Discovery offers families a supportive, knowledgeable staff that is educated, experienced, and committed to developing relationships with the children and families in their care. Classroom teachers have backgrounds and degrees in Education, Child Development, Family Relations and/or Special Education. They offer a developmentally appropriate and child-centered program focused on helping children gain social and emotional competence, in a hands-on, play-based setting. Low student to staff ratios ensure that everyone receives special attention and quality services. Individualized programming based on observation and documentation is provided for all children in the program. Discovery's staff includes:
Collette Box - Director
Collette has been part of Discovery since its beginnings in 1992, working with the two and three year olds and developing what is now known as the Playgroup. She added the responsibilities of Assistant Director shortly thereafter, and became the Director in 1995. She has an associates degree in Child Development and is currently working on a bachelor of science degree. Collette advocates for children and families at the local and state level through professional organizations and advisory boards, striving to raise awareness about the importance of environments and relationships for children birth to five.
Becky Madison - Pre-Kindergarten Classroom Co-Coordinator
Becky has been part of Discovery since 1993, working with both the Pre-School and Pre-Kindergarten aged children in a variety of positions before permanently taking responsibility for the Pre-Kindergarten classroom in 1999. Becky has a bachelor of arts degree in Child Development and Family Relations. Becky has served on the board of local professional organizations. She works closely with her team teacher and families to prepare the Pre-Kindergarten children for full day kindergarten.
Gail Camilleri - Pre-School Classroom Co-Coordinator
Gail first joined the Discovery staff in 1995, starting out in the Playgroup as a Classroom Assistant, before taking responsibility for the classroom in 2002. After taking a two year break from education, she returned to Discovery to work with the Pre-School classroom in 2008 on a permanent basis. Gail has a bachelor of arts degree in Child Development and Family Relations. When not working, she enjoys travel time with her husband and spending time with her grandson.
Kathy Smith - Pre-Kindergarten Classroom Co-Coordinator
Kathy joined the Discovery staff in February 2001 as a support staff in the morning and afternoon, before permanently working with both the Pre-School and Pre-Kindergarten classrooms as a Classroom Assistant. Since 2007 she has taken on additional responsibility as a Classroom Co-Coordinator, first with the Pre-School then the Pre-Kindergarten classrooms. Kathy has been involved with early childhood education for over 15 years in a variety of settings and organizations and has also been a small business owner. Her recent volunteerism includes the Read to Rover program.
Debbie Moon - Pre-School Classroom Co-Coordinator
Debbie joined the Discovery staff in August 2001 as a support staff and Substitute, before taking on the Pre-School classroom in 2002. She has a bachelor of liberal arts degree with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education and Child Development. She has worked in the early childhood education field for over 30 years in a variety of settings and positions, including Teacher/Director of both a parent cooperative preschool and a Head Start. Debbie likes to fill non-working time with kayaking, hiking, skiing, traveling, and spending time with her family in Oregon.
Laura Johnson - Classroom Assistant & Office Assistant
Laura joined the Discovery staff in September 2005. She works with all the age groups and classrooms. She has been the Nutrition Coordinator since 2007 and also provides office and staff support. She has nearly completed a bachelor of arts degree in Human Development and Family Life with an emphasis in Community Leadership and Development. Her professional interests lie in improving family education and connections to community resources as well as health and nutrition promotions for children and their families. Outside of work Laura enjoys reading, cooking, and scrapbooking.
Katie Farley - Classroom Assistant
Katie began working at Discovery in February 2006 as the Pre-School Classroom Assistant and continued until July 2007. After a six month hiatus, she joined us again as a long-term Substitute and Classroom Assistant. She currently divides her time between the Pre-Kindergarten and Pre-School classrooms. Katie enjoys being a part of the Discovery staff social committee.
Tammi Walters - Playgroup Classroom Assistant
Tammi joined the Discovery staff in June 2007. Before coming to Discovery, she worked with both young children and senior citizens in a variety of settings. She is a Child Care Development Specialist through the Montana Apprenticeship and Training Program. Tammi enjoys plastic canvas crafting, camping, reading, and spending time with her family.
April Haller - Playgroup Classroom Coordinator
April started at Discovery in September 2009 as the Playgroup Coordinator. She holds an associates degree in Early Childhood Education with a Special Education endorsement. Her future goal is to obtain a bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education. Besides an ongoing interest in child development, April's hobbies include jewelry making, camping, photography, and spending time with her family.
Mary Siarkowski - Playgroup Classroom Assistant
Mary started working at Discovery in January 2010 as a Classroom Assistant in the Playgroup. She is a Flathead Valley native. Mary enjoys spending time with her large family (she and her husband have five children ages 7 to 20), stamp collecting, photography, scrapbooking, beading, and a variety of outdoor activities.
Torree Heaton - Pre-Kindergarten Classroom Assistant
Torree joined Discovery as a Classroom Assistant in the Pre-Kindergarten classroom in September 2010. She is currently working toward an associates degree in Early Childhood Education at FVCC. Torree enjoys scrapbooking, sewing, baking, watching movies, and spending time with her daughter and family.
Shanell Doane - Pre-School Classroom Assistant
Shanell joined the Discovery staff in October 2010, starting as afternoon support staff before changing rolls to Classroom Assistant in the Pre-School classroom. She has a bachelor of arts degree in English and a bachelor of science in Communicative Sciences and Disorders and is a full-time student working towards a master of science in Speech Language Pathology. Shanell enjoys camping, hiking, and walking her dogs.
Tamara Pitman - Substitute
Tamara joined the Discovery staff in December 2010 as a Substitute. She earned an associates degree in Early Childhood Education from FVCC and is currently working toward a bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education through UM-Western. In her spare time, Tamara enjoys skiing, biking, hiking, and spending time with her family, especially her son Logan.
Dani Minette - Cook
Dani joined the Discovery staff as our Cook in April 2011. She holds an associate of applied science degree in Culinary Arts from FVCC, and her long-term goal is to go back to school for a certificate in baking and pastry. Outside of work Dani enjoys watching movies, attending sporting events, baking, and spending time with her friends and family.