Meet the Teachers & Staff

Whistler Waldorf School Faculty and Staff

Whistler Waldorf School’s faculty consists of all teachers employed at the school and is responsible for delivering the Waldorf curriculum to the students. Our Administration Team works together to support the Faculty of Teachers, Board of Trustees, and Parent Council and ensures the smooth functioning of daily operations of the school, including admissions, implementation of BC Ministry of Education policies, enrollment, facility management, community relations, and marketing.


(Last updated Oct.2020)


Rubeena Sandhu: Head of School

Rubeena Sandhu joined Whistler Waldorf School in 2015 as the Grade 6 class teacher. She led this class through to their high school years continuing as Guardian, facilitating healthy relationships in both student and parent work. Her expertise as a teacher at the Whistler Waldorf School spans both the lower school and high school, giving her first-hand experience of how our school values are implemented in the classroom. Rubeena has fostered countless relationships with students, parents and faculty and taken on leadership roles on the Board of Trustees, Student Support Executive Group and the High School Task Force.

Prior to joining Whistler Waldorf, Rubeena was a founding parent and teacher at the Cedar Bridge School in Lumby, BC, a Waldorf-inspired farm and forest-based school, where she taught Grades 1 to 7. During this time Rubeena focused on community development, healthy growth and parent education.

Rubeena holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Thompson Rivers University where she married her passion for creativity with practice. She holds a Waldorf Teachers Certificate from the West Coast Institute and continues to promote, and support, Waldorf education in BC serving as the BC Sub-Regional Representative for the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. Rubeena has two wonderful children, one now graduated, and child in the lower school.

Jennifer Dodds: Director of Enrolment

Ms. Dodds serves as our Director of Enolment & Admissions. She has a Bachelor of Arts as well as a Masters of Arts Education. She has over ten years of non-profit administrative experience and extensive experience working in the education sector. Jen has been involved with Waldorf education since 2006 and currently has three daughters enrolled in the school. In addition to being a Waldorf parent, she is also a certified Simplicity Parenting Coach. Her door is always open and she warmly welcomes ideas on how we can further deepen our collective understanding of Waldorf education and child development through Parent Enrichment offerings and how we can cultivate increased community connection.

Brian Gohlke: Director of Business and Finance

Mr. Gohlke joined WWS in 2015 as the Grade 7 teacher. Brian was a class teacher at the Vancouver Waldorf School since 2007, taking a class from Grade 2 – 7 and then another class for Grade 7 and 8. He has a BA in Economics and International Business and a Diploma in Rudolf Steiner Education, having completed his Waldorf teacher training in New Zealand in 2006. Previous to his work as a Waldorf teacher, Brian worked as a class teacher for eight years at a school in Taiwan.

Maude Ash: School Registrar & Early Years Licensing Manager

Ms. Ash works as the registrar for WWS, which consists of managing student questions and student records, as well as the Early Years Licensing Manager. You can contact Maude if you need any information regarding students files: personal information and contact details, course registration, issuing transcripts, and much more.

Originally from Quebec, Maude moved to BC in 2001 to escape the harsh winter. She lived in the Okanagan for many years before our family decided to settle in Pemberton 6 years ago because it has the some of the most amazing opportunities for paragliding in Canada. She has a young son who enjoys keeping her busy. Maude completed a Specialized Education Diploma and an Early Childhood Education – Infant and toddler Diploma. She is currently enrolled in a bookkeeping/accounting course, and loves to travel, listen to music and knit hats for the BCCH NICU (Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit).

Gabriel Alden-Hull: Early Years Admissions Manager & EY Chair

Gabriel Alden-Hull joined Whistler Waldorf School in the 2020/21 school year as the Early Years Admissions Manager & Chair. Waldorf Education is the big tent where Gabriel’s wide range of curiosity and practice has found a home. Gabriel received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in music composition at SFU and went on to work in non-profit arts administration, where she discovered her interest in organizational life and human collaboration. Gabriel became a part of the Waldorf movement in 2007 as a parent at Squamish Waldorf School, and later served there as board member, administrator, and music teacher for Grades 1 – 8, earning her subject teaching certificate in music. Gabriel studied Waldorf school administration through Leading with Spirit, and attended Waldorf intensives in teaching music through the Grades. She went on to serve as Principal of Squamish Waldorf School until her move to Whistler in 2020. Outside of school, Gabriel is a dedicated student of life, enjoying exploration in the wilderness, music, writing, philosophy, the arts, literature, handcrafts, cooking, and time with family and friends.

Cassie Hields: Finance Manager

Cassie Hields serves as The Finance Manager for WWS. Cassie’s education includes a BA in Finance and Business Management, Advanced diploma in Accounting and is soon to complete her Chartered Accountancy Certification. She comes to Waldorf with extensive experience in the Financial and HR sector and is looking forward to be working for a thriving Non-Profit Organization.

Originally from the UK, Cassie’s passion for mountain living lead her to spending some years in the French Alps before moving to Whistler earlier this year to be closer to her partner’s family. She has settled into the Whistler Lifestyle with ease and so when away from her desk of spreadsheets and numbers, you can catch Cassie on the mountain. In her spare time she enjoys trail biking, ski touring, or an early morning paddle board at the lakes with a coffee in hand. Cassie resonates with the Waldorf philosophy of learning and is thrilled to be part of the team.

Cristiana Spooner: Communications Manager

Cristiana Spooner has been the Communications Manager for Waldorf since May of 2019. She has a post-secondary education in Visual Design Arts and Film and 25 years of experience working in communications design, public relations & online marketing in Whistler. Cristiana also owns a social media/website design company and enjoys imparting her experience to post-secondary students at Whistler Adventure School’s Media & Marketing program as a Videography and Photography Instructor. In her spare time, she volunteers as a Girl Guides Leader and can be found cross country skiing, running and biking around Whistler with her boarder collie Chinook.

Maeve Bellmore: School Receptionist

(On leave for 2020/21)

Maeve Bellmore, born in Dublin, Ireland. Island hopped to London, UK, then again some (many) years later after finishing her Art degree, landed in Whistler in 2006.  For the past thirteen years Maeve have been working in the hospitality and retail industry, nine years of which were managing a children’s retail store, enjoying the high paced life of sales and customer service. In her spare time she loves traveling, embracing the great outdoors and lakeside chilling. Maeve is also an artist, having had many exhibits in town, and is currently writing & illustrating children’s stories, inspired by her young daughter Areli.

Amanda Schmitt: Receptionist 2020/21

Amanda has joined WWS as Receptionist (replacing Ms. Bellmore who is enjoying a maternity leave for 2020-21). Amanda is new to Whistler having moved from the Fraser Valley and is a trained teacher with Grade 2-3 teaching experience in a Montessori school. She also coaches hockey at the local rink, working with the girls development team as well as the boys rec teams. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, biking, time at the lake and golfing – she’s become a regular at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club.  Within the span of a few weeks, she had mastered the names of the reception regulars – (the ones who love band aids and ice packs), and studied the class photos, lists and asked the children directly to learn them all by name!

High School Faculty

Ellen Maclean: Math & Science; High School Chair

(On Leave for 2020/21)

Ms. Maclean is part of our High School Science and Math teacher team as well as coordinating the High School’s curriculum as High School Chair. She has a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry, and a Bachelor of Education with a focus on Environmental science, Biology and experiential education. Ellen also recently completed her Masters in Education and Waldorf High School Teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College, Sacramento.

Ms. Ellen Maclean

Ali Blancher: Math & Science; High School Chair; Grade 8 Guardian

Ms. Blancher’s education includes Bachelor degrees in Geography and Environmental Sciences from Queen’s University, and a Bachelor of Education from UBC. She is currently completing her Waldorf high school teacher training in math, Life Sciences, and Physical Sciences at the Centre for Anthroposophy in New Hampshire.

Ali moved to Whistler in 2005, and worked as a teaching assistant in Whistler and Pemberton for two years. She first joined Whistler Waldorf in 2009 as a teaching assistant in the Early Years program and fell in love with the school. She was therefore thrilled to return as a science, math and resource teacher in 2011 after completing her Bachelor of Education. Ali gained extensive experience with adolescents over past ten years directing leadership programs, coaching field hockey and softball, and working at the Pemberton Secondary School. She loves the Whistler life with all of its outdoor activities and athletic opportunities.

Charlotte Jacklein: French, Music, Drama & Humanities; Grade 9 Guardian

Ms. Jacklein joined the Whistler Waldorf School faculty in 2015 as a high school humanities and outdoor education teacher. Prior to coming to Whistler, Charlotte taught in both public and independent schools, most recently at the Halton Waldorf School in Ontario as a class teacher. She has an Honours BA from University of Waterloo in English with a Minor in Peace and Conflict Studies, a Bachelor of Education from Lakehead University in English and OE3 (Outdoor Experiential Environmental Education), and a Masters of Education and Waldorf teacher training from Antioch University New England.

A Waldorf graduate herself, Charlotte is grateful that this remarkable opportunity gave her a strong foundation and inspired a deep commitment to lifelong learning. In addition to her classroom teaching, Charlotte has over a decade of experience working as a wilderness guide and outdoor instructor in Canada and internationally. Through her work with organizations such as Outward Bound and the YMCA, Charlotte has a wealth of experience working with children and youth in a wide range of settings from Australia to the Arctic. In her free time Charlotte loves exploring the great outdoors, playing with the Sea to Sky orchestra and growing tasty food with her Pemberton gardening collective.

Ms. Charlotte Jacklein
Mr. Stephen Maskell

Stephen Maskell: Math & Science; Grade 10 Guardian

Mr. Maskell grew up in Wales and while studying at Cardiff High School he took part in an engineering competition which sparked his want to pursue a career in a technical field. Upon graduation, he went on to study Aerospace Engineering at University of Hertfordshire with an exchange year at West Virginia University in the United States. During university, Steve continued volunteering with Scouts and participating in outdoor activities. It became apparent that working with children and youth was the direction he wanted to take.

The next few years were spent working with young people and combining his love for the outdoors by managing a Scout Campsite and working in the outdoor education sector. During this time, Mr. Maskell completed a Graduate Apprenticeship in Outdoor Education. There was something missing though; that technical, analytical side wanted to be aired and so he worked at the Ministry of Defence before completing a Post Graduate Certificate in Education. Steve then moved to Whistler and after working in the adult education sector at Blackcomb Aviation, he has now returned to what he loves, teaching mathematics to awesome adults of the future.

Wes Feagan: French & English; Grade 11 & 12 Guardian

Mr. Feagan joined Whistler Waldorf School in 2013, working in student support as a classroom assistant. He brings over 15 years of experience and training working in special needs education and in children’s recreation. He completed a Bachelor’s degree at the University of Victoria, and post grad studies in Australia in group facilitation, HR and education. Although Wes was born and grew up in Toronto, he is drawn to the mountains of BC and loves his life in Whistler.  Along with his wife and two children, Wes takes full advantage of the beautiful outdoor environment in Whistler through running, mountain biking, skiing, as well as playing and coaching soccer.

Mr. Wes Feagan
Ms. Emma Wardrop

Emma Wardrop: Humanities; Grade 11 & 12 Guardian

(On Leave for 2020/21)

Ms. Wardrop joined Whistler Waldorf School’s High School Humanities Department in 2015. Emma moved to Whistler in 2014, being drawn to the beautiful natural landscapes and the spirit of adventure surrounding the mountains. She completed her undergraduate studies in English and History at Queen’s University, and then moved to New Zealand where she attained her Graduate Diploma in Teaching at the University of Otago. She gained teaching experience in New Zealand at International Baccalaureate and mainstream high schools. In 2017, Emma completed the Waldorf High School Teacher training program run through the Centre for Anthroposophy in New Hampshire.

Emma has always had a passion for teaching and working with youth, whether as a coach, camp counsellor, ESL teacher, or mentor for those in her community. She has coached high school soccer teams, and was a provincial level soccer player. She enjoys the curiosity and vigour with which teens approach the world about them, and is drawn to the Waldorf approach due to its focus on encouraging the discovery of truth and beauty. Emma has a deep love for literature and stories which nourish our understanding of life, and enjoys writing in her free time. She loves being able to ski, bike, explore and play in the mountains she now calls home and is thrilled to be working with the vibrant Whistler Waldorf School community.

Brent Lelond: Science & Outdoor Education

Mr. Lelond comes from a long line of educators, currently the 4th generation of succeeding teachers. The art of teaching has always come naturally to him; his “jack of all trades” skill sets have intuitively led him into many mentorship roles, international classroom instruction, tutoring, coaching, and fitness instruction, to student council leadership, outdoor education, and early childhood development programs.

Yet in all these endeavors, Mr. Lelond learned that true education must not simply teach skills, but it must also teach life. He believes through experiential learning, deep inquisitive investigation, Socratic debate, skillful performance and mindful reflection, students can become the living embodiment of their own education. In every classroom he steps into he hopes to engage and inspire his students to recognize the wonders and magic of life and the natural world.

As a person outside of his role as an educator, experience has been a lifelong pursuit believing that every experience is a chance to learn and to grow. He wants to inspire students to embody a growth mindset and in turn, to be inspired, by those who model this attitude in their daily lives, inside and outside the classroom.

Grade School Faculty

Georgia Johnson: Grade 1

Ms. Georgia Johnson is delighted to join the faculty at Whistler Waldorf School. She recently returned to BC after completing a Master’s Degree in Waldorf Education in Stuttgart, Germany. During her training, Ms. Johnson complete two practica teaching at the Whistler Waldorf School in Grades 1 and 3. Prior to her teaching career, Ms. Johnson completed a BFA in Theatre at New York University. Her passion for creativity, combined with her love of learning have found a natural synthesis in Waldorf Education.

Having grown up in Vancouver, BC and spending her childhood frequenting Whistler, Ms. Johnson is excited to return to this mountain community. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time outdoors, gardening, cooking and playing music.

Mollianne Reynolds: Grade 2 & 3

Ms. Reynolds is caring, creative  and dedicated. She combines a firm hand with a sense of humour to make her an adored teacher and faculty member. Mollianne attended Waldorf schools in Vancouver, Germany and Toronto, and after a few years in the health and vitamin industry and at a bio-dynamic farm, she decided to become a Waldorf teacher herself. With a Bachelor’s degree in English under her belt already, she completed a 2-year Waldorf Teacher Training program at the world’s first Waldorf Teacher Training Institute in Stuttgart, Germany.

Mollianne joined Whistler Waldorf in 2004 as a class teacher for a Grade 6 to 7 before taking on a Grade 1 in 2006. After taking this class to Grade 6 and another class from 2-4, she most recently indulged her creative side, focussing on the handwork curriculum from grades 1-7. She looks forward to returning to class teaching with Grade One this year. In addition to exploring the fabric arts, Mollianne enjoys creating in chalk, watercolour, pencil and sometimes even music. When not at school, she can be found inventing children’s stories and cuddling with her two dogs in Pemberton.

Nina Moore: Grade 4

(on temporary leave till Sept. 2021)

Ms. Moore joined the Whistler Waldorf School in 2010, working in the Early Years department as a Preschool teacher, Parent-Child program facilitator and Kindergarten teacher.

She completed her Waldorf Grade School Teaching Certificate in 2015, through studying at the West Coast Institute and the Rudolph Steiner Centre, Toronto, and took her first Grades class in 2017.

She has two children enrolled in the school.

Olivia Hanna: Grade 4

Ms. Hanna joined Whistler Waldorf School in 2019 as a Substitute Briar Rose teacher. Prior to joining WWS, Ms. Hanna studied Eurhythmy in Switzerland, Germany and New York for almost 5 years, including going on tour and giving eurhythmy performances in Europe, USA and Canada. She taught eurhythmy in Grades 1–8 at Waldorf Academy in Toronto, where she was also formerly a class teacher for Grades 1 and 2 before beginning her eurhythmy training. She has been a Substitute Teacher at the Toronto Waldorf School in a range of subjects, spanning Early Years to Grade 8. Ms. Hanna has designed and led innovative Waldorf summer camp programs with a focus on movement and outdoor education together with arts and literature. She has been an active member of the Therapeutic Circle at Waldorf Academy and acted as a delegate to the Association of Waldorf School of North America.

Ms. Hanna holds a B.A. in General Arts from the University of Guelph, Ontario and a Diploma in Rudolf Steiner Education from Taruna College, New Zealand. She also completed a 4-year Diploma in Eurhythmy from Eurythmeum CH, Switzerland and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Stage Eurhythmy from Eurhythmy Spring Valley, New York. She is an alumna of the Toronto Waldorf School. Ms. Hanna enjoys travel, hiking, camping and skiing.

Tracey Sheppard: Grade 5

Ms. Sheppard is a new recruit to Whistler having moved here with her family in 2017.  Prior to this, she taught grades 4-7 as well as Health and Physical Education at an independent school on the east coast of Australia.  Tracey has a degree in Biology from the University of Victoria, a coaching diploma through the National Coaching Institute and a graduate diploma in teaching from Griffith University in Australia.  Since her return to Canada, Ms. Sheppard has also studied special education and is currently enrolled at the West Coast Institute where she is continuing her teacher training in Waldorf Education.

When Tracey is not in class, you will find her playing outside with her family, stretched out on the yoga mat, or hidden away with a good book.

Amy Wells: Grade 6

Ms. Wells has fond childhood memories growing up in Newfoundland and Labrador. Following her Bachelor of Science at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Amy moved to Toronto to study at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine. The call of the ocean enticed her to travel west and she settled on Vancouver Island. Amy began a small Naturopathic Medical clinic and practiced for five years.

When researching schooling options for their older son, Waldorf education was discovered and Amy was inspired to begin her second career. Amy completed her Waldorf Grades Teacher Training with the West Coast Institute of Anthroposophical Studies. She joined the faculty of the Comox Valley Waldorf School in September 2012 as Kindergarten Assistant. The following year she began teaching a Class One and has guided them through the grades. In June 2020, she graduated her Grade 6-7 class. Amy and her family have moved to Whistler to continue their journey in Waldorf Education.

Angela Brooks: Grade 7; Lower School Chair

Ms. Brooks comes to Whistler Waldorf with her family from Southern Ontario, having taught grades kindergarten to grade 6 for 13 years with the public system. She holds an undergraduate degree in child development from York University in Toronto as well as a Master’s in Education, specializing in motivation in the classroom, from Niagara University in New York State. Ange was so inspired by the Waldorf philosophy she decided to continue her teaching studies part-time at the Rudolf Steiner Institute in Toronto.

In their spare time, Ange and her family enjoy everything sporty in particular skiing, riding horses, volleyball and playing soccer.

Special Subject Faculty

Ms. Romy Grayson

Romy Grayson: Practical Arts & Handwork

Ms. Grayson joined Whistler Waldorf in November 2016. She has worked as a certified Carpenter in the Whistler area for over 10 years and prior to that, was an Administrative Assistant and Event Manager for over 13 years. Romy was born in Eastern Germany and grew up in Stuttgart. She decided to come to Whistler with her dog in 2006 on a Work and Travel Permit and never left. She is now Canadian and has her daughter attending the school.

Marie-Christine Dionne: French

Madame Dionne joined the Whistler Waldorf School in 2016, teaching French in the lower school and high school. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Education and a Certificate in Second Language Teaching from Concordia University. Marie-Christine also spent a semester in Geneva where she taught a Grade 2 class. She is thrilled to be given the opportunity to expand the French program at Whistler Waldorf by bringing a part of her culture and her love for languages. Marie-Christine visited BC many times before officially making it her home in 2016. The mountains and outdoor lifestyle brought her here, and when she is not teaching, she enjoys climbing, hiking, snowboarding and travelling.

Ms. Dionne

Yuko Iwanaga: Strings

Ms. Iwanaga has been supporting the High School strings since September. Yuko studied the Suzuki Method in Japan and completed a post graduate No 4. After completing Suzuki Method, she played in a String Orchestra and a quartet before coming to Canada for the mountains. She has been teaching violin privately for many years in the Sea to Sky corridor and created the Sea to Sky string orchestra to share her passion for music in ensembles. In her free time, you can find her in the coast mountains and in the U.S. backcountry skiing, climbing and hiking. And if she doesn’t have a committed performance soon, she skateboards and mountain bikes. She lives with her husband and two cats in Squamish.

Rachel Colvin: High School Arts

Rachel Colvin is from Australia with her husband, Mark, and their 3 kids (Kai, gr6, Jackson, gr5, and Summer, gr4). For the past 13 years they have lived near Melbourne, Australia, where Rachel has worked as a teacher, and Mark as a Chiropractor. Their children have grown up attending a Waldorf school. Returning to North America this year, their decision to move was prompted by the desire to be closer to their parents.

Rachel began her teaching career in Arizona, having graduated with a double degree in Art: Fine Art, and History: International Studies, with a minor in Spanish, and has completed many trips volunteering in South Africa and Zimbabwe. Rachel loves the outdoors, is passionate about caring for the environment, loves cooking from scratch, all things art, sewing, movies, books and board games, especially Scrabble and Settlers of Catan. She also has an innate desire to make the world a better place. Most recently she worked with Equality Australia to stand up for the dignity, value and rights of the LGBTQ community.

Ms. Katherine Fawcett

Katherine Fawcett: Lower School Music

Ms. Fawcett has been teaching music for over 30 years. She began as a piano teacher, and moved into violin and voice at Whistler Waldorf School. Katherine has lived all over Canada, including Montreal, Yellowknife, Calgary and Canmore, and even spent several years in Japan where she taught English. She and her husband currently live in Squamish with their children Jack  and Lilah. Katherine is also a yoga enthusiast, trail runner, skier, an award-winning writer and a member of the Sea to Sky Orchestra.

Student Support Department

Edrie Henderson: Special Education Assistant;  Student Support Manager; AEP/Exchange Coordinator

Ms. Henderson provides teaching support to our Grade School and High School students, as well as Advisor/Coordinator for AEP and Exchange Students. She has a BSc from UBC in Physiological Psychology, a Diploma in Outdoor Recreation Management from Capilano College and a Diploma in Special Education for Teaching Assistants from Kwantlen. Edrie worked as a Wilderness Trip Leader for five years in the Whistler and Pemberton area taking at risk youth on extended wilderness canoe, backcountry skiing and backpacking trips. Ms. Henderson has also worked with youth in remote areas of Alberta and has worked over 20 years as an educational assistant and private tutor.

Edrie grew up in Vancouver and now lives in Pemberton with her husband. She has a son and a daughter. Ms. Henderson is excited to be living where she used to work and is especially happy to be working at the Whistler Waldorf school.

Megan Hewitt: Special Education Assistant;  SSEG/Student Support Chair

Ms. Hewitt provides learning support for our lower school as a classroom assistant. She earned her BA in Journalism from California State University, Chico in 1995 and completed her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential in 1998. She taught grade school for seven years and loved the challenges, opportunities and learning it brought into her life.

Once in Whistler, which she has lovingly called home since 2005, she began work at the Whistler Youth Centre and LUNA (Late & Unique Nighttime Alternatives) designing programs for youth.  At this time she started a family with her husband, Lon. Her daughter Lola, and son Niko, both attend Whistler Waldorf. Living in the snow-covered mountains has been a childhood dream since riding ski lifts in California, Utah and Colorado on family ski trips. And although living in Whistler is her dream come true, she still loves to soak up the sun, ride the waves and spend time with family in California.

Joanna Berringer: Educational Assistant

Ms. Berringer completed a Bachelor of Education degree at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota in 2007. During her university years, she spent a lot of time in canoes working as a canoe tripper for a YMCA program, as well as Outward Bound Canada. She has worked in many outdoor education programs in BC, as well as Ontario. In the winter of 2007, Joanna fled west to the coast mountains and has been living in Whistler ever since.

Joanna began working at the Whistler Waldorf School in 2012, after five years of teaching skiing for the Whistler Kids Ski School program. She guided a class of students from Grade 2 to 6, and has now returned to the school as the Grade 4 teacher. Joanna is passionate about young people and the outdoors and found the perfect fit in the Waldorf curriculum. She has completed training at Rudolf Steiner College in Sacramento, California.

Early Years

Mrs. Ute Grimm

Ute Grimm: Briar Rose Teacher

Mrs. Grimm moved with her family from Germany where being a Waldorf alumnus herself, she completed her Eurythmy training in Stuttgart and taught Euythmy for more than twenty years. Following this, she turned to her long time passion of helping children with special needs and completed a post graduate diploma for Waldorf Class Teachers, as well as a Certificate in Remedial Education. Mrs. Grimm worked as a full time Remedial Specialist at the Vancouver Waldorf School for five years, and then stepped into a class teacher position. Her deep understanding of anthroposophy, her remedial background, her rich experience in Eurythmy and, last but not least, raising four children has contributed to her success in teaching, remedial work and consulting with parents.

Ute has enjoyed continuing her teaching career at the Whistler Waldorf School as Eurythmy and Remedial teacher, as well as getting to know the Whistler Waldorf School community. Ute has been appointed as our school’s 1st Liaison to the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America.

Orsa Horvath: Little Cedars Teacher

Ms. Orsa first joined the Whistler Waldorf  School in 2010 and was deeply moved by the peaceful setting offered to the children, as well as the ideas and philosophy behind Waldorf Education, which reminded her of her own childhood in Europe. Although she first completed a Business Degree at the Budapest Business School in Hungary, she had always felt a strong desire to work with children.

Orsa moved to Canada in 1999 and worked for Whistler Blackcomb, coaching skiing for 14 years, working with children between 3-12 years of age.  She completed a TESOL Diploma at Vancouver Community College, and taught ESL in the summer months in Whistler. Orsa completed her Early Childhood Education certificate in June 2013 and has completed her Waldorf Early Years training in May 2015. She loves the active outdoor life in Whistler, which fits perfectly with the Waldorf Early Years curriculum of closely following the beautiful changes that take place in our surrounding natural environment.

Ms. Orsa Horvath

Akiho Matsunaga: Early Years Teacher Asst.

Ms. Matsunaga has worked with young children over 25 years in Japan, Canada and Indonesia as a teacher and cultural exchange facilitator.  After completing ECE diploma and BA in Child and Youth Care at Malaspina University-College on Vancouver Island, she moved to Whistler in 2001, drawn to the beauty of the summer mountain’s nature.   Since then, Ms. Matsunaga has worked for daycares and preschools in Whistler and Pemberton as a teacher, HR assistant and supported child care workers.  She started substituting at Whistler Waldorf in 2012 and became an Assistant Preschool and Kindergarten teacher since September 2018.  Originally from Hiroshima, Japan, she obtained a BSc in Biology from Shimane University.  She lives in Whistler and enjoys family rock climbing, as well as growing vegetables at Community Garden during summer. Ms. Matsunaga has two children that attend Whistler Waldorf.

Karina Pena: Early Years Assistant

Ms. Pena has nearly 8 years of experience as an assistant teacher and co-teacher in both the playschool and kindergarten classes at Whistler Waldorf. She completed her ECCE (Early Childhood Care and Education) certification in 2010, and continues to work towards her Waldorf Teacher Training – Early Childhood certification each summer. She has several years experience as a nanny, and also worked at Whistler Blackcomb. Originally from Peru, Karina moved to Whistler ten years ago.

Ms. Karina Pena

Tracy Graham: Spring Creek Early Years Teacher

Tracy has been working on and off at WWS since 2003 and first discovered Waldorf education while working at a daycare in Nelson.  She immediately fell in love with the philosophy and the warm, nurturing classroom and when she initially stepped into the Nelson Waldorf Kindergarten, it felt like coming home. There was bread making, storytelling and lots of singing. A move to Ottawa the next year, Tracy worked as a Waldorf Early Years Assistant at Ottawa’s Parsival Waldorf School. When she returned the next year, she was excited to hear about Whistler’s Waldorf School.

A lifelong learner, Tracy has an ECE Teacher Certificate and Bachelor of Education. Over the years she has taught Kindergarten and Playschool, and now is the Lead ECE teacher at the Early Years Center. She loves working and playing in Whistler with her husband and daughter – skiing, hiking together and spending time camping. When Tracy is not outside, you will find her on a yoga mat or baking sweet treats for  family and friends.

Heather Mackenzie: Spring Creek Early Years Teacher

Ms. MacKenzie is a teaching assistant providing student support and assistance with the Early Years program. Growing up in the highlands of Scotland, Heather fell in love with Whistler when on holiday almost 10 years ago, and made it her mission to one day call this place home. In March 2019, she moved to Pemberton with her husband and dog; they love the beauty, serenity and the incredible outdoor activities. In 2015 Heather graduated from Strathclyde University with a BSc in Prosthetics and Orthotics. She then went on to work in hospitals and specialist schools as an Orthotist for two years, before switching careers and working at a Camphill Community in rural Scotland.

Heather is currently doing an ECEA course as she is passionate about the Waldorf ethos.