Norine Galton

B.A., University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI; AMS 3-6 certification, Chaminade University, Honolulu, HI;  Infant/Toddler certification, Center for Montessori Teacher Education, White Plains, NY. MCS faculty member since 1982.


Norine was born and raised in Hawaii. She received her Bachelor’s degree at the University of Hawaii and completed training in Montessori education for 3-6 year olds at Chaminade University. Norine continued with her Montessori education, receiving certification in Infant/Toddler training from the Center for Montessori Teacher Education (CMTE) in New York. CMTE trains educators on providing quality care with emphasis on the Montessori philosophy, creating appropriate environmental design, and nurturing optimal development for this specific age group.

Norine has over 35 years of teaching experience. When she’s not teaching, she enjoys spending time with her family, husband Ted Galton and daughter Mariko, who is a proud alumni of MCS.

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Kay Burgoyne


B.A., Early Childhood Education, Chaminade University, Honolulu, HI; Association of Montessori International (AMI) certification (for ages 2-1/2 to 6), Maria Montessori Training Organization, London, England. MCS faculty member since 2015.

Kay was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, one of seven children. She began her Montessori training about 30 years ago while living in Princeton, New Jersey. Kay was fortunate to do her training at AMI Montessori Training in London, England, and has taught at many Montessori schools across the U.S. In 2000, she moved to Hawaii where she later received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Early Childhood Education from Chaminade University. She has 30 years of Montessori teaching.

When she’s not inside a classroom, Kay loves the outdoors. She enjoys tennis, hiking, camping, and running, and has participated in numerous marathons and half-marathons. Kay also enjoys being on the ocean and loves to spend time on her sailboat.
Kay has three adult children, Nate, Erica and Brad, and is a grandmother of eleven grandchildren.

Roshani Scott

Tree House

B.A. Economics and AMI London certification, Colombo, Sri Lanka. MCS staff member since 2014.

Roshani was born and raised in Colombo, Sri Lanka. She completed G.C.E. ordinary and advanced levels in Sri Lanka before receiving her Economics degree and AMI two-year certification. Roshani has much experience in Montessori education, having worked at several Montessori schools in Sri Lanka and International Christian Montessori Academy in Orange, CA for six years. 

Roshani and her husband have two children. Her son currently attends University of Utah and her daughter attends Midpacific Institute. In her free time, Roshani enjoys reading, watching movies and gardening.

Sulia Ricote

Tree House

B.S., Elementary Education, West Visayas State College, Philippines; M.Ed. Montessori Emphasis, Chaminade University, Honolulu, HI. MCS faculty member since 1992.

Sulia was born in the Philippines and moved to Hawaii in 1989 to join her husband. Sulia’s first job in Hawaii was in retail but being a teacher by profession, she searched for a teaching position and started at Montessori Community School in 1992 as the teacher-in-charge of the 3-6 After School Care program.


Wanting to further her Montessori education, Sulia went back to school and earned a Montessori teaching certificate for the 3-6 level at Chaminade University. And years later, went back to Chaminade to earn a Master’s in Education with Emphasis in Montessori education. Sulia notes that she was glad she did it because she gained so much for herself and had so much more to give back to her students.

As a hobby, Sulia enjoys doing her own tax returns and previously worked at H&R Block to learn how to file taxes. She also loves to read novels in her free time. Sulia and husband, Eddie, have a daughter who was an MCS student for 9 years.

Tiffany Wong

Little House

B. A., Journalism and Communication Studies, University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO; M.A., Communication and Leadership, Park University, Parkville, MO; M.A.T., Early Childhood Education, Chaminade University, Honolulu, HI; AMS Early Childhood Credential. MCS faculty since 2018.

Tiffany was born and raised in Honolulu, HI. While obtaining her educational degrees in other fields, Tiffany began working with children and found herself immensely enjoying being an educator. She finally decided to pursue her true passion and attended graduate school to study Early Childhood Education at Chaminade University. While attending Chaminade, Tiffany was a recipient of the John Chin Young Scholarship, Castle Scholarship and PATCH Scholarship.

Tiffany loves nurturing her students to become independent and enthusiastic learners. She delights in encouraging their unique gifts, cheerfulness, and warm smiles through the Montessori approach. Tiffany believes in Montessori education because it fosters creativity within each child. Her favorite Maria Montessori quote is, "The child is both a hope and a promise for mankind."

When Tiffany is not in the classroom, she is actively participating in events with her young adult ministry. Being a nature lover, she enjoys hiking and swimming at the beach. In her free time, she also likes attending concerts and musical theatre. Tiffany frequently attends professional development conferences to stay current with new concepts and developments in the field.

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Amalia Prado

Room 1

B.A., Child Development with a minor in Special Education, San Francisco State University. AMS Primary credential, Montessori Teacher Education Center, Sunnyvale, CA. AMS Lower Elementary Credential. MCS faculty member since 2018.


Amalia was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay area. Throughout high school and college, she volunteered for a non-profit program called "Project Read", tutoring reading and math to low-income and learning-challenged children in grades K-3. Through "Project Read", she was overjoyed to see the children's self-confidence rise and this experience led her to pursue her college degree in Child Development and a minor in Special Education. 

In July 2018, Amalia moved to Hawaii and began working as the assistant in the Little House classroom. In Summer 2019, she was presented The Jerry Mueller Fund for Montessori Teacher Training to obtain her AMS Lower Elementary Credential.


Amalia has such an appreciation of the child and she truly enjoys learning about the different development stages. When not in the classroom, Amalia enjoys hiking, visiting beaches and shopping at different local farmers' markets. 

Cindy Shyne

Room 1

B.S. Human Development and Family Studies, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO; M.Ed. Elementary Education, Montessori 6-9 certification, Chaminade University, Honolulu, HI. MCS faculty member since 2001.

Cindy is originally from Denver Colorado.  She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family studies at Colorado State University.    After graduation she moved to California and worked for Boys and Girls Club of Long Beach and also Camp Fire Boys and Girls of Long Beach as a program director.  

Her love of warm weather brought her to Hawaii.  She continued to pursue her education at Chaminade University of Honolulu where she earned her Masters Degree in Elementary Education and her 6-9 Montessori certification.  

When not in the classroom Cindy enjoys swimming, surfing and dancing hula. 

Lisa Browning

Room 2

B.A. Psychology, University of Hawaii Manoa; MSW University of Hawaii Manoa; Montessori AMS 6-9 Certification, Montessori Center for Teacher Education, San Diego, California. MCS faculty member since 2009.

Lisa was born and raised in Waimea, on the Big Island of Hawaii. After earning her Masters Degree in Social Work, she worked with the Department of Human Services in the Foster Care Department. She later worked with Child and Family Services, counseling adolescents at an alternative school in Ewa Beach.

After being a stay-at-home mom for a number of years, Lisa began substitute teaching for the DOE in all grades of Elementary and Special Ed. She discovered the joys of Montessori education through a substitute teaching position with Montessori Community School and feels blessed to have been able to attend the teacher training program in San Diego. She has worked at Montessori Community School since 2009.  Lisa and her husband, Philip have 4 children, Jacob, Eliza, Molly and Ben.

Fana Takahashi

Room 2

B.S. Elementary Education K-8, Montana State University; B.S. Early Childhood Education and Child Services, Montana State University; M. Ed. Elementary Education: Curriculum and Instruction K-8, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT; MACTE Primary and Elementary 6-9, Age of Montessori. MCS faculty member since 2019.

Fana was born in Japan and moved to North Carolina at a young age. Upon earning her bachelor's degrees from Montana State University, she began working in an Early Childhood Classroom at a Montessori school in Bozeman, Montana. She fell in love with the Montessori method and pursued certifications in both Primary and Elementary 6-9. She taught in the Lower Elementary classroom for two years. While teaching, she completed her master's degree with a focus on curriculum and instruction in a K-8 classroom. She loves teaching and continually strives to be a better educator.

In her free time, Fana enjoys traveling, exploring the outdoors and volunteering in the community.

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Andee Blackwell

Room 5

B.A. Elementary Education, University of South Carolina Upstate, Spartanburg, SC; M.Ed. Lander University, Greenwood, SC. MCS faculty member since 2016.

Andee was born and raised in South Carolina. Being the oldest of five, she always loved to teach and work with children. She received her B.A. in Elementary Education from USC Upstate and shortly after started working at a small Montessori school in Charleston, SC with a 6-12 year-old class. During this time she discovered her passion for the Montessori method and completed a Masters of Education with a focus in Montessori, ages 6-12, from Lander University. 


Andee loves to travel, bike, and dance. Her love of traveling inspired her to move to Warsaw, Poland where she continued working with a 9-12 year-old class at Warsaw Montessori School (an international school). After working, living and traveling in Europe for about three years it was time to head back to America. She relocated to Honolulu, trying to catch some warmer weather and has had the great fortune of joining the MCS family. She is happy to be working in the 9-12 class and looks forward to continuing some traveling, this time more in Asia. 

Monika Day

Room 6

B.A. Therapeutic Recreation, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, WA; M.S.Ed., St. Joseph’s College of Maine, Standish, ME; Montessori MACTE/AMS Primary and Elementary Levels, University of Puget Sound/Spring Valley Montessori. MCS faculty member since 2015.


Monika was raised on the U.S. mainland in the Seattle area, attending the first Montessori school west of the Mississippi through the 6th grade. After becoming a mother, she attended Montessori teacher training at the same school, taught by Mrs. Madeline Justus, who was herself trained by Dr. Maria Montessori. She has taught at a variety of levels, from preschool through middle school, since 1995.

Her daughter, Erin, was raised in a Montessori school, and recently graduated from UH Manoa with a degree in Marine Biology and a mention on the Dean’s List. In her “free” time, Monika is a volunteer with Malama Na Honu (turtle guardian), pulls invasive algae from the front of her church, plays in a handbell choir, sings in her church choir, and runs her own small business, Twisted Panache (upcycling used materials for another purpose).

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Elena Chan

Elementary After School Program

B.A., Psychology and Art, Chaminade University. MCS faculty member since 1979.


Elena is from Honolulu, Hawaii. She earned her B.A. with a double major in Psychology and Art from Chaminade University. Elena began working at MCS in 1979 in the 3-6 after school care program and soon after, also as an assistant at the 3-6 level. Elena also taught in the 6-9 class and in two summer elementary programs in 1980 and 1981. She is currently the Head Teacher/Director of the Elementary After-School Care program.

Elena’s husband, Joe, is a retired jade and stone carver whose business specialized in jade and antiques. Elena and Joe are the proud parents of two daughters, Tiffany and Vanessa, and has three grandchildren.

Ruth Orbito

Tree House After School Program

B.S. Family Resources, University of Hawaii Manoa. MCS faculty member since August 2011.


Ruth grew up in Waianae, Hawaii. She has been working in early education since 1994, and has worked at three different preschools on Oahu, Hawaii as an Assistant Teacher.  Prior to MCS, Ruth was an Educational Aide for special education at an elementary school in Honolulu, and earned a Certificate in Disability Studies from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.


Ruth is married with two teenage sons. Her oldest son attends Punahou School and youngest son at Roosevelt High School. Ruth enjoys traveling, walking the family dog, watching movies, and trying new foods. 

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