Katie Tsilosani
School Director

Ms. Katie is the Owner, Director, and Lead Teacher at Purple Bloom School. Before Purple Bloom School emerged, Ms. Katie owned and operated her in-home child care including Purple Bloom Preschool for 14 years. She spent that time studying the philosophies of Play Counts®, Heather Shumaker, Dr. Shinichi Suzuki, Handwriting Without Tears®, Get Set for School®, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Reggio Emelia, Magda Gerber, Janet Lansbury, Rudolf Steiner Waldorf Method, and Dr. Maria Montessori   At 17 years old, Katie received the KCRG TV9 “A+ for Education” for creating an immersion program for the special education students in her high school.   Ms. Katie is a trained and certified Suzuki violin and viola instructor. She owned and operated Stringworks School of Music for 10 years and taught violin at the University of Northern Iowa Suzuki Music School.   She earned her associates degree from Kirkwood Community College and has since continued her education at the University of Northern Iowa and University of Iowa.  

Ms. Katie and her husband, Irakli, have three children whom all attend Purple Bloom School.

 

 

 

Irakli Tsilosani
Director of Business and Facilities
Molly Hodgin
Assistant Director/Lead Teacher

Ms. Molly is the Assistant Director and Lead Teacher at Purple Bloom School. She earned her bachelors in Child Development and Administrative Management from the University of Iowa and Walden University. Prior to coming to Purple Bloom School, she owned and operated her in-home child care for seven years. She studied the philosophies of Maria Montessori and Reggio Emilia and strived to implement these principles each day into her program. Ms. Molly has previous experience working as an in-home Nanny and at child care centers. She continues to further her knowledge by participating in training geared toward early childhood education.   

Ms. Molly happily resides in West Branch with her husband and three daughters, Payton (5), Ellie (3), and Stella (1).

 

Lisa Montz
Marketing Director

Lisa grew up in Marion, Iowa with her older sister and Purple Bloom School Director, Katie Tsilosani.    She graduated from the University of Iowa with a B.A. in Liberal Arts.  Before joining Purple Bloom, she worked at Kirkwood Community College with marketing and high school outreach.    Lisa and her husband Noel have one son, Morgan.    She really enjoys working at Purple Bloom because of the supportive community Purple Bloom has become! 

Matt Huber
Elementary 3rd-6th Grade
Sharaya Peck
Elementary Teacher Room #10

           Sharaya Peck is a licensed elementary teacher. She graduated from Iowa State University with her B.A. in Early Childhood/Elementary Education. Her specialized endorsements include literacy education, special education (level 1 & level 2), and Child, Adult, & Family Services. She is certified in Creative Curriculum, Handwriting Without Tears, and various other techniques for teaching children. Before joining Purple Bloom, she taught for Linn Mar Community School District in Linn County.  Ms Sharaya’s work experience includes teaching Kindergarten, Pre-School, and working as an Early Literacy Specialist.   She and her husband Robert have two children; Lincoln age 4 and Sullivan age 1.   Both of her children attend Purple Bloom.

 

 

Kelley Adkins
Lead Teacher Room #6

Ms. Kelley is a lead teacher in room 6 at Purple Bloom School where she initiated and oversees the upbringing of monarch butterflies with our students. She owned and operated her in-home childcare for four years. Ms. Kelley has experience working in the Iowa City School District as a one on one paraprofessional and a behavioral interventionist. She earned her AA degree and is certified in all early childhood education required training. She and her husband, Malik, have two daughters, two beagles, a guinea pig, and a chinchilla!   Both of their daughters attend Purple Bloom.  Ms. Kelley continues her education by attending various workshops and conferences related to early childhood education. Her favorite part of the school day is watching the kids use their imagination to create something amazing from a pile of “stuff”. 

 

 

Lucie Alcaraz
Lead Teacher Room #8
Paige Dighton
Summer Camp Lead Teacher
Cindy Frazier
Lead Teacher Room #5

Ms. Cindy is a lead teacher in the one year old classroom.   She has her Associates Degree in Social Work from Kirkwood Community College. Ms. Cindy has 3 years+ experience as lead teacher and a para educator in a childcare center setting. She finds Purple Bloom School to be liberating for the students and teachers alike.   Having minimal boundaries allow the children to play and learn the way they decide.   Ms. Cindy lives in North Liberty and has two children, Koryn (16) and Camden (18).   To continue her education, Ms. Cindy participates in early childhood courses and conferences.

 

Rikki Hemsley
Lead Teacher

Ms. Rikki is the lead teacher of the Infant room at Purple Bloom.   She studied early childhood education at College of Saint Mary in Omaha, NE. Before joining Purple Bloom, Ms. Rikki worked as a lead infant teacher with Bright Horizon—Union Pacific Child Development Center.   She enjoys working with infants because there is something new everyday and she loves watching them grow and develop! She has continued her education in early childhood development including infant/toddler nutrition and child safety. Ms. Rikki and her husband live in North Liberty with their son Owen, who also attends Purple Bloom.

 

Saba Khamees
Lead Teacher

Ms. Saba is a lead teacher in a 2-year-old classroom at Purple Bloom. She studied ESL and is almost finished with her Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education. Before joining Purple Bloom, Ms. Saba owned and operated “Daycare by Saba”, an in-home day care, for 2 years for children aged new born to five years of age. She and her husband, Abbas, have two children, Tabarak (8) and Hussain (6) who both attend Purple Bloom School Summer Day Camp.   Working at Purple Bloom has inspired Saba to continue her education in early childhood and she continues to attend seminars and conferences.   Her favorite part of the school day is watching the children grow and learn how to speak from a few simple words into full sentences.

 

Kai Plews
Lead Teacher #1

Mr. Kai Plews is the lead teacher of Pre-K Room #1 at Purple Bloom. He graduated from the University of South Dakota with a BFA in Photography. He then attended the University of Iowa and graduated with an MA and an MFA in Photography. Mr. Kai is currently certified in all early childhood education required training. He has training in social emotional teaching strategies, child-led play strategies, curriculum development, and pedagogical practices. Before working at Purple Bloom School, Mr. Kai worked with Ms. Rachel in her in-home tot school, In the Hive Playschool. Mr. Kai has a passion for teaching and working with all age groups. One of his favorite aspects of working with preschool aged children is reading books. He is excited to bring a creative and art focused approach to Purple Bloom!

Mr. Kai and his wife, Ms. Rachel, live in Iowa City with their five children: Dex age 10, Veda age 9, Gus age 6, twin 3-year-olds Leo and Asa, and their cat Spyder. Mr. Kai and Ms. Rachel's children attend Purple Bloom School.

Rachel Plews
Lead Teacher Room #2

Ms. Rachel Plews graduated from the University of South Dakota with a B.S. in Sociology. She is currently certified in all early childhood education required training. She has additional training in social emotional teaching strategies and child led play strategies. Before joining Purple Bloom, Rachel owned and operated her own in-home "tot school". She developed and taught curriculum focused on play-with-a-purpose for children aged 2 and 3 years. She especially loves working with this age group because everything is a new adventure for them! 

Rachel and her husband, Kai, live in Iowa City with their five children: Dex age 9, Veda age 8, Gus age 5, and twin 2 year olds Leo and Asa, and their cat, Spyder.   Ms. Rachel’s children attend Purple Bloom School.

 

 

Esraa Abdelrhman
Classroom Assistant
Amie Angus
Classroom Assistant
Lisbeth Alcaraz
Classroom Assistant
Kaitlyn Beason
Classroom Assistant
Nakia Brown
Chef/Classroom Assistant
Britta Cavinder
Classroom Assistant
Breanna Davis
Classroom Assistant
Grace Heller
Volunteer
Daisy Garcia
Classroom Assistant
Lora Hesseltine
Classroom Assistant
Lily Lucas
Classroom Assistant
Mandy McPherson
Classroom Assistant
Razan Mohamed
Classroom Assistant
Emilie Nelson
Substitute
Ella Schmitz
Classroom Assistant
Elsy Solis
Classroom Assistant
Tassia Trenkamp
Classroom Assistant
Lynda McDowell
Classroom Assistant
Porter-Adams Rachel
Classroom Assistant
Iris Grossman
Classroom Assistant
Janney Payton
Classroom Assistant