Ms. Tammie - Executive Director

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I am a lifelong educator with 36 years of experience. I received my Bachelors Degree in Elementary and Special Education, a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction and a second Masters Degree in Educational Leadership. I taught for 20 years in special education and elementary education, mostly at the 4th-6th grade levels. I was the Dean of Students at Pine Middle School and Assistant Principal at Bennett Elementary before arriving at High Desert Montessori in 2011 as Principal/Director. 

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

I believe parents need to make educational choices that are best for their family. High Desert Montessori provides a free K-8 option within our community. In addition to a Nevada teaching license, our teachers are highly trained specifically in Montessori which allows them to create a learning environment which meets the needs of their students. We are not a new fad in education, but a school which believes in sound practices which are over 100 years old and focus on the whole child. Our students exit HDMS with a strong sense of self by taking initiative and making choices that help them to be their best version. We are a golden gem within education in northern Nevada and I am honored to be part of such a community!

Mr. Eric - Principal

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I earned my Bachelor’s in Life Sciences from Whittier College in 1992, and completed teacher training in 1995. I taught in the Washoe County School District from August of 1997 to June of 2017. For most of that time, I taught middle school science, but spent 2 years teaching biology and physical science at Galena High School.  In 2008, I earned my bachelor’s in educational administration and spent four years as the dean of students at Vaughn Middle School.

Having had a child go through the program from first grade through middle school, I have always held HDMS in high regard and have wanted to be a part of the staff for many years. At the end of 2017, I felt that I needed a change and chose to leave the Washoe County School District. I got very lucky to find there was an opening at HDMS that summer, interviewed for the position, and was hired. I am so happy to be here and am committed to spending the remainder of my career in this school.  I spent the summer of 2018 attending NAMTA/AMI Adolescent Montessori Training at Beacon Academy in Chicago, Illinois, to solidify my knowledge and to integrate my experience in the public school with Montessori philosophy and practice.

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

After watching my son grow to the amazing student and person he has become, I was sold on the benefits of an education with social and community responsibility, that focuses on the needs and development of the child, but also integrates the national standards of the traditional science education. I truly believe this school is the best place in town to reach students of all backgrounds. 

Ms. Sherrie - Business Coordinator (H. R./A. R.)

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I have an Associates Degree in Business from Santa Barbara College.  I spent over twenty years as a senior account executive in the communications industry.  My husband is in the education field and we always shared the dream of one day being on similar break/vacation schedules.  After our boys left the house, I decided to make a career change.  A family friend worked at HDMS at the time and told me about what a fantastic school and work environment it was.  After several years of working here, I can honestly say that I wholeheartedly agree with her assessment.  HDMS is a wonderful school and I love coming to work each and every day.

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

I am so happy to be a part of the HDMS community.  I’ve already told my own children that when they have my future grandchildren, they will be attending HDMS!  I love this school with all my heart. 

Ms. Laurel - Communications Coordinator (Newsletter, Website, Facebook)

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I attended Southern Utah University where I obtained a BA in Secondary Education & German.  Over the years, I worked as an Administrative Assistant at a large Software Corporation and at a Law Office.  I also ran my own business during the years that I had small children at home. We found High Desert Montessori School when my oldest daughter was in second grade.  I immediately knew that I wanted to be a part of the school and applied when a position came open. Many years later, I still love my job and I still love this school.  I have the added bonus of being one of the Archery Coaches at HDMS, which allows me to interact with many of our incredible students on a regular basis!

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

Our family started our journey in public school. Although the teachers were devoted, it became clear quickly that a “one size fits all” approach was not going to work for our family. Our children were bored and were beginning to hate school at very young ages. After much research, we found Montessori. We were drawn to the idea of independent children learning at their own speed. We were drawn to the idea of a methodology that kindled a love of learning and exploration.  Many years later, we have three children who love learning, who are independent and brave, who are self directed, children who are kind and who love their community. I am forever grateful we found Montessori.

Ms. Stephanie - Enrollment Coordinator (Enrollment Registrar)

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I am a Reno native who attended Bishop Manogue High School and then University of Nevada, Reno. There I studied Communications with a focus in Organizational Communications. I was very active in speech and debate during high school and have enjoyed bringing that to High Desert, teaching a creative expression class. I enjoy helping families through the enrollment process here at HDMS and get a better understanding of what they can expect from a public Montessori experience.

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

I believe in public charter schools because everyone should have access to  education alternatives that give students varied learning opportunities.  I think it is amazing that Montessori is accessible to anyone in the community.

Ms. Stacey - Parent Outreach Coordinator (Orovada Front Desk)

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

After I graduated college I started working with kids as a Behavior Modification Tutor and continued to work with kids of all ages as a Developmental Specialist and a Teacher up until I had my own children. Working with kids  is very rewarding and I enjoy seeing all of our students thrive at High Desert Montessori. From the moment he was born we knew we wanted a non-traditional school setting for my son. I did my research and found High Desert Montessori. By the time our son was two he was on the waiting list. Our son started at High Desert in 2015. Our  daughter started in the primary program in 2017. I started working in the infant toddler room that same year and have been here ever since. 

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori school?

The Montessori philosophy is simply amazing. Here at High Desert we see the whole child and provide an education that meets all of our kids individual needs. The students get to explore, create, and have a hands on educational experience that is incredible to see on a daily basis. 

Ms. Laura - Facilities Coordinator (Silverada Front Desk)

What is your experience and training and how did you come to our school?

I attended the College of San Mateo, Ohlone College and Valley College where I took general classes and classes to become a medical biller.   Over the past 20 plus years I have worked as an Administrative Assistant. I started at Black Mountain Spring Water as an Administrative Assistant and moved up to Senior Billing Specialist.  My husband and I moved to Arizona where we owned a sign and Post Company that served Real Estate companies in the area.  After we sold the business, I worked as a Real Estate Broker’s Assistant.  My husband and I moved to Reno in 2007 and I worked at a school here in town for a couple of years which I enjoyed but needed more hours.  I took a job at a Property Management Company as an Administrative Assistant and became the Office Manager. I decided that I missed working for a school and saw a job posting for High Desert Montessori and have been with the school now for 7 years.

Why do you believe in our public charter Montessori School?

Coming to HDMS taught me a lot about Montessori. Growing up I wish I had this kind of opportunity. The school provides a Montessori education to all children no matter where they live in the community. The school provides a safe loving environment. It teaches independent thinking, responsibility, leadership and they learn at their own level. I see the excitement on our students’ faces and I love watching them grow from year to year.