My name is Manal. I am married and have three kids. This is my first year here at Taylor. I worked at Mercy Daycare for five years and still work there part time. My first language is Arabic. I am the special education associate in the classroom.
My name is Kristen Burkett, and I am honored to be a Pre School teacher. This is my 7th year with Des Moines Public Schools. Schools I have worked at have been Moulton Elementary, Jessie Franklin Taylor, and I am so excited to be here at Woodlawn education center. I am heavily involved within the community and love interacting with people. I graduated from DMACC with an Associate Degree in Human Services. I also graduated from Upper Iowa University with my Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services.
My name is Caitlin Kelly and I have been the Associate Teacher in the UPK classroom with Miss Angela since 2018. I grew up in Iowa; originally receiving my Bachelor’s degree in Political Science at Drake University. In 2009, I moved to Colorado with my boyfriend (now husband) and two pugs where I earned my Early Childhood Teacher certification and began working in daycare, elementary schools, and eventually a Teacher and Assistant Director. I moved back to Iowa in 2016, and have been here ever since! In addition to my education background, I am a licensed esthetician and certified make-up artist. My other hobbies include bodybuilding and weightlifting, thrifting, cycling, hiking, fashion, and everything 80s. I look forward to sharing my knowledge and quirks with your children, and teaching them new and valuable skills in the classroom, as well as for everyday life!
Hello! My name is Ms. Shauna and I will be your child’s preschool associate this year. I am married to my best friend, Andrew. We have a son, Matthew. As a teaching team, we are very excited to work with your children! I currently have my Para-educator in Early Childhood. It is very important to us to grow with continuing education as well. I have been with Des Moines Public Schools for 16 wonderful years!
My Name is Laura Garwick, but my students call me Miss Laura. I have been an associate teacher with Des Moines Public Schools since March of 2020. I graduated from Faith Baptist Bible College in 2016 with an Associate of Arts Degree in Biblical Studies. When I am not at school, I enjoy playing basketball (or any other sport), doing projects on my house, spending time with my friends, serving with the youth at my church, and getting baby time with my two best friend’s babies. My family is also a big part of my life. I enjoy spending time with my parents and my two older brothers!! Fun Fact: I have seen every (main studio) animated Disney movie ever made! I look forward to getting to know your students and your family this school year.
Madisen Kennedy Bernardino
Hello! My name is Amanda Lang and I am an associate in a UPK classroom here at Woodlawn. In 2006 I graduated with my B.S. in Elementary Education and started working for DMPS in 2014. My husband and I have been married for 15 years and we have a daughter, Kara. We have a love for pets in our home and currently have two cats, two bearded dragons, and one hamster. As a family we love spending time swimming, taking walks and watching movies. I look forward to another exciting year at Woodlawn!
Hi, welcome to Taylor, I’m Miss Lee. I am thrilled to have the pleasure to learn and work with preschoolers. I have my Early Childhood Development Associate credential. I have been working in Early Childhood since 2007. I have a son who I enjoy playing board games with, doing karaoke, and watching him grow. I like spending time with my family and friends. I am ready to learn, have fun, and be creative
I’m Cathy Parsons, I’m married and have three boys and five grandchildren, with another one arriving this spring! They are the joy in my life and I enjoy spending my free time with them. I am an Early Childhood Special Ed associate and have been for many, many years. I enjoy the challenges preschoolers bring and I can’t wait to share my love of reading with them. I am looking forward to a really great year!