Sarasota Faculty

All Sarasota Faculty Members

Martha Barrett, LE 1, Early Childhood


Martha Barrett, currently our head educator for our Sarasota early childhood and VPK program, joined our staff as an early childhood assistant educator in 2006. Martha has assisted in both toddler and 3-6 year old classrooms at New Gate School. Martha speaks fluent Spanish and is originally from Central America. She has five children who …

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Jessica McBee, LE 1, Early Childhood


Jessica McBee joined the IVMS staff in 2013. She has a BFA from Ringling College of Art and Design, where she majored in photography. She recieved her national CDA as well as her Florida teaching certificate in Art K-12. Along with teaching children, art is her great passion. Jessica believes that art is a very important …

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Whelma Thompson, LE 2, Elementary, Faculty Montessori Live


Whelma Thompson has been a head educator for our lower elementary program since 2012.  In 2010, Whelma joined IVMS faculty to support lower elementary learning environments as a Montessori consultant. Whelma was a board member of Island Village Montessori for 10 years. She has been a Montessori educator for over 20 years working with three …

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Lowell Myers, LE 2, Elementary


Lowell Myers joined Island Village in 2013. She has had extensive experience with children working for organizations such as the Outward Bound program and Art Relief International located in Chang Mai, Thailand. She attended New College for her undergraduate studies. Through the University of South Florida, Lowell is pursuing her master’s degree in early childhood …

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Maggie St. Laurent, LE 2, Elementary


Maggie joined IVMS in 2013. Maggie has been with the Montessori family for over 4 years. She has her bachelor’s degree in education from University Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, Lima Peru. Originally, from Tarma, Peru, Maggie has been teaching in both public and private schools for more than 20 years. Maggie previously worked at New …

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Macla Evans, LE 3, Elementary


Macla Evans joined IVMS in 2011 as a substitute and began as a full time teacher at IVMS north in 2012.  Macla has a Bachelor of Science in early childhood education.  She is also AMI London certified in Montessori Education for ages 3-6.  She is a native Spanish speaker.  Macla’s entire 15 year teaching career …

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Kat Ricker, LE 3, Elementary


Kat Ricker has a bachelor’s degree and AMS certification in early childhood. In 2010, Kat joined the IVMS Sarasota faculty to work with the youngest students as Martha’s teammate. For the past year, Kat has worked with Whelma Thompson and will continue to do so in the new Clark Rd. campus.

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Kristen Grannell, LE 3, Elementary


Kristen Grannell joined the IVMS staff in 2013.  She was an active volunteer at IVMS and other elementary schools for five years before deciding to pursue a career in elementary education. Kristen has a BA in geoscience from the University of Southern Maine and is currently enrolled in Sarasota University and Montessori Live, working on …

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Monique Czaja, LE4, Elementary, Faculty Montessori Live


Monique joined Island Village Montessori School as a head educator and teacher trainer in 2008. Monique has AMS Montessori elementary I and early childhood certification and has been teaching in Montessori environments since 1978. She also has a PreK-3rd teaching certification. Monique has been involved with training teachers since 1986 and is a faculty member for …

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Lori Bayes, LE 4, Elementary


  Lori joins the team of LE 4 in Sarasota as assistant educator. She has been a Montessori educator since 1988 and has taught in Sarasota, Dallas, and London, Ontario in Canada. She joined the faculty of Island Village Montessori in 2011. Lori earned her B.A. in history and psychology from WLU in Waterloo, Canada …

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Emmaly Rogalski, LE 4 Elementary


Emmaly Rogalski joined Island Village in 2015. She is a double major graduate from UNC Charlotte with Bachelor of Art degrees in elementary education and psychology. She holds an American Montessori Society certification for 6-9 year olds and is certified for K-6 elementary. She has eight years of teaching experience in a Montessori classroom and three …

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Christine Schaefer, LE 6, Elementary


Christine Schaefer, joining the IVMS staff in 2012, has a BA with distinction in human development from Eckerd College. She received her early childhood teaching credential from the American Montessori Society while working at New Gate School. She also has an associates in applied science. Chris spent 6 years volunteering at Ashton Elementary School working with …

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Marjory Barksdale, LE 6 SRQ, Elementary


Marjory joins IVMS in 2014-2015. She earned a BA in Elementary Education, North Park University and AMI Primary certification from Midwest Montessori Institute; taught 1st grade at Emma Melzer School (IL) and was an early childhood directress at Lake Bluffs Montessori School (IL), Lake Forest Montessori School (IL), and New Gate School. Marjory enjoys cycling and spending time with family and friends.  She …

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Rebecca Johnson, LE 6 SRQ, Elementary


Rebecca joins IVMS for the 2014-2015 school year. She has been involved in Montessori education for 12 years and has a BS from the University of South Florida. Rebecca has two daughters, who attended Montessori School until 8th grade.  Rebecca enjoys the water (sailing, swimming and boating), camping, reading and being with family and friends.

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Donna Turoff, LE 7, Elementary


Donna, joining the IVMS staff in 2012, has a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics with a minor in psychology from Stetson University. She obtained her Elementary I credential from Seacoast Center for Montessori Education. She taught at New Gate School in Sarasota for 8 years. She worked in all levels of elementary and spent the …

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Debbie Vale, LE 7, Elementary Team Coordinator Sarasota, Faculty Montessori Live


Debbie Vale, joining the IVMS staff in 2012, has been a Montessori guide for since 1994. Debbie is a faculty member for our accredited educator training program, Montessori Live. Debbie has an elementary Montessori credential, a BS in communications and broadcasting from SUNY Oswego, and a teaching credential from Cal State LA. She has completed the program …

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Almu Fernandez-Anderson, LE 8, Upper School


Almu, joining the IVMS staff in 2012, has 20 years of teaching experience, 13 years of which are teaching in a Montessori environment. Almu holds a B.A. in human development from Eckerd College, and a second B.A. in elementary education from the University of Valladolid in her native country of Spain. Almu will complete Elementary II  certification …

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Agnes Yu, LE 8, Upper School, Faculty Montessori Live


Agnes Yu has been a parent and faculty member at IVMS since 2008 and is a faculty member of our accredited educator training program, Montessori Live. She received her AMS certification for 3 to 6 year olds from the Orlando Montessori Teacher Education Institute. Agnes has also earned her lower elementary Montessori certification through Montessori …

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