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Get To Know Us



Shannon O.

Founder & Executive Director

An Early Intervention Specialist, Shannon believes learning isn't just measured by simple outcomes, but by the "process" in which  learning is retained. Her desire to foster her students' innate love and curiosity for the world led to the founding of The Native School.


Amber D.

Administrative Director

An eternal optimist, Amber believes in lifting spirits through knowledge. She holds multiple business degrees and is experienced in operations management. As a Licensed Foster Parent and Youth Mentor for over 7 years, Amber believes that children should have a solid foundation rooted in outdoor learning, gaining an innate ability to enjoy the beauty of life.

Teaching Team

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Mrs. Rose

Instructional Specialist & Lead of Forest Kindergarten Programming

Rose is a certificated K-8 teacher with a kindergarten teaching background. Her knowledge of teaching methodology combined with a love of the natural world helps her plan educational opportunities that are mindful of both. She is passionate about giving students the tools they need for success while still creating space for wonder, laughter and play.


Ms. Andrea

Forest K Lead Teacher

Originally on the path to becoming a scientist with a BS in Aquatic Biology, Andrea realized her affinity for teaching and pursued a minor in K-8 Science & Math Education from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She continued teaching various ages, ultimately deciding she belonged in classrooms with young children and obtained an AA in Childhood Development. Her goal is to inspire and contribute to student's interest in the natural world that surrounds us, starting in early childhood. She continues professional development by attending NAREA Conferences and brings a unique blend of specialized knowledge to The Native School. 


Ms. Sheri

Forest K Teacher

Sherridan is from Hawaii and earned her bachelors degree in child development, and is currently studying to be a speech-language pathologist. She has a deep love and appreciation for nature being born and raised a rural area on the big island and enjoys surfing on her free time. She is dedicated to providing an exciting and positive learning environment to instill a love for learning in kiddos!

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Ms. Nikki

Forest K Lead Teacher

Nikki is a certificated K-8 teacher with an elementary teaching background. She holds a BS in Elementary Education, with a minor in Human Development and Family Studies. She is also a lifestyle photographer, a mom of two amazing kids and has a true love for children and the outdoors.  


Ms. Marcie

Forest K Teacher

Marcie originally attained her AA in Child Development and began her path to working with children ages 5 weeks to 5 years. After many years of teaching, she went back to school to graduate with a BS in Environmental Science with a concentration in Fish and Wildlife Management. Here, she is able tocombine her love of teaching with her love of the natural world. She has a passion for all living creatures big and small and believes in respect for mother nature. When she is not aiding in the education of young minds, you can find her out and about with her 2 kids, husband and dogs around San Diego at the beach, mountains, and everywhere in between.


Ms. Lizzie

Lead Piccola Teacher

Elisabetta (aka Ms. Lizzie) is first-generation Italian and speaks three languages. She attended La Scuola Primaria Maria Montessori in Perugia, Italy. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Santa Clara University where she also minored in Public Health and Communication. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, she had the great outdoors as her playground and grew up with movement and nature as the guiding force of light in her life. Nature and her connection to it are the most important values she holds. Elisabetta is also an artist, and recently earned a certificate in Therapeutic Art Coaching. She is passionate about Art Therapy, Nature Therapy, and Play Therapy and believes resilience is cultivated through a growth mindset. She has a depth of experience working with both neurodivergent and neurotypical children. Miss Lizzie is thrilled to validate the rich, complex inner lives of the young adventurers of The Native School.


Ms. Shauna

Lead Piccola Educator

Shauna has a love for all animals. She loves to learn and teach about insects, animals, plants and other wildlife. What she doesn't know, she likes to learn about! She has a bachelor's degree in Child Development with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. With over 11 years of experience working from birth-5 years old, Shauna has become quite knowledgeable in the educational and developmental development of young children. Her passion for sharing our natural world with young children has led her to our program so that she can continue to teach her passion and share her love of all things that grow, swim, crawl, fly, slither, and run.


Ms. Evelyn

Lead Piccola Teacher

Evelyn is pursuing studies in Environmental Studies and Early Childhood Education. She has worked for The Native School for over 3 years  and loves working with young children and guiding young hearts and minds, with a patient and loving heart. 


Ms. Ashley

Lead Piccola Teacher

Ashley has always had a passion for kids and knew at a young age she wanted to work with children. She has worked with children for many years through being a nanny and working in child programs. Ashley is currently finishing her AA for Child Development at Palomar College.  She has a love for nature, health, and her dog! You will find her spending her free time outside taking her dog to the beach, on a hike, or going to the farmers market.


Ms. Lindsay

Lead Piccola Teacher
Lindsay, an avid educator with international teaching experience from Texas to South Africa, holds a degree in child development and a minor in communication disorders. She strongly advocates for the power of play, empathy, and trust-based relationships to foster joyful learning and growth. Lindsay is also passionate about sign language, which she believes works wonders in early childhood development. When she's not in the classroom, you'll find her combing the beach for seashells during cleanups or riding the waves while boogie boarding, as the beach is her ultimate happy place!

Ms. Phoebe

Lead Piccola Teacher
Phoebe is pursuing a degree in early childhood education while minoring in botany. She has a passion for everything nature and loves to share her knowledge of Southern California's native plants, bugs, and animals. Phoebe has worked with young children for a number of years and is enthusiastic about creating space for each child to embrace their uniqueness and cultivate their creativity!

Ms. Karina

Piccola Teacher
 I'm Karina, and I'm thrilled to be joining The Native School. I hold a B.S. in Marriage and Family Studies and have a background in leading preschool classrooms and working with special-needs children. Outside of work, I'm a proud mom to two children, and have been married for over 6 years to my best friend! When I'm not teaching children, you'll find me running long distances, exploring new hikes, and practicing yoga. What excites me about teaching at Native School is the chance to engage and learn a new approach to teaching that challenges and inspires me to be the best for the kids. Ready for this new adventure!

Ms. Katie

Piccola Teacher
Katie has been teaching preschool and working in childcare for seven years. She is the mother of four kids and in her spare time, she loves painting, gardening, and spending time with her family, especially at the beach.  She is excited to get to know your children and support them as they explore and learn in nature!

Ms. Maggie

Piccola Teacher

Originally from Chicago, Maggie has been enjoying sunny San Diego for the last two years. As a K-6 Licensed Teacher with over five years of experience working with young learners, Maggie takes so much joy in sparking curiosity and cultivating a joy of learning amongst her students. She had the opportunity to teach English abroad in Chiang Mai, Thailand for over two years. That experience changed her life for the better and allowed her to grow as an educator, while also giving her the opportunity to experience a new culture. She has also worked in a preschool classroom and taught kindergarten at a small private school in Oceanside.


Ms. Alexia

Piccola Teacher

Coming Soon...

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