The MPCA Teaching Team

  • Meet Our Staff

    With education and experience in early childhood care
  • Our staff consists of trained, educated professionals whose goal is to develop a love for learning in your child.

    • Stephanie Smith
      Pre-K Three Class

      Stephanie Smith

      Pre-K Three Class

      Ms. Stephanie became part of the MPCA team in 2017 in the three-year-old class. She is the mother of three girls and has a degree in Early Childhood Education from Oklahoma State.
      Some of Ms. Stephanie’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – December 8th
      Color – Green
      Snack – Sabritones chili lime chips
      Drink – Water
      Flower – Roses
      Animal – Cows, Pigs, & Chickens
      Sports Team – Falcons & Tennessee
      Scent – Coconut Lime (but basically anything but peach!)
      Place to Eat – Olive Garden, Chick-fil-a, & O’Charley’s
      Place to Shop – Belk, Khol’s, Target, Michaels, & Ikea
      Hobbies – Crafts
      Things You Need For Classroom – Expo Markers & Laminate Paper
      Monogram – S
      Allergies – None

    • Nikki Gaines
      One's Class

      Nikki Gaines

      One's Class

      Ms. Nikki has been at MPCA since 2015. She holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in History from Georgia College and State University and an Associates Degree in Teacher Education from Georgia Perimeter College. Ms. Nikki loves spending time with her husband and two daughters.
      Some of Ms. Nikki’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – May 23rd
      Color – Purple & Green
      Snack – Popcorn & Milkduds
      Flower – Daffodil
      Animal – Otters
      Drink – Sweet Tea & Mellow Yellow
      Place to Eat – Logans & Applebees
      Places to Shop – Walmart
      Scent – Berries & Beach; for candles she prefers Apple Cinnamon
      Sports Team – Braves & UGA
      Hobbies – Crocheting & Reading
      Things you need for classroom – Swiffer, Wipes, Tissues, & Radio
      Monogram – NGL

    • Kate Smith
      Pre-K Three Class

      Kate Smith

      Pre-K Three Class

      Kate joined the MPCA staff in 2017.  She is working with the Three’s class this year, but she is always willing to help out where she is needed. A few of Ms. Kate’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – October 25th
      Color – Purple
      Drinks – Sprite & coffee
      Flower – Pink roses & Peonies
      Animal – Owls & Chickens
      Sports Team – Georgia State & Tennessee
      Scent – Thousand Wishes (Bath & Body Works)
      Place to Eat – Anywhere
      Hobbies – Painting
      Monogram – Mrs. Kate or K
      Allergies – None

    • Dawn Goldsmith
      Pre-K Four Class

      Dawn Goldsmith

      Pre-K Four Class

      Ms. Dawn began working at MPCA in 2014 and has worked with the ones and the fours classes. She and her husband have four children which keeps her very busy!
      Some of Ms. Dawn’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – October 11th
      Color – Any shade of Blue
      Snack – Popcorn
      Drink – Coke Zero & Water
      Flower – Lily
      Animal – Loves them all!
      Sports Team – Atlanta United
      Place to Eat – Chili’s & Longhorn
      Store for a Gift Card – Target
      Scent – Coconut
      Monogram – DGM
      Allergies – no food allergies

    • Nikita Funderbunk
      Kindergarten

      Nikita Funderbunk

      Kindergarten

      Ms. Nikita has been a vital part of the MPCA team since 2006. She began in the PreK classes, but in 2011 began developing our highly regarded Kindergarten program. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Georgia Southern University.
      Some of Ms. Nikita’s favorite things are:
      Color – Black
      Snack – Fruit
      Animal – Dog
      Sports Team – Brazil/Barcelona Soccer
      Drink – Dr. Pepper, good sweet tea!
      Place to Eat – Chick-fil-a
      Store for a Gift Card – Target, JCPenny
      Pets – Dogs, Lizards
      Hobbies – Reading,Soccer,Travel
      Anything you would prefer not to receive – plants, mugs
      Allergies – onion, sesame seeds, vanilla scents, latex, cats, gluten/lactose sensative

    • Amy Barwick
      Two's Class

      Amy Barwick

      Two's Class

      We are super glad that to have Ms. Amy joining us in the Two’s class this year! Amy has vast experience teaching children at all different levels and she is even a Certified Child Development Associate (CDA). Her skills and knowledge about working with children have made her such a fabulous addition to the MPCA team!
      Some of Ms. Amy’s favorite things include:
      Birthday – October 16th
      Color – Turquoise & Browns
      Snack – Popcorn, Trailmix, & Nuts
      Drink – Coke Zero & Diet Dr. Pepper
      Flower – Daisies & Roses
      Animal – Dogs & Horses
      Sports Team – GA Bulldogs
      Scent – Any fruit scents (Apple & Pear)
      Place to eat – Longhorn, Outback, & Chilis
      Place to shop – Marshalls & TJ Maxx
      Hobbies – Reading & Yoga
      Things you need for the classroom – Thankful for anything
      Monogram – ALB

    • Ashton Smith
      Two's Class

      Ashton Smith

      Two's Class

      Ashton is one of our newest members to the MPCA team and we are so excited to have her! Her energetic and kind spirit makes her the perfect fit for the Two’s class that she is teaching. Some of Ashton’s favorite things include:
      Birthday – May 21st
      Snack – Skittles
      Drink – Coffee
      Flower – Hydrangeas
      Animals – Pigs, Llamas, & Elephants
      Sports Team – Falcons & Tennessee Volunteers
      Scent – Vanilla
      Places to Eat – Anywhere, She LOVES herself a good meal!
      Places to Shop – Belk & Kohls
      Things you need for classroom – Wipes
      Allergies – Bananas, Peanuts, Treenuts
      Monogram – A

    • Donna Fredriksen
      One's Class

      Donna Fredriksen

      One's Class

       

      Ms. Donna is one of our newest team members at MPCA and works in the ones class. She is Nana to one of our students and has tons of experience working with children.
      Some Ms. Donna’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – December 27th
      Color – Yellow
      Snack – Potato Chips
      Drink – Dr.Pepper
      Flower – Daisy
      Animal – Baby animals
      Sports Team – Alabama, Roll Tide
      Scent – FLoral
      Place to eat – Anywhere I don’t have to cook!
      Place to shop – Walmart
      Hobbies – Crafts, Sewing, & Crochet
      Monogram – DFF

    • Cindy Hawxhurst
      Pre-K Four's Class

      Cindy Hawxhurst

      Pre-K Four's Class

      Cindy is not only a parapro in Ms. Leslie’s class, but also a valuable member of our Board of Directors.  Cindy graduated with a business degree from Presbyterian College and is a proud wife and mom of two children.

      Some of Ms. Cindy’s favorite things are:                                                                          Color-Blue                                                                                                        Snack-Salt and vinegar chips, chocolate
      Drink-Coke Zero
      Flower-Anthurium
      Animal-Cat
      Sports Team-Auburn Tigers
      Scentt-Fall/Winter
      Place to Eat-15th Street Pizza
      Place to Shop-Target, Tanger
      Hobbies-Watching my kids play sports, movies
      Allergies-None
      Monogram-CHM

       

    • Becca McLean
      Pre-K Three Class

      Becca McLean

      Pre-K Three Class

      Becca joined the MPCA team in 2018 as a para in the three-year-old class.  Before staying home with her three boys, she worked at Stockbridge Methodist Preschool.

      Some of Becca’s favorite things are:
      Color-Purple
      Snack-Chocolate
      Drink-Water
      Flower-Daisy
      Animal-Dog
      Sports Team-UGA, Hockey
      Scent-no watermelon or peach
      Place to eat-Mesquite, Chick-Fil-A
      Place to shop-Loft, TJMaxx, Lowes
      Hobbies-Crafting, camping, collecting Fiestaware
      Allergies-none
      Mongram-BMN

    • Katy Glover
      Two's Class

      Katy Glover

      Two's Class

      Katy joined the MPCA team in the two’s class after relocating here from Savannah. She has a Psychology degree from Armstrong State and has experience working with special needs children. She and her husband have two boys, the youngest is a student at MPCA.
      Some of Katy’s favorite things are:
      Color-Orange and Navy Blue
      Snack-Carmel
      Drink-Strawberry Fanta
      Flower-Daisy
      Animal-Tiger
      Sports Team-Auburn
      Place to Eat-Bonefish
      Hobbies-Fairy Garden
      Allergies-None
      Monogram-KG

    • Madi Woodcock
      Kindergarten

      Madi Woodcock

      Kindergarten

      Madi joined the MPCA this year as our Kindergarten paraprofessional. Madi is the oldest of four children and has lots of experience with kids.
      Some of Madi’s favorite things are:
      Color-Purple
      Snack-Goldfish
      Drink-Sprite/Rootbeer
      Flower-All
      Animal-Cheetah or cat
      Sports team-Braves or Kansas City
      Scent-Anything sweet…loves candles
      Place to eat-Chick-fil-a, Zaxbys, Subway
      Place to shop- Forever 21, Pacsun, H&M, Nike, Adidas, TJ Maxx
      Hobbies- Spending time with family and boyfriend
      Anything not to receive- Nothing…grateful for anything!
      Allergies-None
      Monogram-SMW

    • Nancy Alphonse Jean
      Two's Class

      Nancy Alphonse Jean

      Two's Class

      Ms. Jean rejoined the MPCA staff after working here in 2008-2009.  She works in the two-year-old class and also assists our ESOL students. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Elementary Education with an ESOL endorsement from Barry University.  Ms. Jean is the proud mom of five children….all girls!
      Some of Ms. Jean’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – May 27th
      Color – Turquoise, Hunter Green, & Seafoam Green
      Snack – Almonds
      Drink – Water & Tea
      Flower – Any!!
      Animal – Butterflies
      Sports Team – Any team with Wade & Lebron
      Scent – Anything from Bath & Body Works
      Place to Eat – Longhorn
      Place to Shop – Target, Hobby Lobby, Bath & Body Works, & Michaels
      Hobbies – Crafting, Reading, & Spending time with family!
      Monogram – NJA
      Allergies – No

    • Susanne Pinch

      Susanne Pinch

      Susanne joined MPCA in 2018 as a permanant sub. She will be filling in when a teacher/para is out and will also help in the office as needed. We are excited to have her on staff!
      Some of Susanne’s favorite things are:
      Color-Navy, Black, Purple
      Snack-anything
      Drink-Diet Coke
      Flower-Any
      Animal-Dog
      Sports-Alabama
      Scent-Clean
      Place to Eat-Anywhere with good sushi
      Place to Shop-Old Navy
      Hobbies-Hobby Lobby
      Anything you prefer not to receive-No Peanuts
      Allergies-No
      Monogram-SPS

    • Cheryl Wide
      Pre-K Four Class

      Cheryl Wide

      Pre-K Four Class

      Ms. Cheryl has been part of the MPCA team since 2015 and has worked in the ones, threes and fours classes. She and her husband have five boys, but no grandchildren yet!
      Some of Ms. Cheryl’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – July 13th
      Color – Blue
      Snack – Cheetos
      Flower – Carnation
      Animal – Dogs
      Drink – Water & Cola
      Sports Team – Los Angeles Lakers
      Scent – Vanilla Fields
      Place to Eat – Red Lobster
      Store for a Gift Card – Walmart
      Monogram – CLW
      Allergies – None

    • Julie Garcia
      Music/Bible/Library

      Julie Garcia

      Music/Bible/Library

      Ms. Julie has worked at MPCA since 2011 as the Music/Bible/Library teacher. She previously worked at McDonough Presbyterian Church as the Director of Children’s Ministry. Ms. Julie has a Bachelors Degree in Journalism from the University of Georgia. She and her husband have two daughters in high school.
      Some of Ms. Julie’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – March 2nd
      Color – Red
      Snack – Popcorn & M&Ms
      Flower – Rose
      Animal – Dog & Monkey
      Sports Team – Bulldogs
      Drink – Water
      Place to Eat – Mellow Mushroom & Chili’s
      Store for a Gift Card – Walmart
      Bath and Body Scent – Sweet Pea & Lavendar
      Sports Team – University of Georgia
      Hobbies – Yoga & Painting
      Monogram – JGH
      Allergies – Gluten

    • Jennifer Norris
      Garden Teacher

      Jennifer Norris

      Garden Teacher

      Jennifer is a mom of two and a student at Mercer University studying to be a middle school science teacher. She is the perfect person to be our garden teacher!
      Some of Jennifer’s favorite things are:
      Color-Blue
      Snack-Pretzels, peanut butter, bananas, honey, fruit
      Drink-Water with lemon
      Flower-all flowers
      Animal-Dog
      Sports Team- Georgia Bulldogs
      Scent-any candle, wallflower
      Place to Eat-Chick-fil-a
      Place to Shop-Target
      Hobbies-Reading, Hiking and Gardening
      Allergies-None
      Monogram-JNL

    • Dee Kirby
      Pre-K Three Class

      Dee Kirby

      Pre-K Three Class

      Dee began working at MPCA in 2017 in the three-year-old class. She studied at Clayton State and Georgia College and State University and has years of experience in the preschool setting. Dee is the mother to four children, two of whom attend MPCA.
      Some of her favorite things are:
      Birthday – January 30th
      Color – Olive Green (& others, but just no red!)
      Snack – Cashews, Apples, & Baked Lays
      Drink – Coffee & Water
      Flower – Lillies & Lavender
      Animal – Ocean Animals
      Sports Team – Atlanta Falcons & Atlanta United
      Scent – Essential Oils, Orange Giner Aromatherapy, & Coconut
      Place to eat – Pasta Max, Chick-fil-a, & La Parilla
      Place to shop – Target
      Hobbies – Camping, Traveling, Being Outside, & Watching Falcons Football or Atlanta United Soccer
      Momogram – DKT
      Classroom wish list – Extra Snacks, M&M’s, & Skittles

    • Heather Tagliaferi
      Pre-K Fours Class

      Heather Tagliaferi

      Pre-K Fours Class

      Ms. Heather has been with MPCA since 2011 and after teaching the three-year-old class for the past four years she has decided to move into the Pre-K Four class. She and her husband have two children and she loves to travel to the beach.
      Some of Ms. Heather’s favorite things are:
      Birthday – March 18th
      Color – Red
      Snack – Pretzels & Chocolate covered Pretzels
      Drink – Water
      Flower – Tulips
      Animal – Dogs!!
      Place to Eat – Pasta Max
      Sports Team – Auburn Tigers
      Store to Shop – Target & Amazon
      Scent – Vanilla & Cucumber Melon
      Hobbies – Crafts
      Anything you prefer not to receive – Candles
      Monogram – HTL
      Allergies – None

    • Heather Hammonds
      Director

      Heather Hammonds

      Director

      Ms. Hammonds joined MPCA in 2014 after spending 14 years in the marketing industry. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Corporate Journalism from Auburn University. Ms. Hammonds is a member of McDonough Presbyterian Church and has served on the Board of Directors for MPCA since 2012. She and her husband have three boys.
      Some of Ms. Hammonds favorite things are:
      Color – Orange & Navy Blue
      Flower – Any
      Drink – Water
      Place to Eat – Pippins
      Store for a Gift Card – Target & Amazon
      Sports Team – Auburn Tigers
      Hobbies – Cooking, Yoga, & Reading
      Monogram – H
      Allergies – lactose intolerant

    • Leslie Dickson
      Assistant Director/ Pre K Four Class

      Leslie Dickson

      Assistant Director/ Pre K Four Class

      Ms. Leslie joined MPCA in 2014 after teaching in the Henry County School System for seven years. Currently she teaches in our four-year-old classroom and has responsibilities as our assistant director. Ms. Leslie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Georgia State University. She and her husband have two boys, one who is currently enrolled at MPCA.
      Some of Ms. Leslie’s favorite things are:
      Color – Red & Black
      Snack – Almonds, Trail Mix, Peanut Butter with Apples
      Flower – Calla Lilies
      Drink – Water, Flavored Water, Dr. Pepper, & Cherry Coke
      Places to Eat – Chick-fil-a & Six Feet Under
      Places to Shop – Amazon & Target
      Scent – Lavendar
      Sports Team – Georgia Bulldogs, Atlanta Braves, & Falcons
      Hobbies – Watching her son playing sports & going to different sporting events!
      Things you need for classroom – Skittles, M&M, Treasure box items, & Extra Snacks
      Monogram – LDM
      Anything you prefer not to receieve? COFFEE (She does not drink it!)
      Allergies – None

    • Amber Womack
      PE

      Amber Womack

      PE

      Ms. Amber became a part of the MPCA team in 2016 after serving on our Board of Directors for three years. She has a Bachelor’s Degree from Georgia State University. Ms. Amber and her husband have twins who previously attended MPCA.
      Some of Ms. Amber’s favorite things are:
      Color – Blue
      Flower – Tulip
      Drink – Flavored Water
      Place to Eat – anywhere!
      Store for a Gift Card – Marshalls, Target, TJ Maxx
      Pets – Dog
      Sports Team – Georgia Bulldogs
      Hobbies – Shopping
      Monogram – AWC

  • Paraprofessionals