Our School Leaders

P.L. de Avila

Head of School

“I believe in Stratford’s emphasis on not only academics, but the importance of character development and community spirit.”

P.L. de Avila joins Stratford School Mission Viejo as the Head of School through our partnership with Carden Academy. P.L. has been the Director of Carden Academy in Mission Viejo since 2000.

P.L. believes this partnership will allow our students and staff opportunities that we have not yet been able to provide.

She feels that Stratford and Carden Academy are closely matched in philosophy, not just in curriculum, but in the importance placed on character development and community spirit.


Shellie Collins

Director of Upper School

“I have a passion for learning.”

Shellie Collins joins Stratford School Mission Viejo through our partnership with Carden Academy. She believes in an educational foundation where curriculum and character are equally emphasized. She knows the importance of developing the whole child. In her role as curriculum director at Carden, she mentored numerous new and experienced teachers in an encouraging and supportive way that empowers them to believe in their ability and potential growth. Her open-door policy and ready smile make her an accessible resource for the entire staff.

As Assistant Director, Shellie supports the Director in all aspects of running the school and is acting Director in her absence. In this role, by creating meaningful student and parent relationships, Shellie continues to honor her love of family and children that started when she, as a young girl, recognized this is the key to a healthy and happy development.


Cheryl Molenkamp

Director of Lower School

“A great school experience can change the trajectory of a child’s life.”

Cheryl Molenkamp has over 20 years of experience in the field of education. Before taking on her current role as the Director of the Lower School at our new Mission Viejo campus, Cheryl was a teacher, principal, and regional director.

Cheryl knows how important it is for each child to have a teacher who truly believes in them, one who tells them how amazing they are and recognizes what special gift they can bring to the world.

Cheryl feels honored to be part of opening a new Stratford campus where we can help each child find his or her own success!


Our Faculty

Sarah Asay

6th Grade Teacher

Pooja Basrur

Kindergarten Teacher

Alexis Belify

2nd Grade Teacher

Jessica Collins

Kindergarten Teacher

Maithy Dokovic

8th Grade Teacher

Sanida Dokovic

2nd Grade Teacher

Natalie Ferreira

Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

Davis Hill

7th Grade Teacher

Christie Hobson

5th Grade Teacher

Ted Mansour

PE Teacher

Schehera McKasson

Music Teacher

Lesley Mills

3rd Grade Teacher

Izabela Mrowka

Preschool Teacher

Stephanie Nardelli

1st Grade Teacher

Ashley Ruiz

Preschool Spanish Teacher

Alexander Schantz-Bekken

Computer Teacher

Kia Smallcomb

4th Grade Teacher

Angela Truong

1st Grade Teacher