Primrose School of Druid Hills

Our Staff

  • Elizabeth Bennett, Executive Director

    Elizabeth Bennett

    Executive Director

    We are so excited to have Ms. Bennett as our Executive Director! Elizabeth began working with Primrose Schools in Lawrenceville in 1998 and continued her career with Primrose when she and her husband moved to Greensboro, NC in 2003. She has experience as a Lead Teacher serving various age groups, and then joined the Leadership Team at her school in 2005. She served as the Director of the Primrose School of Brassfield for nine years, where she was responsible for overseeing daily operations, following and implementing state licensing requirements, hiring and developing teachers and maintaining enrollment. She most recently became the Curriculum Director and Senior Administrator for both Greensboro locations, Primrose Schools of New Irving Park and Brassfield, in January of 2016.

    Ms. Bennett has two young children who started at Primrose when they were each six weeks old and are a part of our Explorers program. She also recently welcomed a third baby girl to the family who attends our infant program. Throughout her time with Primrose, her attention and focus on high standards has been driven by her desire to provide the best educational environment for young children.

  • Jennifer Bullard, Curriculum Director

    Jennifer Bullard

    Curriculum Director

    Like all of our leadership team here at Primrose School of Druid Hills, Mrs. Bullard has a passion for teaching and developing young children. She has worked with preschoolers for over 20 years, most recently as a teacher at a private preschool. She felt the call to teach at a young age when her 3rd grade teacher, Mrs. Harper, inspired her to dream big! She has a background in Family and Consumer Science, is Reggio Certified, and holds a Child Development Associates Certification. She is happily married to her loving husband of 25 years and is the proud mother of three sons whom she cherishes dearly. Mrs. Bullard is grateful to have a role that allows her to draw on the elements of teaching through watching others inspire and captivate young learners.


  • Jasmine McDaniel-Smalls, Assistant Director

    Jasmine McDaniel-Smalls

    Assistant Director

    Mrs. Smalls began her career with Primrose Schools in Douglasville, GA in 2008. Prior to becoming the Assistant Director at Druid Hills, she was a Lead Teacher for the Preschool classroom at the Brookhaven location. She is currently pursuing her Bachelors Degree at Phoenix University. Mrs. Smalls joined Primrose because of the philosophy that who children become is just as important as what they know. She believes strongly in the Balanced Learning curriculum and the foundation it creates for young children. We are so excited that she chose to continue her career with Druid Hills as the Assistant Director!

    In her leisure time, Mrs. Smalls loves to shop and spend time with her family and friends.


  • Braxton Brooks, Chef Brooks

    Braxton Brooks

    Chef Brooks

    Chef Brooks is an Atlanta native and has worked in the culinary industry for over 6 years. She has completed her studies through Johnson and Wales University earning an Associate's Degree in Culinary Arts as well as a Bachelor's of Science in Food Service Management. Chef Brooks has worked in various five star restaurants in Miami and Charlotte. She has also participated in charity dinner functions most recently being out of the kitchen. Chef Brooks loves preparing meals for others to give everyone the feeling of home away from home with every bite!

  • Maria Celestino, Toddler Teacher

    Maria Celestino

    Toddler Teacher
    My name is Maria Celestino, and I am a teacher at Primrose School of Druid Hills. Here’s a little about myself: I was born and raised in New York until my senior year of high school. I graduated in 2011 from Carver High School, Health Science and Research. After I graduated, I shadowed a dental assistant and volunteered in the dental office. I then attended college at Brigham Young University – Idaho, majoring in general studies. I have always been with children, because my mother works as a full time nanny. I started taking care of children at the age of 13. I have always loved working with children! I think there is so much we can learn from our children, mostly because they have a different perspective on things than we do. I am very excited for the school year, because education is the most valuable thing to have. I can’t wait to watch the children grow while learning and seeing their faces with excitement as they learn new things. I know we will have a great and fun school year together! I am excited to be a part of the Primrose Druid Hills family.
  • Maya Chatman, Explorers Teacher

    Maya Chatman

    Explorers Teacher

    My name is Maya Chatman. I was born and raised in Atlanta Ga. I graduated from South Georgia College with a degree in Early Childhood Education. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, I also like to travel. I have 8 years of childcare experience. Teaching children has always been a huge passion of mine. I look forward to continuing what I love to do at Primrose school of Druid Hills!

  • Shaquita Clark, Preschool Teacher

    Shaquita Clark

    Preschool Teacher

    My name is Ms. Shaquita Clark, and I joined Primrose School of Druid Hills as the Lead Teacher in the Preschool 1 classroom in the summer of 2020. I have over 13 years of teaching experience, with the past 10 years being with Preschool and Pre-Kindergarten children. I have a Bachelors Degree, and look forward to continuing to develop my teaching experience through the Balanced Learning curriculum and getting to know the children. I have a school aged daughter and am originally from Atlanta. I look forward to getting to know your family!

  • Callie Connelly, Early Preschool Teacher

    Callie Connelly

    Early Preschool Teacher

    My name is Callie Connelly, and I have been with the Primrose Family since 2018. After graduating from Belmont University in Nashville, TN, I started my journey with Primrose there before moving back to my hometown of Atlanta last year. I have over 14 years of childcare experience and look forward to adding many more years to that list. I love spending time with children of all ages, and strive to give them a nurturing and fun environment to learn. I look forward to getting to know your child and family.

  • Marie Daniel, Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

    Marie Daniel

    Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

    My name is Marie Daniel, and I am a 3 year veteran of Primrose. I love being in the classroom and watching children grow and learn. I am currently pursuing my Masters Degree and plan to eventually further my career in education. I am from Atlanta, and look forward to getting to know your family!

  • Emawaysh Defru, Support Teacher

    Emawaysh Defru

    Support Teacher

    My name is Ms. Defru, and I am originally from Ethiopia. I have 2 beautiful children of my own, and I love working with the younger children each day to show them love and care for them. I am happy to be a part of the Primrose team!

  • Johnnita Desmond, Infant Teacher

    Johnnita Desmond

    Infant Teacher

    Hello, my name is Johnnita Desmond. I am a native of Atlanta, and have worked in childcare for 7 years. I received my Bachelor's degree in Early Learning from Mercer University. In my leisure time I enjoy spending time with my family. I also enjoy watching football and basketball games. My passion has always been to work with children. I believe children are the most precious gift, and that they learn best in a loving and safe environment. I am looking forward to meeting your family and being a part of Primrose Druid Hills.

  • Kayla Durrant, Kindergarten Teacher

    Kayla Durrant

    Kindergarten Teacher

    Hello , My name is Kayla Durrant, and I am from Villa Rica, GA. I am married, and I have a dog named Remy. I graduated from Villa Rica High School in 2009, and I am a 2013 graduate of The Fort Valley State University, where I received a Bachelors of Science in Early Childhood Special Education. This year marks my 6th year in the field of education. I love to see students learn, and I am very passionate about what I do. Thank you for the opportunity to service you and your family.

    Keep Moving Forward-

    We keep moving forward, opening new doors and doing new things, because we're curious, and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.

    - Walt Disney

  • Asma Faraj, Preschool Pathways Teacher

    Asma Faraj

    Preschool Pathways Teacher

    My name is Asma Faraj, and I am originally from Iraq. Although my schooling and background are in accounting, I have been caring for and tutoring children for over 15 years. I love children of all ages, but I am most passionate about working with toddlers and 2 year olds! I earned my Child Development Associate's degree in 2019. I am excited to work with the children and families at the Primrose School of Druid Hills!

  • Lucrecia Garcia, Support Teacher

    Lucrecia Garcia

    Support Teacher

    Hola! My name is Lucrecia Garcia. I am from Guatemala, and I have lived in Georgia for 10 plus years. I have over 30 years of childcare experience. I am very passionate about children because of the love they give back to us each and every day. I look forward to seeing their smiling faces everyday, and I also love introducing children to new vocabulary in Spanish. I am very excited to be a part of the Primrose Druid Hills team, and I look forward to getting to know your family.

  • Dominique Harris, Support Teacher

    Dominique Harris

    Support Teacher

    "Hello, my name is Dominique Harris. My work with children started a long time ago. I started working with a non-profit organization in California where I served as an English tutor for 10th and 11th grade students. I have also been a substitute teacher and camp counselor for ages 3-12. I am very passionate about working with children. I believe if you give children knowledge, it gives them the power to change the world. I am from Atlanta and love to eat Mexican food and write songs in my free time. I am so excited to get to know all of my students this year."

  • Morgan Jacobs, Preschool Pathways Teacher

    Morgan Jacobs

    Preschool Pathways Teacher

    Welcome! My name is Morgan Jacobs and I am so excited to meet you! I know this is going to be a great year for all of us to learn and grow together. I graduated from Albany State University with my associates degree in Early Childhood Education. My passion is to help children discover what they don't know. I have 10 years of experience working with children, starting as a teacher at my church’s summer camp. I also taught Ga Pre-K for 5 years and now I have the opportunity here at Primrose to explore so many fun things with all of you! . My goal is to not only provide educational guidance but to also provide a safe, healthy and fun envornment and help each child develop social and interpersonal skills. We are going to have a great year & I look forward to every minute of it!

  • Monica Lee, Admin Support

    Monica Lee

    Admin Support

    My name is Monica Lee. I am from Georgia, and I love to spend time of with my family and friends. This is my second year teaching at Primrose School of Druid Hills. I am currently pursuing my Masters Degree in counseling. I am ready to learn all there is to know about your family and child, and help them grow and thrive using the Balanced Learning curriculum. I am excited to be a part of the Druid Hills team!

  • Megan Lins, Infant Teacher

    Megan Lins

    Infant Teacher

    My name is Megan Lins, and I’m very excited to be a part of the Primrose family! I graduated from Kennesaw State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education and just moved back to the Atlanta area after spending a few years in Savannah. I have always loved working with children, especially infants, and between baby-sitting, helping in the nurseries at churches I have attended, and teaching, I have over 10 years of experience working with children of all ages. I can’t wait to care for and get to know you and your children.

  • Noorayni Mohammed, Preschool/ Pre-K Teacher

    Noorayni Mohammed

    Preschool/ Pre-K Teacher

    Hello! My name is Noorayni Mohammed, but you can call me Ms. Noora. I am from Eritrea, and I have been blessed with 3 beautiful children. I have more than 10 years experience in Early Childhood Education, and I love working with children. I am so excited to learn more and grow in the field of teaching. I am looking forward to getting to know your child and your family!

  • Lucy Ndukwe, Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

    Lucy Ndukwe

    Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

    My name is Lucy Ndukwe. I am married and blessed with two beautiful girls. I joined the Primrose family because I am a firm believer in how children learn through the Balanced Learning curriculum. I earned my degree in Early Childhood Education at Walden University in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I am currently working on my Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education. It warms my heart to see that children are provided with love, safety and nurturing care. I enjoy working with Pre-Kindergartners and watching them grow. I look forward to meeting you!

  • Caressa Pearce, Early Preschool Teacher

    Caressa Pearce

    Early Preschool Teacher

    I am currently a student at Georgia State University pursuing my degree in Early Childhood Education. I have been working with children for almost 10 years as a teacher and caregiver. While working in my church’s child care program, I gained a lot more love and compassion for teaching.

    I can’t wait to learn more about you and your family!

  • Cyerra Rhymes-Mitchell, Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

    Cyerra Rhymes-Mitchell

    Pre-Kindergarten Teacher
    Apple of Our Eye

    I am happy to be a part of the Primrose Druid Hills team! I’m excited to be apart of the Pre-K 1 classroom for the 2021-2022 school year. I’ll be serving as the assistant teacher alongside Ms.Lucy! I have worked with preschool children for 4 years and hold a bachelors degree in Educational Studies from Clark Atlanta University. I love teaching your Pre-K children the fundamentals that they will need to thrive in kindergarten and I can’t wait to build bonds with your family!

  • Zainab Sallah, Young Toddler Teacher

    Zainab Sallah

    Young Toddler Teacher
    My name is Zainab Sallah, but you can call me "Ms. Zay!" I have been working with children for over 3 years, and am currently pursuing my nursing degree from Georgia State University. I love to read and meet new people. I grew up here in Atlanta, and am looking forward to caring for your children and family.
  • Parker Simon, Early Preschool Teacher

    Parker Simon

    Early Preschool Teacher

    "I am Ms. Simon and I was born and raised in Atlanta. I am working towards a degree in Early Childhood Education at Kennesaw State University. I have worked with children in some capacity for almost 10 years. I love working with kids and I'm really excited about getting to know my new class at Primrose. In my free time I love to read, paint and watch movies."

  • Jana Smith, Preschool Teacher

    Jana Smith

    Preschool Teacher

    My name is Jana Smith, I grew up in the Atlanta metro area. I was introduced into early childhood through tutoring and volunteer activities. I am excited to teach and care for children in our preschool program. During my free time I enjoy listening to music, blogging, styling, and networking. My specialty to get children engaged for development is by learning, dancing and singing. My 5 year goal for my career is to be a director of a prestige Academy. Overall, I want to continue to grow as a professional and to be a great role model.

  • Louisa Smith, Young Toddler Teacher

    Louisa Smith

    Young Toddler Teacher
    Hello, my name is Louisa Smith. I have worked with children for several years. I am excited to learn the Balanced Learning curriculum, teach it to our young students, and see how they grow and thrive! I am currently enrolled in the Child Development Associate's program, and hope to graduate this year. I am excited to be a part of the Druid Hills team! I cannot wait to get to know you and your families.
  • Carolina Soto, Preschool Teacher

    Carolina Soto

    Preschool Teacher

    Hello, my name is Carolina Soto and I am the Preschool 2 lead teacher at Primrose of Druid Hills. was born and raised in Georgia, and my parents were born in Mexico. I have a younger brother and an older sister. I received my Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education from Georgia State University and will be graduating with my Bachelors Degree in the near future. During my spare time, I love to spend time with family and friends, go on road trips, attend concerts, and graphic design. It fascinates me to watch children grow and discover the world in their own way. I’m excited to be apart of the Primrose of Druid Hills team and I can’t wait to meet your family and help your child grow!

  • Tahisha Celestin, Assistant Teacher

    Tahisha Celestin

    Assistant Teacher

    My name is Tahisha Celestina graduate from Bethune-Cookman University. I graduated with my degree in Education. I wanted to pursue Education because of my passion for teaching young children. I am a creative spirit, hairstylist and I love to sing! I am excited to learn more about your families!

  • Jannah Mussa, Support Teacher

    Jannah Mussa

    Support Teacher
  • Samantha Richarson, Lead Teacher

    Samantha Richarson

    Lead Teacher

    Hi, my name is Samantha Richardson; but you can call me, Mrs. Sam. I come to Primrose School with 11 years of service with my CDA credentials having worked at military installations as a Child Youth Program Assistant during this time. I am happy to be a part of the Primrose family and to have the privilege to be a part of your child's learning experience.

  • Yesha Mckay, Infant Teacher

    Yesha Mckay

    Infant Teacher

    My name is Yesha McKay-Jackson, and I am a teacher at Primrose School of Druid Hills. Here’s a little about myself: I am originally from California, but Atlanta has been my home for almost 20 years now. I studied undergrad at Tuskegee University and California Baptist University earning my BA in English with an emphasis in Education. I've worked with children in some capacity my entire professional career. My experience ranges from teaching English at the high school level, to matching students with private tutors to prep for the SAT and ACT with Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions as the Pre College Director. I've been working specifically in Early Childhood Education for several years, most recently earning my CDA in Infant/Toddler. I love children and enjoy guilding them through their development. I look forward to fostering a positive and creative learning environment for the children here at Primrose Druid Hills. I know we will have a fun-filled school year together! I am excited to be a part of the Primrose Druid Hills family.

  • Jackie Bacchus, Assistant Teacher

    Jackie Bacchus

    Assistant Teacher
  • Laura and Paul Stechmesser, Franchise Owner

    Laura and Paul Stechmesser

    Franchise Owner

    Meet Laura and Paul Stechmesser — proud Franchise Owners of Primrose School of Druid Hills. As with everyone in the Primrose Schools family, the Stechmessers believe that who children become is as important as what they know. They are excited to bring the thoughtful curriculum and impressive character-building focus of the Balanced Learning® approach to the Druid Hills community.

    “When we had our first child, it was a challenge to find nurturing child care with an educational component in our neighborhood,” said Laura. “A friend of mine told me how well her children were doing at Primrose; not only were they excelling academically, but they were building life skills and good character as well. I knew that was exactly what we needed in the Druid Hills community.”

    A Clemson graduate and a University of Tennessee alum, Laura and Paul met in Atlanta and have been married for more than 10 years. They are incredibly proud of their three children: Lilly, Luke and the newest edition, Mary Hazel. Paul manages the Coca-Cola Studios design team at The Coca-Cola Company. Laura left a prosperous career in logistics and supply chain management to fulfill her dream of owning a Primrose school in her beloved community. Laura and Paul are long-time supporters of Blueprint 58, a community-based mentoring program that serves some of Atlanta’s most at-risk children in the Adair Park and Pittsburgh neighborhoods. They plan to increase their support of local charities serving Atlanta through Primrose Promise™, the charitable giving arm of Primrose Schools.

    “We love this community and are invested in helping children grow into future leaders,” said Laura. “Parents here genuinely value education, and Paul and I are confident that the high-quality, Balanced Learning curriculum at Primrose Schools is uniquely positioned to set up local children for future success in school and in life. When our children are equipped with the tools they need to thrive, the whole community benefits.”

    The school will feature the Balanced Learning curriculum in infant through Pre-Kindergarten classrooms and the Primrose Explorers after-school program for students up to age 10. All three of Laura and Paul’s children attend the school in the Primrose Explorers program and the Early Preschool program. Developed and taught exclusively at Primrose Schools, the research-informed curriculum blends purposeful play with nurturing guidance to develop curious, compassionate and creative individuals.

    “For our family, opening Primrose School of Druid Hills is a proud moment, and we’re excited to give back to a loving community that has given us so much,” said Laura. “We want to welcome parents, teachers, community members and students alike to our Primrose family!”

    Primrose School of Druid Hills is located at 2910 North Druid Hills Road.
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