Meet Our Faculty

Sarah Lurie Picture.jpg

Sarah Lurie

Head of School

Sarah has been dedicated to working in education for over 12 years, with experience ranging from preschool to secondary school. She currently holds a B.S. in Education and has Reading/ESOL endorsements as well. After becoming a mom, Sarah looked toward Montessori and began to implement Montessori values into both her professional career and personal life. Sarah has spent her last four years guiding her children, Agnes (7 years) and Doris (5 years), at home using Montessori-based curriculums as a guide to their development. She passionately believes this style of education recognizes each child as an individual and celebrates their uniqueness. Furthermore, Sarah feels Montessori approaches to learning allow for children to be respected while gaining a strong sense of independence- ultimately nurturing a lifelong love for learning. In addition to her passion for teaching, Sarah enjoys hiking, camping, homeschooling her girls, spending time with her family, and working towards her master’s degree. As both an educator and a mother, she is thrilled to aid in the continual growth of the DMS students, guides, families, and community.

image0 (1).jpeg

Andrea Georgas

Primary Co- Guide

Classically trained in the art of illustration, Andrea was instantly drawn to the aesthetics of Montessori classroom materials. She combined her lifetime love of drawing with her newfound love of Montessori education when she and her husband moved abroad to Japan in 2014. Andrea was the after school art specialist for the elementary children at the Montessori School of Tokyo and also taught private lessons off campus to children ages 6-18.
After welcoming a daughter into the world, Andrea's family relocated back stateside in 2017 and she enrolled in the Primary training course at Montessori Northwest in Portland, OR. Andrea is AMI Montessori certified for ages 2.5-6 and holds a BA in Illustration in addition to a M.Ed. in Montessori education. She recently relocated to our region in 2021 to be closer to extended family and to start homesteading and homeschooling on 20 acres of wild Florida land.

5043895833740978915.jpg

Emily Ziegenfelder

Early-Primary Lead Guide

While working in the public school system, Emily was introduced to the Montessori philosophy by Laura Tidmore. Emily loves the way the Montessori method addresses each child as an individual and promotes independence.  She loves the energy and curiosity of children 18 months – 3 years old, and delights in watching them develop self-sufficiency. Before graduating from Troy University, Emily moved back to the Dothan area to complete her teaching internship. She and her husband Brandon met shortly after her graduation and were married in 2014. They enjoy going to the lake with family and hanging out with friends. On most weekends in the fall, you can find them in Auburn cheering on the AU Tigers. Emily loves spending time with her family, Taco Tuesday, and going on an occasional bike ride. Emily has always loved kids and has worked with them in many capacities. She has babysat, worked in a daycare, and taught Kindergarten and First Grade. She is ecstatic to continue what she loves here at DMS as an AMS certified Toddler Guide.

IMG_4316_edited.png

Caitlyn Bailey

Director's Assistant

After spending much of her adult life managing bookstores and being a children’s librarian, Caitlyn was introduced to the Montessori philosophy when she became pregnant with her son, Francis. Before her family joined the DMS community, she incorporated the Montessori Method into her home as a stay-at-home mother. While there is much she praises about the Montessori philosophy, she believes the respect for the child as an individual is of upmost importance and a key to raising kind humans. When she is not at the school, she is volunteering, feeding local cats and wildlife, or has her head stuck in a book.

image0 (1).jpeg

Kylie Parker

Primary Co- Guide

From caregiving to volunteering in preschool classrooms, Kylie was involved in education through her adolescence and young adulthood. She realized her passion for teaching while shadowing in local elementary schools and guiding children in small-group settings. She was first introduced to the Montessori method while completing her career tech classes in high school. She was intrigued by the methodology and began to incorporate this style of learning into her one-on-one student groups, while volunteering. Kylie believes that the Montessori method of learning encourages confidence and allows students to learn independently. Thus, creating their own timeline for growth.  

She has a passion for Montessori education and is currently pursuing her certification. She is thrilled to have planted her roots at DMS and looks forward to the growth she'll be a part of in our community.  

20220207_073512.jpg

Alli McAfee

Early-Primary 
Assistant Guide

Allison grew up around childcare and education with her mother and grandmother both working in the early childhood field. During college, she worked at a local academy as the Lead in the Infant & Toddler room and later as an Elementary Assistant Teacher. After completing a degree in Engineering Graphics and spending several years in that industry, Allison returned to Troy University with the desire to teach. When she moved home from Savannah, GA, she learned of DMS and remembered the wonderful times she had in high school when she'd spend her summers working at the Montessori school in McDonough, GA. Her desire for children to learn in a way that embraces their uniqueness led her to the school.  After serving extensively at DMS as a substitute guide, she looks forward to enriching her love for the Montessori method, as the Early Primary Assistant Guide.

When she is not at DMS, Allison enjoys spending time with her husband and cats.