Norma Bolinger - Montessori Director (email@example.com)
Ms. Bolinger is originally from Vancouver, Canada and has extensively traveled and worked throughout the world – St. Maarten, Australia, Bahamas and the U.S. She received her AMI Primary Directress Certification from Vancouver, Canada; studied Community Recreation from Quebec, Canada; earned an AA in Early Childhood Education from Ohio; and gained her Staff Credential and Director Credentials from the state of Florida. Previously, Ms. Bolinger has worked with Head Start programs and has served as Directress of Toddler and Primary programs, as well as School Director. She rejoined the VIMSIA staff as Montessori Director in 2011.
PRIMARY: 3 to 6 year olds
Mandy Boyle, Primary Directress/Primary Coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ms. Boyle was born and raised in Ireland. Growing up she traveled to most continents; Oceania is still on the bucket list! Mandy received both Primary and Elementary AMI training in Ireland. She worked in Ireland and Massachusetts before making her journey to the Virgin Islands. She has over 20 years of Montessori experience. Through her years at Virgin Islands Montessori School she has seen it expand in students, staff, land, buildings and name! She is proud to be part of our school community.
Simone Summer, Primary Directress/Primary Coordinator (email@example.com)
Simone was born and raised in St Thomas. As a child, she attended VIMSIA and was a student of Ms. Keating, who is now retired. Simone has been teaching Montessori for approximately 20 years: in the US here at VIMSIA between 2001-2011 and for the last 5 years in New Zealand. Her love of travel and learning about different cultures has grown from her upbringing in our largely diverse and multicultural island and now brings her back. Although Simone will continue to enjoy her adventures to foreign lands, her heart and home will always be here, surrounded by the crystal blue sea and love for diverse island life.
LOWER ELEMENTARY: 6 to 9 year olds
Jessica Di Francesco, Lower Elementary Directress
Ms. Di Francesco received her diploma from Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) for elementary (ages 6-12) from the Montessori Training Center of New England. She received her Master of Education from the University of Hartford and holds a B.S. in Advertising and Marketing. Jessica was a toddler assistant at the Cobb Montessori School, CT, then a lower elementary class assistant at the Montessori Magnet School, CT, and a lower elementary teacher at the Annie Fisher Montessori Magnet School since 2015. Jessica’s talents and interests include: martial arts instruction, drama, and singing, and she is a board member for the Connecticut Regional Burning Man event.
LeAnne Mattingley, Lower Elementary Directress
Ms. Mattingley has been a long time faculty member of VI Montessori School. She has taught at the Primary and Elementary levels. She has a BA in Communications from Arizona State University and has been a long time resident of St. Thomas. Ms. Mattingley received her AMI accreditation in 1997. She was an organizer with VICCTRE (Virgin Islands V.I. Community Cooperative Thoroughbred Retirement Efforts) and remains passionate about riding and caring for her horse. Ms. Mattingley has been teaching tumbling, gymnastics and yoga for after school programs for many years, and personally loves being a yoga student herself.
UPPER ELEMENTARY: 9 to 12 year olds
Kate Ludick, Upper Elementary Directress (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ms. Ludick holds two diplomas from Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) for elementary (ages 6-12) and adolescent (ages 12-18). She has certification from the Green School Educator Course at the Green School in Bali, Indonesia, and a State of Ohio teaching license for all grades K-12. Kate holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from Cleveland State University. Special training includes “All Kinds of Minds” (Mel Levine) approach to learning differences, Montessori Model United Nations teacher training, and Orton-Gillingham method for teaching reading, writing, and spelling from the Institute of Multi-Sensory Education. She has taught, directed and developed programs for over eight years at Montessori and progressive/alternative schools emphasizing best practice and holistic learning in the USA, Canada, Spain and Indonesia. Kate is a yoga instructor (Cleveland Clinic School of Yoga), enjoys the outdoors, sports, reading, writing and travel.
Petra Satter, Upper Elementary Directress (email@example.com)
Originally from Poulsbo, Washington, Ms. Satter joins us from Portland Oregon where she received her Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) diploma from Montessori Northwest. She holds a Masters of Education with Montessori focus from Loyola University, Baltimore, Maryland and a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from University of Portland. In 2015 Ms. Satter participated in a study abroad program in Toledo, Spain where she volunteered teaching English as a second language to Spanish students in multiple grades.
Before coming to VIMS her work has spanned from Portland Village School, a K-8 Waldorf inspired charter school, Colegio Divina Pastora in Toledo, Spain, Holy Cross K-8 school in Portland, Head Counselor at Camp Fire of Seattle to Assistant Teacher at Vermont Hills Family Life Center, Portland, Oregon.
Ms. Satter is passionate about sharing her love of global lifelong learning with an emphasis on respect for the environment while fostering a natural development of every child. She enjoys engaging with the community through volunteering. She loves traveling and discovering new cultures and bicycling, having completed 5 Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classics- a 200 mile, 2 day bike race from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon. She is an avid snowboarder and hiker, summiting Mt. St Helens twice.
Nicole Donastorg, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Señora Donastorg was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She is currently working on her degree in Early Childhood Education. Starting with VIMSIA in 2011, Señora Donastorg has worked in the Bougainvillea and La Casa programs, as well as her current role in Lower Elementary. She has two children, Audrianna and Destiny, both attending VIMSIA.
Stephanie Miles, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Señora Miles continues to assist in Ms. Boyle's classroom as a part of our Spanish Infusion program. She has been a Spanish Teacher at other local schools and has been an Assistant at several levels within our Montessori Spanish Infusion program. Señora holds a degree in Business from the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico. She has two children, Afeefe and Fathi, that are VIMSIA students.
Morgan Sampson, Teacher's Assistant
Ms. Sampson has recently received her AMI Elementary teaching accreditation from Montessori Northwest Portland. She has a Bachelors of Fine Arts/Painting Emphasis with a minor in Psychology from Northern Arizona University. She has worked in Montessori environments as an art specialist and as an assistant. Congratulations to Morgan for receiving her AMI accreditation to teach and we look forward to having you share your art, Montessori and Psychology skills in our Elementary classroom! Morgan enjoys painting and drawing, reading, music and dancing, exploring the outdoors and practicing yoga. Welcome Morgan.
Milisa Santiago, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Señora Santiago has a Masters Degree and a Bachelors Degree in Pyschology. She has experience in teaching and counseling and is a native Spanish speaker. We welcome Señora Santiago to our Spanish Infusion Program!
Spanish & Physical Education for Elementary
Adalio Araujo, Spanish and Physical Education (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Señor Araujo is a native of São Tomé, Africa, and holds a M.A. in Linguistics obtained in Besancon, France. Since 1989, Señor has been offering a quality Spanish program to students starting at the elementary level. In addition, Señor teaches Physical Education and coaches our elementary soccer teams. He is a FIFA-certified soccer coach and has refereed JV/Varsity soccer for more than ten years. Our soccer program is unparalleled on the island, and since the inception of inter-school elementary soccer several years ago, our elementary teams have dominated!
Michele Weichman, Spanish Teacher Montessori and PGIA
Michele Weichman was born in New Jersey. She holds a B.A. in Spanish from Rutgers University and is currently working on her Master's Degree in Education Administration. She has taught in the States and in St. Thomas. Señora Weichman teaches Spanish in both Montessori and PGIA and is the student council advisor. Señora Weichman joined VIMSIA in 2013 and her daughter, Carly, is currently in the PGIA.