Faith Nursery School Staff 2016-2017
Lee Ann Jacobsen – School Director
Lee Ann Jacobsen comes to Faith Nursery School and Faith Lutheran Church and with a M.S. in Early Childhood Education from LIU Post, a B.F.A. in Communications from NYIT, and an A.A. in Liberal Arts and Theater from Nassau Community College. She holds a Professional New York State Teacher Certification in Early Childhood Education (Birth-Grade 2).
Lee Ann came to Faith in the summer of 2014, when the church and school had taken on the rigorous task of applying, registering, and obtaining a Child Day Care License for Faith Nursery School. Her dedication, expertise, and diligence are accredited to Faith finally receiving a Child Day Care License in August of 2015 from the New York State Office of Children and Family Services.
Lee Ann feels that there is a very important connection between a child and his or her faith. She feels blessed to have been able to establish a religion program for Faith Nursery School and lead the children in the weekly children’s chapel services her first 2 years at Faith, before there was a full time Pastor.
Lee Ann Is committed to sustaining and improving the quality of Early Childhood Education and the care Faith provides. She has put forth great efforts to ensure that the school environment is secure, safe, fun, nurturing, positive, and always Christ-centered. Lee Ann’s passion for literacy prompted her to establish a children’s library in the school. She has also inaugurated science and math centers in the classrooms, improved writing and art centers in the classrooms, and is vigilant that staff keeps up to date on training, especially in STEM, STEAM, and knowing the OCFS regulations.
Miss Lee Ann wears several hats in her job. In addition to being the School Director: acting as administrative agent for all school related operations, special event coordinator, and overall supervisor, Lee Ann is the music teacher. She runs weekly music and movement classes, prepares the children for chapel services, and various events thought the school year.
Lee Ann has 15 years of professional teaching experience at several schools across Long Island. She has taught Pre-K, Nursery school, Toddlers, and a Mommy and Me Class. She was also a home child-care provider for 3 years.
Lee Ann was an active member of the Hicksville School District’s PTSAs for 14 years, serving as Chairperson for several committees, and a board member. She was a Girl Scout leader for 8 years, and a Substitute Religion Teacher at her church. Lee Ann is currently involved in Creative Ministries – Journey: Cross and Crucifixion, a traveling troupe that presents a musical interpretation of the Stations of the Cross during Lent.
Justine Kang – Pre-K Teacher
Miss Justine is back at Faith Nursery School after a short hiatus. Justine is the lead teacher in the “Kangaroo” Pre-K Class.
She has an M.S. from Saint John’s University in Elementary Education and a B.S. in Early Childhood and Elementary Education form New York University. She holds a Permanent New York State Teacher Certification in Nursery, Kindergarten & Grades 1-6.
In addition to teaching 2 and 3 year-olds here at Faith in the past, Justine has a vast array of teaching experiences including NYC Department of Education teaching 4th and 5th grade, The Seoul Academy International School, in Seoul, Korea, teaching Kindergarten, and 4th grade, as well as being an independent ESL instructor in Seoul, Korea, and The Dalton School, New York, NY, teaching Kindergarten and 3rd grade.
Justine has spent the last 14 years volunteering her time teaching Sunday School: Nursery to Grade 6, and Summer VBS Nursery to Grade 5.
Justine lives in the Syosset community, is an avid sports fan of her 3 children. Other interests revolve around piano, tennis and arts and crafts. Justine is Bilingual.
Darlene Happel – Nursery School Teacher
Miss Darlene, the lead teacher in the “Bunny” Nursery Class, has been with Faith for 15 years. In that time she has worked with every age group and has also worked in our summer program for many years.
Darlene is currently working towards her CDA. The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential is the most nationally recognized credential in early childhood education. In becoming a CDA, Darlene is demonstrating herself as a committed, confident practitioner with command of today’s best practices for teaching young children.
Darlene attended Plaza Business Institute and Queens College for her Business Degree and worked in the financial industry, including working for Lloyds bank where she traded foreign exchange for Fortune 500 companies on their corporate foreign exchange desk for 10 years. Darlene left the business arena to raise her family. Over the past years, Darlene has volunteered in Syosset’s Elementary, Middle and High Schools, chairing various PTA committees, she taught Sunday school and was a Girl Scout Leader. When Darlene is not here, she is often providing private childcare in the community.
Wendy Abruzzo – Assistant to the Director and Teacher’s Assistant
Miss Wendy has worn many hats while working at Faith for the past 27 years. She is currently the Assistant to the Director and a Teacher’s assistant.
Wendy has worked with all age groups as a teacher’s assistant, camp counselor, and camp director. She is the person in charge in the afternoons, organizes all our supplies, and keeps both the church and school office in line.
She is a reliable and dedicated worker, to both Faith and the children. She keeps calm and is always caring and nurturing.
Before working at Faith, Wendy was a Customer Service Representative for Allstate, as well as an Ice Skating instructor for 6 years.
Wendy has lived in the community for 32 years, has a grown daughter, and has recently become a grandmother.
Christine Diekmann – Teacher’s Assistant
Miss Chris is the assistant teacher in the Bunny classroom. Miss Chris has been with Faith for 27 years. Over the years she has worked with all age groups.
Chris is a certified medical assistant; she graduated from the Mandel School. Chris worked as a medical secretary and medical assistant for many years before switching careers and coming to work at Faith.
Chris has been a member here at Faith Evangelical Lutheran church for many years. She has worked in the office, taught Sunday school and has been a counselor in the summer program. Chris and her husband sing in the choir.
Chris loves her job, loves to work alongside this great group of women, and enjoys working with the children. She will cry right along with the children when they are sad or upset and cheer them on when they succeed. Miss Chris is always encouraging the students to try new things.
Stacey Broggy – School Photographer, Toddler Teacher, and Substitute Teacher (all levels)
Miss Stacey has worked at Faith as both a Toddler Teacher and a Substitute Teacher for the past few years. She has a B.A. in Special Education from Florida Atlantic University and an A.A. in Elementary Education from Palm Beach Community College. Stacey was certified in Florida for Special Education K-12.
Stacey spent her early career teaching in Florida as a Middle School Special Education Teacher working with students with learning disabilities, emotional disabilities and cognitive disabilities. She also was a SIET teacher and a volleyball coach. She also taught remedial math in Palm Beach Community College.
Stacy stayed home several years when she started her family, but quickly started her own photography business, Mom2boyz Photography, that still keeps her busy when she’s not here. Her specialty is newborn babies.
Stacey’s 3 boys keep her very busy but she has found the time to be a Summer Camp Teacher and Sunday School Teacher. Stacey is a former member of the school board at Good Shepherd School in Plainview.
One of Stacey son’s attended Nursery School, here, at Faith. She looks forward to coming to work each day so she can give her students the same nurturing environment her son experienced here. She runs a safe and loving classroom and she takes care of her students as she would her own. The children adore her and have so much fun, while being exposed to early learning fundamentals in an age appropriate environment.