All teachers at Central Kitsap Montessori are certified and trained to teach according to the Montessori method. We are committed to excellence in education and to meeting the individual needs of the children. Our caring and enthusiastic assistants are specially trained to respond to the interests of each student. The entire staff is committed to creating a secure and happy atmosphere where your child can blossom.
Diana Zegers: Owner
Diana is the founder of Central Kitsap Montessori. She is a certified Montessori teacher through the Montessori Education Institute of the Pacific Northwest, an American Montessori Society affiliate. She is the author of Music Education for Young Children, a curriculum that is being taught in over 1,400 Montessori classrooms and Intro to Montessori, which is the textbook for her college course. In addition to being an adjunct faculty member at Olympic College, Diana has been a frequent seminar presenter and a teacher trainer for the music and movement portions of several Montessori training centers. Together with Jillian, she enjoys developing Montessori appropriate curriculum and they have a ‘store’ on TeachersPayTeachers.com called CK Montessori. Outside of school, Diana enjoys her grandchildren, involvement at Central Kitsap Presbyterian Church and leading tours in the Netherlands from where her family originates.
Jillian McClendon: Administrator
Jillian has been with CK Montessori since 2003. She loves working with young children and is a certified Montessori teacher through United Montessori Association. She developed the Sign Language curriculum being taught in our school and manages our Art curriculum. Jillian has two children; both of whom have attended CK Montessori. She has also authored a book titled The Call to Love. She enjoys crafts, games, singing, baking, and gardening.
Teresa Zweber: Head Teacher
Teresa has been with CK Montessori since 1996. It all started when her son attended Barker Creek Montessori and she spent a lot of time volunteering in the classroom. When Steele Creek opened she was offered an assistant position. After several years as an assistant she decided to get her Montessori training through United Montessori Association and become a certified Montessori teacher. She has been a head teacher since 2005 and manages our Sensorial curriculum. Teresa enjoys traveling, hiking, quilting, reading and even the occasional half marathon.
Misty Clark: Head Teacher
Mrs. Clark joined CK Montessori in 2017. She came to us with 13 years of Montessori teaching experience. She is loved and respected by the children she teaches and came highly recommended by several respected Montessorians in our community. Misty has 2 teenage children. She is fitting in amazingly well!
Susan Avery: Assistant Teacher
Susan started volunteering at Steele Creek Montessori in 1995 when her oldest son was attending. Eventually, all 4 of her children attended for a total of 14 years! After SCM, each of her children continued their Montessori education for 6 more years at the CK School District’s program. She has been happily married to Scott since 1990. Susan manages our Sewing curriculum. Susan loves gardening, cooking and DIY decorating her house.
Charmaine Leicht: Assistant Teacher
Charmaine has been with CK Montessori since 2003. Her education is in Chemical Engineering, however, she started coming in when her children came to school at Barker Creek and enjoyed it so much she decided to stay and work. She manages our Geography curriculum. Charmaine enjoys spending time with her 3 adult children. She loves reading and a good cup of coffee.
Darlene Mullen: Assistant Teacher
Darlene first came to us in 2006 when her daughter was enrolled at Barker Creek. She enjoyed it so much that she decided to stay and is now Montessori certified through United Montessori Association. Darlene manages our Practical Life curriculum. She and her husband have an adopted daughter from China and have adopted two sibling boys that also attended CK Montessori. They have just added a 5 year old foster girl to their family. She loves working with children, writing western novels, anything to do with Native American history, camping, and cooking.
Melissa Wheeler: Music Teacher
Melissa is a life-long lover of music. She began singing and playing piano at a young age. Some of her earliest memories include singing with her mother, a piano teacher and organist, and creating piano songs to perform for her family. While she continues to sing and play piano, Melissa has also begun learning the Ocarina, an ancient wind musical instrument, and the violin. Outside of CK Montessori, Melissa is a guest teacher for CK School District. She also instructs a children’s chorus at her church and volunteers as an elementary school Art docent. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons, crafting, hiking, baking, and curling up with a good book.