Instructional Staff

Karthiha Kunasekaran, Primary (4-6 years)

Karthi was born in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, traveled around the globe, and experienced various cultures, climates, and people. She obtained her bachelor’s and master’s in Computer Science at the University of Madras, India. She started her career as a project guide, computer teacher, and web developer. Her love for Montessori Education was rooted in her when pregnant with her first daughter, Aarrna. Karthi began her Montessori career at the Children’s School, obtained AMS credentials, and gratefully continuing her Montessori passion at our School.

Kate Barrow, Lower Elementary (6-9 years)

Growing up in New York, Ms.Kate moved to the Dutch side of Sint Maarten in 2002.  From 2002-2019 she taught various subjects and age groups from PreKindergarten to Medical Students on the island. Ms. Kate was the Directress of the Upper Elementary Program at the St. Maarten Montessori School for 10 years and spent the last year as the Lead Guide of the U.E. Sea Star Class here at May Sands Montessori School. With a Masters of Science in Education and her Montessori Elementary II credentials from the American Society of Montessori, Kate has worn many hats in her lifetime and says she is “looking forward to sharing these experiences along with… sparking joy and a love of learning within each student.”

Zurima Cisneros, Lower Elementary (6-9 years)

Born and raised in the heart of Caracas, Venezuela, Zurima has acquired a passion for teaching. Earning her B.A. in Gender, Sexuality, Women’s Studies and a double minor in Sociology and Portuguese at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Zurima cultivated a strong sense of community-building through cross-cultural education, music, and dance. Currently working on completing a Montessori Elementary I credential, Zurima is delighted to be this year’s new lead guide in the Sea Turtle classroom. Outside of the classroom, Zurima spends precious family time with her companion, Rudy, and their two children, Zahira (3 years) and Razu (8 months) creating crafts, riding bikes, and going on MoonWalks.

Sandy McCoy, Upper Elementary (9-12 years)

Originally from Orlando, Florida, Sandy graduated from the University of Central Florida (“Go Knights!”) with a Bachelor’s of Science in Anthropology in 2008. Soon after graduating she decided to go into education and taught 8th grade Science for 8 years in the Orange County Public Schools. In 2017, Sandy and Ryan, her husband, and their two children Roland (6 years) and Stella (3 years), moved to Key West. This is also when she stumbled upon May Sands Montessori school and fell in love with our school and the philosophy of Montessori education. This exciting new discovery started her on a journey – she became an Upper Elementary Lead Guide for our school and completed her Montessori Elementary I & II credentials from the American Montessori Society in the summer of 2019.

Glenn Grizzard, Early Secondary ELA & Social Studies (12-14 years)

Lower secondary specialist, Glenn Grizzard, comes to us from the Appalachian town of Boone, North Carolina. Glenn taught traditional middle school, and also served as Director, of Mountain Pathways Montessori School in Boone for 14 years, in addition to teaching Educational Psychology at Appalachian State University. Prior to moving to Boone, Glenn taught gifted classes and Social Studies at a public school near Athens, Georgia, where he had attended the University of Georgia for his undergraduate and graduate work. “Go Dawgs!” In addition to his passion for college football, Glenn enjoys golf, travel, and learning all that he can about the world so he can share it with the children!

Brooke Dillon, Early Secondary Math & Science (12-14 years)

Brooke graduated from the Florida Institute of Technology with a degree in Marine Biology and STEM education. She has lived in the Keys for most of her life and has a passion for teaching. She came to May Sands Montessori looking for a different approach to teaching and fell in love with the Montessori philosophy. When not in school Brooke spends time with her family, two boys Dillon and Andrew.

Susan Berkowitz, Teacher of Student Supports

Susan holds a BFA from The Corcoran School of Art in Washington DC, an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, and is Florida State Certified ESE K-12, Art K-12, and Elementary Ed K-6. Raised outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Susan relocated out West where she resided for over 20 years. In July of 2019, Susan decided to move to Key West to continue her work with ESE students and make her art. She blends her artistic background with her ESE work so that each student is will succeed and learn as an individual and to his/her own learning style. When not at school, Susan can be found making her art, out and in the water, riding her bike, and roller skating, all with her chihuahua Spike by her side.

Laura Hulec, Teacher of Student Support & Personal Development

Laura left her home in Lakewood, Ohio, bringing with her more than 15 years of experience in teaching. Much of her professional experience teaching Family and Consumer Sciences aligns with Montessori pedagogy – teaching life skills such as food and nutrition, career planning, and financial management at the middle and high school levels. Additionally, Laura has experience in Special Education in a variety of settings from elementary through high school. Here at May Sands Montessori School, she offers support primarily to students in our Upper Elementary and Early Secondary classes. Laura enjoys sharing with her students her passion for living a healthy lifestyle and building a love for learning. When not at school she tries to be outside as much as possible – running, walking her dogs, and getting out on and in the water. Laura, her husband Bob, their 3 dogs, and cat are happy to call Key West home.

Nick Mesnard, Health & Physical Education

Originally from Petoskey, Michigan, Nick holds a Master of Science in Exercise Science from The University of Concordia of Chicago and has experience coaching youth in exercise and sports. He previously lived in Sarasota, Florida where he was a Basketball Coach and Head of Strength and Conditioning for Victory Rock Prep Academy. Nick enjoys living a healthy lifestyle and has a passion for coaching. In his free time, he likes to go on runs with his dog, being on the water and playing basketball.