Faculty

Jennifer Shoemaker 

(Miss Jennifer)

Executive Director 

Email: jshoemaker@lehimontessori.com

Jennifer was born into a Montessori home and has been involved in Montessori her whole life. She has worked in several classrooms as a Montessori Aide over the years. Jennifer worked for Mesa Public Schools for many years running and maintaining their auditoriums, while training students in theatre basics. Jennifer taught Drama and stagecraft classes at Heritage Academy for 16 years. During that time she trained students to run sound and lighting, equipment  as well as basic carpentry skills, costuming, time management, and cooperation. Jennifer's children have been in Montessori schools for the last 13 years. She considers the years involved in Montessori as a big part of what has shaped her love of learning. She is excited to be a part of Lehi Montessori's future.

Skye Jones

(Miss Skye)

Upper Elementary Teacher

Email: sjones@lehimontessori.com

Skye Jones has been teaching Upper Elementary at Lehi Montessori since Fall of 2019. She was born and raised here in Mesa, and her family is very involved with the school. She has an A.A. in Theatre from Mesa Community College, a B.A. in Theatre and Drama from Grand Canyon University, a Montessori Certification for Upper Elementary from North American Montessori Center (NAMC) and is currently training with the American Montessori Society (AMS) for a certification in ages 6-12 (Lower and Upper Elementary). She began her career in education at Heritage Academy as a Beginning Stagecraft Teacher shortly after graduating from Heritage. Since then, she has worked with students in multiple roles at Westwood High School, Actor’s Youth Theatre, Montessori House, BASIS Chandler South Primary, and BASIS Phoenix South Primary. Throughout her years of teaching, she has found that students who are the most successful have had a love of learning instilled in them. Because of this, her desire is to guide each student to find their own love of learning on their education journey.

Judith Novak

(Miss Judith)

Lower Elementary Teacher

Email: jnovak@lehimontessori.com

I grew up in Mexico in a home where learning and speaking a second language was fostered by two parents who were educators. I went to school in Mexico and graduated as a Biochemical Engineer. Before graduating I did my internship in UGA (University of Georgia) where I met my husband. We have three children.

I found Montessori when my first child was 5 years old. I took the Orientation training for Infant, Primary, Elementary and Adolescents from 2018-2021, the AMI Primary training in 2020 and the AMI administrators training in 2022. I have had the chance to work in many Montessori environments in all stages of development. I love science, cooking, dancing, hiking and children.

Alissa Irish

(Miss Alissa)

Kindergarten and Preschool Teacher

Email: lehiprimary@lehimontessori.com

Alissa Irish loves learning! She’s spent the majority of her life teaching and learning together with kids.  She has volunteered for over 13 years in classrooms and presented art masterpiece presentations to elementary classes.  She especially loves creating, coloring, upcycling, children’s art, and picture books.  In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her husband and family- four daughters, one son, 2 dogs, and 8 chickens.  She loves hiking, bike rides, 60 degree temperatures, and nature- especially leaves and trees.  She is excited to join the learning adventure at Lehi Montessori this year in the Preschool/ Kindergarten realm. 

Heather Budd

(Miss Heather)

Kindergarten and Preschool Teacher

My name is Heather Budd and I am excited to start at Lehi Montessori. I received my B.A. from Arizona State University. I have been teaching and working with students for over 25 years. My experience ranges from high school students to preschool aged students. 

We are an ASU family. I have been married to my college Sun Devil sweetheart for 27 years. Our two sons attend ASU and you might see us walking our two dogs in their ASU gear. We enjoy traveling, biking, hiking, and playing board games together. I especially like to swim, take pictures and read. 

Dominique Cazako

(Miss Dominique)

Special Education

Hello my name is Dominique, my son and I moved to Arizona for a new beginning almost a year ago, from Missouri. I have worked with all age groups in special education for over 6 years. I started as a twos preschool teacher in 2017. I then moved on to work for Saint Louis county Special School district as a resource teacher,working with the High school students. In 2021 I started working at  City Garden Montessori school working half the day with lower elementary and the other half with upper school. It was there that I really received training on the Montessori way and I fell in love with the concepts. I love learning so that I can apply  the new concepts into my lessons. 


I’m a pretty simple and straightforward person. I love visiting and hanging with my huge family. I love to travel and spend time at home with my bunny Zoe. Two interesting facts about me is that I grew up on a small Island and went to school in Europe from 1st - 4rd grade. I also love chauffeuring my 13 year old son and his friends around on the weekends.


(Miss)

Elementary Aide

Information coming soon

Laura Safsten

(Miss Laura)

Music

Laura Safsten graduated from Arizona State University with a bachelors in Choral Music Education and Music Theatre Performance. She loves spending time getting to know all the kids, and build their confidence as they contribute to the creative process. Laura also believes in utilizing music games as a tool to help solidify concepts they are learning in the classroom. Before teaching at Lehi Montessori, she was a show choir director at Red Mountain High School for 8 years and a choreographer for numerous high school Broadway productions throughout the valley. Her other interests include performing improv comedy and making fun vacation memories with her husband and 5 kids.

Sam Jones

(Coach Sam)

Sports

Hi, my name is Sam Jones, and I'm excited to come teach P.E. here at Lehi Montessori! While receiving my B.A. in Art, Media, and Engineering at Arizona State University, I spent my summer semesters working with upper elementary, middle school, and high school students in workshops to create interactive art projects, video games, and video projects. For the past several years, I have also developed a passion for fitness and am currently in the process of receiving my personal training certification from The National Academy of Sports Medicine. I hope to share the knowledge I have cultivated over the past several years and get the kids excited about physical fitness and exercise.

Rebecca Tibbetts

(Miss Rebecca)

Art

Rebecca Tibbetts received her Associate of Arts degree from Mesa Community College and her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Arizona State University.

Most recently Rebecca taught junior-high art at Heritage Academy Mesa from Fall 2015 to Spring 2022. She currently enjoys working in her home studio. Rebecca resides in Mesa, Arizona with her husband and has 4 grown children and 9 grandchildren – three of which attend Lehi Montessori School!

Rebecca’s work can be found at the following locations:

Dailypaintworks.com

Facebook at Rebecca Tibbetts Fine Art

Alyssa Durfee

(Miss Alyssa)

Administrative Assistant 

Email: help@lehimontessori.com

Bio coming soon