Teacher Profiles

Teacher Profiles

The education and care of young children demand a high level of personal and professional integrity and enthusiasm. Our teachers have diplomas in Early Childhood Education (ECE) or are working toward this goal. ECE teachers are registered with the College of Early Childhood Educators. Having ECE’s in the program ensures that its graduates learn about the social, cognitive, emotional, physical, and creative needs of children aged twelve and under, and have the skills and knowledge necessary for planning and carrying out programming that optimizes individual development for infant, toddler, preschool, and school-aged children.

These teachers have knowledge about how to:

  • Provide a physically safe, mentally healthy, and intellectually stimulating environment for children five and under by understanding psychological, sociological, and developmental theories and principles
  • Observe and interpret children’s developmental levels and reactions to situations by assessing and analyzing children’s behaviour
  • Implement a flexible curriculum that meets the needs of individual children within the group, as well as implement a combination of the children’s ideas along with those taught in the curriculum so that children can expand their learning
  • Communicate positively and purposefully with children, parents, and other adults in the preschool setting

Celina Whitehead (Lengacher), R.E.C.E., D.S.W.

Celina is a veteran BCCNS teacher with a keen sense of child development and love for all children. Celina brings her wisdom and experience to all of our programs. She is always up for a new challenge and loves to bring new programming ideas wherever she goes. Celina is dedicated to providing a warm, stimulating, and welcoming learning environment for each individual student. We are privileged to have Celina call BCCNS home.


Janis Leney, BA,  R.E.C.E.

Janis brings many years of Early Learning experience and knowledge from her time in a full-day lab school environment where the focus on Early Childhood Education and student learning came a close second to the experiences, investigations, and play of the children. In the last few years of being here at BCCNS, Janis has continued to practice her skills, learn more about the preschool environment, and continue her own learning and growth as an RECE. We love having Janis as part of the teaching team because it is so obvious that she loves the children and the children love having her as their teacher.


Jannin Legault, R.E.C.E.

Jannin joined BCCNS as a supply teacher and she enjoyed working with us so much she stayed with us Jannin has worked with children for as long as she can remember.  She taught swimming lessons and then dance classes for 16 years. She has worked in licenced daycares and nursery schools in Ottawa, with the last 6 years before joining BCCNS spent as an ECE in Kindergarten classes with the Ottawa School Board.  As well as having an ECE Diploma, she has a diploma as a Child and Youth Worker. Jannin knows the value of early education and is dedicated to encouraging your children to find excitement in learning.  Jannin finds joy in opening up the possibilities and potentials in young lives. She looks forward to exploring and growing with your children and the amazing team here at BCCNS.  


Jaya Valentino BELCD, R.E.C.E.

Jaya was a placement student with us as one of the first group of educators to graduate from Algonquin’s BELCD program. Jaya has a true love for educating young children. She brings a reflective, creative, gentle, fun-loving approach to teaching her young students. We are delighted to have her join our team.


Jen Hoyt, Program Assistant

Jen has many years of experience working with children, at different ages and stages and she brings an array of fun and excitement. In her spare time Jen is mother of two boys she enjoys downhill skiing, tennis, biking, and spending time together as a family. Jen enjoys interacting with children, watching, being creative and experimenting with new things. She has a warm caring and patient personality which she brings to each child as they explore, discover, learn and grow.


Karen Knox, R.E.C.E.

Karen has had her RECE accreditation since 1993 and brings a wealth of experience working in a preschool setting. Her enthusiastic personality and exuberant sense of humour is a welcomed addition to our programs. Karen can often be heard playing her ukulele during circle time (or at any time, for that matter). Karen loves to share her enthusiasm for all things superhero and loves to share French and Sign Language with all our friends. We are very proud to have Karen as part of the BCCNS teaching team. 


Louise Huskisson, R.E.C.E.

Louise is a warm, nurturing educator with many years of teaching experience. Early learning and development hold an especially dear place for her due to their importance to children’s lifelong learning, health and well-being. Louise is attuned to each child’s gifts, strengths, interests and needs. She is an inquisitive, inclusive educator with a passion for active, nature- and inquiry-based play, exploration and learning. Louise is quick to notice and name children’s learning. She enjoys documenting this learning in order to stimulate reflection and conversation between the children, families and educators. Louise values establishing strong connections with the children’s families. She shares fully in the joy, laughter, creativity and wonder that each day at BCCNS brings.


Rhonda Ferguson, E.C.E. in progress 

Rhonda has been a treasured member of the BCCNS staff since 2011. Her enthusiasm, energy, fun-loving attitude, and genuine interest in both the children and their families have made her special to all her students. Rhonda is gifted at interacting and playing with children while supporting their desire to learn and explore their environment. She brings warmth and a positive attitude to teaching independent skills and the routines at preschool, not to mention some fabulous Music and Movement classes. We are so pleased to have Rhonda as part of the teaching team here at BCCNS


Rohini Visvanatha, Program Assistant

Ro is new to both BCCNS and Ottawa and we are delighted she found her way to our team. She brings with her tremendous patience and  a true love of early learning. Ro is able to help foster the best in all her students. She is calm, caring and adaptable and inclusive. We are so pleased she has chosen to be part of our classroom this year.  


Svetlana Fee, BA, R.E.C.E.

Svetlana joined the BCCNS team as a student while working on her RECE designation several years ago and has been a valued member of the team ever since! She has worked in all our other programs in past years and brings with her fresh ideas, creative approaches, and a passion for working in the early learning field. Svetlana’s enthusiasm and caring demeanour have children naturally gravitating towards her. She has an innate sense of what all children need, and we are very proud to have her as part of our teaching team here at BCCNS.