachelor of fine arts from the University of Pennsylvania. He also has associates degrees in animation, film and video production, computer science and multimedia arts and technologies. Francis has been a substitute teacher at Santa Barbara Unified Schools since 2010.
Appointed in 2017 About me
Julianne Stibbe
Aqua Door Assistant Teacher
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Julianne Stibbe

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EASC@mcssb.org

Title Aqua Door Assistant Teacher
Appointed 2017
Julianne Stibbe is part of the elementary after school care team. She holds a B.A. in psychology from the University of California in Santa Barbara. Before coming to MCS, she worked as a behavioral interventionist and a music instructor.
Appointed in 2016 About me
Delaney Newhouse
Elementary After School Care

Delaney Newhouse

Title Elementary After School Care
Appointed 2016
Appointed in 1996 About me
Kathy Finck
Primary After School Care Lead
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Kathy Finck

805- 683-9383 X 248

pasc@mcssb.org

Title Primary After School Care Lead
Appointed 1996
Kathy Finck has been at Montessori Center School since 1996. Kathy has a master's degree in education and school counseling. Before finding MCS, Kathy worked in thepublic schools in various positions, including assistant principal, counselor and credentialed teacher.
Appointed in 2017 About me
Kali Gutierrez
Elementary After School Care Lead

Kali Gutierrez

Title Elementary After School Care Lead
Appointed 2017
Kali Gutierrez works in primary after school care. She holds a B.A. in environmental studies from the University of California at Santa Barbara. In addition to working at MCS, Kali works as a kindergarten instructional aide for Santa Barbara Unified School District.
Appointed in 2017 About me
Jacqueline Ochoa
Playground/PrePrimary Extended Care

Jacqueline Ochoa

Title Playground/PrePrimary Extended Care
Appointed 2017
Jacqueline Ochoa works in primary after school care and as a playground aide. Her undergraduate studies are in early childhood education.
Appointed in 2015 About me
Paulo Perez
Buildings and Grounds Maintenance

Paulo Perez

Title Buildings and Grounds Maintenance
Appointed 2015