Ever since she was nine years old, Yasmine Ghandour knew she would become a teacher of young children. She would tell anyone who would listen what her school would look like and what it would entail. Years later, in 2003, when she was looking for the perfect preschool for her newly born daughter, she opened the doors to the first Orchard House. There, she hoped for a school that would mirror the values she holds dear: one with a calm learning environment, a steady separation process, and a progressive, well-developed curriculum that would engage each child to reach his or her full potential. At Orchard House, she created just that! Over the years, Orchard House has grown into Quebec’s leading establishment for early childhood education.
Miss Yasmine holds her Montessori Qualifications from the Montessori Center International, a M.A. in Early & Elementary Education from Columbia University and a M.Ed in Educational Psychology from McGill University (focusing on Inclusive Education). She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at Concordia University, exploring early intervention measures for executive dysfunctions. She has taught in preschool settings in Asia, the Middle East and North America and has most recently spent a few years as an Elementary School Director in Montreal. Miss Yasmine has also led seminars at McGill University, hosted workshops in early childhood education at the annual Rocky Mountain Early Childhood Conference and has served on the board of a speech and language centre. Her varied experiences have led her to understand the true value of an individualized approach to education.
Imad holds a B.Comm in International Business (Concordia University), and a Kellogg-Schulich MBA from both the Kellogg School of Management (Northwestern University) and the Schulich School of Business (York University). With over twenty years of corporate experience culminating in leadership roles in marketing and merchandising, Imad has channeled his skills in his new-found passion for education. As a father of three, he is actively aware of the important role of building and continuously maintaining the ideal learning environment for young children.
Miss Tina holds a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Social Science and a certificate in Family Life Education from Concordia University. She also has completed Montessori and Daycare Management Certification. Miss Tina has taught and directed in preschool settings in the Montreal area for over 20 years. She is passionate about nutrition and cooking, cycling and being a mom of two daughters.
Miss Christine has a Bachelor of Commerce from Concordia University and has worked in various administrative positions but enjoys preschool environments the most. In her spare time, she likes cooking, skiing, hiking, reading and spending time with her family and two daughters.
Miss Annette holds a B.A. with Major in Child Studies from Concordia University and has been working with children in both the elementary and daycare settings for over ten years. She strives to create a climate of connection and community within the school, as well as foster a lifelong love of learning in children. Miss Annette enjoys reading, dancing, spending time in nature and visiting her family in Manitoba.
Miss Victoria has her Bachelor of Education from McGill University with a minor in her favourite subject… Natural Sciences! She has been working in the daycare and school setting for 12 years now gaining a variety of experiences along the way. She loves promoting a healthy and active lifestyle and, when not busy looking after her two young daughters, teaches fitness classes in her spare time.
Miss Allison has a diploma in Montessori Early Childhood Education from the North American Montessori Centre and has her ECE qualifications from Champlain College. She has worked for over twenty years with children in both the elementary and daycare setting. Her passion remains at the preschool level where her classroom fosters an environment in which the children participate in hands-on learning activities while creating an atmosphere of warmth and open communication. When she is not at work, you can find Miss Allison keeping active with her own two children!
The teachers at Orchard House are specifically chosen for their warm and nurturing nature, and for their understanding of individual needs. All teachers hold a certificate in Emergency First Aid procedures. With class sizes ranging from 6 to 10 children, teachers create child-centered environments, concentrate on the needs of the whole child and are well-positioned to address social or cognitive issues as they arise.
All members of our Helping Hands – our professional cleaning team – support us in our efforts to maintain a clean and hygienically safe learning environment. They also help the children with their diapering and toilet training needs. Most importantly, they offer on-going operational support around the school. We could not do our jobs as well as we do, were it not for the hard but discrete work of Miss Celia, Miss Kaye and Miss Jas (NDG), Miss Susan and Miss Yolanda (Pointe Claire).
Miss Jaz has a diploma in Criminology from the Bergen College in the Philippines. She is always smiling and loves to sing. In her spare time, Miss Jaz plays volleyball and badminton and enjoys travelling.
Miss Celia has been with Orchard House for over 10 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Baguio in the Philippines. Miss Celia has been working with children for many years and considers herself to be a kid at heart! Miss Celia loves adventure and exploring new places with her friends in her spare time.
Miss Anna worked as a high school teacher in the Philippines before coming to Canada. She loves cooking Filipino delicacies and being a mom to two daughters.
Miss Leonor holds a Bachelor of Secondary Education from the University of Mindanao in the Philippines. When she is not helping our little friends at Orchard House, in her spare time, she loves cooking, travelling and volunteering at her local church.
Miss Yolanda has completed courses in accounting and secretarial work and has undertaken prerequisite classes for early childhood education. With these qualifications, Miss Yolanda operated a home daycare for 10 years before joining the team at Orchard house in 2010. When not working, she enjoys spending time with her children and volunteering as a Sunday school teacher in her local church.