Faculty & Staff
Teachers at Alexander Montessori School have many options, but this is the place they have chosen to be. Here they are able to fulfill their professional aspirations to teach and to help children in an orderly environment where the objective is education. Here, teachers are not merely employees, but partners in an important mission.
Teaching at an independent school is very special, and our staff chooses to be here because it is professionally rewarding, and it is where they can see children prosper under their tutelage. In order to prepare themselves to teach in a Montessori School, these teachers are required to complete a rigorous training program in an approved training course and then spend a long period of internship under the direction of an experienced teacher.
Red Road Campus
(Preschool, Ages 3-6)
Mrs. Maria McGuire
BA in Liberal Arts from Florida International University, Miami, FL. AMS Montessori 3-6 Teacher’s Certificate from MTTI. She speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Brenda Orihuela
BA in Criminology, University of Miami, Miami, FL. AMS Early Childhood Education Certificate (MTTI). Speaks English and Spanish. Spent 2 years as a Lance Corporal in the United States Marine Corps and is an alumna of Alexander Montessori School.
Old Cutler Road Campus
(Montessori Toddler Program, Ages 2-3 and Preschool, Ages 3-6)
Ms. Mirnely Borrero
BA in Elementary Education from Interamerican University of Puerto Rico. AMS Montessori 3-6 Teacher's Certificate from MTTI. Speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Mariana Cacho
MA in Education, Loyola College, Baltimore, MD, and BA in Pedagogy, Universidad Morelos, Mexico. AMI Montessori 3-6 Certificate from the Foundation for Montessori Education in Toronto, Canada. Has several years of Montessori teaching experience in Toronto. Ms. Cacho speaks English and Spanish.
Mrs. Ella Cibils Montes
BS in Early Childhood Education from Universidad Catolica del Uruguay, Montevideo, Uruguay. Pursuing a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of North Florida. AMS Montessori 3-6 Certificate from MTTI. Mrs. Cibils Montes speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Sharon Dalton
Attended SUNY at Plattsburgh, NY. Has both her AMS 3-6 and Infant/Toddler Credentials. Taught at schools in Alaska, California, Washington, and Florida. Consulted for many Washington schools. Has been a Montessori Infant/Toddler Trainer for programs in Seattle, WA, Boulder, CO, as well as at Native American Tribal schools.
Mrs. Marta Demmer
BS, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AA, Miami-Dade Community College. AMS Montessori 3-6 Teacher’s Certificate from MTTI. Mrs. Demmer speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Maria Luisa Ferro-Escuza
BS in Early Childhood Education from Universidad Metropolitana in Caracas, Venezuela. AMS Montessori 3-6 Certificate from MTTI. She received Montessori training in Mexico, and taught Montessori there for six years. Speaks English and Spanish.
Mrs. Tanny Beatriz Lago
BA in Art History from Universidad de Oriente, Santiago de Cuba, Cuba. AMS Montessori 3-6 Teacher's Certificate from MTTI. Currently pursuing a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of North Florida. Speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Soraya Penate
BA in Education, Barry University, Miami, FL. Mrs. Penate attended Miami-Dade Community College and Florida International University. She holds an AMS Montessori 3-6 Certificate from MTTI. She speaks English and Spanish.
Mrs. Grecia Perez
MS in Early Childhood Education with ESOL endorsement and BS in Exercise and Sports Sciences, Florida International University, Miami, FL. Professional Director's Credential; AMS Montessori 3-6 Certificate from MTTI. Speaks English and Spanish.
Mrs. Maria Teresa Vicens
BA in Modern Languages from Fordham University, New York City, NY. She holds AMS Montessori Certificates at both Infant/Toddler and 3-6 Levels from the North Carolina Center for Montessori Teacher Education. She speaks both English and Spanish.
Palmetto Bay Campus
(Montessori Toddler Program, Ages 1½-3 and Preschool, Ages 3-6)
Ms. Pamela Earl-Parler
BA in Sociology, Univeristy of Manitoba. Montessori 3-6 Diploma from AMI Centre, London. AMS Montessori Infant-Toddler Certificate, CMTE, NY. Ms. Earl-Parler has taught in the Virgin Islands and at Alexander Montessori School since the Toddler Program's inception in 1989.
Mrs. Linda Habich
BA, Psychology, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AMS Montessori 3-6 Certificate from MTTI. Mrs. Habich speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Milagros Vargas
AA in Early Childhood Education, Community College, New York City, NY. AMS Infant/Toddler Certificate from South Florida Montessori Education Center, Miami, FL. Ms. Aponte has worked with the Alexander Montessori School Toddler Program since she started. She speaks English and Spanish.
Ludlam Road Campus
(Lower School Elementary, Ages 6-9 and Middle School Prep, Ages 9-12)
Ms. Cynthia Arboleda
BS in Education, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL. Florida State Certified in Elementary Education and Florida State Certified Masters Program in Gifted Education (K-12). Ms. Arboleda has taught Gifted Education in the Miami-Dade County Public School System.
Ms. Anne Becton
MS, Education, BS, Psychology, University of Miami and is an Alexander alumna (Class of 1972). Mrs. Becton worked as a psychometrist in private practice for six years and joined our staff in 1993. She is the Academic Coordinator and also runs the Reading Lab.
Mrs. Jeneise Bello
Ed.S., Educational Leadership, Nova Southeastern University, Davie, FL. MA, Early Childhood Education, BS, Elementary Education, Florida International University, Miami, FL. Mrs. Bello holds a Florida State Certificate in Elementary Education with an ESOL Endorsement. Mrs. Bello has taught Gifted Education in the International Baccalaureate Program for the Miami-Dade County Public School system.
Ms. Silvia Borda
BS, Industrial Design, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogota, Colombia. AMI Montessori Infant-Toddler, 3-6 Certificates (Casa dei Bambini, Mexico). Speaks English and Spanish, and has earned credentials in Conscious Discipline.
Mrs. Meghan Camilletti
BA, Psychology, Minors in Dance and Theatre, University of Tampa, Tampa, FL. Mrs. Camilletti is the owner of Stretch Dance Studio in Chicago, founded in 2009. She has taught at various schools in the city of Chicago as a Preschool Teacher and Dance Program Director. As a professional dancer, Mrs. Camilletti has also performed in Walt Disney World. She is the Elementary Dance Teacher.
Mrs. Melanie Carlson
MS, Barry University, Miami, FL. BS, University of Georgia, Athens, GA. AMS Montessori 6-9 Certificate (CMTE, New Rochelle, NY), AMS Montessori 6-12 Certificate, Barry University, Miami, FL. Adjunct Assistant Professor, Barry University, 1996; Adjunct Professor, Palm Beach Community College, Montessori Teacher Training.
Mrs. Chiara Cates
MA, Spanish Linguistics, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM. BA, Interdisciplinary Studies and Minor in Media Studies, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC. AMS Montessori 6-9 Certification, Summit Montessori Teacher Training Institute, Davie, FL. Mrs. Cates is a native Spanish speaker from Lima, Peru. Her teaching path began as a Professor Assistant at Appalachian State University. Since then, Mrs. Cates has served as a lead Teacher in Texas and California and has volunteered at a Montessori school in England.
Mrs. Cynthia Chereque
BA, French with honors, Minor in Psychology, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL. AA in Business, West Valley College, Saratoga, CA. Mrs. Chereque was born in Peru and raised in France. She speaks English, French, and Spanish. She has worked at the French International School, Le Petit Prince, in Boca Raton, as well as at Gulliver Academy and Acadomia in Miami as a French tutor.
Mr. Michael Depew
BA, History, Minor in Education, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AA, Accounting, University of Baltimore, Baltimore, MD. Mr. Depew coached soccer and basketball for the YMCA, was a General Manager in the hospitality industry, and is an avid marathon runner.
Mr. Stephen Falk
BA, Music, Oakland University, Rochester, MI. Mr. Falk has been a Music School Teacher, a Middle School Band Director, and a Music Director at a variety of independent schools. He is also a professional musician and a church accompanist.
Mr. Rodolfo Fernandez, Jr.
BS, Sports Management, American Military University, Charlestown, WV. Coach Fernandez is the owner of RYAN Sports and RYAN Football (founded in 2005). Coach has led countless flag football teams to national titles. He has also been the Sports Track Camp Director at Alexander Camp since 2005. Coach Fernandez is an alumnus of Alexander Montessori School (Class of 1997).
Ms. Lessie Fleischfresser
Graduate of Liberty University in Child Psychology and Early Childhood Education. Has been teaching ESOL since 2000.
Mrs. Christina Gonzalez
BS, Early Childhood Development with ESOL Endorsement, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AMS Montessori 6-9 Certificate, Summit Montessori Teacher Training Institute. Mrs. Gonzalez completed her Internship in Alexander's Lower School Elementary Program prior to joining the Faculty. She speaks English and Spanish, and is a Red Cross Certified Lifeguard.
Mrs. Ismary Hassun
MS, Elementary Education, Barry University, Miami, FL. BA, Elementary Education, St. Thomas University, Miami, FL. AMS Montessori 6-12 Certificate, Barry University. Mrs Hassun is an experienced Montessori Teacher. She taught Elementary Montessori in Miami-Dade public schools for 8 years.
Mrs. Caroline Jacobellis
MA in Library and Information Science, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. BS in Elementary Education, Florida International University, Miami, FL. She holds a Florida Certificate in Elementary Education and an ESOL Endorsement.
Mrs. Ellen Kahn
MA in Learning Disabilities, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. BA in Special Education, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Florida State Certified, K-12. Mrs. Kahn has taught in public schools in Pinellas and Miami-Dade Counties and was Placement Specialist for MDCPS. She was Lower School Curriculum Coordinator for seven years at Alexander before joining the Middle School Preparatory Staff.
Mrs. Carol Karch
MA in Business Education, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. BA in Business Education, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. Mrs. Karch holds a Florida State Certificate in Computer Science K-12 and Business Education 6-12. She taught Computer Science at Gulliver Schools for 20 years.
Mrs. Dellys Limonta
MS, Teaching, Reading, and Writing, BS, Teaching Spanish, University of Carabobo, Valencia, Venezuela. Florida State Certified in World Language Spanish (Grades K-12). Mrs. Limonta speaks English and Spanish, and she has taught Spanish for several years both in Venezuela and in the Miami-Dade County Public School system.
Mrs. Robbie Lukes
MS, BS in Elementary Education and Specialties in ESOL and Early Childhood Education, University of Memphis, Memphis, TN and Southwest Nova University. Mrs. Lukes has been teaching since 1980 and has been at Alexander Montessori School as Director of ESOL since 1986.
Mrs. Nina McClendon
MS Ed., University of Louisiana, Lafayette, LA. BA, William Patterson College, Wayne, NJ. AA, Middlesex County College, Edison, NJ. AMS Montessori 6-9 Certificate (CMTE, New Rochelle, NY). She speaks English and Spanish.
Mrs. Angie McCray
BS in Elementary Education K-6, Institute of Education, University of London, England. Montessori Centres Examination Board 2-5, 6-9 Certificate, London Montessori Centre, England. Mrs. Worton-McCray has worked as both a Montessori and state-certified Teacher in England. She has also spent many years teaching ESOL in both Spain and Mexico.
Mrs. Annia Elena Ballagas Negrete
BFA in Dance (with Honors), Higher Institute of the Arts, Havana, Cuba. Mrs. Negrete taught in the ENA (National School of Art) for several years. She has been a professional dancer and choreographer of different dance companies in Cuba and Italy (where she had run her own Dance Academy for 10 years). Before joining Alexander's Faculty, she taught Dance in the Pinecrest Community Center's after school program.
Mrs. Patricia Pittaluga
BS in Education, Universidad Sagrado Corazon, Lima, Peru. Mrs. Pittaluga taught from Preschool through Elementary in Peru and in Miami. She has studied Computers in Peru and at Florida International University, holds Teacher’s Certificates from Peru and the State of Florida, and has taught Visual Arts.
Mrs. Wendy Ross
BA in Communications with a minor in Foreign Languages, University of Miami, Miami, FL. Elementary Teacher Certification credits, Florida International University, Miami, FL. Mrs. Ross taught elementary independent school students (K-5) in Miami-Dade County, FL and elementary public school ESOL students (K-5) in Oakland County, MI. Mrs. Ross has educated children and adults in literacy and art having volunteered at the Oakland Literacy Council in Michigan, as well as at the Detroit Institute of Art. Her daughters are Alexander Montessori Alumnae. She is an avid cyclist, traveler, and hiker.
Mrs. Gladys Tirse
BS in Communications, Trinity International University (cum laude), Davie, FL. Mrs. Tirse holds a Florida Certificate in Elementary Education. Prior to joining the Alexander Faculty, she taught Language Arts and Writing in the Miami-Dade County public school system.
Ms. Karina Torres
MS in Neuroscience and Education, Universidad Antonio Ruiz de Montoya, Lima, Peru. BS in Biology, Universidad Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru. Ms. Torres speaks English and Spanish. She has worked as a STEAM Coordinator at a school in Peru as well as a Science and Math Teacher.
Mrs. Virginia Vaca
BS in Elementary Education, Florida International University (cum laude), Miami, FL. Florida State Certified, K-6, ESOL Endorsement, AMS Montessori 6-9 Certificate, Summit Questa Montessori. Mrs. Vaca completed her Internship in Alexander's Lower School Elementary Program prior to joining the Faculty. She speaks English and Spanish.
Ms. Jodi Veillette
USPTA Pro; Ms. Veillette has created and directed programs in Michigan and Florida.
Mrs. Victoria Yunta
BFA in Fine Art and Art History, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AA in Fine Art and Art Education, Miami-Dade College, Miami, FL. Ratcliffe Art + Design Incubator Fellow and Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Alumnus. Mrs. Yunta has studied Japanese art and culture as an exchange student at Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka, Japan. She is a practicing silversmith, jewelry designer, and small metals artist. Mrs. Yunta has worked with students from the elementary to undergraduate levels, and is continuing her graduate education in Asian Culture, Aesthetics, and Design at Florida International University.
Mrs. Susan Zsigo
MS in Montessori Education, Barry University, Miami, FL. BA in English, Florida International University, Miami, FL. AMS Montessori 6-12 Certificate, Barry University. Completed her Internship in Alexander's Lower School Elementary Program prior to joining the Faculty. Mrs. Zsigo studied abroad in London where she discovered her passion for acting and storytelling. She speaks English and Spanish.
Ann Blau, Campus Secretary/Human Resources
Ena Casco, Accounts Payable
Gioconda Dynes, Accounts Receivable
Maria Franco, School Secretary/Registrar
Gabriela Martinez-Fonts, Director of Marketing & Communications
Odalys Fernandez, Campus Secretary
Carol Wolcott, Administrator
Jose Casares, Director of Maintenance
OLD CUTLER ROAD
Marta Valdes, Campus Secretary
Michelle Romero, Campus Director