All teachers at the Coop are certified by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care and regularly attend continuing education courses in a range of topics, including literacy, math, science, social studies, art, music and physical activity, health and safety, meeting the needs of children with differing learning styles and disabilities, classroom management, parent and community engagement, and evolving regulations. Teachers at the Coop are also parents of former Coop students.
 

 

Kathrine Mitchell

Director

Kathy Mitchell received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Arcadia University in 1973 and a Master of Fine Arts degree from American University in 1980. Kathy began her career in Rome, where she painted and taught for ten years. Upon her return to the United States, she co-founded a community art center in rural Maryland and served as administrator, grant writer, curator, and teacher. Kathy began teaching at the Coop in 1997 and currently serves as Director. She is on the board of the Newton Early Childhood Association and a member of the Massachusetts Association for the Education of Young Children. Kathy speaks English and Italian.

Zhanna Cantor

Co-lead Teacher of Four Day Class

Zhanna Cantor received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Carnegie-Mellon University in 1985 and a Master of Fine Arts degree at Tufts University in 1990. She grew up in Kiev, Ukraine, and moved to the United States in 1978. Zhanna is a landscape painter and teaches oil and acrylic painting classes at the Newton Community School. She began teaching at the Coop in 2000 and currently serves as Co-lead Teacher of the Four Day Class. Zhanna speaks English and Russian.

Lu Ann Sholemson

Consultant and Teacher

Lu Ann Sholemson received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts in 1980 and a Master of Science in Human Services degree from New Hampshire College in 1986. She grew up in Western Massachusetts and came to the Boston area in 1980. She started a career as a case manager and supervisor working with older adults and later, after her children were born, turned to a career in preschool education. She began teaching at the Coop in 1996 and currently serves as a consultant and substitute teacher.

John Steber

Teacher

John Steber received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree from Northeastern University in 2007. After retiring from a career at Gillette, John worked as a Teacher Aide in the Special Education Department at Oak Hill Middle School in Newton. He began teaching at the Coop in 2007 and currently serves as an Assistant Teacher.

Alex Vaillancourt
Alex Vaillancourt

Assistant Director and Co-lead Teacher of Four Day Class

Alex Vaillancourt received a Bachelor of Science degree from Wheelock College in 1994 and a Master of Science degree in Early Childhood Education from Wheelock College in 1997.She grew up in New York City and came to Boston in 1992.Alex taught at two parent cooperative preschools for 16 years and taught English in Japan for one year. She began teaching at the Coop in 2016 and currently serves as Co-lead Teacher of the Four Day Class. Alex speaks English and some Japanese.

Yuko Kimura

Yuko Kimura

Teacher

Yuko Kimura received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Relations from Rikkyo University, Japan in 1996 after graduating from TASIS England high school. Before moving to the United States in 2004, she was working in Tokyo as an interpreter/translator for companies including Disney, McCann Erickson and PTC. Yuko began teaching at the Coop in 2015 and currently serves as an Assistant Teacher. She speaks English and Japanese.

Lisa Taylor

Lisa Taylor

Lead Teacher of Five Day Class

Lisa Taylor received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Boston University in 1987 and a Masters in Early Childhood Education from Wheelock College in 1991. She grew up in Newton where she has been teaching pre-school and running music and movement classes for the past 25 years. She started her career as a Teacher/Director in a Parent Co-operative in Cambridge, MA. She servers as a Lead Teacher in the 5 Day class as of 2016.