Meet Our Staff

Patience Harris

Patience Harris

Teacher - Classroom 2

 My name is Patience Harris. I have been working with preschool aged children and families in Santa Cruz County for over 26 years. I also owned my own home-based preschool for 5 years. I’ve been a part of the CCP community for 5 years and I’ve had the opportunity to work as a teacher in all of the classrooms.

In my personal life, I’ve been with my husband Jon for 23 years. We have two sons. My oldest, Qwentin, is in his second year of college at Brown University where he plays football and is studying to work in the medical field. My younger son, Roman, is in 3rd grade at Live Oak Elementary School and also loves to play football. Topping off our family unit is Raven, our French Bulldog, whom we love very much.

Sports keeps our family pretty busy throughout the year. If we are not doing something sports related, we love just enjoying our beautiful Santa Cruz area!

 

 

Suzie Dailey

Suzie Dailey

Teacher - Classroom 2

Hello! My name is Suzie, and I am so grateful to be at Coastal Community Preschool and share my days with your beautiful children. I have been teaching young children for 35 years in a variety of places, with one of the most interesting locations being at an orphanage in Zambia for two summers. This has caused me to have a tender spot in my heart for all things Africa!
I am a proud and blessed mom of my son, Galen, who is a recent graduate of Seattle Pacific University, and an avid photographer. I am also a mama to my four-legged son, Surfer! He takes me on lots of long walks in our beautiful Santa Cruz area and keeps me company while I enjoy one of my favorite hobbies of reading historical novels.
The preschool years are such a magical, joyful, emotional, and wonderful time in childhood, and also in parenthood. It is my honor to travel the journey with each of you! Children are amazing, and it is such a gift to work alongside them every day.
Thank you for welcoming me into the Coastal Community Preschool family!

 

Beth Sporleder

Beth Sporleder

Teacher - Classroom 1

Hi everyone, my name is Beth and I am excited to join the team at Coastal Community Preschool. In 2019, when our youngest was in high school, I decided to return to school to test the waters with one ECE class and was hooked! I have since continued my education taking 3-4 classes a semester and 2 during summer sessions. I have earned my Child Development Associate Teacher certificate through Cerro Coso and am on track to earn my Master Teacher certificate as well as my AS in Child Human Development this fall. I just can’t get enough and look forward to continuing my education through classes and collaborating with coworkers here at CCP.

As our boys were growing up, I was an active volunteer in school, sports, and scouts so I was surrounded by various age groups for many years. As they got older, I realized I especially enjoyed working with the very young and decided to seek out career opportunities. In 2019 I started work as a teacher’s aide with a variety of age groups from 2–5 year-olds. Within a few months, I was promoted to a teaching position working with toddlers, ages 18-24 months, and I have spent the last three years enjoying every minute of my day. I love the connections I make with both the children and their families I work with.

I can be found outside when I have time to spend with my family, friends, or by myself. I love camping, hiking, kayaking (am a novice), gardening, and going barefoot. Our two dogs, Ajax and Sidekick will usually be by my side. My other passion is reading everything from cookbooks to suspense to children’s books and beyond. One of my favorite children’s books is The Whole Night Through by David Frampton. The words are lyrical, but what I find most fascinating is that the illustrations are made from woodcuts that he carved and then painted to create each page.

Kim Boon

Kim Boon

Teacher - Classroom 3

I began with the Pre-K age group over thirty years ago in a co-op preschool with my own children. When my oldest child went to college, 15 years ago, I started teaching in early childhood education where I enjoy developing curriculum and helping students reach their full potential. I taught Pre-K for over 10 years in Carlsbad, California and I have taught 3- 5 year old children in play-based and Reggio-inspired programs.

In continuing my education I have earned ECE units from several community colleges over the years including a Certificate of Achievement in Child Development Associate Teacher from MiraCosta College. Additionally, I have taught art at a non-profit program called StudioAce and I have volunteered throughout my teaching career at numerous non-profits.

When I’m not in the classroom, I enjoy traveling, photography, gardening, riding my bike, and eating delicious food. I also love trying new restaurants, going to the beach, museums, art galleries, and spending time with my two adorable grandsons!

 

 

M Latta

M Latta

Teacher - Classroom 1

Hello my name is M. and I am delighted to be a part of the Classroom 1 team here at CCP. I have completed several ECE units at Cabrillo College where I am currently pursuing my Bachelor degree in Early Childhood Education.

I began my career working with children as a swim instructor and I have taught students ages 5-12 how to groom and tack up and care for horses while volunteering at Horse Sense Education and Advocacy.  I have experience as a behavioral technician working with autistic children and after I started my first preschool job, I absolutely fell in love with this field.

My personal hobbies include Historical reenactments, specifically during the time periods of the 15-16 century, and I love everything creative; music, theater, many different media types (paint, digital etc.) and sewing.

 

Maribel Ocaranza

Maribel Ocaranza

PM Teacher - Classroom 3

Hi I’m Maribel, I am currently earning my BA in Intensive Psychology at UCSC and I am focusing on Developmental Child Psychology. I am also a part of a speech processing research team on campus. I started taking psychology courses even in high school to better understand how we as humans function and found that learning and observing how children’s minds grow was of great interest to me.

I have always been interested in working with children and education. I want to continue my education after my Bachelors by obtaining a Master’s Degree in Family Therapy (fingers crossed!).  

I was born and raised in Santa Cruz so I make sure to visit all my favorite places in the area with my family whenever I get the chance. I love going on hikes and to the beach with friends.

Raeleen Benabides

Raeleen Benabides

PM Teacher - Classroom 2

I have earned my A.S Degree in Early Childhood Education from Cabrillo College where I interned in their Children’s Center for a year and then became a Head Teacher. I worked at the Family Network preschool for three years before moving to the Santa Cruz Toddler Care Center from 2004 until 2020. Additionally I worked in a home preschool from 2017-2020. I have had over 20 years of experience working with children from infant age to 5 years old.
I have three beautiful daughters that I am very proud of and I love spending time with them. I was a pastor’s kid and I enjoy going to church. My hobbies include photography and doing Word Search and board games. If I have spare time I enjoy listening to music and visiting the beach and taking in the beauty of this area.

 

Sara Jaesler

Sara Jaesler

Teacher - Classroom 3

I have a BA in psychology with an emphasis in child development, many ECE units from the Cabrillo College program and I have training and certification in Montessori education for ages 2.5-6years from The American Montessori Society.

I have been working with young children in at-home and classroom settings on and off since 1990. My first experience working with young children was as a nanny and I wanted more! I wanted to learn more about healthful practices with young children, and to gain classroom experience.

My life is quite simple and I like it that way! I enjoy walks and hikes with friends, and in the evening, streaming good shows are my small pleasures. I LOVE to de-clutter and organize when the need arises as well.

I am happy to be a part of the classroom 3 team at Coastal Community Preschool!

 

 

Heidi Vincent

Heidi Vincent

Float/Team support Teacher

Hello, my name is Heidi and I am excited to be a part of the staff here at CCP. My educational background includes a bachelor degree in Child Development and I have been working with young children for more than thirty years. Fun extra fact: I have also earned a Baking and Pastry certificate from a culinary school.

I have worked with children from ages 6 months through 6 years and began my career with children as a preschool teacher in San Diego. I then worked a teacher at a Montessori school until 2015 and next as a nanny until 2023.

I have three grown children and one adorable grandson. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, biking, swimming and traveling. I especially enjoy traveling to Europe and hiking in local forests.

 

 

Bobbie Imai

Bobbie Imai

Teacher - After-School Program

I graduated from Soquel High School in 1984. I continued my education at Cabrillo College where I studied early child development before earning a Bachelor’s in Liberal Arts from Sonoma State University in 1992. I earned my teaching credential from Bethany University in 1994.I hold a Cultural Language Academic Diversity (C.L.A.D.) certificate from UC Berkeley, which I earned in 2013.
I’ve worked with children my entire life. My mother owned and operated a home daycare in Santa Cruz where I gained valuable experience that I relied on throughout my teaching career in public and private schools. I’ve worked with children as young as 8 weeks and as old as Seniors in High School.

If you don’t see me at Coastal Community Preschool then you’ll find me at Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park or Twin Lakes Beach. I practice Yoga with my family on a weekly basis. And every few years I try to make it to New York City to enjoy a show on Broadway.

I am excited to be a part of CCP working as co teacher in the School-Age program!

 

Alicia Hammon

Alicia Hammon

Teacher - After-School Program

My name is Alicia. I have been working with children for nearly eight years now. Most of my experience has been in the Reggio Emilia, play based philosophies. I have worked in this industry all over the Bay area and in Southern California. I’m excited to be a part of the CCP community working in the After School Program.

I am currently working on obtaining my A.S degree in Early Childhood Education at Cabrillo College.

When I am not working or in school, I love to go to the beach with my wife and dogs, take day trips around California, read retellings of Greek myths, create art and go to concerts.

 

Kimberlee Biagini

Kimberlee Biagini

Administrative Director

I joined the CCP community in August of 2011 as a parent in Classroom 2.  I enjoyed getting involved with Spring Festival planning and being a member of the CCP Board of Directors as a way to take part in my child’s early education. In 2013 I was delighted to become a member of the staff at this wonderful preschool.

Being around the energy of children is a great joy and a fun environment to work in. My employment background is in management and administration. I have earned a BA in Social Science with a concentration in education, focusing on early childhood education. I feel working here is a great fit for my professional life as I’m able to utilize my degree and knowledge in many ways.

My daughter is now a Sophomore at Santa Cruz High School! We enjoy watching her play sports and we love traveling and biking. In my spare time I love to work in the garden as well as spend time at the beach and in nature.

kimberlee@coastalcommunitypreschool.org

Stephanie Simmons

Stephanie Simmons

Program Director

I have worked in Early Childhood Education in the Santa Cruz area for over 25 years, and at  CCP since 2011, where I have been a part of Classrooms 2 and 3.  Most recently, I was promoted to Program Director. I earned my AA in Early Childhood Education along with multiple ECE certificates at Cabrillo College, and have a Child Development Site-Supervisor permit. I have also been trained in both the SEEDS literacy and Handwriting Without Tears programs. 

I have always loved working with children and am passionate about creating a learning, enriched environment that focuses on fostering a child’s self-respect and respect for others. I feel strongly about giving children the opportunity to explore and create at their own pace and to embrace cultural diversity, all the while having FUN! I have always found it rewarding to witness the progression of how a child starts to learn something and then when he/she really grasps the concept. I realize how special these early years are and the positive impact a teacher can have on their growth.  

In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with my husband Craig, going on walks, listening to music, spending time in bookshops (I have an exceptionally large children’s book collection), as well as watching the GIANTS!

stephanie@coastalcommunitypreschool.org