Miss Shaylynn was born and raised here in the Cowichan Valley and attended Sunrise for Kindergarten which was extremely enriching. She recently completed Early Childhood Education Certification at Vancouver Island University and is currently working on her first year of my Waldorf training with West Coast Institute. Her goal is to be able to expand my knowledge and practice in Waldorf education while providing loving, comforting, and quality care to the children at Sunrise. She is passionate about working alongside the new generation as they truly are our future. She believes that we, as adults, need to be worthy of imitation because the quality of care which we provide defines the tone of our environment and relationships.
Natasha completed an extensive early childhood education program in former Yugoslavia and embarked on a journey, working in diverse educational settings across different countries. For 15 years, she owned and operated Waldorf-inspired daycare in Vancouver, creating a nurturing and holistic environment that encouraged imagination, creativity, and a deep connection with nature. Working with children brings her immense joy and fulfillment. She thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to engage with young minds and make a positive impact in their lives.
Yoga has been her lifelong passion for over 30 years. She received extensive training in India that laid the foundation for her practice. As well as joining and hosting numerous courses and workshops, she co-founded a yoga studio in Vancouver that was running for many years.
Her heart holds a special place for yoga for children, as she firmly believe in the transformative power of nurturing their physical, mental, and emotional well-being through yoga. It is an honour for her to share her love for yoga with the little ones.
Parent & Child Facilitator
Bright Angel Kindergarten Lead
Born in Poland Dorota grew to love all forms of artistic expression and creativity. After finishing her studies of philosophy in Lublin she spent two years in Cambridge, England. In Canada she worked as a kindergarten teacher in Yellowknife. After a year of studies at the Waldorf Institute in Spring Valley, Dorota came to Vancouver Island where she worked as a biodynamic farmer, toymaker of Fairywood Toys, Celtic harp performer and substitute teacher at Sunrise Waldorf School. While raising her daughter in the Cowichan Valley, Dorota took the Waldorf teacher training with the West Coast Institute for Studies in Anthroposophy. She was the first kindergarten teacher at Alta Lake School in Whistler, completed her degree in Education at the University of Victoria and then taught at the Whistler Waldorf School.
Meaghan completed an undergraduate degree in political science, psychology and criminology. She then spent time working with youth living in group homes. Through this work, she felt called to explore how she could best support children and youth, and began volunteering with children in various Toronto elementary schools. Meaghan then obtained a Master’s degree in child development and education, obtaining teaching and early childhood education degrees. Meaghan then spent 12 years working as a parent support worker for the Toronto District School Board.
Originally from Ontario, Meaghan first discovered the beauty of Vancouver Island when she was fortunate enough to travel here with her husband in 2007. She knew that one day she wanted to call this island home. Thirteen years and 3 children later, she was able to make this dream a reality. Having attended a Waldorf school as a child, Meaghan was thrilled to discover Sunrise Waldorf School. Watching her children thrive at Sunrise encouraged Meaghan to pursue employment here, and she is very much looking forward to the opportunity to work in this community.
Shining Star Kindergarten Lead
Miss Mima was born in Yugoslavia to parents who were both elementary school teachers. She graduated from the Belgrade University of Economics, and was employed at the City planning Institute. She soon realized her heart was in working with children, so she entered a part time teacher training program. In 1989, she moved to Vancouver and worked as a nanny, in a children’s group home, and as a family services support worker. Ten years later she moved to the Cowichan Valley. In her search for the right education for her children she attended a parent education series and recognized a deep kinship with the strivings and philosophy of Waldorf education. Miss Mima enrolled her children at SWS and completed the Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher Training with the West Coast Institute. Miss Mima worked in the preschool for three years, before moving to Shining Star Kindergarten in 2007. She feels fortunate to have found her life calling where every day her encounters with children, parents and colleagues bring new joys and opportunities for growth.
Bright Angel Kindergarten Assistant
Bright Angel Kindergarten Assistant
After years as a student herself in French Immersion, Dana Crudo pursued studies in French, Psychology and Education at McGill and Simon Fraser Universities. She then taught French Immersion in Vancouver for almost 15 years while also taking breaks to travel, get married in Sicily, and live in Switzerland for a few years. Once a mother of three beautiful girls, Dana stepped away from the public school system, focused more on family while teaching yoga part time to both adults and children as well as working in a Reggio inspired preschool. In 2021, the family took another leap to the Cowichan Valley where they have a small homestead with another family. Dana is thrilled to have found her way to Sunrise and is enjoying working and learning in the ECE department. Though she is not Waldorf trained (yet!), she feels very aligned with the approach and is so grateful to be surrounded by the philosophy and community. In her time away from work, Dana enjoys spending time with family, working on the farm, and creating and sharing meals with loved ones.
Shining Star Kindergarten Assistant
Sara is grateful every day to be living, learning and raising her family on the traditional Hul’q’umi’num territory in the Quw’utsun Valley and to be part of the Sunrise Waldorf School community. After attending the Vancouver Waldorf school from grades 1-12, Sara had long wished to return to the Waldorf community and to give her children the gift of a Waldorf education, and moved here from Victoria in September of 2020 for her two children to attend Sunrise.
During her 14 years in Victoria, Sara was on the Victoria Waldorf Society board promoting Waldorf education and community connections in Victoria and volunteered in many child-centered community initiatives while raising a family and working in the environmental field.
Sara holds a bachelor degree in biology and environmental management, and is currently completing her Waldorf Early Childhood Educator training. Sara is very happy to be working with children again, now for a second year in shining star kindergarten.
Class 1 Assistant
Mr. Naeem Datoo enjoys living in the Cowichan Valley and teaching at Sunrise Waldorf School. He loves the natural beauty of the area. Before coming to Sunrise, Mr. Naeem was a teacher in Vancouver for many years. He also teaches yoga and meditation and enjoys studying Anthroposophy.
Raja Chrimes is an experienced Waldorf teacher with almost a decade of Waldorf School teaching experience; she has her Waldorf Teacher Training certificate, a Bachelor of Education and a Bachelor of Arts. She has also worked in different educational settings in Canada and abroad. She is artistically and musically talented.
Raja returns to Vancouver Island this summer, which is a homecoming for her.
Lisa is grateful to be teaching and learning on traditional Hul’q’umi’num territory in the Quw’utsun Valley. She has been a teacher in many different environments since 1990, and has been a class teacher at Sunrise Waldorf School since 2010. She holds a Bachelor of Education, a BFA in Theatre Performance, and attained her Waldorf Teacher Certification from the West Coast Institute for Studies in Anthroposophy. In 2018, she was awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence in STEM, and is currently the BC Regional Representative to the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. Originally from Victoria, Lisa began her Waldorf journey when her own children – now grown – started their schooling at Washington Waldorf School in Washington DC, and she has been on a continual learning path in this direction ever since. Lisa enjoys playing music with her family, planning her garden, hiking with her partner and dog, and learning more how to live in balance and harmony with our dear Earth.
Ms. Brooks has many wonderful memories growing up in Ontario riding horses. After studying child development at York University and training in strength and conditioning, she began a small gym. Angela's passion for teaching became more evident and she pursued her Masters of Science in education. For the next 20 years, Angela was fortunate to be able to combine a teaching career and operate her three training facilities. When visiting Whistler on a ski trip, Angela was introduced to Waldorf education and was inspired to take her teaching in a different direction. She completed her Waldorf Teacher training in Toronto and joined the Whistler Waldorf School in September 2018. Angela moved to Nanaimo and began substitute teaching at Sunrise in 2022. She is so grateful to call the island home and to be able to work with the Grade 6 class.
Class 5 Assistant
Jacqueline began her education at the Vancouver Waldorf School. She attended Pre-school through Grade 5 there, and transitioned to public school in Grade 7. She is excited to be returning to the curriculum now. Jacqueline has a Bachelors Degree in Anthropology and Canadian Studies from the University of British Columbia, and has just returned from completing a teacher education course in the United Kingdom. She is currently training with the West Coast Institute, studying for her Waldorf Certification.
Mr. Mothes completed his Waldorf Teacher Training in Germany, with additional training as a foreign language teacher in French and German. In addition, he holds a Bachelor's Degree and a Diploma from the College for Anthroposophic Pedagogy. He has taught at Waldorf Schools in the United States, taking a class to grade eight, as well as a specialty teacher.
Madame Powell started learning French in high school and then perfected her knowledge of the language while living in France as an exchange student. This experience inspired her to learn about other cultures and languages (Spanish and German). Madame Powell holds a BA in French and Spanish (completed in Bordeaux, France) as well as a BA in Education from the province of Ontario. She began her professional career teaching French at a public middle school in Toronto, and then became a part of the Waldorf movement 15 years ago at the Kelowna Waldorf School where she was inspired by its spiritual perspective on child development and teaching. Madame Powell was both a parent and a French teacher at the KWS and, after completing her Waldorf Teacher Training from Antioch Unoiversity New England, she bacame a class teacher and took a Class from G2 to G5.
Shannon and her family moved to the Cowichan Valley in 2017 so that her three children could attend The Sunrise Waldorf School. Being a part of the Sunrise Waldorf School and community has been an incredibly enriching experience for their whole family and they feel so grateful to be a part of it. Shannon holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of British Columbia, with a major in studio arts. She is in the process of receiving her Independent School Teaching Certificate. She has been inspired by Waldorf Education and anthroposophy since she first learned about it over twelve years ago. She deepened her knowledge and passion for the grade’s curriculum through the Teaching with Heart; Experiencing the Waldorf Approach Course two years ago and is eager to continue her own Waldorf Education Training. Shannon has worked in a supportive teaching role in art classrooms for children up to the age of 12. She is looking forward to meeting all the children and families that make up our community.
Student Resource Counsellor
As a seasoned Waldorf school principal and class teacher, Rubeena combines her extensive experience in school leadership with a deep passion for nurturing students' educational growth.Having served as Waldorf School Principal for many years, Rubeena's academic background in Waldorf education complements her passion for guiding students through adolescence. Currently pursuing her master's degree in School Counselling, she seeks to blend the best of both worlds, enhancing her ability to support and inspire students.
Alongside her educational and counselling endeavours, she was co-founder of the Okanagan Waldorf School where she played a pivotal role in developing the gardening and farming curriculum, fostering connections with the natural world, and instilling essential sustainability values.
Rubeena actively serves on the Leadership Council of the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA), collaborating with fellow educators, sharing best practices, and championing the core values of Waldorf education, influencing its growth in North America.
Rubeena Sandhu embodies a warm and compassionate approach, grounded in her passion for holistic education, sustainability, and the enduring principles of Waldorf education.
Ms. Susan grew up on the Island and is grateful to have started her Waldorf journey over 10 years ago when her own children attended Sunrise. Before becoming an Educational Assistant Ms. Susan volunteered as a Roots of Empathy Facilitator at many schools and worked as a Home Support/Resident Care Attendant. She has been a hairstylist for over 30 years and has owned and operated her own business since 2009. In her free time Ms. Susan is usually camping with family and friends, playing in her garden or out walking with her dog.
Head of School
Rae has been an Independent School leader in BC for a decade and loves being in the education sector. Prior to working in schools, she managed youth outreach programs and quality assurance compliance in social service settings. Rae's formal education is in social work and her Master of Social Work Degree specialization was Leadership in the Human Services. Rae is passionate about the education and wellbeing of children and youth as well as building intentional communities that espouse kindness and respect. She is excited to expand her knowledge and understanding of Waldorf education as well as meaningfully contribute to the beautiful Sunrise community over the coming years.
Rachel has been involved in Waldorf Education for 20 years and has over 10 years of experience teaching in Waldorf classrooms. She took a class from grades one through eight at Sunrise. Rachel has a degree in English Literature, and she completed her Waldorf teacher training along with a Masters of Education Degree at Antioch University in New England. She is now the Education Director at Sunrise Waldorf School.
Admissions and Communication Director
Katherine attended Waldorf schools in Scotland from pre-school to grade 12 and went on to gain a BA hons in Fine Art at Edinburgh College of Art. She came to Canada in 2005 and has been part of Sunrise Waldorf School since 2016 when her daughter started attending preschool here. She is committed to her role in bringing Waldorf education to all those who seek a more meaningful, integrated and gentle approach to preparing children for today’s world.
Director of Finance
Joy was BC born and raised, and in her early years, lived and travelled in various parts of the country pursuing careers in music and fitness. She settled on a career in finance and honed her skills in the Okanagan Valley. Years of holidaying on the Gulf Islands planted the seed of love for the ocean, and she and her husband moved to the Cowichan Valley in 2013. Joy loves the energy and spirit of Sunrise Waldorf School and is grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the admin team. She has two grown children, and a beautiful granddaughter. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, kayaking, gardening, and music.
Reception and Administrative Assistant
Sorina immigrated from South Africa to Canada with her husband and three children in 2006. They called Fort McMurray, Alberta home for 15 years. She worked within the Public School Division in Fort McMurray as a school secretary until she and her husband made the journey to Vancouver Island in September 2021. They love walking the trails and exploring everything that BC has to offer. She is excited to be part of the team at Sunrise Waldorf School.