Meet Our Staff at Eden Prairie Montessori South!


Ms Shyami – Casa Lead Guide

Shyami started at Eden Prairie Montessori North in November of 2003. She holds a Montessori Diploma from Havelock Gardens Training Center for the Montessori Method in Sri Lanka, as well as a Preschool Education Diploma and a Bachelor’s of Science degree. With over 30 years of experience working with children, you can trust that your little one is in good and loving hands. She was the well-loved lead Infant teacher at our North location for 10 years and decided it was time to get back into a preschool classroom.

Fun Fact: Shyami loves to travel and has been such areas as the UK, Thailand, Singapore, the Maldives Islands and the United Arab Emirates (among others)!

Ms Shalonda Casa Assistant Teacher

Shalonda originally joined the EPM family in 2007. She has re-joined us at our South location now and we are glad to have her back! Shalonda bring over a decade of childcare experience to the table, as well as an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and a Fundamentals of Montessori certificate. She was born in Hartford, Connecticut, but was raised right here in the Twin Cities where she still lives with her husband. She is Black Cherokee Indian and loves speaking to and empowering other women!

Fun Fact- Shalonda has a love for muscle cars!



Ms Neelia – Lead Toddler Guide

Neelia has been with us since June of 2010 and holds a AMI Montessori Teacher Diploma from Sri Lanka. She has been a Preschool Teacher in Montessori schools for over 16 years. She is married with 3 grown children of her own. In addition to teaching, Neelia enjoys many crafts such as sewing, painting and flower arranging, as well as cooking.

Fun Fact: Neelia enjoys doing charity work and has a special love of working with disadvantaged children.


The Nido

Ms Cheryl – Lead Nido Guide

Cheryl joins us with over 30 years of experience with children as both a nanny and a teacher. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education with a Kindergarten endorsement and an Associate’s Degree in Childhood Development. She’s a small town Minnesota gal, born and raised. She loves penguins, Mickey Mouse and her cat, Fiona.

Fun Fact: Cheryl is a crafty one… as in beading and paper crafts. And it runs in the family- her mother made the beautiful quilt that hangs in Cheryl’s classroom!

Ms Dora – Nido Aide

Dora joined us at our North Location in August of 2016 and moved over to spend her days loving on the infants at our South Location! Dora is originally from Lima, Peru. She speaks Spanish and Italian and has a teenage son. She is working towards her CPA and loves learning and the children!
Fun Fact: She was able to visit the Ruins of Machu Picchu in Cuzco, Peru and counts it as an unforgettable experience!



Ms Veronica – Spanish Teacher

Ms Veronica works over at North as a Teacher, but comes over in the afternoon to teach the children Spanish! She started with us in September of 2012. She holds an Early Childhood Education degree and has over a decade of childcare experience. Originally from Los Angeles, California, she is of Mexican descent and uses her Spanish language skills to teach the children in fun and engaging ways. She is married with 2 children. She loves to sing and often uses songs to teach the children Spanish.
Fun Fact: Veronica likes doing Zumba. She claims that it’s the only way she can dance.



Ms Lisa – Director

Lisa joins us with over four decades of teaching experience, most of that in a Montessori setting. She completed her AMI Montessori Teacher’s certificate in Italy- where Dr. Maria Montessori originated her method. She also holds a Fine Arts degree from Gustavus Adolphus College, a BA in Child Psychology from the University of Minnesota and graduate work through Metro State! She is quite the academic and is always learning! She comes from a family of artists. Her husband owns an art gallery, her oldest son is a filmmaker and married to a writer with 3 publish books, her youngest son is a woodworker and she herself sings and plays guitar and ukulele. She is a world traveler with trips to South and Central America and Europe, as well as having seen 4/5 of the United States.

Fun Fact: Lisa is an Italophile. She loves anything Italian- the food, the cities, the museums… She’s even learning the language!


Eden Prairie Montessori North  | (952) 944-8466 | 7455 Market Place Dr.,  Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Eden Prairie Montessori South  |  (952) 941-2971 |  8098 Glen Lane,  Eden Prairie, MN 55344

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