Board of Directors
"Montessori Children's School Board of Directors stewards the school's mission and values by establishing strategic goals and policies, while allocating resources through the careful consideration of annual operating budgets. The board also works in tandem with the head of school and administrators to focus on long range and strategic planning efforts that ensure the Montessori Children's School remains a premier private school in the Onslow Community. MCS board members are committed to the success of the school, and observe the highest ethical standards and principles of fiscal integrity".
Current Board Members
Michele Parsons is a native of Maryland and began her residence in NC in 1996. Her family began their MCS journey in the Primary House 5 Years ago. Her daughter Sophia is transitioning to Upper Elementary this Fall. Michele has enjoyed the past two years serving as a Board Member and assisting to guide the school through its transitional growth and the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Her intentions as a re-elected board member are to continue assisting in the decision-making process as MCS strategically plans to grow the school and our children. Michele brings 30 years experience working with pregnant women, families, and children in a variety of community settings. She has been with the Onslow County Health Department for the past 16 years overseeing care management programs that serve families with children birth to five and pregnant women. Prior to that position, she has served as a certified NC Infant, Toddler, and Family Specialist for the state on NC, a Developmental Specialist for Healthy Families America, a Childcare Center Director, and an Early Childhood teacher for both a private school and military CDC. She has an educational background in Early Childhood Development and Child Life. Michele enjoys spending time traveling, visiting family, and coloring. “We absolutely love the school and the Montessori philosophy. Watching my daughter blossom under the wings of the school has brought us peace and gratitude. “-M. Parsons
Ciara Hunter is the Vice President of The Hunter Family Company Inc. and small business owner. She received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Towson University, Associate of Science in Nursing from The Community College of Baltimore County, Paramedic certification and license from the Baltimore County Fire Rescue Academy and continuing education through Indiana University Kelley School of Business Executive Education. During her medical career she has served in various roles in the fields of solid organ transplantation, emergency medicine and critical care medicine. In 2016 Ciara and her husband opened their first small business. Since then, they have continued to expand locations and start additional business ventures. She was the recipient of Jacksonville Onslow Chamber of Commerce 2019 Minority Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Ciara has had the pleasure of volunteering with the Baltimore County Volunteer Firemen's Association, Catholic Charities and serving on Jacksonville Onslow Chamber of Commerce committees. She is a native of Maryland, a retired US Marine Corps spouse and has resided in North Carolina since 2014. Together, Ciara and her husband, John, have one daughter who will be starting her third year at Montessori Children’s School (MCS). Ciara enjoys spending time with her family, traveling and seafood.
Bethaney moved to Jacksonville 7 years ago from Rhode Island. Her parents also moved here and live in Williamsburg Plantation. She and Tim started her daughter Dylan at MCS 5 years ago. Dylan is going into her 6th year as a first year in elementary! Bethaney is currently co leading an international company that trains transformational coaches. The company has 3 live (now virtual) events that run each year that she manages. Bethaney is the Sales and Marketing trainer for their coaches. By nature of her role, she handles difficult conversations with both high-level clients and staff. Though not always possible, she looks for the win win.
“This school is a precious resource with a philosophy that supports our children to be independent thinkers, love learning and to resolve conflict from a very young age. We are in a time where there is nothing more valuable and it is reflected in the work I do as well as this school. It takes a community to maintain this vision and ensure it thrives.” -B. Long
Jana Bartley has served as the Vice President for Buildings and Grounds on the Board of Directors at MCS for the last three years. Only a month after taking on the role of Vice President, Jana was responsible for the rapid reopening of the school following Hurricane Florence; directing most of the recovery and clean-up operation with minimal help, while most were evacuated from the area. During the last two years Jana facilitated improvement and expansion projects too numerable to detail and truly went above and beyond as a parent volunteer. Her leadership and dedication were integral to rallying the MCS community together during times of transition. She organized numerous community workdays, maintaining a staunch support system for parents in the community to join and be part of. In the absence of volunteers to help, Jana can often be seen tackling projects herself and parents and students can attest to the fact that she is a vital presence at MCS. The management of buildings and grounds has been a project that Jana has completely devoted herself to and her experience and wealth of knowledge will be invaluable to the continued growth and development of MCS.
Jana spent 26 years in the Marine Corps in various administrative positions and has extensive personnel management experience with both active duty and civilian employees. She is not only an active volunteer at MCS but can be found volunteering in the local community with youth sports and religious education programs. Jana and her husband Milt are committed to the Montessori philosophy and community at MCS and are a vital asset to both the board and the school. Their son Jayce has attended MCS for three years and is a student in Lower Elementary.
Shelley Freeman is beginning her second year serving on the MCS Board of Directors. She has a son, Evander, who is 4 and will be in Primary South this year, as well as a daughter, Amelia, who is 2, who will be in Stepping Stones. Shelley and her family have been a part of the school for 3 yrs. She is a native of Jacksonville, NC and grew up military. After moving around for college and graduate school, she returned to eastern North Carolina since her family retired here. Shelley owns a private practice in counseling, specializing in trauma, with a focus on perinatal and motherhood issues. She enjoys baking, cooking, wine and reading.
Sara Mashburn is a freelance graphic/website designer and social media manager. She is student at ECU studying Neuroscience and Psychology. Her children have attended MCS since 2014 and have experienced all of the programs that Montessori Childrens School has to offer. Sara’s oldest daughter is her final year as an Upper Elementary student at MCS. Her younger sister, is starting her first year as an Elementary student. Sara’s family enjoys everything that MCS has to offer and is dedicated to helping build and enrich this incredible Montessori Community.
Overview of being a Board Member
Core Duties of the Board
Board Expectations as a Whole
As the highest leadership body of the organization and to satisfy its fiduciary duties, the board is responsible for:
Board Expectations of Individual Members
Board Position Details
Board Calendar for 2022
Tuesday January 18th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday February 15th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday March 15th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday April 19th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday May 17th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday June 21st, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Tuesday July 19th, Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:00pm
Saturday August 6th, Annual Board Retreat & Orientation