Will Wintermute is the Director of our school. Will has been working with young children in a variety of capacities for over 25 years. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in early childhood education and began his career as a preschool teacher. He then served as director of operations at a school for children with special needs where he gained valuable managerial experience in a non-profit setting. He continued to hone his business skills as a site director of a large national pediatric healthcare organization where he was responsible for strategic planning, budgeting and compliance. For the past five years, he has served as the director of a large corporate childcare organization in Fairfield and then Stamford where he has overseen early childhood programs that, like CHT, are Reggio-inspired and NAEYC accredited. In addition to holding State credentials as Head Teacher and Preschool Director, Will is also a certified emergency medical technician (EMT). He lives in Fairfield with his two teenaged sons.
"Before we ever put a pencil in a child's hands, those hands should dig, climb, press, push, pull, squish, twist, and pinch in a wide array of environments and with a variety of materials" - Amanda Morgan
Hilary Cummings started as a substitute teacher at CHT in 2018 and is very excited to be teaching in the Caterpillar class this year. Hilary earned her Education Specialist Degree at the University of Colorado Denver and worked as a School Psychologist for six years at the elementary school level. She also worked for Child Find in Colorado, an organization focused on connecting children age birth to 5 with community resources.
Hillary moved to Westport 5 years ago where she lives with her husband, two boys and dog Lulu. In her free time she loves being at the beach with her kids, exercising and cooking with her husband.
"Every child can learn, just not in the same way." - George Evans
Lori Murray has been a teacher at CHT since 2016. Prior to CHT, Lori spent 10 years teaching for another preschool in Westport as a Twos teacher. Lori has a degree in Psychology from Southern Connecticut State University with a concentration in Early Childhood Education. Lori lives in Trumbull with her husband Kevin and their 2 children. She enjoys outdoor running, riding her Peleton and spending time with her family.
"Teachers who love teaching teach children to love learning." - Anonymous
Angela Silano has taught for almost a decade at CHT leading a Reggio inspired classroom. She loves teaching young children and delights in experiencing that first "Ah-ha" moment with them. Angela graduated Magna Cum Laude from Charter Oak State College and holds a BS degree in Early Childhood Education. She most recently obtained a certificate in Administrative Leadership from Norwalk Community College. Angela lives in Norwalk with her husband and has two children. In her spare time she enjoys cooking, reading, and taking walks with friends.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -Albert Einstein
Ann Dickson is enjoying her fourth year at CHT Preschool and this year is teaching our three's Sea Class. She has been teaching three and four year olds in Fairfield County for the past ten years. Ann holds a degree in English Literature from Wheaton College and a Master's in Early Childhood Education from Bank Street College. Ann and her husband are the parents of two grown sons. In her free time, Ann enjoys baking, walking, and reading.
"Play is the highest form of research." -Albert Einstein
Georgia Morrison joined us in the 2020-21 school year in the Three's Sea Class. She comes to us with 17 years of teaching experience in Early Childhood Education. She received a Diploma in Teaching from Shortwood Teachers College in Jamaica, a BA in Sociology with a minor in Early Childhood Education and a MS in Applied Psychology. She is the mother of two school-aged children and a toddler. Georgia loves watching Korean dramas and going on "grocery dates" with her husband of 15 years.
“The best teachers are those who show you where to look, but don’t tell you what to see.” –Alexandra Trenfor
Maureen Hines has been with us for five years and has spent the last three years in the Three's Sky Class. Maureen holds a BS degree in Physical Education from Old Dominion University with a minor in Education. She has a passion for the outdoors, exercise, gardening and self-expression through yoga, art, and cooking which is why she enjoys a Reggio classroom so immensely! Her youngest child attended CHT which is when she fell in love with the school. Maureen and her husband of 27 years have raised three children in Westport and are now looking forward to being empty nesters!
"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." -Benjamin Franklin
Melinda Bell began teaching at CHT in 2003. Melinda is currently the Sun Class teacher. Prior to joining CHT Preschool, Melinda worked in the Three's and Four's program at the Child Care Learning Center in Stamford, CT, and taught Pre-K to 8th Grade for 12 years at the Westchester Area S.D.A. School in New Rochelle, NY. Melinda's teaching experience spans over 30 years. She received her B.A. degree in Secondary Education from Queens College and her CDA from Norwalk Community College. She is fluent in Spanish and enjoys reading, traveling and gardening. Melinda is married and has two grown children.
"Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it." Prov. 22:6 NIV
Melissa Coughlin joined CHT in 2020 as a teacher in the Rainbow class.. Melissa is also the Associate for Children's Ministries at the Christ & Holy Trinity Church. Melissa lives in Westport with her husband and their four children. Recent transplants from California, she and her adventurous family are exploring the town's parks and east coast. Melissa is excited about bringing her excitement and love of learning to the preschool where two of her daughters are currently enrolled.
"...a willingness to question all our own abilities, your knowledge, to become humble. Only then will you be able to listen to the child, to set off on a common search to educate each other together." -Loris Malaguzzi
Maria Rosa-Rockoff joined our staff as one of our Star class teachers in 2015. Maria has worked in early childhood education in Fairfield County for 21 years. She holds an A.S. degree in Early Childhood Education from Naugatuck Community College and attended UCONN Stamford working towards a B.A. degree Human Services, with a focus on Women's Studies. She and her husband live in Easton. She has two children and three grandchildren that she loves spending time with any chance she can get. She enjoys trail running or playing racquetball with friends.
"You don't stop playing because you grow old, you grow old because you stop playing!" -George Bernard Shaw
Jerilyne Davis-Arslanagic joined CHT in 2020 as a Floater Teacher in the 4's and 5's Programs. Jerilyne has a BA in music performance with a minor In education from NAU in Flagstaff, AZ. She also received certification in Suzuki Pedagogy in violin, specializing in early childhood music education. She is an Alumni of Interlochen Arts Academy Interlochen, MI. Jerilyne has been teaching and performing in Westport and Fairfield County for the past 20 years and is on staff at the Suzuki Music School of Westport & Orange. She feels very strongly that her experience in music and work with young children carries over into the preschool setting. Jerilyne lives in Fairfield with her husband and two daughters. Both girls are very involved in music and art .
“What is Man’s ultimate direction in life, It is to look for love, truth, virtue and beauty.” -Shinichi Suzuki
Kate Nelson is the Program Coordinator of our school having previously taught in the Sky and Sea classes. Kate also works at Christ & Holy Trinity Church as the Coordinator of Youth and Children's Ministries. She has a B.A. in Human Development Family Services from UCONN and her Masters in Elementary Education from Fordham University. She has worked with children of all ages in many capacities and has taught for over 10 years primarily with the preschool and elementary-school ages. Kate lives in Fairfield with her husband, two children and two dogs. She is often found running, skiing, and playing with her kids.
"Time spent playing with children is never wasted." -Dawn Laterno
Pam Kopack is a 28 year resident of Westport where she lives with her husband, Jim. They have two children, Jenny and Jimmy and a very cute spoiled rescue dog named Abby. Currently all are grown and flown except Abby. Pam is a CPA and has worked both as an internal and external auditor for the bulk of her career. She has been a member of CHT for more than 20 years.
The Rev. John Betit is the Rector of Christ & Holy Trinity Church and serves as Head of School. The preschool has been a treasured ministry of Christ & Holy Trinity Church for over 50 years. Regardless of a family's faith background or beliefs, all are welcome in the CHT community. Christ & Holy Trinity Church is guided by a vision of "transforming lives." Each day, the church campus is alive in this vision as young learners discover the world and grow in curiosity, confidence and empathy with love and respect for another.