Our Team2020-10-06T13:36:14+00:00

Meet Our Team

We’ve got a long list of things to be thankful for — such as a great, in-town location and a beautiful neighborhood site. But, at the top of that list is the team responsible for guiding your children every day. Over the years, we’ve become an incredible team of knowledge-hungry, caring, spirited pros who continue to push ourselves to learn more, do more, and teach more.

The reason we do it is pretty simple. It’s because we want your children to be the best they can be and want to do everything to make that happen.

Check out our staff and faculty below.

Beth Samples, Co-founder and Executive Director and Carey Logan, Director of School

Our Staff

Beth Samples


Beth is co-founder of Northwoods Montessori in 1972 and serves as Executive Director. Beth attended West Georgia College where she majored in education. She was inspired to begin Northwoods after witnessing the effects of the Montessori experience on her older child. She has worked to make a quality Montessori education available to a broad cross-section of children in the Atlanta community.

Carey Logan

Director of School

Carey serves as the Director of Northwoods Montessori School. A graduate of Georgia State University, she holds an M.Ed degree and an AMI diploma for Elementary from the Washington Montessori Institute. With over thirty years of experience at the elementary, junior high, and high school levels as teacher and administrator, she began her Montessori journey at Northwoods as the Physical Education teacher before taking the elementary training. An outdoor enthusiast, Carey developed and steered our elementary outdoor program – biking, hiking, and camping. Active in the Georgia Montessori community, Carey serves as Vice President of the board for the Montessori Administrators of GA.

Sue Zampella

Accounts Manager

Sue is a native of Bowie, Maryland and attended the University of Maryland. Sue’s daughter and son attended and graduated from Northwoods Montessori. She came to Northwoods in 1985, holds the position of Accounts Manager, and manages fund raising events.

Linda Spinks

Operations Manager

Linda re-established her relationship with Northwoods when she joined the administrative staff in 2009. Linda’s son attended Northwoods as a child. She attended Georgia Perimeter College and worked in the corporate sector before becoming Operations Manager.

Our Teachers

Melissa Jones

Lead Toddler Guide

Melissa attended Northwoods Montessori from age 2-1/2 to 12 years, graduating in 2002. She studied Education and Early Childhood at Georgia Southern University. She is currently completing her AMI Assistants to Infancy training at the Southwest Institute of Montessori Studies, in Phoenix, AZ. Melissa will begin her first year as the Lead Guide in our Toddler Program.

Jennifer Samples

Lead Primary Guide

Jennifer attended Northwoods Montessori from age 2-1/2 to 12 years, graduating in 1992. She earned an Associate Degree in Sociology from Gainesville College. Jennifer holds the AMI Primary Diploma from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta. Jennifer begins her sixteenth year as Primary Teacher at Northwoods. Her daughter and son attend Northwoods.

Lisa Jones

Lead Primary Guide

Lisa, a native Atlantan, begins her thirty-seventh year as a Primary Teacher at Northwoods. She holds a B.S. degree in Sociology from West Georgia College. She worked five years as a social worker for the Douglas County Resource Association. After the arrival of her first child, Lisa became interested in Montessori education. She holds the AMI Primary Diploma from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta.

Monika Rawla

Lead Elementary Guide

Monika Rawla begins her first year at Northwoods as our Elementary Guide. She earned her master’s degree in Food and Nutrition at Lady Irwin College in New Delhi, India. With over thirteen years of teaching experience at the Primary level, Monika holds both the AMI Primary and Elementary Diplomas from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta.

Classroom Assistants

Ericka Battle

Primary Assistant

Arijeta Piliqi

Primary Assistant

Hema Dilipkumar

Primary Assistant and Primary Extended Day Supervisor

Merry Rowe

Toddler Community Assistant

Kristina Barrett

Toddler Community Assistant

Our Montessori Credentials

We, who have tried other methods, are happy to find ourselves working with the child’s own processes. The faculty and staff of Northwoods are proud of our graduates and we are active members of national and international organizations that support the method that has nurtured them.

Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) was developed by Dr. Maria Montessori in 1929 to ensure that her methods and style would be accurately and consistently represented in the schools that bore her name. The mission of the organization is to promote the growth of Montessori education in public and private schools, to promote the development of Montessori teacher training, to promote public understanding of the Montessori method and principles in educational communities, and to provide opportunities for children to develop normally.

Northwoods Montessori School has been affiliated with and recognized at the highest level by AMI continuously since our founding in 1972. We were one of the first schools to be so certified in the Atlanta area. Our certification and recognition means that we closely adhere to the standards and methods promoted in teacher training courses provided by the Association and that we meet the Association’s criteria for consistent teacher training standards, use of Montessori learning materials, classroom sizes, and adherence to Dr. Maria Montessori’s original educational philosophy. We are AMI certified at the birth to three and three to six age levels. From time to time, our school is honored to host student teachers from local AMI training centers for required Observations and for Student Teaching from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta and International Montessori Training Institute. Also, our faculty participates regularly in the nationwide annual AMI- USA Refresher Course, an AMI-certified continuing education course.