Holly Schafer, Administrator

Holly is licensed Early Childhood Educator and Montessori Primary Teacher with over 25 years of experience working with young children in many different capacities.

Prior to attending the Early Childhood Education Program at Okanagan University College, Holly taught preschool in New York, NY where she ran a program for two to three year olds called the “Two Group”.

Upon completion of her studies in the Early Childhood Education field in 1993, she was hired as an Assistant Teacher at the Okanagan Montessori Preschool in Kelowna, B.C. This was a wonderful experience! Having been exposed to many preschool and day care environments, Holly found what she believed to be excellence in Early Childhood Education. Holly found her niche in the Montessori classroom and could never imagine a career that could be as fulfilling and inspiring as working with children in a Montessori environment.

Holly went on to take her St. Nicholas practical training and examination at Pacific Montessori School in Victoria during the summer of 1995. In March of 2002, she completed The Montessori Foundations Level 1 Certificate at The Western Montessori Teachers College in Port Moody, British Columbia. Because of her dedication and love for children, appreciation of the Montessori Method, and the desire to offer such a program to the families of Kamloops, she made the decision to open the Kamloops Montessori Preschool Kindergarten and Kamloops Montessori Academy in 1998.

Since the opening of our programs at our main campus at our Greystone location, we have expanded our programs to the Aberdeen Hills Montessori Preschool/Kindergarten, Sahali Montessori Preschool and Kindergarten and Kamloops Village Garden Montessori.

Michealla McNamara

Michealla completed her Early Childhood Education at UCC in 1999 and has since been employed at the Kamloops Montessori Preschool/Kindergarten and the Kamloops Montessori Academy. After completing her ECE education, Michealla went to Calgary Alberta, where she completed her practical training and examinations via the Montessori St. Nicholas Centre. In December 2001, Michealla received her Montessori Teaching Diploma from Montessori Centre International, London, England.

Michealla thoroughly enjoys teaching the Montessori method and plans to continue expanding her knowledge in this area through distance education and workshops.


Kevina Humphrey

Kevina was born and raised in Uganda, Africa.  She completed her Early Childhood Education Degree at Curtin University in Australia. Kevina has 14 years experience teaching children in Qatar, Middle East and has vast knowledge in the Regio Emilla teaching philosophy.  In the summer of 2016, Kevina completed her Montessori teacher training and has been putting her skills to use in the classroom ever since. Kevina believes every child is unique and she takes pride in using different learning materials to teach different skills and concepts to individual children. Kevina loves to be a facilitator in a child's learning process and is excited for the school year ahead.   


Natalie Chmilar

Natalie was born in Victoria, BC and moved to Kamloops when she was a child.  She is married and has a four-year old daughter named Aubrey, who is now in her second year of the Montessori Program. After falling in love with the Montessori philosophy of education, Natalie graduated in April 2016 with honors from the College of New Caledonia, completing the Education Assistant Certification. In August of 2016, Natalie completed her Level One Montessori Foundations Course. Natalie is passionate about helping children and making a difference in each of their lives.


Cindy Taylor

Cindy was born and raised in Kamloops, BC.  After graduating from High School Cindy took the Office Procedures Course and worked at the Federal Business Development Bank for many years.  After deciding on a career change, Cindy completed her Montessori Training in teh summer of 2016.  Cindy loves coming to work each day and finds it truly rewarding. Cindy is excited to be working in the School Age Program and looks forward to working with your children. 


Laura Ledesma-Ortiz

Laura was born in Columbia, South America.  At the age of fifteen, Laura fell in love with the Montessori Method of Education.  She graduated from a Bachelor of Earth Sciences in Columbia and then proceeded to take a two year Montessori Teaching Certification with Age of Montessori, a training program that was personally designed by Elisabbeth Caspari, Maria Montessori's personal friend and trainee.  Laura was a lead Teacher in a Montessori school in Columbia for over two years, where she was able to put her knowledge and skills to practice.  She became certified in Positive Discipline training and began to teach parents how to incorporate positive discipline into their parenting techniques.  After a long immigration process, Laura is excited to be teaching here in Kamloops.  Laura is very happy to be a part of the Kamloops Montessori family.


Chrystal Hockersmith

Chrystal was born in New Westminster and grew up in Abbotsford, BC.  In 2012 she attended Millar College of the Bible in Salmon Arm and took courses towards children's ministry. During this time she taught Sunday School and helped run Bible Camps.  She also did support work in a home with four children with special needs.  In 2014, Chrystal graduated from Thompson Rivers University with a certificate in Community Support and Education Assistant.   Since then she has worked in the childcare field as an Early Childhood Educator Assistant and loves it! Currently Chrystal is enrolled in the ECE Program through Northern Lights College.  She is excited to be fully certified in ECE and looks forward to working with your children.


Arlene Regato


Arlene was born and raised in the Philippines. She worked in Bangkok as a learning support teacher for Special Needs Children and also worked for many years as an English teacher for Primary Students.   Arlene just moved to Canada in February and is now working as an Office Administrator for Kamloops Montessori and Juniper Early Learning Center. She is excited for her new journey in Canada!