MEET THE TEAM
Head of School/ Academic Director
Sharee joined the staff at BBMS as Academic Director in 2017, having had a past connection with the school as a founding parent. During the early years of establishing the school, she sat on the MIND Board and later filled the role of Intermediate Directress for 3 years. She completed preschool and elementary course work in the Montessori method through the International Association of Progressive Montessori (IAPM) and on the adolescent years through Antioch University. Sharee has a teaching degree from Simon Fraser University, Professional Teaching Certification and a Masters in Administration & Leadership and Curriculum Development from the University of British Columbia. She taught in a variety of programs and schools within the Vancouver School District for 34 years, one of which was the Montessori Secondary program. For 12 years, she carried out the role of Teacher Leader and Humanities Directress of this District mini program. Always interested in Professional Development, Sharee facilitated Collaborative Inquiry with teachers and presented opportunities for the exploration of the new BC curriculum. She is delighted to have returned to BBMS where she continues her commitment to supporting Montessori education in Delta; a program that truly respects the child and prepares them for life.
Olga joined the staff in 2020. She obtained her Primary AMI Diploma as well as her Early Childhood Education in 2007 from the Montessori Institute of BC. She also holds a TESOL Certificate which gave her the opportunity to teach English as a Second Language in her home country Greece for four years. Since returning from Greece she realized that she had a passion to continue working with children of the preschool age. The Montessori approach to "follow the child" has helped her to appreciate and trust the child's instincts through observation. As a Casa Directress for the past fifteen years she has collaborated with staff in several schools and fulfilled the role of a Directress, as well as a Manager. She is delighted to continue to guide and foster children's growth. As a mother of one daughter, she enjoys spending time with family, travelling, and cooking.
Lower Elementary Directress
Lower Elementary Classroom Support
Daphne completed a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Ontario, followed by AMI Montessori certification at the Toronto Montessori Institute. She worked as a Casa Directress in Toronto before moving to South Delta. Her first association with BBMS was to register her daughter to attend the Casa. She later offered her skills substituting in the program and was hired as a part-time Casa Directress. Daphne has recently obtained a Delta Teaching Assistant Certification (DTAC) and offers extra educational support to students in the Lower Elementary class. Outside of work, Daphne’s helpful nature has lead her to be involved in a lot of volunteering when she is not gardening, cooking, reading and travelling.
Cathy von Ende
Upper Elementary Directress
Cathy has a passion for learning. She completed a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Waterloo (1990) and then a Master of Science at the University of Guelph. She has also taken many courses over the years at UBC and University of Calgary. Cathy’s journey to teaching was sparked by what she saw in her children’s Montessori classrooms, first in Ontario and then in BC when her three young children joined the BBMS community. Intrigued with the Montessori teaching process and how well it fit with learning theory, she completed her Montessori Elementary Credential (AMS) and a Post Baccalaureate Diploma in Montessori Education through Simon Fraser University. Cathy joined the BBMS staff in 2005, spending time first in the Casa and Lower Elementary classrooms. In addition, Cathy has worked one-on-one with children with learning disabilities as a Certified associate Orton-Gillingham tutor (Canadian Association of Therapeutic Tutors - CATT). She holds a BC Independent Teacher Certificate from the Ministry of Education and joined BBMS as a Directress in the Upper Elementary class in 2021. Outside the classroom, Cathy loves cycling, paddle boarding, photographing local landscapes, knitting, exploring new places, and learning new things.
Kayla Boucher joined the BBMS staff in 2023 and is enjoying running the OSC program, and providing classroom support to the school. She experienced a Montessori education in her childhood in Port Moody and fondly remembers her experience. She has a CSW (community service worker) Diploma which she completed in September 2022. The 1040 hours of instruction, theory and lab work are equivalent to an associate degree. This program included child mental health, child development, biopsychosocial considerations and holistic /alternative approaches to health. She has a background in childcare having worked with both individual families, as well as larger organizations throughout her life. She enjoyed volunteering at summer camps as a youth, and is currently volunteering with the Ukrainian refugee association in helping to run a child and youth afterschool program.
Kayla feels very fortunate to have been able to grow up in the lower mainland and travel abroad to learn about many different cultures. She’s been to 15 countries throughout Asia, Europe, Oceania and Latin America, as well as, travelling through different parts of Canada; living in BC’s interior and Yukon. She grew up with her family hosting international students and claimant refugees and has been immersed with different languages and cultures from a young age. Currently she is looking for more training opportunities within the Montessori setting and curriculum. She believes education is foundational in life and can create a positive ripple effect throughout the world.
Administrative & Financial Officer
Julie returned to BBMS as the Office Administrator in January 2020 after a 2 year absence. Originally from France, Julie has also lived in South Africa and the UAE and has many years experience as a school administrator. Her role within the school has widened to include additional responsibilities related to financial accounts, in addition to records clerk and staff support. In her spare time, she enjoys playing pickleball and walking her dog, reading and gardening.
Upper Elementary Directress
Kate has been involved with Montessori education for the past 20 plus years. Upon graduation from University in Ontario, she received her Casa training from St. Nicholas Institute and worked as an assistant in the Casa and Lower Elementary classrooms alongside her mother, the owner of a Montessori school. Upon relocation to British Columbia in 1999, she received her Elementary certification at both the 3-6 and 6-12 levels. Kate has worked in both the 6-9 and 9-12 levels since 2001. She believes in the importance of incorporating the Virtues program into her class to support children in becoming confident, cooperative and empathetic members of their community. She is the mother of one daughter and in her spare time enjoys hiking, reading and canoeing with her family.
Casa Directress & Childcare Manager
Karen Gaitens joins BBMS as a Casa/ Kindergarten Directress in 2019.
Karen comes with extensive teaching experience having taught in Montessori classrooms for 14 years in Scotland and the US. Since relocating to Canada in 2015 Karen has taught at BBMS in the lower elementary class and more recently as kindergarten and elementary learning support at IB schools. Karen is well versed in inquiry-based learning and is excited to explore and incorporate BCs new curriculum into our Montessori environment. Karen holds a BA (Honours) in Education and an AMS Montessori Early Childhood/3-6 teaching credential as well her BC Independent teaching certificate. A particular focus of Karen’s degree involved studying research on how children with various learning styles are supported in the Montessori learning environment. Karen has a passion for teaching/learning and building an inclusive classroom community that fosters learning as well as having FUN. Karen likes to travel, walk (briskly) and spend time in nature with her husband and son.
School Ground Supervisor
Joan has an elementary teaching certificate from Teachers College in Thunder Bay, Ontario where she was a teacher before moving to South Delta. To allow her to stay at home with her own children, she ran a family daycare for 20 years. We are pleased to have had her on staff doing lunch hour supervision since 2012.
Music & French Directress
Originally from Montreal, Marla’s musical training began with the piano at the age of six. While attending high school, she added the clarinet and flute to her studies, but it was in the choral program that she discovered a love of singing. Marla pursued post secondary studies in Music first at Vanier College, and later at McGill University, where she studied Voice Performance and Collaborative Piano. Over the course of thirty-five years as a professional musician, teaching has always been an important, integral, and inspiring part of Marla’s career. In conjunction with both private and community music school voice studios, she has taught Music and Choir to students from Kindergarten through Grade 9 in the Independent School system, and directed several children’s choirs. Marla is a full member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, and holds both a Bachelor of Applied Music as well as an Independent School Teaching Certificate from the Ministry of Education. An ardent proponent of the importance of the inclusion of music in core education, particularly in the early years, Marla believes passionately that music, particularly choral music, is a powerful teaching tool for a wide variety of components so important to the fabric of our society. From fostering spirit and social interaction, to the building of individual skills, self confidence, teamwork and the pursuit of a common goal, singing in choirs provides a cornucopia of things we need for life, not least of which is the gift of beautiful music that we make and share with others. Fluent in French, she adds to her Music role at BBMS to include French instruction to our K-year 7 children using AMI methodology.