Faculty & Staff

Dedicated to authentic Montessori education, the faculty and staff at Hollis Montessori are energetic, optimistic, talented, and want to make a difference. We strongly believe that great teachers are our best asset.

kari.jpg

Kari Headington - Head of School

Kari joined Hollis Montessori in 2009 as our Children's House Lead Teacher and became Head of School in 2010. Kari completed her AMI Primary Diploma at the Montessori Training Center of Minnesota in St. Paul. She received her B.S. in Special Education from Moorhead State University in Moorhead, Minnesota. Prior to coming to Hollis, Kari was the Lead Teacher in Montessori Primary classrooms in both Massachusetts and Minnesota. Outside of teaching, Kari enjoys travel, reading, running and visiting the sights of New England with her family. Her sons attend Hollis Montessori.

Karen.jpg

KAREN BRIDGEO - admissions & campus MANAGER

Karen joined Hollis Montessori in 2013. She received her B.A. in Geography from Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Karen enjoyed a long tenure in the hospitality industry prior to coming to Hollis Montessori. She has worked as a volunteer for Beaver Brook Association in Hollis and the Audubon Society of NH. In 1996, Karen hiked the length of the Appalachian Trail. Outside of school, Karen enjoys reading, raising her family, cooking, and traveling.  Her son attends Hollis Montessori.

darlene.jpg

darlene mann - business MANAGER

Darlene joined Hollis Montessori in 2015. She has a B.S. in Finance from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey. Darlene holds the volunteer position of Chairman of the Hollis Brookline Cooperative School District Budget Committee. Previously she worked in marketing and finance roles in the publishing and telecommunications industries. 

ANDREW JEANS - UPPER SCHOOL TEACHER

Andrew joined the Hollis Montessori Upper School faculty in 2014. Andrew completed the NAMTA/AMI Orientation to Adolescent Studies and has a B.S. in Physical Science Education from Brigham Young University and a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law. He chaired the Environment and Natural Resource Section of the New Hampshire Bar Association. Andrew also served on the Conservation Commission in his home town of Chester, New Hampshire for seven years. Prior to joining Hollis Montessori, he taught chemistry, physical science and math at the high school level for four years. In addition to his education experience, Andrew practiced law at a litigation firm in Londonderry, New Hampshire. Andrew enjoys mountain biking, snowboarding, hiking, camping and just about every other outdoor activity. In his spare time, he loves spending time in the outdoors with his wife, son and baby daughter. His son attends Hollis Montessori. 

sarah.jpg

SARAH SALLADE - UPPER SCHOOL TEACHER

Sarah joined the Hollis Montessori Upper School faculty in 2015. She holds a Master's Degree in Education and a Master of Science in Natural Resources from the University of New Hampshire. She has her B.S. in Resource Ecology from the University of Vermont. Prior to joining Hollis Montessori, Sarah taught life sciences at the high school level where she used an inquiry and/or project-based approach to engage students in authentic work in their communities. Previously Sarah worked with other scientists and educators for the GLOBE Carbon Cycle Project to create hands-on educational and research projects for classrooms around the world, training teachers in countries as diverse as Thailand, Macedonia, and South Africa. Together with her husband and husky dog, Tippet, Sarah spends her weekends gardening, rock climbing, hiking, and telemark skiing. 

meesa.jpg

MEESA JEANS - UPPER SCHOOL TEACHER

Meesa joined the Hollis Montessori Upper School faculty in 2014. She has a Masters in Education from Simmons University and a B.S. in Elementary Education from Brigham Young University with minors in Spanish and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Meesa has studied abroad in the Dominican Republic and spent a year and a half volunteering in Brazil. Prior to joining Hollis Montessori, she taught at a dual language school for ten years. Meesa has done volunteer work with adolescent girls, including organizing a week-long summer camp. She enjoys the outdoors, camping, hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing and snowboarding, as well as yoga, reading, piano, cooking, traveling to Latin American countries and spending time with her young family. Her son attends Hollis Montessori.

Karen Kelley - UPPER School teacher

Karen joined the Hollis Montessori Upper School faculty in 2016. She completed the NAMTA/AMI Orientation to Adolescent Studies in 2005, has a B.A. in English and Humanities from the University of Northern Colorado and an M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction with a cognate in International Relations from the University of Denver. Karen taught at private and public schools in Colorado and Massachusetts for twelve years before learning about Montessori. She helped to develop the Adolescent Program at a Massachusetts Montessori School from 1998-2015. Both of her children, now 24 and 21, attended Montessori school. Karen enjoys communicating the benefits of Montessori education and hopes that more children will have access to this approach in the future.

shannon.jpg

Shannon welsh - Upper Elementary Teacher

Shannon joined Hollis Montessori in 2015 as our Upper Elementary Lead Guide. She completed her AMI Elementary Diploma at the Washington Montessori Institute at Loyola University in Maryland, where she also earned her Master's Degree in Education. She holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Anthropology/Sociology and a Minor in Fine Art from the University of Maine. Shannon has taught in Montessori elementary classrooms in Massachusetts and most recently was a course assistant for the first AMI elementary teacher training program at the Montessori Institute Northwest in Portland, Oregon. She has two young children. Her daughter attends Hollis Montessori.

zoe.jpg

Zoe Castro - Lower Elementary Teacher

Zoe joined Hollis Montessori in 2010 as our Lower Elementary Lead Guide. As a child, Zoe attended Montessori schools through fifth grade. After completing her AMS Montessori Upper Elementary training at Michigan Montessori Teacher Education Center, Zoe went on to complete her AMI Elementary Diploma at the Washington Montessori Institute at Loyola University in Maryland. She received her B.A. in English and Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Michigan. Zoe taught in Elementary classrooms in Michigan, Texas, and Massachusetts before joining the Hollis Montessori community. Zoe enjoys quilting and other crafts, spending time outdoors, and traveling, especially around New England. 

Cristina Fernandez - Lower Elementary Teacher

Cristina joined Hollis Montessori in 2016 as our Lower Elementary II Lead Guide. In May 2016 she completed her AMI Elementary Diploma at the Washington Montessori Institute at Loyola University in Maryland, where she also earned her Master's Degree in Education in the same year. Cristina holds a B.A. in Biology and Spanish from Providence College in Providence, Rhode Island. She was introduced to the Montessori world through two of her nieces, who attend a Montessori school in Northern Virginia. She enjoys playing soccer, reading, and spending time with friends and family.

Sarah Gilleeny - Elementary Assistant

Sarah joined Hollis Montessori in 2016.  She graduated from Ithaca College with a B.S. in Cinema & Photography and a minor in Anthropology, and then went on to obtain her MFA from Pratt Institute with a focus on Photography.  She worked full time as a wedding and portrait photographer, running her own business for 10 years.  Sarah excitedly plans to pursue her AMI training at the Elementary level.  She enjoys spending time with her family, reading, running, being outdoors and being artistic.  Her two children attend Hollis Montessori.

carla.jpg

Carla Carney - Children's House I Teacher

Carla joined Hollis Montessori in 2010 as our Children's House I Lead Guide. A Montessori child herself, Carla earned her AMI Primary Diploma from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta and her B.A. in Organ at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia. She has taught in Montessori schools in Georgia and Massachusetts, and has taught English in Tai Yuan, China. Carla enjoys running marathons, sewing, quilting, traveling, cooking, and knitting. Her daughter attends Hollis Montessori.

cheri.jpg

CHERI BIRCH - CHILDREN'S HOUSE I ASSISTANT

Cheri joined Hollis Montessori in 2013. She has worked as an Environmental Science teacher with children from preschool through elementary age in both public and private school settings, and served as Assistant Education Director for Beaver Brook Association in Hollis. Cheri holds a B.S. in Forest Management and Recreation and Parks Management from the University of Maine, and is a member of New Hampshire Environmental Educators and New Hampshire Children in Nature Coalition. She is a NH Certified Science Teacher with "HQT" status. She enjoys visiting her adult children, hiking, camping, theatre, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and playing with her puppy "Pemi."

anjali.jpg

Anjali Longan - Children's House II teacher

Anjali joined Hollis Montessori in 2013. An experienced early childhood educator, Anjali completed her AMI Primary Training from the Montessori Institute of San Diego in 2015. Anjali holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of New Hampshire and is working towards the completion of a Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education/Special Education from Rivier University. She is a member of New England Environmental Educators Association, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, and she was the 2012 New Hampshire Project Learning Tree Educator of the Year. In her free time, she enjoys yoga, reading, gardening and spending time in nature with friends and family. Her daughter attends Hollis Montessori School.

katie.jpg

Katherine Skinner - Children's House II Assistant

Katie joined Hollis Montessori in 2008 as our Children's House Assistant. She graduated from Saint Anselm College with a B.A. in Psychology. Katie and her siblings attended Montessori schools growing up in East Granby, Connecticut. Her mother is an AMI trained Montessori teacher and Katie's own children also attended Montessori school. Katie enjoys working with children of all ages. Previously she was the assistant coordinator of Teen Programs at the Manchester YWCA and also tutored students at Hollis Brookline High School in the special education department. In her free time Katie enjoys reading and spending time with her family. 

andrea.jpg

Andrea Seddon - Language Specialist

Andrea joined Hollis Montessori in 2013 as our Language Specialist. A seasoned language teacher in both French and Spanish, Andrea most recently started the elementary language program for the Carlisle Public Schools in Massachusetts. She has her B.A. in French from the University of Arizona and her Masters in Teaching from Simmons College. Some of her most precious teaching memories come from time spent with students abroad and seeing the language come alive through their eyes. Andrea enjoys cooking for family and friends and is passionate about educating herself and others about real food and its healing properties. She has lived and studied in France, Mexico and Costa Rica and loves to incorporate those foods and traditions into her life and the lives of her students. Outside of teaching, Andrea enjoys traveling, hiking, photography, exploring nature and spending time with her young family. Her daughters attend Hollis Montessori.

jim.jpg

JAMES WEBSTER - faculty EMERITUS

Jim joined Hollis Montessori in 2011 as our Upper School Lead Guide and retired in 2015. He continues to support our school with his time and talents in a variety of ways. During his career as a Montessori teacher, he enjoyed working in different environments ranging from Primary to Adolescent. Prior to coming to Hollis, he taught as an Adolescent Guide at the Hershey Montessori Farm School in Ohio. Jim has been a speaker at several AMI/NAMTA conferences. He holds a B.A. in English Literature from Dartmouth College. He completed the NAMTA Orientation to Adolescent Studies and his AMI Elementary training at the Washington Montessori Institute under Margaret Stephenson. Jim enjoys adventures and using his hands as well as his head. He is the father of two adult children who completed their Montessori educations in the Hershey Adolescent Program. He lives on a small farm in New Hampshire with his wife, who is also a retired Montessori teacher.

The training of the teacher is something far more than the learning of ideas. It includes the training of character; it is a preparation of the spirit.
— Maria Montessori