STAFF

Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School is a small and vibrant early childhood community. Our well-qualified and supportive staff respectfully, appreciate the unfolding of each child's development. We embrace Maria Montessori's goal to recreate the world into a more peaceful, compassionate, and purposeful place by focusing on both the nature and development of each child.

MYANI LAWSON

Myani Lawson.png

Executive Director / Head of School

Ms. Lawson graduated from Lincoln University, cum laude, with a B.A. in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. She also holds an M.Ed. in Reading Education from Howard University. Ms. Lawson received her formal introduction to The Montessori Method at Princeton Center for Teacher Education. She has worked in the field of education for over 20 years. During her career she has held the positions of classroom teacher, academic enrichment program director, elementary instructional coach, adult education instructor, university adjunct instructor, educational consultant, and curriculum coordinator. Ms. Lawson is a passionate and dedicated educator whose varied background and hands-on approach ensure Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School's offerings exceed the standards.

RINA TORRENTO

Office Manager

Ms. Torrento holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Relations and Advertisement. She has over 15 years of experience in customer service and in the banking industry. Ms. Torrento decided to move into the world of education after volunteering for 2 years in her daughter’s school. She is committed, self-motivated and a compassionate professional. Ms. Torrento prides herself on being patient with the ability to assess the needs and concerns of individuals and provide workable solutions. She is dedicated to personal, professional and spiritual growth.  Ms. Torrento is bilingual and happy to assist families in both the English and Spanish languages.

“The greatest sign of success for a teacher…is to be able to say, ‘The children are now working as if I did not exist.'"

-Maria Montessori

Elizabeth.jpg

ELIZABETH LUTHER

Head Primary Teacher

Ms. Luther received her B.A. from Otterbein University where she studied broadcasting and creative writing. She moved to New York in 2014 and after working in childcare, pursued a Master of Early Childhood Education and Special Education degree at Concordia College. She received her Montessori certification from the West Side Montessori Teacher Education Program. Ms. Luther’s first experience with Montessori was as a child, where she attended a Montessori school in Cincinnati; she remembers her experience and teachers fondly. Now as an adult, she continues Montessori education because of the independence and self-direction children gain from an environment where they are free to choose, using tactile materials to master concepts. 

Carlos.jpg

CARLOS HUALPA

Primary Spanish Language Teacher

Mr. Hualpa is a native Spanish speaker from Ecuador and has been an educator for over a decade. He started out his career as an industrial engineer in Ecuador, but his passion for teaching caused him to enter the field of education as an ESL teacher, teaching English to Spanish-speaking students in Ecuador. During his tenure at BLMS, he has utilized his ESL teaching skills to support English-speaking students as they acquire the Spanish language. He has also learned much about The Montessori Method, observing the students, presenting lessons and creating materials according to these principles. He has fallen in love with the Montessori philosophy and enjoys the opportunity to teach children his native language, in the Montessori way. 

BETSY FERNANDEZ

Dual-Language Toddler Teacher

Ms. Fernandez holds a bachelor’s degree in childhood education with a concentration in History, from Nyack College. She is a parent of two children who went to Montessori early childhood programs. After seeing how Montessori worked so well with her own children, she fell in love with the Montessori curriculum and decided to work in a Montessori environment when she reentered the workforce. She served as a Teaching Assistant for our Toddler classroom, during her first year at Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School and now she is pursuing her Montessori Teacher Certification at the West Side Montessori School Teacher Education Program. She is enthusiastic about Bergen-Lafayette Montessori school’s programs and excited to continue working with our toddlers. 

ARIANA RODRIGUEZ

Toddler Teaching Assistant

Ms. Rodriguez holds a bachelor's degree in Health Sciences from New Jersey City University. She has previous years of experience as Montessori Assistant Teacher and has gained a lot of experience implementing the Montessori Method with Toddler and Primary students. Ms. Rodriguez is very passionate about Montessori methodology and loves to prepare an environment that fosters growth. She is happy to be a part of BLMS as she believes the school consistently values the needs and best interests of its students. 

MzimaGrossett.jpg

MZIMA GROSSETT 

 Infant Teacher

Ms. Grossett loves working with children. She began fulfilling her desire to educate, once she became a mother. With over 12 years of experience in the infant and toddler field, Ms. Grossett is well poised to work with our youngest students. Ms. Grossett is a graduate of the Westside Montessori School Teacher Education Program, where she received her Infant & Toddler Montessori credential. Ms. Grossett is the mother of five and understands what having a sound start enables children to do. She delights in working with infants and young toddlers, as their growth is rapid and ever advancing.   

VASHNI DAYAL

Infant  Teaching Assistant

Ms. Dayal is currently pursuing her Child Development Associate certification. She is the proud mother of three children, twin girls and a son. She recently moved to the United States from Guyana and has been working with infants, toddlers, and preschool children. Ms. Dayal is excited to share her love of education with the youngest students at BLMS. She believes that Montessori education is a wonderful way for a child to begin learning, as it addresses both their academic and emotional needs. 

JESSICA PALMA

Infant  Teaching Assistant

Mrs. Palma is native Spanish speaker from Ecuador. She has a passion for working with young children and is currently pursuing her degree in Early Childhood Education. She is the first in her family to attend college and is honored to be able to use her time and talents to assist young children with their development. Ms. Palma is the mother of three sons and her passion for teaching started when she began working with them as infants. Mrs. Palma’s children opened her eyes to the rewarding life of working with young children. She finds joy in witnessing a child learn something new. She appreciates the impact she can make in their lives and the bigger and completely gratifying impact they have on her own life.

ASHLEY MONTANEZ

Infant  Teaching Assistant

Ms. Montanez has always had a love for children. She has 5 years of experience in the infant and toddler field. Ms. Montanez has an Associate's degree and Child Development Associate certificate. From a young age she knew she wanted to be an educator to young minds. Ms. Montanez is also the proud mother of a baby boy and she is excited to be working in the Infant classroom and to learn more about Montessori education. 

NWANDI LAWSON

Development Director

Ms. Lawson earned an MBA from the Emory University Goizueta School of Business, and she is a magna cum laude graduate of Howard University where she studied journalism and French. Ms. Lawson’s broad professional experience includes teaching middle school in an economically challenged California community, becoming an Emmy Award winning television producer for CNN and other broadcasters, and founding both a media production company and business consulting firm. As a current member of the Bahá'i Continental Board of Counsellors for the Americas, Ms. Lawson has the opportunity to work on educational initiatives in North, Central and South America as well as the Caribbean.

Ms. Lawson is the mother of two daughters who benefitted from Montessori education from age three through middle school. She brings this experience along with her continuing interest in developing educational opportunities for children of all backgrounds to receive a sound education that recognizes their individual nobility and builds their capacity to contribute to a better world.

QUEENIE YU 

Business Manager

Ms. Yu is a cum laude graduate of the State University of New York at Albany, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with concentrations in Finance and Management Information Systems. 

Ms. Yu has over 10 years of experience as a Management Consultant for many Fortune 500 companies to develop and implement improvement plans to increase productivity, reduce costs and enable efficiencies to drive an increase in revenue and profit.  Driven by a desire for small businesses to have a stronger financial understanding, Ms. Yu has more recently worked with local small businesses to gain financial strength and stability by developing financial models and operational budgets for her clients.  She is happy to use her time and talents to further the mission of Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School.

CHARLES ADEGITE

Information Technology Specialist

Charles is a native New Yorker and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Information Technology. He loves to spend time with family, watch sports while also volunteering his time mentoring high school students and empowering young leaders in our world today to be successful. Charles is our IT Specialist at Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School leading the way towards new IT infrastructure and key technologies for staff and students. He's truly passionate about IT and thankful he is able to contribute to the mission of the BLMS community. 

Join our mailing list!
 

© 2020 by Bergen-Lafayette Montessori School. All Rights Reserved.


324 Communipaw Ave 
Jersey City, NJ 07304

info@bergenlafayettemontessori.com 
Phone: (201) 706-3403