Our Staff

  • Faye E. Hunt - School Director & Lead Primary Guide

    Faye E. Hunt holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in the History and Criticism of Art from Florida State University, a Master of Arts degree in Art History from the University of California-Los Angeles, and a Master of Science in Teaching degree from Fordham University. With over 13 years of experience as an educator in a variety of school settings, both within administration and as a classroom teacher, she has come to believe that the Montessori method of education is a way of life and an incredible way to educate all children. She holds an Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Primary Diploma from the Montessori Institute of San Diego. She has dedicated her life and love of learning to art, education, and above all--children. She has a deep and abiding reverence for nature and enjoys spending time exploring the many amazing facets of the world with her husband and two children.
  • Alice Smith - Director of Admissions

    Alice Smith has a Bachelor of Arts in both Journalism and Christian Ministries & Missions from Asbury University. She began working at Montessori East in early 2010, a few months after the school was founded. Alice enjoys adventures with her family, discussing educational philosophies, learning alongside others, and is particularly grateful for the East Nashville community. In 2016, she completed the Orientation to Adolescent Studies offered by the North American Montessori Teachers Association (NAMTA) and the Association Montessori International (AMI) at Hershey Montessori School's Huntsburg Farm campus in Ohio.
  • Brooks Gerber - Curriculum Coordinator

    Brooks Gerber received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Arts at Sarah Lawrence College. She also holds a Master's Degree in Montessori Education from Loyola University Maryland. Brooks is trained by the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) and has been in the field of Montessori education since 2004, and was a Lead Guide from 2008-2017. She currently is Montessori East's Curriculum Coordinator. In 2013, Brooks co-founded the Montessori Alliance of Tennessee. She believes Montessori education is not just a gift to children, but a gift to society. She dedicates her professional life to seeing the movement grow and prosper. Brooks is passionate about the needs of the whole child and enjoys incorporating her love of travel and gardening into her teaching. She calls East Nashville home and lives in a cheerful blue house with her husband, Matt, son, Reed, and daughter, June.
  • Christopher Guanajuato - Lead Elementary Guide

    Christopher A. Guanajuato studied the liberal arts at Occidental College, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Biology. He also studied medicine at the University of California San Diego and holds a Master of Science in Teaching degree from Fordham University. An educator for fourteen years, Chris completed a master teacher fellowship with the National Academy of Advanced Teacher Education. Chris holds an Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) elementary guide credential from the Montessori Institute of San Diego. He is deeply devoted to partnering with families and children in nurturing the potential of every child he works with. Chris’ goal is to unfold and tend to children's natural curiosity and joy for learning while fostering a community in which children build a foundation of knowledge and character for a life of learning. Chris is living the dream of a life of learning and loving with his wife, Faye, and two children, Quetzal Sol and Paloma.
  • Julia Wilmeth - Lead Primary All Day Guide

    Julia Wilmeth received her Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Primary teaching diploma from the Montessori Institute of North Texas. She recently moved to Nashville from Austin, Texas, where she helped to establish a Montessori school and worked as the director. She has over 12 years of experience working in Montessori schools in various capacities. Her mother is also a Montessori teacher, and Julia spent most of her life following her adventurous parents around the world, learning through travel. Julia lives in Southeast Nashville with her dog, Layla, and her turtle, Sparkles, and looks forward to moving to East Nashville as quickly as possible.
  • Cassie Coppess - Lead Primary Guide

    Cassie Coppess has been working and learning within the Montessori community since 2012. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Anderson University in her home state of Indiana, Cassie started work as an assistant Montessori guide. This whole-child approach to education spoke to her on a deep level, in part because it built upon her own non-traditional background of having been homeschooled from ages seven through 18. Cassie began AMI training in St. Louis in 2014, alternating between summer training sessions and leading a primary class until she earned her AMI diploma in July 2016. A few months later, she relocated to the Nashville area from Indianapolis with her husband Daniel in December 2016, and is thrilled to become part of the Montessori East community.
  • Camille Jackson - Lead Primary Guide

    Camille Jackson received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance from The Ohio State University. She spent the last five years teaching dance to children of all ages in various studio and school settings in Atlanta, GA. While in Atlanta, Camille served as a volunteer and board member at Reforming Arts, a non-profit that provides theater infused liberal arts education to incarcerated women in the state of Georgia. After twenty years away, Camille has returned to her hometown and is excited to get to know the new Nashville! She has formerly served as a Primary All Day Montessori Program Assistant Guide at Montessori East and is currently in Association Montessori Internationale Primary training at the Southwest Institute of Montessori Studies.
  • Baylan Meganck - Lead Toddler Guide

    Baylan was born in Paraguay, South America and raised in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She attended Middle Tennessee State University where she earned a Bachelors of Science Degree in Sociology with a concentration in Lifespan Development and Family Studies. Baylan has been working in childcare for the past six years and feels that the Montessori Method is the most beneficial for child development. Baylan has begun AMI Assistants to Infancy training in Atlanta and will complete the Masters course next Fall. Baylan is married with one son and loves implementing Montessori practices at home. In her free time you can find her at a concert, in the woods or spending time with family in Chattanooga.
  • Leah Webster - Toddler Assistant Guide

    Leah Rochelle Webster is an East Nashville native. After graduating from Nashville School of the Arts in 2010, Leah attended Austin Peay State University seeking a degree in Finance. Having a life-long interest in education, Leah started working at The Academy of Maryland where she stayed for 2 years. Looking for more exciting educational environments, Leah sought to learn about Montessori education and ended up here at Montessori East! Leah is really happy to be here and she is ready and excited for all the challenges and new experiences to come!
  • Aleisha Johnson - Toddler Assistant Guide

    Aleisha Johnson has lived in Tennessee for 18 years. She is married and has two wonderful children. She has worked with children for 12 years in various settings. What she loves about working with children is that she can help shape their formative years by being a positive role model for them as children help you see things from a new perspective.
  • Brittany Fluman - Elementary Assistant Guide

    Brit Fluman received her B.A. in Cognitive Behavioral Psychology from Wesley College, and received her M.A. in Humanistic Transpersonal Psychology from University of West Georgia where she studied the affects of expressive arts in therapy and the role of creativity in the development and cultivation of human potential throughout the lifespan. Professionally, Brit worked with Nashville non-profit organizations to provide supplemental education and College Access programs for Title 1 schools, was a Middle Grades Language Arts Instructor and Fourth Grade Main Lesson Teacher for a Waldorf school, provided ELL education with a focus on the role of art and movement in language development/retention at a Japanese international school, and worked as an Adolescent Lead Guide for an Atlanta Montessori school where she enjoyed working in conjunction with her students to identify and develop community goals. Her favorite subjects to teach and guide are Human Biology, Zoology, Organic Gardening and Companion Planting, Micro-Economy, Language Arts & Humanities, and Performing Arts. In her spare time, she enjoys teaching yoga & creative movement, organizing Variety Arts performances, and having Iron Chef competitions with friends. Brit is excited to contribute to the Montessori East community, and explore this new adventure.
  • Ashley Bess - Primary Assistant Guide

    Ashley is a Nashville native who has been assisting and fostering the independence of children in a Montessori setting for over 10 years. She is excited to be a part our community and continuing her love and devotion of nurturing the whole child. Ashley has a son, Hendrix, and enjoys cooking, traveling and being outdoors.
  • Debi Brinker - Primary Assistant Guide

    Debi received her Montessori training through London Montessori Centre in the United Kingdom. She has traveled across the globe teaching and has taught Montessori in the United States for 16 years. Additionally, she has owned her own Montessori school in Texas. Debi has two daughters, two granddaughters, and a cat named Tiffany. She is an award-winning artist who also enjoys reading, travel, hiking, interior design, and the beautiful scenery of Tennessee!
  • Frances Brent - Primary Assistant and Outdoor Education Guide

    Frances grew up in rural West Virginia, and attended college in Shepherdstown, WV, where she earned a degree in English with a minor in French. During her studies, she worked as a Montessori assistant for several years. She went on to graduate school at the University of Georgia and earned her master's in linguistics. She then lived in South America for several months to learn Spanish, and returned to the US to teach at a charter school in Nashville. She is thrilled to return to her Montessori roots at Montessori East. Frances lives in Hillsboro Village with her husband and two goofy cats.
  • MaKeshia Leslie - Elementary All Day Montessori Program Assistant Guide

    MaKeshia Leslie is a native Nashvillian. She received her Associate of Science in Teaching (K-6) degree at Nashville State Community College in 2014. Two years later at Tennessee State University she earned a Bachelor of Arts and Sciences degree with a concentration in Social Sciences. Subbing for Metro Public Schools has allowed her to work with all levels of children. MaKeshia has always wanted to be a teacher. She became interested in the Montessori philosophy when her son began attending Hull Jackson Montessori in 2015. MaKeshia is very excited to begin her journey here at Montessori East! Her next goal is to obtain her certification. In her spare time she loves to sing karaoke, have family time, and watch movies. As for now, she is enjoying being a wife and mother of two beautiful children.
  • Kelly Cox - Primary All Day Montessori Program Assistant Guide

    Kelly is originally from Arkansas where she received a Bachelor's degree in early childhood education. With the desire to invest into a new community, she spent the last three years living in Colorado working as a lead teacher in a creative learning center and for a non-profit ministry. She is newly married and joyfully making a home in her East Nashville cottage with her husband, Andrew. She loves cooking new recipes, traveling, reading in her hammock and exploring the outdoors. She is passionate about children and honored to be a part of the Montessori East community this year!
  • Sarah Eighmy - Toddler All Day Montessori Program Assistant Guide

    Sarah Eighmy joins Montessori East with 16 years of childcare experience in many different capacities- her most recent involving 2 years as a co-lead teacher for young toddlers, in a Reggio Emilia inspired program, at the McKendree UMC Daycare. Sarah grew up in Dickson, TN- just 30 minutes West of Nashville. Changing schools twice and majors many more times throughout her college experience, she found that the one thing which remained constant for her was her love of children and the joy they bring her. Sarah earned a Bachelors of Science in Organizational Communication from Middle Tennessee State University in 2015, and she has been working with children ever since. In her spare time, Sarah has a passion for the success and growth of her friend's farm- Further Farms- learning all about gardening, helping to bottle/label Further Farms hot sauces, as well as planning events which take place on the farm. Sarah is so excited to be apart of this wonderful community of individuals at Montessori East- children and adults alike- and grow in the Montessori way. She feels she has already gained so much in her short time here thus far- "There is a continuous cycle of growth and learning for me as I guide the children and observe them- there is something so special about the Montessori way, and I find myself amazed everyday at the kind, considerate, capable, joyful, young individuals this community is cultivating- I am so happy to be apart of it all."

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