Directory

Administration

Mrs. Meredith Le Grand, M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Meredith Le Grand, M.Ed.

Co-Head of School, Academic
mlegrand@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Meredith Le Grand, M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Meredith Le Grand, M.Ed.

Co-Head of School, Academic
mlegrand@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Le Grand has over 30 years of experience as a Montessorian, serving in several different roles, and was a Primary Teacher. She discovered Montessori while still in high school, and immediately fell in love with the Method. She joined MSM in 1996, and became the Academic Head of School in 2008. She is on the faculty of the Northern Virginia Montessori Institute in Ashburn VA, and also serves as an Intern Observer.
Education: George Mason University - History BA; Xavier University - M.Ed.; AMS Montessori Certification
Personal Mission: to help as many children as possible become confident, competent, independent learners who are unafraid.
Interests: reading historical novels, nature walks, the beach
Thomas Le Grand's picture

Mr. Thomas Le Grand

Co-Head of School, Business
tlegrand@mcleanmontessori.org
Joan Marie Parasine's picture

Ms Joan Marie Parasine

School Founder
jmp241@hotmail.com
Rahma Adams's picture

Mrs. Rahma Adams

Bookkeeper
bookkeeper@mcleanmontessori.org
Rahma Adams's picture

Mrs. Rahma Adams

Bookkeeper
bookkeeper@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Adams was born in Ghana, and in 2011, she migrated to the United States to join her husband who serves in the US Navy. She received a BS in Finance from Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) in 2009, and a Certificate in Accounting from Northern Virginia Community College in 2013, and is currently a CPA candidate. In 2009, she joined CDH Financial Holdings in a position of Finance/Admin Officer and rose to Executive Director’s Assistance in 2010. She joined Hertzbach and Company P.A. in 2014, starting as Staff Accountant I-II, and joined Robert Half as a salary professional Consultant, and served in the capacity of Staff Accountant III/ Senior Accountant.

She joined the Montessori School of McLean as the Accounting consultant in July 2018, and enjoys every bit of what she does because of the excellent services the School offers to our future Leaders.  Her hobbies are cooking and dancing.
Lael Dowd's picture

Mrs Lael Dowd

Administrative Assistant
ldowd@mcleanmontessori.org
Susan Lyons's picture

Ms Susan Lyons

Receptionist
reception@mcleanmontessori.org
Leslie Montague's picture

Mrs. Leslie Montague

Director of Admission
lmontague@mcleanmontessori.org
Leslie Montague's picture

Mrs. Leslie Montague

Director of Admission
lmontague@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Montague has over 30 years of experience in Early Childhood Education, wearing many hats: starting as a Parent Aide and member of the governing Board of Trustees of a prominent McLean independent school, then moving to the classroom as a teaching assistant for many years. She became a Lead Teacher which she also enjoyed before joining MSM in 2010 as the Director of Admission.  Education: George Mason University - Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a Focus on Early Childhood; three University of Virginia courses toward her M.Ed.;  Personal Mission: to help parents connect with the benefits of Montessori education for their children. Interests: being the best Grammie she can be for four (soon to be six) wonderful grandchildren!
Ivy Moore LPN's picture

Mrs. Ivy Moore LPN

Health Coordinator
nurse@mcleanmontessori.org
Heather Pearce's picture

Mrs. Heather Pearce

Communications Liaison
Outplacement Coordinator
hpearce@mcleanmontessori.org
Heather Pearce's picture

Mrs. Heather Pearce

Communications Liaison
Outplacement Coordinator
hpearce@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Pearce became a member of the MSM community as a parent in 2010, and as a staff member in 2018. Prior to joining MSM, she spent over twenty years in the political and corporate arenas. She has worked in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom, the United States House of Representatives, the United States Senate and the White House. She has also worked in corporate sales and government relations for Fortune 500 companies. She received her BA from The Catholic University and MBA from The University of Texas at Austin. 

Mrs. Pearce resides in McLean, VA with her husband and two sons and enjoys hiking, tennis and golf. Her favorite aspect of being a part of MSM is “the amazing close-knit community that spans across students, faculty and staff, and families.”

Pre-Primary

Shayla Carter's picture

Ms Shayla Carter

Lead Teacher
shaylacrystalcarter@gmail.com
Shayla Carter's picture

Ms Shayla Carter

Lead Teacher
shaylacrystalcarter@gmail.com
Originally from California, I spent the last 2 years in Salt Lake City, Utah as a Montessori Infant/Toddler Teacher and received my AMS Montessori Credential for 0-3 year olds from the Institute of Montessori Innovation from Westminster College. Before that, I split my time between Northern and Southern California going from my hometown in Sacramento where I worked as a Montessori toddler teacher for 2 years, to Los Angeles, where I received my Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations from the University of Southern California (Fight On!). What I love about Montessori is the emphasis on the respect for the child, and how, when given freely, the child will always amaze and exceed expectations. I love to hear, “I didn’t know a 2-year old could do that!” When I do, I know that I have done my job well. Having recently moved to Virginia in June 2019, I have enjoyed getting acquainted with the East Coast, antique shopping, visiting museums, finding used and rare bookstores, and exploring the plethora of mountains and parks nearby. It has been so fun to explore the DMV! I love to talk about Montessori philosophy and consult on how to incorporate Montessori principles into your homes, so please, do not hesitate to ask!
Margarita Ibarra's picture

Mrs. Margarita Ibarra

Assistant
margalucre@yahoo.com
Manjula Patel's picture

Mrs. Manjula Patel

Unassigned Assistant
patel.manjula242@gmail.com
Jeannette Yanes's picture

Mrs Jeannette Yanes

Lead Teacher
jyanes@mcleanmontessori.org
Jeannette Yanes's picture

Mrs Jeannette Yanes

Lead Teacher
jyanes@mcleanmontessori.org
I came to MSM as a Primary classroom assistant in February 2015 with zero experience of working with children. The only experience I had was taking care of my own nieces and nephews. I consider myself fortunate that Mrs. LeGrand saw in me something that I did not see in myself. In February of this year, I will have 4 years at MSM. I went to George Mason University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science and did my Infant/Toddler Montessori training at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies at Barrie. What I love most about MSM is the authentic Montessori method being practiced by each teacher. It is great to work in an environment where we all believe that the greatest work we have is to follow the child and meet his or her needs. 

I love to spend time with my loved ones. I also enjoy hiking, going the beach, and getting to explore new places.

Primary

Ms. Zainab Aliyu's picture

Ms. Zainab Aliyu

Assistant - Fremming
zainabgiade@yahoo.com
Zeynep Biron's picture

Miss Zeynep Biron

Assistant - Lu
zeynepbiron@yahoo.com
Sara Bjerde's picture

Ms. Sara Bjerde

Assistant - Silverman
sarabjerde@yahoo.com
Christiane Cristo's picture

Mrs. Christiane Cristo

Assistant - Rucker
christiane_cristo@hotmail.com
Megan Fremming's picture

Mrs. Megan Fremming

Lead Teacher
mfremming@mcleanmontessori.org
Megan Fremming's picture

Mrs. Megan Fremming

Lead Teacher
mfremming@mcleanmontessori.org
I am AMS certified to teach Primary (pre-k -1st grade) and Secondary education (ages 12-18) with 15 years of teaching experience. I am native to the area and graduated from Langley High School. My Bachelor’s degree is in Economics, with a background in alternative health care practices. After quickly discovering a desk job was not in the cards for my overall happiness and wellbeing, I decided to pursue teaching.  After observing in a Montessori early childhood classroom, I was intrigued! I quickly became passionate about the teachings of Dr. Maria Montessori and the implementation of her pedagogy in the classroom. I spent six years teaching in an early childhood classroom and then took a three year hiatus to obtain my secondary teaching credential and to teach in a Montessori middle school program. I had a great experience working with middle school students, but realized working with the little ones was my true calling. I returned to a Primary classroom at the Montessori School of McLean in 2010. I am happy to be back in an early childhood classroom and to be a part of such a great community of educators and families here at MSM.  My husband and I have a 3 year old daughter, Melody. She inspires and motivates me to be a better person every day. When I am not at school, I recharge my batteries through my love of nature, seeing live music, and taking frequent trips to the beach.
Mrs. Melissa Jarvis's picture

Mrs. Melissa Jarvis

Intern/Assistant - Kiess
melissa.jarvis@gmail.com
Jennifer Kiess's picture

Ms. Jennifer Kiess

Lead Teacher
jkiess@mcleanmontessori.org
Wei Lu's picture

Ms Wei Lu

Lead Teacher
wlu@mcleanmontessori.org
Wei Lu's picture

Ms Wei Lu

Lead Teacher
wlu@mcleanmontessori.org
I started working at MSM in August 2018 after completing my certification in Early Childhood Development from Northern Virginia Community College. My first degree is in Economics.  Earlier on, I worked with under-privileged children as a volunteer and also, as a full-time teacher at a school. I have returned to teaching after many years of being a devoted mother and raising a family. I have always enjoyed interacting with children and playing my role in their personal development. For this reason, teaching is very close to my heart. I am happy being a part of the MSM community as it is a great place for children, and also for me to pursue my passion.
Riffat Malik's picture

Mrs. Riffat Malik

Assistant - Vaz
Art Teacher - Elementary
art@mcleanmontessori.org
Riffat Malik's picture

Mrs. Riffat Malik

Assistant - Vaz
Art Teacher - Elementary
art@mcleanmontessori.org
I have studied Fine Arts and Early Childhood Development. I started my teaching career in 1991, in the Alexandria school system, working with preschool and kindergarten students. Since then, I have worked with young children to make a difference in their lives. In 2009, I joined Montessori School of McLean as a Teacher’s Assistant, and became an Art Teacher to Elementary students in 2017. At MSM, I am also responsible for teaching a Peace building class to Kindergarten students. I can honestly say that joining MSM was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I truly enjoy being part of the teaching staff, who are creative, loving, engaging, and offer an immersive experience to all children in our school. Outside of school, I enjoy traveling to different parts of the world. I like going to the theater, taking nature trails, baking, and drawing sketches as it helps me relax.
Carolyn Rucker's picture

Miss Carolyn Rucker

Lead Teacher
crucker@mcleanmontessori.org
Coleen Silverman's picture

Ms. Coleen Silverman

Lead Teacher
csilverman@mcleanmontessori.org
Coleen Silverman's picture

Ms. Coleen Silverman

Lead Teacher
csilverman@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Silverman joined MSM in 2013. She holds a BA in Marketing Communications from State University of NY at Buffalo, and her Montessori Primary credential from the Northern Virginia Montessori Institute. She enjoys collecting children's books, visiting historic sites, and classic movies. Her personal philosophy: "Each child is an individual with unique interests, needs and developmental paths, and it's the goal of any teacher to identify and nurture these in every child. The core of the Montessori educational philosophy is to seek and serve each child's unique spirit and nurture the lifelong love of learning. This educational model provides me, as an educator, a way to connect with my students in a wholistic manner and continue to learn about the world with them as well.'  It is my privilege to work with such an unparalleled and committed faculty, staff, students and families.
Avan Vaz's picture

Mrs. Avan Vaz

Lead Teacher
avaz@mcleanmontessori.org

Lower Elementary

Ingy Ali's picture

Mrs Ingy Ali

Lower Elementary Assistant
ingyali1@gmail.com
Maria Benincasa's picture

Mrs. Maria Benincasa

Lower Elementary Assistant
maria.benincasa88@gmail.com
Maria Benincasa's picture

Mrs. Maria Benincasa

Lower Elementary Assistant
maria.benincasa88@gmail.com
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Caitlyn Carter-Nanian M.Ed.'s picture

Ms. Caitlyn Carter-Nanian M.Ed.

Lead Teacher
ccarternanian@mcleanmontessori.org
Caitlyn Carter-Nanian M.Ed.'s picture

Ms. Caitlyn Carter-Nanian M.Ed.

Lead Teacher
ccarternanian@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Carter-Nanian began her teaching career as an assistant in a Montessori Primary classroom for 3 years, and she has been a Montessori Lower Elementary teacher at MSM since 2010.  She holds a BA in English from George Mason University, and her Montessori Elementary credential from the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies.  She holds a Masters in Teaching from Trinity Washington University.  She is an avid reader who enjoys watching movies and spending time with her husband (an English professor), her toddler, and her standard poodle.

Personal philosophy: "I love being a Montessori teacher mostly because I get to foster the overall growth of the students.  We don't just focus on academics, we prepare students for life, to become leaders, and citizens of society.  I find it to be a very powerful way of teaching".
Laura Evers's picture

Mrs. Laura Evers

Elementary Distance Learning Assistant
Peace Curriculum
levers@mcleanmontessori.org
Laura Evers's picture

Mrs. Laura Evers

Elementary Distance Learning Assistant
Peace Curriculum
levers@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Evers was a traditional preschool teacher for 8 years before becoming a Montessori teacher in 2003.  She holds a B.A. in Psychology, and completed her Montessori Primary training at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies.  "Int. Research and child development"  Her interests outside of school include: Community of Christ minister, gardening, travel, Reiki master, seminary.
Tammy Gikakis's picture

Mrs Tammy Gikakis

Elementary Distance Learning Assistant
tammy@gikakis.com
Ms. Bonnie Kohner's picture

Ms. Bonnie Kohner

Lead Teacher
bkohner@mcleanmontessori.org
Calesse Smith M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Calesse Smith M.Ed.

Lead Teacher
csmith@mcleanmontessori.org
Calesse Smith M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Calesse Smith M.Ed.

Lead Teacher
csmith@mcleanmontessori.org
I am enjoying my 6th year of teaching at MSM in the Lower Elementary. I started working here in 2013, immediately after graduating from Xavier University (Cincinnati, Ohio) with a dual degree in Montessori Education (ages 6-9) and Early Childhood Education (grades K – 3rd), and a minor in Spanish. I also have a Master’s Degree from George Mason University in Literacy Education. Some interesting things about me are that I love to do any outdoor activities, especially running, hiking, water and/or snow skiing, and rock climbing. I also grew up living in various cities all over the world, including Athens, Greece and Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. I love exploring and learning about different cultures. My favorite thing about being a part of the MSM community is the camaraderie among the staff, the students, and their families. Everyone functions as one big team working towards the same goal: doing our best to guide our students toward becoming life-long lovers of learning in order to achieve their unique potential.
Ainsley Van Over's picture

Ms. Ainsley Van Over

Lead Teacher
avanover@mcleanmontessori.org
Ainsley Van Over's picture

Ms. Ainsley Van Over

Lead Teacher
avanover@mcleanmontessori.org
Ever since Ainsley Van Over attended Montessori School of McLean Upper Elementary from 1998-2001, she knew she’d found her home.  Once you become a member of the MSM community, you’re one for life!  Ms. Van Over has been teaching Elementary Montessori for three years and earned her Elementary I-II certification at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies.  She was a lead Upper Elementary teacher and Elementary Spanish teacher for the 2017-18 school year at another Montessori school.  This is her first year as an assistant teacher at MSM.  She completed a senior internship at MSM in the Lower Elementary in 2007.  After she left MSM, she went on to attend Flint Hill, Franklin & Marshall College, and Marymount University where she studied comparative literature and Spanish.

Upper Elementary

Patricia Farruggio's picture

Mrs. Patricia Farruggio

Lead Teacher
pfarruggio@mcleanmontessori.org
Patricia Farruggio's picture

Mrs. Patricia Farruggio

Lead Teacher
pfarruggio@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Farruggio has been a member of the MSM community since 2008. She began as a parent, then a yoga instructor, a classroom assistant and has been teaching in the Lower and Upper Elementary since 2015.  She holds a BA in English Literature from George Mason University, and a Montessori Elementary I-II  credential from the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies. She enjoys reading, traveling, cooking, hiking, and spending time with her family. Her goal as a teacher is to help prepare children to face the challenges of the world, and inspire them to become lifelong learners.
Sarah Grocock's picture

Mrs. Sarah Grocock

Assistant - Upper Elementary
sgrocock@mcleanmontessori.org
Sarah Grocock's picture

Mrs. Sarah Grocock

Assistant - Upper Elementary
sgrocock@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Grocock has worked as a teaching assistant at MSM since 2007. She spent eight years working in Primary classes before moving to her current role in Lower Elementary. She is from the UK, where she trained and worked as a pediatric oncology nurse, and her family moved to the US in 2002 because of her husband’s job. At MSM, she enjoys watching students grow academically and socially as they progress from Primary through to graduating from Upper Elementary. She loves working with children, and particularly enjoys reading out loud, especially since her own children are now in college. In her free time, she likes to hike and explore new places.
Sara Mulhall's picture

Ms Sara Mulhall

Lead Teacher
smulhall@mcleanmontessori.org
Sara Mulhall's picture

Ms Sara Mulhall

Lead Teacher
smulhall@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Mulhall became a part of the MSM community in 2008 as a parent, and has been teaching at MSM since 2011. She spent five years as a Lower Elementary Teacher and currently is an Upper Elementary Teacher. She holds a BA in Psychology with an emphasis in Child Development from Purdue University. As of 2018, she has been working in the Child Development and Education field for 20 years. Ms. Mulhall holds an Elementary I-II credential from the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies, and completed the Montessori Applied to Children at Risk (MACAR) training. She enjoys reading, gardening, traveling, and spending time with her friends and family. Her philosophy is, “The purpose of education is not simply to teach but to nurture a child’s love of learning. Children should spend their early years becoming independent thinkers who are in command of their learning environment, and are always striving to learn more.”

Enrichments

Thea Bartha M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Thea Bartha M.Ed.

Outdoor Classroom Teacher
Curriculum Coordinator and Learning Specialist
tbartha@mcleanmontessori.org
Thea Bartha M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Thea Bartha M.Ed.

Outdoor Classroom Teacher
Curriculum Coordinator and Learning Specialist
tbartha@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Bartha is a lifelong learner and enjoys taking on new challenges.  She came to MSM in the spring of 2018.  She has a Bachelor's degree in both Early Childhood and Special Education from Salve Regina University, a Master's degree in Reading Education from Boston University, and has her Elementary I training from the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies.  She has over 20 years of teaching experience, and has held positions as a Lower Elementary Teacher, Learning Specialist, Director of Studies, and Transition Counselor, all in a Montessori environment.  Ms. Bartha is trained in the Orton Gillingham and MACAR reading programs.  Currently, she owns and operates Magnolia Montessori Materials, a company that develops support materials for the Elementary classroom.  She is a board member at the Sycamore School, a private middle school located in Arlington.  She lives in Alexandria, has two Montessori children, and a Westie named, Scout.  She enjoys watching her students make new discoveries in the outdoor classroom, and spends her time outdoors, practicing yoga, biking, cooking, and baking.
Laura Cian's picture

Mrs. Laura Cian

Music/Drama Teacher
lcian@mcleanmontessori.org
Laura Cian's picture

Mrs. Laura Cian

Music/Drama Teacher
lcian@mcleanmontessori.org
Ms. Cian joined MSM in 2014 as a Spanish teacher, and has now  been the Pre-Primary through Lower Elementary Music Teacher at MSM for 2 years.  Ms. Cian is from Argentina.  She holds a Master’s Degree in Music Education from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina; and a Master’s Degree in Music Education from the CAECE University of Buenos Aires, Argentina.  She has 8 years of working experience in her country, specializing in children ages 2-12.  After moving to the States with her family 13 years ago, she worked as a Toddler and 4- year old class teacher at Providence Baptist Preschool.  She has also worked as a Music Teacher at the Levine Music School.  Ms. Cian enjoys knitting and jogging.  Being a Music Teacher at MSM gives her the opportunity to continue her passion for teaching and learning in an environment that strives to equip the whole child for everyday life, inside and outside the school, which ultimately makes a direct impact on families and communities.  Ms. Cian is also the parent of an MSM Kindergartener.  She  experiences firsthand how her son continuously develops social skills, emotional growth and cognitive preparation, leading him to be more independent, self-disciplined and self-confident.  She lives in McLean with her husband, 3 kids, and their two pets.
Jaimie Galbreath M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Jaimie Galbreath M.Ed.

Science Teacher
jgalbreath@mcleanmontessori.org
Jaimie Galbreath M.Ed.'s picture

Mrs. Jaimie Galbreath M.Ed.

Science Teacher
jgalbreath@mcleanmontessori.org
Mrs. Galbreath (“Mrs. G”) has over 20 years of Montessori teacher experience at MSM, including 10 in the Science Lab. She received her BA in Theatre from Sweet Briar College, her AMI Montessori Elementary Teaching Certificate and Master of Education Degree from Loyola University Maryland, and a Graduate Certificate in Earth/Space Science Education from Johns Hopkins University. All three of her daughters graduated from MSM and have wonderful memories of their time here. Mrs. Galbreath loves the family atmosphere at MSM. When not in the Science Lab she can be found on the tennis courts.
Nina Gibson's picture

Ms. Nina Gibson

Music/Drama Teacher - Upper Elementary
ngibson@mcleanmontessori.org
Monica Granovsky's picture

Mrs. Monica Granovsky

Spanish Teacher - Primary
mgranovsky@mcleanmontessori.org
Janet Lee's picture

Dr. Janet Lee

Academic Technology Strategist
Technology Teacher
jlee@mcleanmontessori.org
Janet Lee's picture

Dr. Janet Lee

Academic Technology Strategist
Technology Teacher
jlee@mcleanmontessori.org
Dr. Lee is the Technology Teacher and Academic Technology Strategist, serving MSM since 2012. A Northern Virginian native, she has deep professional and personal roots in the community. Dr. Lee earned her doctorate from the Graduate School at The University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA upon successful defense of her dissertation on pattern recognition using Artificial Neural Networks, a branch of Artificial Intelligence. She earned her Master and Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. Dr. Lee was an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton in the Advanced Computational Technologies Practice. Dr. Lee finds it her duty and honor to guide students from their first technological steps to full expression of the students’ research and ideas, that will serve them well into the future. Her two grown children are proud alumni of MSM. Outside of the classroom, Dr. Lee enjoys photography and traveling.
Riffat Malik's picture

Mrs. Riffat Malik

Assistant - Vaz
Art Teacher - Elementary
art@mcleanmontessori.org
Riffat Malik's picture

Mrs. Riffat Malik

Assistant - Vaz
Art Teacher - Elementary
art@mcleanmontessori.org
I have studied Fine Arts and Early Childhood Development. I started my teaching career in 1991, in the Alexandria school system, working with preschool and kindergarten students. Since then, I have worked with young children to make a difference in their lives. In 2009, I joined Montessori School of McLean as a Teacher’s Assistant, and became an Art Teacher to Elementary students in 2017. At MSM, I am also responsible for teaching a Peace building class to Kindergarten students. I can honestly say that joining MSM was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I truly enjoy being part of the teaching staff, who are creative, loving, engaging, and offer an immersive experience to all children in our school. Outside of school, I enjoy traveling to different parts of the world. I like going to the theater, taking nature trails, baking, and drawing sketches as it helps me relax.
Katherine Orlando's picture

Mrs Katherine Orlando

Physical Education Teacher
physicaled@mcleanmontessori.org
Isabel Salas's picture

Mrs Isabel Salas

Spanish Teacher - Elementary
spanish@mcleanmontessori.org
Jana Thomas's picture

Mrs Jana Thomas

Outdoor Classroom Teacher
jthomas@mcleanmontessori.org

Transportation

Hyo Pak's picture

Mr. Hyo Pak

Bus Driver
hyopak1@gmail.com