Faculty

 

All of our classroom teachers are BC Certified teachers with Montessori certification.  Our specialty subject teachers are all BC Certified teachers with background knowledge in Montessori philosophy.  In our preschool/Kindergarten classrooms, our teachers all have their Early Childhood Education certification as well as teaching credentials through the provincial regulating bodies.

We boast low student to teacher ratios with each classroom having one classroom teacher and one Classroom Assistant.
 
Please see our full faculty list below.

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Administration

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Patrick Vincentine

Mr. Patrick Vincentine comes from a family of educators. Born and raised in Ontario he graduated from Concordia University and taught at the Montreal School for the Hearing impaired before travelling overseas. Mr. Patrick was principal of an English immersion school in Hualien, Taiwan for 5 years. Upon his return to Canada, Mr. Patrick settled in Victoria and soon found work as a teacher with Maria Montessori Academy.  After completing Elementary, Middle and Secondary Montessori training he was part of a team which initiated the Senior school. When not guiding traffic in the parking lot, Mr. Patrick enjoys mountaineering, running and hockey.

 

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Christine Tuttle

After graduating from UBC with a B.Ed in 2007, Christine Tuttle came to MMA as a teacher in the Gamma classroom; she immediately fell in love with the Montessori philosophy of education and went on to complete her Montessori certification in Lower Elementary.  In 2015, Miss Christine was hired as Vice Principal and now shares her time equally between the Gamma classroom and the office.  Miss Christine loves spending time outdoors with her family, playing field hockey, reading books at the beach and going camping.  

 

Office Admin

 

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Deborah Arcuri

Deborah Arcuri has been a member of the MMA office team since 2007.  Miss Deborah has a wealth of experience having previously been the Office Administrator at Greater Victoria Christian Academy and West-Mont School. When Miss Deborah is not at school she loves to spend time with family, especially her grandchildren.  Her passions include line-dancing, scrapbooking, walking, and travelling with her husband, Ron.

 

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Laura Hofmann

Laura Hofmann joined MMA in the spring 2015 as the newest contribution to the office team!  Miss Laura comes to us from Germany with a background in Office Administration.  Miss Laura loves the community of MMA and is proud to be Mom to Lucas and Anton, who are also fortunate to attend MMA.  When Laura is not at school, she enjoys the outdoors and is busy working on her hobby farm tending to her bees, chickens, dog, Henry, and garden with her loving husband Paul.

 

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Renée Pelletier

Renée Pelletier has worked at MMA since 2011 as our Office Administrator.  Miss Renée loves being the one to welcome new families to the Academy as well as being a liaison between parents, teachers, and the administration.  Miss Renée has a Certificate in Accounting and Computing as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Science.   She is Mom to two amazing children, both who are fortunate to have attended MMA since preschool/kindergarten in 2008.  When she is not at school, she can be found playing with her dog, Evie, working in her garden, or on her road bike (which is her new passion).

 

Jennie Lewis

Jennie Lewis has worked at Maria Montessori Academy since 2011 as our Financial Comptroller. Miss Jennie loves working at the school and being responsible for the accounting operations of MMA. Miss Jennie has a CPA, CA designation as well as a Master’s in Public Administration.  When she is not working, she is spending time with her family, gardening, or practicing yoga.

 

Preschool/Kindergarten Classroom Teachers 

Lavender

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tania Bennato

Tania Bennato joined Maria Montessori Academy in 2011 after teaching in a more traditional education setting in other local private schools.  Miss Tania has 9 years of teaching experience in the classroom, and several more years working with early childhood years.  She has worked with various grades here at MMA and her passion has always been working in the Preschool and Kindergarten rooms.  Tania was born and raised in Victoria, BC and cherishes her island lifestyle.   When Tania is not enjoying herself at MMA,  she can be found spending time with family outdoors, baking, and any sort of project that she can build, paint or restyle.      

 

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Sara dePol

Sara dePol has worked at Maria Montessori Academy since 2006.  Upon completion of her Montessori and Early Childhood Education with the Angela Martin Montessori Training center, Miss Sara has thoroughly enjoyed her time working with the Preschool/Kindergarten classes.  She is passionate about watching young children discover their individual potential and providing them with the fundamental skills they will use throughout their lives.  When Miss Sara is not at MMA, she can be found enjoying her time with her family.

Bluebell

 

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Nicole Tuele

Nicole Tuele began her career as a receptionist at Selkirk Montessori School in 2000, where she discovered her passion for the Montessori philosophy. She obtained her Montessori Diploma in 2007 from the Angela Martin Montessori Training Centre. Miss Nicole continued her studies at Camosun College and received her ECE Certificate in 2008. She then went on to work at Glenlyon Norfolk School for four years, went back to Selkirk Montessori for a year then worked as a substitute teacher when she decided to join MMA full-time in April 2015. Born and raised in Victoria, Miss Nicole has developed a true appreciation for nature and all the natural spaces the area has to offer. When not working she can often be found hiking or playing sports.

 

Janelle Doucette

Janelle Doucette has been a preschool kindergarten teacher for more than 20 years at MMA.  She has a BFA from Concordia University and a Diploma in Education from McGill University. After moving to Victoria in 1991 she studied at the Angela Martin training center and obtained her Montessori diploma.  She loves working with children and their families, and being able to see how Montessori education can make such a difference in their lives.  Janelle loves the community that MMA offers and enjoys teaching in such a positive and supportive environment. She is a mom of two children who both went to MMA and are now in University.  When she is not working, Janelle loves cooking, playing with her family, and going for walks with her two dogs, Max and Zoe.

Sunflower

 

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Trudi Samson

Trudi Samson is a Preschool Classroom Teacher in the Sunflower Room.  She was educated at Montessori Centre International, St Nicholas in London (UK).  She worked as a teacher in the UK and Sweden, before moving to Canada in 2001.  Trudi loves to travel and is always planning her next trip abroad.  She dreams of one day selling up, buying a yellow camper van and taking to the road!

 

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Kyung-Hee Kim

Kyung-Hee Kim has been part of Maria Montessori Academy since 1996. She started her teacher training at the Angela Martin Montessori Teacher Training Centre and completed both Early Childhood and Elementary level of training in 2001.  Kyung-Hee also has an Early Childhood Education certificate as well as a BC Independent Teaching certificate.  Inspiration from her own children who have attended Montessori schools in Korea, she found her passion as a Montessori teacher. Kyung-Hee finds joy in observing the developmental and growing process of her students during the Preschool and Kindergarten years.  In addition to teaching, Kyung-Hee is often hiking with her two dogs at the Mt. Doug trails. She also enjoys training at the Pilates and Barre studios.

Elementary Classroom Teachers 

Alpha

 

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Marilyn Triste

Marilyn Triste joined MMA in the year 2000 as the Culture Teacher for the lower elementary classes. Since then she has been the Head Teacher for the Alpha Class. Miss Marilyn has also been involved in the training of teachers at the Angela Martin Montessori Training Centre. She holds a Master’s Degree in Communication Research, a Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcast Communication, and a Diploma in Montessori Elementary Education. Miss Marilyn is a true believer in awakening the sense of wonder in every child. She imparts her enthusiasm for cooking, baking and gardening to her students, teaching them skills for everyday living.

Beta

 

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Lesley Duthie

Lesley Duthie has been the classroom teacher in Beta (Lower Elementary) since 2010, and taught for three years at a Montessori school in North Vancouver. She has an MA in Art Education from the University of British Columbia and has worked in art gallery education as well as in corporate training and communications. Miss Lesley leaped into a Montessori training program in Vancouver, after observing her daughter (now an MMA graduating student) thrive at a preschool there.  Miss Lesley’s greatest joys outside of school are gardening and horseback riding.

Gamma

 

Jodi Brown

Jodi Brown joined the MMA lower elementary teaching staff in 2014 and currently shares the Gamma classroom with Miss Christine. She began her Montessori career by embarking on her AMS certification in 2009 while living in Vancouver.  Prior to moving to Vancouver in 2007, Miss Jodi held a diverse array of teaching positions including teaching English to junior high school students in the Japanese public school system and physical education to elementary students in Australia.

Miss Jodi has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Whitman College in Washington State. She attained her teaching credentials from Western Washington University. Miss Jodi has a busy family life with three young children, and when time permits, enjoys running, reading and taking in all of the wonderful natural surroundings of Victoria.

 

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Christine Tuttle

After graduating from UBC with a B.Ed in 2007, Christine Tuttle came to MMA as a teacher in the Gamma classroom; she immediately fell in love with the Montessori philosophy of education and went on to complete her Montessori certification in Lower Elementary.  In 2015, Miss Christine was hired as Vice Principal and now shares her time equally between the Gamma classroom and the office.  Miss Christine loves spending time outdoors with her family, playing field hockey, reading books at the beach and going camping.  

Kappa

 

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Sandra Haywood

Miss Sandra is currently the directress for the Kappa classroom. With twenty years teaching experience, she has taught at preschool, lower elementary and upper elementary levels. She also has a graduate degree in Library and Information Studies, with a thesis in award-winning young adult literature. When not teaching, Sandra enjoys cycling with her son, David.

Lambda

 

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Sue Thorne

Sue Thorne  began her career teaching medical professionals about Nutrition and Wellness.  She switched gears and started in the school system with preschool, then lower elementary and eventually moved into the upper elementary level.  As well as UE, Miss Sue now teaches adults again, with the Montessori  Classroom Assistant training course.  She has her undergraduate degree in Science and an MA in Education as well as a Montessori Certificate in Elementary I and II. On a personal note, Miss Sue is a long distance runner, a kayaker, and a cyclist.  For quiet time, she loves to read and garden.  Most importantly,  Miss Sue loves spending time with her own children and extended family.  

Delta

 

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Rachel Hartsook

Rachel Hartsook has been teaching at the Academy since January 2009.  She first taught preschool/kindergarten music and worked as a classroom assistant, while completing her Montessori Elementary credential.  Miss Rachel began teaching in the Delta classroom in September 2011, after a large wait list prompted the new classroom to open.  Miss Rachel has a Bachelor of Arts in English and Sociology and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Victoria. She loves teaching her students about the world, different cultures and history.  In her spare time Miss Rachel enjoys reading novels, going for walks, and singing in a community choir.

Sigma

 

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Brooke Rose

In 2008, Brooke Rose started work at MMA as the French teacher and part-time in Sigma. She has been a full-time Sigma teacher since 2009. In 2013 Miss Brooke completed her Secondary Montessori certification, in Houston, Texas. This year, Miss Brooke is also starting up the Omega Drama department! Outside of school, Brooke loves hiking around this beautiful island, drinking soy lattes, reading, writing down ideas for her future book, taking photos, and thinking about where next to travel.

 

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Lee Patterson

Lee Patterson has worked as a Sigma Director since 2015. Since joining the MMA community, he has been involved with coaching soccer, helping with other sports, and the creation of the senior school garden. Lee is a graduate of the University of Victoria, having completed a Bachelor of Arts with a major in French, as well as a Bachelor of Education, with a focus on Middle School. He is currently undertaking his Montessori training through the Cincinnati Montessori Secondary Teacher Education Program.

In his free time, Lee enjoys a wide array of activities, including: swimming, ultimate Frisbee, soccer, hockey, skiing, kitesurfing, camping, cooking, reading, and gardening.

 

Omega

 

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Aaron Gillatly

Aaron Gillatly came to Maria Montessori Academy after 6 years in the public system, and arrived just in time to be there at Omega’s very beginnings. An enthusiast in politics, Mr. Aaron has been fortunate enough to attend Teacher Institutes in Democracy held at both the Provincial legislative and the Parliament in Ottawa. When not boldly defending the value of the Oxford Comma, Mr. Aaron can be found riding about on a motorcycle with his club, the Angry Pandas.

 

 

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Andy Moll

Andy Moll is the newest teacher to join the Omega team. He currently teaches mathematics and social studies to students from grades 9-12. Born and raised in Victoria, Mr. Andy traveled overseas to Vancouver to complete an undergraduate degree in Genetics at UBC. After a few years working as a research scientist Mr. Andy began working in various educational roles and soon decided to complete his Bachelor of Education at SFU with a minor in Outdoor Education. When Mr. Andy is not at MMA he might be found riding his bike around town or foraging for seafood, mushrooms or other tasty treats somewhere in our local wilderness

 

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Haley Rymer

Haley Rymer has worked at MMA since 2011 teaching science to grades 9-12 students.  She received her bachelor of science in Biology at the University of Victoria in 2009 and went on to get both her teaching certificate and her Montessori certification.  Haley brings an inquiry based, hands on approach to science that encourages students to explore and make their own discoveries about the world around us.  When Haley is not at school she enjoys cooking, hiking and spending time with her family.

 

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Ashley Jones

Ashley Jones has ten years of teaching experience and has been teaching in the high school at MMA since 2013.   She has completed a Masters in Educational Technology and is currently completing her Masters in Integrative Montessori Education. Her specialty and passion is in Mathematics and she feels that there is nothing more satisfying than when a concept "clicks" in the student's mind.  She also teaches Personal World and Entrepreneurship and enjoys gardening and spending time in nature.

Specialty Teachers

French

 

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Valérie Cooper

Back at MMA after a ten-year hiatus in France, Madame Valérie teaches French from Pre-school to Grade 3 and P.E. in Kindergarten. Over the course of her career, Madame Valérie has taught in different classroom settings in France and in Victoria. In 2016, she graduated from Université d’Artois and was awarded her Masters in Education with Distinction in Modern Languages Education. Beyond the boundaries of MMA, you might see Valérie cycling, running with her whippet or busy enjoying herself preparing a gourmet meal... Mmm…

 

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Dominique de Chantal

Dominique de Chantal has been teaching upper level French at MMA since 2014. Dominique has a French Canadian background and took her teaching education at UVIC along with a bachelors of English Literature. She also has a bachelors of Ecotourism and Outdoor Leadership from Mount Royal University. Dominique is an active equestrian and loves spending her weekends competing or camping with her Appaloosa horse Elmo. Keep an eye out for them around Elk Lake Park.

Arts Education

 

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Susanne Ledingham

Susanne Ledingham has been involved with art education for over 20 years.  After moving to Victoria in 2004, Miss Susanne began working at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, developing art programs and teaching art classes.  Using her experience both as an artist and as an art historian, Susanne brings a multi-cultural emphasis to her classes while focusing on process and play in order to gain mastery and skill.  When Miss Susanne is not thoroughly enjoying herself in her MMA art studio, she can be found kayaking on Mayne Island, taking in a yoga class, playing around with her own art projects, and having tons of fun with her family.  

 

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Sandi Henrich

Sandi Henrich has been teaching art classes and developing art programs and workshops in Victoria since 2002. Her teaching approach is centered on encouraging creative expression and process-based art exploration. Miss Sandi has a degree in History in Art from the University of Victoria and a background in visual arts. When she is not making art, Miss Sandi loves to spend time with her creative family enjoying the beauty of nature.

 

 

Music Education

 

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Bambie Maree

Bambie Maree has been teaching music to the preschool/Kindergarten and Lower Elementary students of MMA since _________.    She specializes in the childhood music programs of Orff, Kodaly and studied in Japan at the Suzuki music school in Matsumoto.  Miss Bambie  is the founder and instructor of The Victoria Suzuki Piano School Studio, sings in the St. Barnabas Church choir and directs the children's choir at First Metropolitan United.  She enjoys her students, family and friends in her home rose garden and music studio where they paint, garden, read books and make music together. Miss Bambie passionately loves to hear the students of MMA sing in harmony and make beautiful music happen!

 

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Melissa Cossaro

Miss Melissa has been working at Maria Montessori Academy since December of 2012. She is a trained teacher, specializing in French and Music, but also recently completed her Montessori elementary training requirements. Currently, she is working as a classroom assistant in Lambda, as well as teaching music to Grades 4-8 students. Outside of work, Melissa enjoys cycling, hiking with her three dogs, and being in the kitchen.

Physical Education/Outdoor Education

 

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Cameron Robinson

Cameron Robinson has been the Physical and Junior Outdoor education teacher at MMA since 2015. He has been an active member of the Victoria sporting community as both a coach and participant for over a decade with a specific passion for hockey. Mr. Cameron has an affinity for early 20th century history and is a part-time writer for a hockey website. However, most of his spare time is spent with his beautiful wife, Sarah and son, Olekai. They enjoy hiking, cooking and the never-ending search for more sleep.

 

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Christina Hofmann

Christina Hofmann has been a part of the MMA team since January 2011. Previous to her time at MMA, she worked at St Michaels University School working in the Outdoor Education Department.  Miss Christina has a Human Kinetics degree from Trinity Western University and Outdoor Experiential Education degree from Queens University. What she loves most about working at MMA is all the laughs and good conversation she has with her students and co-workers. Five things Miss Christina could not do without are: skiing , hot tea, friendships, family, and camping.

Learning Assistance Team

 

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Miranda Longpre

Miranda Longpre has been a Learning Support Teacher at MMA since 2015.  She received her Bachelor of Education Degree from the University of Victoria. She is currently pursuing her Special Education Diploma and is also trained to teach the Barton Reading and Spelling System. Miss Miranda has experience teaching many ages, including a group of spirited Grade Threes in the Yukon Territory.  Miss Miranda loves that she now gets to work closely with individuals and small groups of students, to nurture their growth at MMA.  When she is not at school, you can find her with her nose in a good book.

 

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Leslie O'Hagan

Leslie O'Hagan has been working as a Montessori Learning Assistant for over 20 years and has been at MMA since 2006. Leslie holds a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Computer Science and spent her early adult years working in high-tech. Her teaching career began after her own children began attending a Montessori school. In 2009, Leslie received her Certification in the Barton Reading and Spelling Program and she also trained to be a Dyslexia Screener. Leslie loves being able to give struggling students the gift of reading for enjoyment!  In her spare time, Leslie enjoys reading, cooking, sailing and teaching Sexuality Courses for Teens.

 

 

Courtney Rasura

Courtney Rasura has worked at MMA since 2014 as a Learning Assistance Teacher. She graduated with her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education in 2013. Miss Courtney has further specialized in Special Education, earning her certificate in 2015. She  enjoys creating individualized programs to meet each students unique needs and to celebrate their wonderful strengths. Miss Courtney is also trained to teach using the Barton Reading and Spelling System.   When Miss Courtney is not at MMA she is with her family. Her family expanded in November 2015, with the addition of a beautiful baby boy. Together they love to travel and see what new adventures they can discover.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maggie Fraser

Maggie Fraser began  found Maria Montessori Academy  in 2013 and she began in learning assistance and took on the roles of Special Education Coordinator and Learning Assistance teacher in 2015. Her passion is helping students reach their full potential and advocating for their needs. She enjoys working with families, teachers, and specialist to develop plans and strategies providing students with the opportunity to excel. During her down time she enjoys time spent with her family and pup, Tug, where they relish in camping, hiking, and being active. You will often find them travelling around the island in their camper van discovering new places to enjoy nature.

 

Krystal Rajan
Krystal Rajan first joined MMA back in 2008 while still a student at university. She later graduated from UVic with a degree in Political Science. In 2010 Miss Krystal left MMA and Victoria to move to Japan to teach at a high school in Shizuoka, as a part of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme. She lived and taught there for two years, after which she travelled some more and continued to teach in various capacities in Amsterdam and Seoul. Finally, she returned to Canada to attain a Bachelor of Education degree from UBC in 2016. Since completing her degree she has joined us again at MMA for the 2016/2017 school year.