Michele Zipperer:  Preschool Director   I am so excited to be the director of this exciting new early childhood program in our Westover Hills neighborhood.  I received my undergraduate degree in Special Education at James Madison University and my master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University.  My career in education spans 26 years and includes teaching in both public and private preschool programs, as well as working for nearly ten years with the Department of Correction Education; evaluating and instructing juvenile offenders.  Once my children were born, I stayed home with them and when they were preschool-aged, we attended Bon Air Presbyterian Preschool (BAPP); an excellent program with which I know many of you are familiar.  I subsequently taught at BAPP for several years and more recently have worked as a Head Start educator in Richmond Public Schools. I am a member of NAEYC and its local affiliate, RECA as well as RAD. My family has lived in the Forest Hills community for over two decades and I have been so gratified to see so many young families settle into this vibrant and historic neighborhood in recent years.  If the considerable activity at our popular WHUMC “Tot Lot” (corner of Westover Hills Boulevard and New Kent Avenue) is any indication; preschoolers, toddlers, and infants are delightfully abundant where we live.  Please let me hear from you if there is any further information I can provide about our preschool program.  I am looking forward to a wonderful year of learning and growing with your child and family!   

Michele Zipperer:  Preschool Director

I am so excited to be the director of this exciting new early childhood program in our Westover Hills neighborhood.  I received my undergraduate degree in Special Education at James Madison University and my master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University.  My career in education spans 26 years and includes teaching in both public and private preschool programs, as well as working for nearly ten years with the Department of Correction Education; evaluating and instructing juvenile offenders.  Once my children were born, I stayed home with them and when they were preschool-aged, we attended Bon Air Presbyterian Preschool (BAPP); an excellent program with which I know many of you are familiar.  I subsequently taught at BAPP for several years and more recently have worked as a Head Start educator in Richmond Public Schools. I am a member of NAEYC and its local affiliate, RECA as well as RAD. My family has lived in the Forest Hills community for over two decades and I have been so gratified to see so many young families settle into this vibrant and historic neighborhood in recent years.  If the considerable activity at our popular WHUMC “Tot Lot” (corner of Westover Hills Boulevard and New Kent Avenue) is any indication; preschoolers, toddlers, and infants are delightfully abundant where we live.  Please let me hear from you if there is any further information I can provide about our preschool program.  I am looking forward to a wonderful year of learning and growing with your child and family!

 

  Amy Arnold   I'm so happy to join the wonderful team of teachers here at WHP. 2016/2017 is going to be amazing! I'm originally from northern California.  I come from a big family, so growing up I always had a love for children. In high school, I took part in the on-campus preschool as one of my electives. I completely fell in love with Early Childhood Education.  After high school, I continued my education at the local college, majoring in Early Childhood Education and Psychology. I worked for several years at a children's center before getting the opportunity to move to Boston. I worked for several wonderful families in New England as a Nanny before getting married in 2003. In 2005 we moved to Virginia and I worked for several years as a Lead Teacher at a Preschool in Richmond’s west end. In 2007, I desired to go back to school to continue my education in Psychology. The mind of a young child is absolutely fascinating to me! I just love the way children look at and interpret the world. School was short-lived, and having my son was my next great adventure! I had the wonderful opportunity to stay home with him for the first 5 years, and when my son entered kindergarten, I too returned to work at his elementary school assisting the Reading Specialist in the Title 1 Program. Working with kindergartners and children through 5th grade was an experience which I thoroughly enjoyed. I'm super excited to be back where I started, and working with my first love... Preschoolers! There is just something magical about this age and I can't wait to get started!

Amy Arnold

I'm so happy to join the wonderful team of teachers here at WHP. 2016/2017 is going to be amazing! I'm originally from northern California.  I come from a big family, so growing up I always had a love for children. In high school, I took part in the on-campus preschool as one of my electives. I completely fell in love with Early Childhood Education.  After high school, I continued my education at the local college, majoring in Early Childhood Education and Psychology. I worked for several years at a children's center before getting the opportunity to move to Boston. I worked for several wonderful families in New England as a Nanny before getting married in 2003. In 2005 we moved to Virginia and I worked for several years as a Lead Teacher at a Preschool in Richmond’s west end. In 2007, I desired to go back to school to continue my education in Psychology. The mind of a young child is absolutely fascinating to me! I just love the way children look at and interpret the world. School was short-lived, and having my son was my next great adventure! I had the wonderful opportunity to stay home with him for the first 5 years, and when my son entered kindergarten, I too returned to work at his elementary school assisting the Reading Specialist in the Title 1 Program. Working with kindergartners and children through 5th grade was an experience which I thoroughly enjoyed. I'm super excited to be back where I started, and working with my first love... Preschoolers! There is just something magical about this age and I can't wait to get started!

  Barbara Sneddon   I am excited to be part of the beginning of a new support and resource for families in Westover Hills.  I live nearby and raised my children on the tot lot and in the church and appreciated all the kindnesses, and want to pass them on.  I have a BA in Psychology from Wheaton College and an MA in Marital and Family Therapy from Fuller Seminary in California.  I began my career teaching preschool, then went on to become a Licensed Professional Counselor and have worked in foster care, community mental health and currently in a private counseling practice.  I find preschool to be a fun and happy place and am glad to return.  I am married to a kind and patient man, have three smart and busy kids and love life with them (most days :)  I enjoy being outside, playing games, traveling, reading and making things.  

Barbara Sneddon

I am excited to be part of the beginning of a new support and resource for families in Westover Hills.  I live nearby and raised my children on the tot lot and in the church and appreciated all the kindnesses, and want to pass them on.

I have a BA in Psychology from Wheaton College and an MA in Marital and Family Therapy from Fuller Seminary in California.  I began my career teaching preschool, then went on to become a Licensed Professional Counselor and have worked in foster care, community mental health and currently in a private counseling practice.  I find preschool to be a fun and happy place and am glad to return.

I am married to a kind and patient man, have three smart and busy kids and love life with them (most days :)  I enjoy being outside, playing games, traveling, reading and making things.  

  Andy Nester   Mr. Andy is overly ecstatic to be joining the Westover Hills Preschool as a teacher this year! He is a graduate of Radford University with a degree in Theater Arts. While attending school, he was involved with countless theatrical productions, including a number of children's shows. He has worked with all shapes and sizes of children, and is still in touch with his "inner child." He enjoys magic tricks, video games, Saturday morning cartoon shows, coloring books, and board games. He is very excited to get to meet and get to know all the wonderful children at Westover Hills!

Andy Nester

Mr. Andy is overly ecstatic to be joining the Westover Hills Preschool as a teacher this year! He is a graduate of Radford University with a degree in Theater Arts. While attending school, he was involved with countless theatrical productions, including a number of children's shows. He has worked with all shapes and sizes of children, and is still in touch with his "inner child." He enjoys magic tricks, video games, Saturday morning cartoon shows, coloring books, and board games. He is very excited to get to meet and get to know all the wonderful children at Westover Hills!

  Deana Stroebel     I am so thrilled to be joining the amazing team here at Westover Hills Preschool! I first came to Richmond from New Jersey, and am a graduate of the University of Richmond with a degree in Business. I quickly realized that the business world wasn't for me, and returned to school in my native New Jersey at Rutgers University for my Teaching Certification and my Masters in English. My husband then entered school at MCV, and we found ourselves back in Richmond! Before staying home with my two girls, I was a 6th grade teacher here in Richmond, and loved every minute of it. While staying at home during the day, I tutored in the evenings. Once my oldest became a toddler of preschool age, I found this developmental stage fascinating. I decided that maybe it was time to return to teaching, but wanted to work with younger children, so this job is a dream come true!   I have a wonderful husband, two amazing and entertaining daughters, a Great Dane named Bubba, a cat, a fish and three chickens! We love to garden and play outside, and I love reading. We're frequenters of the Tot Lot, and enjoy going to the farmer's market down the street. I'm really looking forward to meeting your children this year!

Deana Stroebel  

I am so thrilled to be joining the amazing team here at Westover Hills Preschool! I first came to Richmond from New Jersey, and am a graduate of the University of Richmond with a degree in Business. I quickly realized that the business world wasn't for me, and returned to school in my native New Jersey at Rutgers University for my Teaching Certification and my Masters in English. My husband then entered school at MCV, and we found ourselves back in Richmond! Before staying home with my two girls, I was a 6th grade teacher here in Richmond, and loved every minute of it. While staying at home during the day, I tutored in the evenings. Once my oldest became a toddler of preschool age, I found this developmental stage fascinating. I decided that maybe it was time to return to teaching, but wanted to work with younger children, so this job is a dream come true! 

I have a wonderful husband, two amazing and entertaining daughters, a Great Dane named Bubba, a cat, a fish and three chickens! We love to garden and play outside, and I love reading. We're frequenters of the Tot Lot, and enjoy going to the farmer's market down the street. I'm really looking forward to meeting your children this year!

  Rebecca Rivera   The idea of being a part of the Westover Hills Preschool team is an adventure I am excited to encounter.   I was born in Brooklyn, New York and moved to the city of Richmond at the age of 13; quickly going from a city girl to a country girl with huge dreams! I am the oldest sister of six younger siblings. Growing up, my mom ran a daycare out of our two-bedroom apartment with 13 children a day to herself. The older siblings would help out with the younger children. As one of the oldest, I took my role very seriously. At the age of 8 I watched and partially assisted my mother while she delivered my sister on our bathroom floor. Seeing that had to have been one of the most amazing things ever, which lead me to my current career path. Starting this fall, I will be attending J. Sargent Reynolds in hopes of graduating as an RN and going on to VCU to become a Labor & Delivery Nurse. Having a big family also played a major part in my love of children. Up until the week before my 18th birthday, I volunteered at the VCU Health Systems Child Care Center. For over 5 years, I woke up every day of my summer vacation with my mom at 6 a.m. just to play with the children. Two weeks after celebrating my birthday, I began my new job at the child care center. I quickly went from a part-time float teacher to a full-time lead teacher for an infant classroom. I fluctuated from an infant teacher to a pre-toddler teacher and my last position was as an evening lead teacher. The child care center allowed me the chance to meet the Pariyadath family and my Lali Leaf (WHP Eagle Student, 2016-17). Lali had been one of the first infants in my classroom. The girls and I became regulars at the famous Tot Lot where I met an abundance of wonderful families. Before I knew it, I had bonded with almost all the preschoolers, growing to love this family-based community. As a teacher at WHP, I hope to build more relationships while assisting and watching your children grow!

Rebecca Rivera

The idea of being a part of the Westover Hills Preschool team is an adventure I am excited to encounter.   I was born in Brooklyn, New York and moved to the city of Richmond at the age of 13; quickly going from a city girl to a country girl with huge dreams! I am the oldest sister of six younger siblings. Growing up, my mom ran a daycare out of our two-bedroom apartment with 13 children a day to herself. The older siblings would help out with the younger children. As one of the oldest, I took my role very seriously. At the age of 8 I watched and partially assisted my mother while she delivered my sister on our bathroom floor. Seeing that had to have been one of the most amazing things ever, which lead me to my current career path. Starting this fall, I will be attending J. Sargent Reynolds in hopes of graduating as an RN and going on to VCU to become a Labor & Delivery Nurse. Having a big family also played a major part in my love of children. Up until the week before my 18th birthday, I volunteered at the VCU Health Systems Child Care Center. For over 5 years, I woke up every day of my summer vacation with my mom at 6 a.m. just to play with the children. Two weeks after celebrating my birthday, I began my new job at the child care center. I quickly went from a part-time float teacher to a full-time lead teacher for an infant classroom. I fluctuated from an infant teacher to a pre-toddler teacher and my last position was as an evening lead teacher. The child care center allowed me the chance to meet the Pariyadath family and my Lali Leaf (WHP Eagle Student, 2016-17). Lali had been one of the first infants in my classroom. The girls and I became regulars at the famous Tot Lot where I met an abundance of wonderful families. Before I knew it, I had bonded with almost all the preschoolers, growing to love this family-based community. As a teacher at WHP, I hope to build more relationships while assisting and watching your children grow!

  Jacquelin Barden   My name is Jackie and I am looking forward to joining the wonderful team of teachers here at Westover Hills Preschool.  I am coming to you from Good Shepard Episcopal School.  I have been working in the field of Early Childhood Education for 25 years, both with 3- and 4-year olds and assisting in the Kindergarten classroom.  I’ve also worked with the GCES after-school program which served PreK-3 through 8th grade students.  I truly enjoy watching children learn and grow.  My goal is to have a positive influence on the children in my care by promoting their joy in learning.   Outside of work, I am married to an amazing man and we have two daughters and a son-in-law.  I also have two grandsons whom I just adore.  Things I enjoy are arts and crafts and making kids smile. I am so excited to meet and work with the children at Westover Hills Preschool. 

Jacquelin Barden

My name is Jackie and I am looking forward to joining the wonderful team of teachers here at Westover Hills Preschool.  I am coming to you from Good Shepard Episcopal School.  I have been working in the field of Early Childhood Education for 25 years, both with 3- and 4-year olds and assisting in the Kindergarten classroom.  I’ve also worked with the GCES after-school program which served PreK-3 through 8th grade students.  I truly enjoy watching children learn and grow.  My goal is to have a positive influence on the children in my care by promoting their joy in learning. 

Outside of work, I am married to an amazing man and we have two daughters and a son-in-law.  I also have two grandsons whom I just adore.  Things I enjoy are arts and crafts and making kids smile. I am so excited to meet and work with the children at Westover Hills Preschool. 

  Lara Hollberg   I am excited to be a part of the Westover Hills Preschool program . I have over 15 years of experience working with children in the field of early childhood education . I received my Associate of Arts degree in Florida where I specialized in dance . I have recently graduated from John Tyler Community college where I received my degree in Early Childhood Education. I have lived in Virginia with my husband and 3 daughters for over 14 years. I love being a mom and have been a part of several mommy support organizations (Mops, Mom's Next ) over the years as well as working with the YMCA . I love to cook and scrapbook…..I look forward to working with your children this year.

Lara Hollberg

I am excited to be a part of the Westover Hills Preschool program . I have over 15 years of experience working with children in the field of early childhood education . I received my Associate of Arts degree in Florida where I specialized in dance . I have recently graduated from John Tyler Community college where I received my degree in Early Childhood Education. I have lived in Virginia with my husband and 3 daughters for over 14 years. I love being a mom and have been a part of several mommy support organizations (Mops, Mom's Next ) over the years as well as working with the YMCA . I love to cook and scrapbook…..I look forward to working with your children this year.

  Natasha Beltran    I am very happy to be joining the Westover Hills Preschool team. My first career in life was Military Police in the United States Army. I retired from the military after the completion of my third tour in Iraq. I have always loved working with children and did a lot of volunteer work with children during my military career. I am currently in school working towards my degree in Early Childhood Education. Helping children discover the world around them has always been a passion of mine. I have two children who frequent the Tot Lot with me. I have truly enjoyed my time being a stay at home mom for the past three years. Now that my oldest is starting school, I am ready to return to work. I look forward to working with all the children and families at Westover Hills Preschool.

Natasha Beltran

I am very happy to be joining the Westover Hills Preschool team. My first career in life was Military Police in the United States Army. I retired from the military after the completion of my third tour in Iraq. I have always loved working with children and did a lot of volunteer work with children during my military career. I am currently in school working towards my degree in Early Childhood Education. Helping children discover the world around them has always been a passion of mine. I have two children who frequent the Tot Lot with me. I have truly enjoyed my time being a stay at home mom for the past three years. Now that my oldest is starting school, I am ready to return to work. I look forward to working with all the children and families at Westover Hills Preschool.

  Jayne Bryant   Joining the teaching team at Westover Hills Preschool has been a true blessing at this time in my career. My first teaching position was in 1985 in Maryland, where I grew up, met my husband and started a family. When our young family moved to the west coast of Florida and the foothills of Denver, I taught preschool where my 2 children attended. Once we settled in Midlothian, I continued to teach preschool, part-time, until my children began attending high school. For the past 12 years I taught both preschool and kindergarten at Good Shepherd Episcopal School, right here in Westover Hills.  Even though my family is not originally from Virginia, we all call RVA home.  I am thrilled to be returning to the wonderful world of preschool, where I can share my love of song, movement, art, poetry and children's literature.  To a place where love, compassion, kindness and purposeful play creates the perfect springboard for life-long learning. 

Jayne Bryant

Joining the teaching team at Westover Hills Preschool has been a true blessing at this time in my career. My first teaching position was in 1985 in Maryland, where I grew up, met my husband and started a family. When our young family moved to the west coast of Florida and the foothills of Denver, I taught preschool where my 2 children attended. Once we settled in Midlothian, I continued to teach preschool, part-time, until my children began attending high school. For the past 12 years I taught both preschool and kindergarten at Good Shepherd Episcopal School, right here in Westover Hills.  Even though my family is not originally from Virginia, we all call RVA home.

I am thrilled to be returning to the wonderful world of preschool, where I can share my love of song, movement, art, poetry and children's literature.  To a place where love, compassion, kindness and purposeful play creates the perfect springboard for life-long learning.