Meet Our Staff


Katie, our Director of Early Childhood Education, has been working at KI Preschool in various capacities since 2012. She began teaching in Parparim, and took time off to have her son, then spent time in Susim and Dubonim before taking another leave to have her daughter. She returned to KI Preschool as Curriculum Coordinator, then Assistant Director and is so excited to now lead the team of teachers in all their amazing work. She has a BA in American Studies from Boston University and M. Ed. from Hunter College in Early Childhood Education. Outside of KI, Katie enjoys spending time with her kids, husband and crew of rescue animals (2 dogs, 1 cat), running, and cooking up a storm.

Valerie, our Office Administrator, has been been working with the preschool for 15 years. She holds a BS and Ed.M. from Boston University. Valerie is married to a Brookline native, whose parents were married at KI!  She lives in West Roxbury and has been privileged to share in raising three super awesome stepchildren, along with Dakota, the family cat. Valerie’s warm and welcoming presence is an integral part of the KI community.

Teaching Teams

Dubonim (Toddlers)

Ruthie is a certified Lead Teacher who attended Lesley University. She has been involved in children’s education for many years — owning and running her own family daycare,  and teaching at a Cambridge preschool. Ruthie has also worked as a birth and postpartum doula. Ruthie is a proud mom to two daughters and two wonderful grandchildren. She has been a familiar face at KI for the past eleven years; first as a volunteer, then as a substitute teacher, and as a full-time teacher for the past nine years. Ruthie is a welcoming presence for some of KI’s youngest students and she is looking forward to another exciting year at KI!

Rachel is very excited to be a part of the Dubonim classroom. She was an infant toddler teacher for over 24 years in Cambridge. She has a degree in Early Childhood Education and is a certified lead teacher. She is the proud mama to one beautiful daughter. In her spare time, she enjoys going to the beach, traveling, listening to music, and when she can, catching some live music. She loves having dance parties with the little ones as well!

Aida (“Mimi”) is super excited to be on the Dubonim team. Mimi studied at the International University of Sarajevo, majoring in Political Science and Journalism and speaks both Bosnian and German. She also has 17 years of experience as a preschool teacher. Mimi is a proud mother of 3 smart and beautiful children and grandmother of Victoria. She is fond of music, the visual arts, dancing, organizing, reading, traveling and loves, loves children!


Deirdre has taught at KI Preschool for many years, mostly in the Kofim classroom. Deirdre is particularly passionate about literacy and uses storytelling, drama, and poetry in the classroom to wrap preschoolers in the magic of language.  Deirdre began her teaching career as a Parent Educator for Early Intervention and welcomes engagement with her students’ families.  She took a few years away from teaching at KI to explore teaching at other Brookline schools and is delighted to bring that experience and knowledge back home to KI Preschool. She has a Master of Fine Arts in Writing from Emerson College, and in her free time she writes poetry,  children’s stories, and is currently working on a book, Strong Words, about teaching conflict resolution skills to young children.  She has two (almost) grown-up daughters, and outside of school she can usually be found in her backyard tending her organic vegetable garden, or playing with her mischievous young pup, Giuseppe.

Dawn is a native of Jamaica, West Indies. She moved to Boston in 1987 with her husband of 37 years. She has an associates degree in human services and early childhood from Bunker Hill Community college. She is the proud mother of three adult children, a daughter and two sons, and is delighted to say she’s the grandmother of four grandchildren. Dawn loves to exercise, garden, and spend quality time with her family. She has always had the ability to bond with children and although she enjoys working with children of all age groups her preference is working with toddlers and preschoolers.

Tania is excited to start her second year at KI in the Kofim classroom. She has a degree in Liberal Arts and is going into her 9th year of teaching. She loves reading a good book, running daily, anything related to Star Wars, video games, and her cat, Kratos. She loves being a part of the KI community!


Lizzie is excited for her fifth year as a part of the KI team! Prior to becoming a full-time teacher at KI, Lizzie spent 8 years at KI student teaching, substituting and working during the summer program. She recently graduated from UMass Boston with her Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. Before taking a teaching position at KI, Lizzie nannied for a former KI family and thoroughly enjoys being a part of the KI community. Lizzie is very excited to be a part of the Pilim team with Tirzah, Gaby and Carrie, and is so excited for her own daughter to begin her preschool experience at KI!

Tirzah is joining KI Preschool for her sixth year. Tirzah has a degree from Wheelock College in Human Development with a Child Life concentration, and has a certificate in Early Childhood Education. Her work experience includes working at Brigham and Women’s Hospital as a child life intern, and has been a much-loved nanny for many families in the area. Tirzah is so proud of her two KI Preschool Alumni (graduating classes of 2016 and 2019). She’s excited for this year in Pilim!

Carrie has been with the preschool for over thirty years! She is a graduate of the Threshold Program at Lesley College. She first came to KI Preschool as a student teacher in 1987 and decided to stay on as a beloved member of KI Preschool’s staff. Carrie is an avid pet lover and a proud owner of three wonderful pets: her dog, Kilvert; her horse Limelight; and her cat Oliver, and enjoys spending her down time with them on the North shore. Carrie brings her warmth and love of children directly into the classroom. She is a wonderful storyteller! This year she will be joining the Pilim team.

Gaby has more than twenty years of experience as a childhood educator serving as a preschool lead teacher, kindergarten Hebrew teacher, and as director of the Beth El preschool in Newton. She received her MA degree in Japanese studies from Harvard and a BA in Political Science from University of California, Berkeley. Gaby also holds an early childhood teacher and Director 1 certification from Mass Bay Community College. Gaby is fluent in English, Hebrew, and Spanish and conversant in Yiddish and Japanese. She is excited to be returning for her seventh year at KI!


Alex is joining our newest young toddler classroom for her first year at KI Preschool! Alex has a MA in Early Childhood Education from Lesley University, and is currently working on her second Master’s in School Counseling. She will also serve as our in-house behavior consultant. She brings several years of experience teaching Kindergarten as well as the knowledge gained from having two young children of her own! When not studying, teaching or spending time with her family, Alex loves the company of her rescue dog Arwin and two adorable kittens while spending time in her garden.

Tessa has spent years teaching Early Childhood in and around Brookline. After graduating from Wheelock, Tessa taught at BEEP (Brookline Early Education Program), and most recently toddlers and pre-k at Everbrook Academy. Tessa has an amazing way with our youngest students, and we feel so lucky to have her at KI preschool!

Specialty Staff

Jenn Harrington, Creative Movement.  Affectionately known as “Miss Jenn,” Jenn will be starting her ninth year at the preschool. For over ten years Jenn has worked with children of all ages, ranging from one year to eighteen years of age, teaching creative movement and gymnastics classes through her business, Imagination Runs Wild. Every class that Jenn teaches at KI Preschool incorporates fun and planned out themes that help the children stay physically fit, as well as give them the opportunity to practice their hand-eye coordination and gross motor skill development. Jenn will teach creative movement classes on Wednesdays once a week to each preschool class. She also teaches an enrichment program on Wednesdays from 2-3PM for preschool children. This program will incorporate gymnastics into her movement activities.

Stav, Hebrew. Stav is a former KI Preschool parent and is joining us for a second year of her wonderful Hebrew classes!

Francesca is our beloved yoga teacher. She guides our students through different poses and meditations, making movement fun and relaxing!