Children’s Garden Staff – They Make a Difference
Kaitlynn Smart, Director
Meet Kaitlynn Smart, the Director. Kaitlynn has been with Children’s Garden Montessori for over a decade! Kaitlynn has a strong passion for early childhood education and is a natural at her position. Kaitlynn assists parents with enrollment, billing, and other school policies and procedures. Kaitlynn has two beautiful children, Hadley and Mason!
Jamie Romjue, Assistant Director
Meet Jamie Romjue, the Assistant Director. Jamie grew up in the Tri-Cities, and she has one wonderful daughter, Luciella. Jamie has been with Children’s Garden for five years and holds a Montessori teaching credential for primary aged children. Jamie enjoys holding visits for new families and offering support for enrolled families.
Cheryl Ornstein, Montessori Program Director
Children’s Garden has been a part of my family for the past 25 years. I built the curriculum for the 1st and 2nd grade classroom from the ground up. I hold a Masters Degree in Elementary Education and a Montessori Certification. Recently I joined as a school administrator to assist in further training, guidance, and development of our toddler through elementary programs. A piece of being the Montessori Program Director still allows me to utilize my teaching skills and fulfill my passion of providing a strong and accelerated learning environment for children. I am proud to be a part of the school. I am married to my husband, Rick and together we have three grown boys who are now married and giving me beautiful grandchildren!
Kimberly Goude, Lead Teacher in Rainbow Room
Meet Kimberly Goude, the Lead Teacher in Rainbow Room. Ms. Goude has been with the school since 2009. Ms. Goude is a kind and compassionate teacher. Ms. Goude enjoys anything to do with holidays, children, and animals. She holds her Montessori credential for primary aged children.
Sofia Olvera, Lead Teacher in the Branch
Meet Sofia Olvera, Lead teacher in the Branch. Ms. Sofia enjoys spending her days with these busy 2 year olds! She is a kind and patient. Ms. Sofia is bilingual and speaks both English and Spanish to the children each day. Sofia enjoys spending time with her family on the weekends. Sofia currently holds her Montessori teaching credential for toddler aged children as well as a state certificate from Columbia Basin College in Early Childhood Education.
Stacey Kennedy, Lead Teacher in Sunshine
Meet Stacey Kennedy, our Sunshine room lead. Stacey holds a Montessori Primary Certificate and has been with Children’s Garden for over 2 years. Ms. Kennedy enjoys watching children grow and loves it when her students show her the new lessons they have mastered. Stacey enjoys camping, hiking, and spending time with her three wonderful children.
Christie Alvarez, Lead Teacher in Apple Tree
Meet Mrs. Alvarez, Lead Teacher in Apple Tree. Christie is married to her husband Gil, and has two grown children. Christie is a life-long learner who takes pride in always striving to do her best. Christie enjoys volunteering her time with local non-profit and church groups and is always finding the right opportunity for ways to give back to them. Christie enjoys spending time with her family, going to movies, supporting local businesses, and fishing. Christie is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree in Education and has been with Children’s Garden since 2008.
Tina Lucas, Lead Teacher in River Room
Meet Tina Lucas, our lead teacher in River Room. Tina has been at Children’s Garden since 2006. Prior to Children’s Garden, Tina worked at a Montessori school in Yakima. Tina loves watching her youngest daughter, Kiera compete in cheer competitions. Tina enjoys traveling to the Seattle area to visit with her sisters and spending quality time with her daughter, Ashley. Tina holds her Montessori Certification for Primary aged Children.
Amber Lehew, Lead Teacher in Nest
Amber has recently relocated from the great state of Texas, where she worked previously in a Montessori School. Amber holds a Master’s Degree in Education and loves teaching these little one year olds! Amber has primarily worked with toddler aged children for over 2 years. Amber will soon be married to her fiancé Eric, who works for Bechtel. Amber and Eric love to explore the area, try new food, and spend time with their dog!