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Hello, I'm Michele VanDerworp; a California native, born and raised in the Bay Area and more recently a resident of San Diego. I'm a mother of three children under the age of 5 and a golden lab. My professional background is first as a 6th Grade American History and Art teacher at a Classical Liberal Arts Charter school. I taught for five years which included a couple years in a Vice Principal role as well. That role gave me a broad look and on the ground experience in what it takes to start and grow a new school. If this were a resume, I'd say my experience in Motherhood is also responsible for preparing me to open The New Haven. It enabled me to see this need to be filled, but also by being my own client, I have so much insight into creating a space where I would want my own child to be enriched, according to my own high standards of care.


I value being surrounded by beauty for the sake of development, mental & spiritual peace, and creativity in work. I also value being present with the people I am with, whether that's my own family at home, or the members of my community. These early years of my children's lives will be brief, and while there are desires and necessity to work, I been dreaming up a way to keep them so close at the same time. I can take a break to visit them, each lunch with them and nurse my young baby without having to pump. 

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Lead Infant Teacher

Markayria Stallings, known to the children as Miss Mary, starting with us this February and she has been such a blessing to the infants in our care at The New Haven. Originally from Houston, Texas she has previously served as a Behavioral Health teacher while living in San Diego. She paused that work when she had her own child, now 7 months old who attends The New Haven with her. It's just another wonderful way that this village is growing; by mothers serving mothers while providing for their own families in a sustainable way.