TEACHERS

Casey Irwin

OWNER AND LEAD TEACHER

Casey is one of the founders and the Program Director for Monarch Montessori School. She is also the lead teacher for the Garden Classroom. Casey has been a teacher in the Montessori setting since 1997 and has been a lead teacher in Montessori schools since 2001. She has a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Kansas and has American Montessori Society (AMS) Early Childhood Certification from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder, CO. She received extensive training and experience at Raintree Montessori in Lawrence, KS. Casey is also licensed with the state of Kansas as a Preschool Program Director. Casey is a teacher by vocation and by nature. She has worked as a teacher, tutor, CASA advocate, reading specialist, and volunteer since 1997. Casey is committed to providing an authentic Montessori education for each child, but the Montessori method is more than the materials in the classroom or the teacher giving lessons. At the heart of the Montessori philosophy is the teacher’s understanding of the nature of the child. It is Casey’s attitude toward children and the way that she understands the unique nature of each child that allows the children in our school to grow and develop to their fullest potential.

Rebecca Clark

PROGRAM DIRECTOR AND ADMINISTRATOR

Rebecca Clark is a Kansas City native and has more than decade of experience working in early childhood development. She started as an artist and advocate for children in Phoenix, AZ where she formed and ran GrowOp Boutique, an art collective and community garden. She ran the children’s arts and garden education workshops there and worked hand in hand with local coffee shops, restaurants, and other community gardens to promote the program. When she moved back to Kansas City, she worked at Gymboree as an instructor, birthday party coordinator and office administrator for more than four years. Currently, she runs her own professional childcare service, Little Owlettes, where she matches families with qualified childcare professionals who meet her strict standards of care. Her goal has always been to create a community where children benefit from the education of art and nature and to provide services that focus on helping families. Rebecca comes to Monarch with her knowledge and love of children and to aid in the operations of the school.

Kensley Wilson

LEAD TEACHER

Kensley comes to us from Lawrence, KS where she has been working in the Montessori community for many years. She is an American Montessori Society (AMS) certified Early Childhood Montessori teacher from the Kansas City Center/Montessori Education in Kansas City, MO. Kensley started in 2009 as an assistant teacher at Sunshine Acres Montessori where she worked with one- to three-year-olds and was a substitute in the primary classrooms. In 2013, she moved to Lawrence Montessori School where she was an assistant teacher in both the toddler and primary classrooms. She was a nanny starting in 2005 for several families in Lawrence and worked as a teacher’s aide at Emporia State University’s Center for Early Childhood Education. Kensley joined the Monarch community in the summer of 2014 and quickly immeshed herself into the Monarch Montessori School methods and culture. She carries with her glowing recommendations from her colleagues, former employers, and Montessori training instructors. Kensley has a bachelor’s degree in visual arts/design and ceramics from the University of Kansas and plans to pursue her Master’s degree in early childhood development with an emphasis in Montessori. Kensley has great intuition and a natural connection with the children, and we are excited to have a committed and experienced Montessorian as the lead teacher in the Atrium classroom.

Erika Munoz

ASSISTANT TEACHER 

Erika is an experienced childcare provider. She has worked with young children for the past 6 years. She initially joined Monarch as our Aftercare Teacher but now works as an Assistant Teacher. She is kind and gentle with the children. Always treating them with respect and approaching them with a sense of humor. She loves spending time with each individual child, learning their personalities and finding what works for them. She is an amazing artist. She shares her studies of drawing, ceramics, and creative writing with the children. She enjoys putting together art projects that allow each child to use their imagination and explore.

Janelle Crawford-Hine

TODDLER LEAD TEACHER

Janelle Crawford-Hine, with American Montessori International training, is a Lead Teacher in the Toddler Community. Daily she guides the children as they explore and discover, growing in the areas of self-care, independence, coordination, concentration, and peace. She has worked in several Montessori Toddler Communities as well as led a Primary Classroom. She was a Montessori child, graduating from Raintree Montessori School in Lawrence, KS at the completion of her sixth-grade year. She is also an artist. You can find her beautiful work designed to delight both children and adults through Janellabee Studios. Her nurturing, gentle approach will help the children feel comfortable as they explore and learn in a home-like environment that is catered to their needs.

Kylee Brooks

TODDLER ASSISTANT

Kylee grew up in Prairie Village and lives there currently. She completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Kansas. Kylee is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Art Education from The University of Missouri Kansas City. She thoroughly enjoys working with children and has decided to combine her two loves, art and children! We are excited to welcome her to the Monarch Community! We look forward to all of the art projects and art exploration ideas she will share with us!

Kaylee Field

TODDLER AFTERCARE

Currently attending The University of Missouri Kansas City majoring in Psychology and minoring in Studio Art. With prior Montessori toddler teaching experience, Kaylee is excited to continue working with toddlers in a Montessori school. She loves getting to know each child individually and enjoys discovering what they are passionate about. She lives for those ah-ha moments where the light bulbs click on and the child is so proud that they learned or discovered something new. Her caring and loving personality make her a natural fit in the Montessori environment. She aims to help guide the children to become more confident and independent.

Carlos Castillo

PRIMARY AFTERCARE

Native to Kansas City, Carlos earned his Bachelor of Arts in Art History and is pursuing a Master of Arts in Teaching with a concentration in Art Education, both from UMKC. Carlos is looking forward to helping the children continue discovering their creativity through art. He enjoys teaching the children arts and crafts, reading stories to them and helping them learn Spanish alongside Ms. Loren. During the weekends, you can find Carlos all around Kansas City, most likely at a park with his Shih Tzu, Caesar.

Loren Figueroa

ASSISTANT TEACHER/ AFTERCARE

Loren joined Monarch in 2018 but is certainly not new to teaching and working with children. While being a member of Team USA Diving, the Houston, TX native earned a full scholarship to the University of Missouri and went on to becoming Mizzou’s first-ever SEC Champion. After earning her Bachelors in Sociology, Loren combined her love of working with children along with her fluency in Spanish and became the Lead Assistant Spanish teacher at The Language Tree in Columbia, MO. There she taught children between the ages of two and five to speak and write Spanish through songs, games, and activities. Now Loren will be teaching Spanish to the two Primary classrooms and is one of the Primary Aftercare Teachers.

Ellie Coons

ASSISTANT TEACHER

Ellie started at Monarch in one of the Toddler Community classrooms. She has since moved up to an Assistant Teacher in one of the Primary classrooms. Ellie has her Bachelors Degree from UMKC in Business Administration with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship. She has worked with children her whole life from being a nanny, doing volunteer work with children in the community, and teaching church in Sunday School. She began her teaching career at a preschool called Little Learner where she was the Head Teacher for the Toddler classroom. She could not be more excited to be part of Monarch and believes in the Montessori Philosophy. Most of all she loves to see children change, grow, and develop in their own unique ways.

Lindsey Bowman

TODDLER LEAD TEACHER

Lindsey was born and raised in Western Kansas and received her Bachelor’s in Social Work from the University of Kansas in 2012. She had the opportunity to work as an AmeriCorps tutor for Federal Way Public Schools in Federal Way, WA, and through this experience, she realized that early childhood education was her true passion. After finishing her term of service, she spent two years working as a para-educator in a Head Start Preschool Program in Lincoln, NE. A family member encouraged her to learn more about Montessori education, and after researching more about the philosophy, she decided to pursue her Montessori certification from Mid-American Montessori Teacher Training Institute in Omaha, NE. She spent a school year as a student teacher at Frog Song Montessori in Portland, OR and completed her training in 2017. After this, she worked as a lead guide in a Primary classroom at Westside Montessori International in Beaverton, OR. In 2018, she moved back to Kansas to be closer to her family and friends. She is so excited to be a part of the community at Monarch to learn, grow, and find joy with the children each day!

Vrushali Mane

TODDLER ASSISTANT

Vrushali Mane is originally from India. She started her career in the hospitality industry as a flight attendant and worked in an International airline for 6 years. This job gave her an opportunity to travel to many different countries and experience many different cultures, food, and beliefs. She moved to the USA in 2012 and started pursuing her AMI training from the International Montessori Training Institute in Atlanta, Georgia. After completion of this training in 2013, she moved to Kansas, USA. Apart from AMI certification, she also has a Bachelor’s degree in Science and has her Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education with Montessori concentration from the University of Hartford, Connecticut. Her deep-rooted interest in Montessori education and love for working with children strengthens her will to serve them in their most crucial growth years. Working with children brings her joy and she loves to witness their growth and to be a part of their journey towards independence.

© 2016 Monarch Montessori School. All Rights Reserved.

Monarch Montessori School 7600 W 75th St Overland Park KS 66204

monarch news png

FB Twitter Follow Us!