Kathe grew up in State College, Pa. and received a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Penn State in 1979. Kathe also completed Early Childhood related coursework at the master’s level from the University of Virginia and James Madison University.
P.J. received her certification in Early Education from Piedmont Virginia Community College and has recently completed her CDA (Child Development Associate). After high school, P. J. worked for Greene County Primary School as a Teacher’s Assistant in 2nd grade for 2 years before opening a successful home child care center in Greene County for 7 years.
P.J. has had extensive training in administration and management including customer service, bookkeeping, early childhood best practices and HR policies.
Molly Petchel grew up in Bright Beginnings as her mom, Kathe, founded Bright Beginnings. Molly attended Bright Beginnings as a preschooler and graduated from St. Anne’s Belfield School in 2008. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in the History of Art from Sweet Briar College in 2012. Molly has worked at Bright Beginnings since high school when she worked as an assistant teacher. Molly is currently our Jill of all Trades! She works as our website developer, Collaborates with Sareena Ryan on our marketing and is managing the social media communications!
Sareena earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Studies and Publications from Longwood University. She has worked in multiple school settings before but now comes to us assisting in marketing and admissions as well as being a mommy of a 3 year old at our Forest Lakes school. Sareena has a background in marketing and a passion for customer service which makes her a perfect fit for our family friendly culture.
Kelly Landes, LCSW, brings many years of professional experience to Bright Beginnings as part of the Human Resources team, specifically leading onboarding for new staff. This includes conducting interviews of potential faculty members, assisting with teacher and staff placements, conducting initial onboarding training and orientation and regular mentoring sessions to ensure each new staff member feel support as they join Bright Beginnings. She also hosts monthly “Lunch and Learn” trainings for staff which includes facilitating a Book Club for staff encouraging our core value of continually learning. She is our resident ‘Fairy Godmother’ often surprising staff with treats, yummy soup and salad lunches or fresh Duck Donuts!
In addition to her work at Bright Beginnings, Kelly maintains a busy family and adolescent therapy practice.
Besides, her staff responsibilities, Kelly regularly visits each school spending time in the classrooms, on site training and assisting with customer service by modeling our best early childhood pre school and day care practices.
Adding Kelly to the team exemplifies Bright Beginnings commitment to building and maintaining the strongest and most capable team of teachers, assistants, directors and managers possible to serve you!
Kelly graduated from the University of Virginia in 1992 with a degree in Rhetoric and Communications and Sociology and from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1994 with a Master’s of Social Work (MSW). Kelly is an LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker) and a certified Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). The MBTI instrument is the most trusted and widely used personality instrument used in the world. At Bright Beginnings we utilize several general personality and work ethic assessments aiming to ensure a solid match between staff member and our preschool.