Our Faculty

faculty-July-4th-TeacherEmilie Christian Day School is blessed to have highly trained and experienced teachers in all of the early childhood education classes offered at our facility.

Our entire faculty is degreed and work as a team in meeting the goals for creating quality learning experiences within a child care center, which has led them to great success in achieving a star 4 rating (highest rating possible) through Keystone Stars.

Creative, Kind and Kid Focused

Praise for our teachers not only comes through their academic and performance achievements, but for what they bring each and every day into the lives of the children they interact with and instruct.

faculty-ECDS-049They recognize that each child is their own person and learns in their own way. The teachers at our Christian school provide an education foundation for young learners in a fun and interactive way as well as help each child with the individual “building blocks” they need to grow and learn in a way that creates a child’s own learning ladder. The teachers and assistants are active in helping children learn Christian values through teachable moments (e.g. sharing, helping your friend if they fall down, being considerate of your classmates feelings, etc.) that occur through the children’s day- to-day experiences.

Our teachers believe in open communication with parents and care givers. Daily feedback notes are provided at the toddler level to give milestone updates; preschooler, and pre-k classes receive class messaging with individual communication as needed. This communication on your child’s day provides a window into their world. Parent-Teacher conferences are offered throughout the school year and all faculty and staff are accessible to discuss concerns or the latest happenings at the school.

Enthusiastic Educators

faculty-Alison-making-bubbles-for-kidsfaculty-Nursery-Rhyme-Teachers

Alison Angelaccio (Mrs. A)

Alison-AngelaccioI am the Director at Emilie Christian Day School. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Temple University and a Master’s degree in Reading from Holy Family University. I am married and have two amazing adult daughters: Caitlin and Emily, both alumna of ECDS.

I have worked at Emilie since 1988; the first 4 years as a full day preschool teacher, the next 3 as director. I left for short while and returned as director at Emilie in 2000.

In addition to my work at Emilie, I am an adjunct instructor at Bucks County Community College in the Social and Behavioral Sciences Dept, teaching classes in Early Childhood Education. I am a Mentor in the Keystone STARS program, assisting other area child care programs in increasing their quality and moving up in the STARS system. In my spare time (ha!), I make the desserts for my husband’s restaurant, Annabella, in historic Bristol Borough.

I am actively involved on several Boards in the early childhood community: overseeing Grants and Scholarships for the Bucks County Association for the Education of Young Children (BCAEYC), as a member at-large on the Quality Child Care Coalition of Bucks County (QCCC), on the advisory board of Bucks County Community College for the Education Dept and the Occupational Advisory Committee for the Bucks County Technical High School.

I am blessed to work with an amazing group of incredibly creative, highly motivated, fantastic women who make every day interesting and fulfilling. Our work is supported by the Emilie United Methodist Church board and larger church family. My faith has led me to a life devoted to service to others in the community and beyond. Nothing gives me more joy than to see the children at Emilie thriving and growing under the guidance and teaching of our staff. When I get to relax, I love to read, bake, sing in the choir at Harriman United Methodist Church, and spend time with my family and friends.

Linda Zaborniak (Mrs. Z)

Linda-ZaborniakI am the Assistant Director here at Emilie. My primary responsibility is the finances, but I am available to help out wherever I am needed.

I have been lucky enough to find a job that I really enjoy doing. I have made many friends since I arrived at Emilie in 2000. I really enjoy seeing the children every day.

I live in Levittown with my husband of 35+ yrs (WOW!) and my cat, Mello. I enjoy collecting artwork by Thomas Kinkade, traveling, going to the movies, shopping and helping my husband stay on his Weight Watchers program.

Toddlers and more

Barbara McGonigle

Barbara-McGonigleBarbara McGonigle here – aka “Mrs. Mac.” They say I’ve been here forever, and it’s almost true. I have been around Emilie Church my whole life. I grew up in the neighborhood, in Goldenridge, and came to services and Sunday School with my family starting at age 1. I continued to do so until I left to attend church with my Episcopalian husband. My mom worked for the Day School office during my childhood, so Emilie has been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember.

While attending BCCC, I started working here part time as an afternoon assistant and working full time during the summers. After attaining my Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education, I was later hired as a teacher in the “half day” program, and a few years after that I switched to “all day,” which at that time was a mixed age group. When we began to separate children by age, I started working with the younger group (3’s turning 4), and continued to do so for many years. The 2010-2011 school year began and a new and exciting journey for me (along with my co-teacher “Miss Cathy”) in the world of toddlers as ECDS opened its 2 year old program.

I am a major read-aholic, a bit of an insomniac and not “tech-savvy.” My husband, Bob, has put up with me for over 30 years. We have 2 grown children, a son and daughter, both married and living in the area.

Cathy Horcher

Cathy-HorcherI have been “Miss Cathy” since my days as a Girl Scout leader, but, I do have a last name – it is Horcher.

I have been married to my great husband, Gregg, who can often be found helping out around the school. We have a daughter, Katie. I have little dogs.

I have been at Emilie since 2006. I have my Associate’s degree from Ashworth College and 25 years of experience teaching preschool. Two year olds are some of my favorite people. Teaching and spending time with my family and friends are my greatest pleasures in life.

In my free time, I enjoy crafts and going to yard sales.

Lori Hyjurick

Lori-HyjurickMy name is Lori Hyjurick. I have been working in the child care field since 1996 and have been at Emilie Christian Day School since 2006, opening up in the morning, teaching the 2 year old class and substituting in other classrooms.

I am married to my husband, George, and we have 4 children, Bryan, Stacey, Raymond and Jeffrey. We have 4 grandchildren: Lily, Bryan, Brooke and Allison. I enjoy spending time down the shore, reading, fishing, watching Philly Sports teams, and spending time with my family.

Kathy Roden

Kathy-RodenMy husband, Jeremy, and I were married in 1987. He often stops with crickets for our class pet, Frogger. I don’t do bugs! We have 4 children: Andrew, Sean, Sarah and James. Andrew and his girlfriend, Ayanna have 2 girls, Bailie and Chloe. Andrew works for GameStop and is enrolled at Savannah College in Graphic Arts and Design. Sean is in the Navy. He has a fiancé, Bri. Sarah and her fiancé, Jim, live in Langhorne with our grandson, Owen. James is attending Penn State for engineering. We have a dog, Bandit and a cat, Bast.

I received my Bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University in 1986 and earned my Child Development Associate Credential in 2009. I have worked at Emilie since 2001 and have taught half day PreK, Full day 3 year olds and now teach the Young Toddlers.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my grandchildren. We love going to the movies or having movie nights at “G’s,” with lots of popcorn. We also love to cook and bake together. Grandchildren are the best “taste testers.” We also play school, Peanuts, soccer and baseball, or splash in the backyard.

Amy Marsden

Amy-MarsdenMy name is Amy Marsden or “Miss Amy” to the kids. Currently, I am an assistant teacher with Miss Kathy in the Young Toddler class. I have been a co-teacher with Miss Lori in the 2 yr old room and with Mrs. Anderson in Pre-K. This is my fifth year here at Emilie and I really enjoy spending time with the kids and watching their progression through the year.

I am married and have been with my husband for 25 years. We have 4 boys, Sean, DJ, Brian and Nate. I have been a stay at home mom for the majority of raising my children. I always felt that is was important to be with them as they grew and developed. I decided to go to work when Nate entered school but choose to be in a part-time position so that I can still be available to him before and after school.

I absolutely love to read and do various other artistic activities like stained glass and torch work glass beads. I was invited to help with the Pennsbury Senior Prom and it has taken on a life of its own. I am in charge of decorating the boys bathroom in the parents hallway. It is almost a year long commitment with all the planning that goes into it but from January to mid May I am in it up to my eyeballs. There is cutting of the murals, tracing them, and then making them come to life with paint and 3D objects. It is a large commitment but I(even with the stress) enjoy every minute of the creative process.

I am looking forward to spending the year with your child. I am really going to enjoy getting to know him/her and watching their growth through the year. The changes that take place while they are here just amaze me. I truly hope your child enjoys the year and thank you for entrusting me to their care.

Stephanie Margerum

Stephanie-MargerumI am married with 3 children. My husband, Shannon, and I have been married since 2000. Our children are Breanne, Austin and Carson.

I have worked with children for half of my life. I have worked as a babysitter, a personal care assistant for children with special needs and now as a teacher assistant in the young toddler room. Working with children is something I have always loved since I was a teenager and hope to continue for a long time. I am enrolled at Bucks County Community College, working toward my associate degree in Early Childhood Education.

As a family, my husband and children, in our spare time, enjoy watching movies, going camping and just spending quality time together….when we are not running all over town to volleyball and basketball games with the kids. I love my family and my job!!

Full day Preschool

Betsy Dougherty

Betsy-DoughertyI have worked at Emilie since 2001. I have a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the College of New Jersey (Trenton State) and have been teaching for over 32 years.

I taught Pre-K at Emilie for 12 years and have had the pleasure of teaching the preschoolers for the past few years. In the summer time, I work with the school-age kids, grades 1-5. It is safe to say that children are my life and I love working with every age group.

I am married with two adult children, Kyle and Katie. When not spending time with my family, I enjoy reading, listening to music, and watching wildlife in my backyard. I am an animal lover and can be found cuddling with my three cats at home! My classroom pets include gerbils and a hairless guinea pig (skinny pig). I am also an avid sports fan and support all the Philadelphia teams!

Nurturing young children and forming relationships with families have been a wonderful experience for me and have made my life complete. Friends and family are always welcome and I look forward to sharing your children with you!

Randee Lerner

Randee-LernerMy name is Randee Lerner. I have worked at Emilie Christian Day School since 2005 as a camp counselor and teacher. I graduated from Temple University with a B.S. in Education in 1998 and am certified to teach Early Childhood, Elementary, and Special Education. I taught Special Education at East Windsor Regional School District in NJ before my daughter was born. I have also worked in various child care centers as a teacher and director, but none of them compared to Emilie.

I am married and have one daughter named Belinda. She went to Emilie for camp and kindergarten She likes to visit. When I am not working I enjoy spending time with family. I like to visit historical places, read books, and complete puzzles and crafts. In my next life I would like to travel. The only place I seem to get to go is Myrtle Beach every summer.

I tend to be a shy person when I am in a group of adults. I do not like to be in the spotlight, however give me a group of kids and I am a different person. I love working with children and acting goofy. Your child may come home and tell you that Ms. Randee is silly. I tend to make up my own songs or start dancing around just because I feel like it. I also have a friend that helps out at circle time especially in the beginning of the year named Bob. Bob is a sock puppet that likes to go fishing. The kids love Bob and usually beg me to bring him out.

Peggy Figueroa

Peggy-FigueroaI am “Miss Peggy” Figueroa. I have worked with children for more than 30 years. I went back to school and obtained a Child Development Associate Credential. I started working at Emilie Christian Day School as an Assistant Teacher, in 1998. I am married, and all of my children are adults now and on their own. During my spare time, I enjoy reading and painting. I love coloring and drawing with the children. I am looking forward to another great year.

Kim Tomlinson

Kim-TomlinsonI am an assistant teacher and floater here at Emilie. I have been working here since 1993 and have really enjoyed it. I am enrolled at Bucks County Community College and am working toward an associate degree in Early Childhood Education.

My hobbies include going to Knoebels in Elysburg, PA during the Covered Bridge Festival in October, amusement parks, traveling through PA, thrift shopping and computers.

Full day Pre-K

Sandy Choyce

Sandy-ChoyceI was always one of those kids who drove her friends crazy because I always wanted to play school, with me as the teacher, of course. At the age of 12, my mom (God bless her!) allowed me to have a ½ day summer program for neighborhood kids. I charged 50 cents a week. At the age of 15, my dream came true when I was hired to watch children at Emilie Day School by a single father who needed after hours care. The program became so popular that the school officially added the program and I was officially hired as an employee. Now during the summer months, I again had a summer program at my parent’s house providing care for all day students of ECDS at $12.00/wk. When I graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education in June of 1973, ECDS added the summer program, hiring me to direct and teach it, and my career here as a teacher began.

As you can see, I’ve been working with children my whole life. I have also been a children’s choir director, a youth Sunday School teacher, Sr High Youth leader and coordinator. At present, I am still a Sunday School teacher and Women’s Ministry leader. I have taken youth on an exchange trip to England and a mission trip to Ecuador. I have also traveled to the Canary Islands, Australia, Africa (3x), Haiti, Costa Rica, Canada and Mexico.

I share my home with my three cats, Cappachino, Hugo, and Poindexter. Poindexter goes back and forth to school every day! Our class rats, Bashful and Blaze, live at school. My favorite color is red and as you can tell by my classroom, my favorite animal is the giraffe. I am still living my childhood dream by coming to ECDS every day and being a teacher, sharing my love of learning, reading, singing and exploring the world around us.

Debbie West

Debbie-WestI began teaching at Emilie Christian Day School in 1996 after spending fourteen years raising my three children. During that time, I volunteered at their school, was a Girl Scout leader, a Cub Scout den mother, and taught Sunday School. Previous to having children I taught at both the elementary and preschool levels. I graduated from the College of New Jersey (Trenton State) with a degree in Elementary Education.

My experience at Emilie has been a very positive one, and I love working with the Prekindergarten Level. With each class I find that I grow with them, and am always thrilled to see their growth over the course of the year.

Outside of school, I enjoy reading, cooking, gardening, and spending time with my family. I have had cats for many years, and currently own an orange tabby.

Amber Riefner

Amber-RiefnerI joined the Emilie team in January, 2015 and am having the time of my life! I have been teaching Pre-K for 13 years. I earned my Bachelor’s degree from Holy Family University, majoring in both Elementary and Special Education. I live with my husband, Chris and two boys, Noah and Christian. I love my family more than anything!

I enjoy vacationing at Knoebels every August and visiting my parents in the Poconos. I LOVE God, Music and Sports…GO STEELERS!!! I attend several concerts a year. I enjoy working with children because I am an oversized child myself J I love laughing, chatting, dancing, and playing all day long. Most importantly, I LOVE to have fun!

Deborah Herbert

Debbie-HerbertI received my Bachelor of Science of Early Childhood Education from the College of New Jersey. I’ve been teaching at Emilie Christian Day School since 1994. I currently teach kindergarten. I am passionate about my work and look forward to creating a classroom environment that meets the individual needs of each student.

My husband and I raised our family in the area. We have two grown children. My daughter is a registered nurse and my son is married, works in sales and is a volunteer firefighter. We have been blessed with two beautiful granddaughters.

When I am not at school, I’m enjoying my family and our cat, Misty. My favorite vacation place is Tybee Island, in Savannah, Georgia.

Half Day Preschool/Pre-K

Janel Kieslich

Janel-KieslichI have been at Emilie since 1994. I am a graduate of The College of New Jersey (Trenton State) with a degree in Early Childhood Education. I also work part time for Lower Makefield Twp as the Recording Secretary for a number of their Boards and Commissions. My husband is the CFO at Peruzzi Automotive. I have one son, who is a Senior Aquarist at Sea World in Orlando and my daughter works for a design firm in Center City Philadelphia.

My family loves the shore, and we have a home in Ocean City, NJ where we try to get together as often as possible with family and friends.

Since my own children have “left the nest” and I have no grandchildren, I am thrilled to be able to spend my days with the children in my classes at Emilie.

Christine Anderson

Christine-AndersonI have been at Emilie Christian Day School since 2007. I have my Bachelor’s degree from Kutztown University. I have been married to my wonderful husband, Keith, since 1999. I have two wonderful children: a daughter named Samantha and a son named Ian. Both of them went through Emilie. My children keep me very busy. We enjoy going outside, riding bikes, taking walks and walking our dog to the field to run wild.

Gala Gahr

Gala-GahrI attended the University of Illinois and graduated with a degree in Education. I was born and raised in central Illinois in a small (pop. 1200) town on the Illinois River. I grew up eating and loving fried carp and buffalo fritters (fresh water fish) and fresh corn on the cob! I attended a small public school much like Emilie in size and community.

After graduating college, I moved to Lawrenceville, NJ, with my future husband, Steven, and eventually moved across the Delaware River to PA. Steven and I have 2 grown daughters, Lauren, who is currently living in Arizona, and Jordan, who lives locally. We also have a much adored 9 year-old Border Collie “puppy” named Scooter, who is my only “son.” I cannot remember life before Scoots! There is nothing like a family dog for unconditional love.

In 2007, I began working at Emilie as a substitute teacher, after years of raising our daughters and working in a law office. Finding Emilie to be a warm and welcoming place, I took a job in late 2007 as a half day Pre-K and Preschool teacher. I enjoy interacting with my young students who are full of enthusiasm and fun, and feel that learning in my classroom is a two way street – our relationship as teacher/learner and learners/teachers.

When not at school, I enjoy baking cookies and cakes, tending to indoor and outdoor plants, visiting flea markets and consignment shops (buying for my friends), perusing cookbooks, my email, an occasional novel and watching NetFlix!

Emilie United Methodist Church Staff

Ann Ermer

Ann-ErmerAnn (aka Mrs. Ann) is the Director of Congregational Life at Emilie UMC and occasionally subs in the classes of Emilie Christian Day School.  Mrs. Ann has worked in children, youth and family ministry for over ten years.  She also tutors and absolutely loves math.  (Some people do love algebra. 😉 )

Mrs. Ann grew up in southern California with her mom, dad, and three sisters.  (The four girls are actually two sets of twins!) Mrs. Ann obtained her BA from Ohio Wesleyan University with degrees in Religion, Chemistry and Mathematics.  She has been a United Methodist her whole life and loves the Church.  Her most beloved time of year is the season of Advent.

One of Mrs. Ann’s favorite activities is leading the ECDS children in chapel.  She finds it amazing to witness the faith of the children and feels blessed to be part of the team who gets to “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)  She shares that visiting the classes and spending time with the children provides an excellent example of Jesus’ words in Matthew 18:3, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”  She shares a fond memory of a four year old ECDS child running up to her and exclaiming, “Miss Ann, Miss Ann, I want to be like the one man, not the nine.  I’m gonna say thank you to Jesus!”

In her spare time, Mrs. Ann enjoys spending time with her husband, Todd and her daughter Lydia, especially visiting National Parks.  Some of Mrs. Ann’s other favorites include reading, crafting, cats, Dr. Pepper and the season of autumn.

Music

Shawn Moesch

Shawn-MoeschSince 2006, I have been the music teacher, afternoon kindergarten assistant teacher and school age teacher for the summer camp program. I am also teacher music at Hope Lutheran School. In my former life, prior to moving to Levittown from north Jersey, I owned 3 auto body repair shops (have the 3 tier tool box to prove it), ran and owned day camps, taught 3rd grade, and phys ed, AND was the accounting manager for a world wide distributor for 15 years. All that makes me either very old, or multi-faceted! I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was 20 years old (which is how I met my husband). We love fishing and camping. I sew, knit, make recycled crafts and paint. I play the flute, guitar, piccolo, recorder and much to my neighbors’ unhappiness, I’m learning to play the drums and piano. I have 3 children: 2 girls and a son. We have 6 grandchildren. I graduated from Thomas Edison College in Trenton in 2002 with a Liberal Arts degree. My concentrations were in elementary education, music and psychology. I am NOTED (music humor) for my skills in climbing trees and large mulch piles, and carrying entirely too many bags full of cool stuff into my classroom. I also like long walks on the beach (just kidding. I wanted to see if you were reading or scanning!). I am blessed to have made such a giant leap so late in life and landed where I always wanted to be – teaching music. And, because I come from North Jersey, I like the Giants, Jets and Yankees.