How Things Work at MCWS

MCWS is administered by its faculty, administrative staff, and Board of Directors. The faculty is responsible for pedagogical decisions and is supported by the administrative staff in the day-to-day life of the school. The Board carries fiscal, legal, and risk management responsibility for the school, and works closely on long term planning with the faculty, administration, and parents who serve on various committees.

All full-time faculty and staff meet weekly to study, address the practical details of school life and to share the insights, joys and challenges arising from their work with students. After their first year of teaching, faculty and staff are asked to serve on committees that support and enhance the work of the school.

Leadership Council

Leadership Council consists of the Pedagogical Director, the Business Director or Operations Manager, the College Chair and representatives from school branches (faculty representatives from early childhood, grades and high school). It provides a nexus of communication among the decision-making bodies within the school. Under the mandate of the College of Teachers, Leadership Council has the authority to make decisions for the school on employment related issues, development of the operation budget and on time-sensitive or confidential issues.

  • Caitlin Pow
    Caitlin PowEighth Grade Teacher
    Caitlin Pow

    Caitlin Pow

    Eighth Grade Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2014
    BA, Anthropology, University of Massachusetts Amherst; BA, Spanish, University of Massachusetts Amherst; M.Ed & Waldorf Teaching Certificate, Antioch University New England

    Caitlin grew up in the beautiful Berkshire Hills of Western Massachusetts. After completing her undergraduate degrees at UMass Amherst, where she studied anthropology and Spanish, she was lucky enough to be hired at a nearby Waldorf school as an assistant. Inspired by her work, she went on to complete a M.Ed and Waldorf teacher training through Antioch University in Keene, NH. When not with her students, Caitlin can be found gardening, knitting, sewing, and walking her dog.

  • Chloe Dowley
    Chloe DowleyEarly Childhood Teacher, EC Faculty Chair
    Chloe Dowley

    Chloe Dowley

    Early Childhood Teacher, EC Faculty Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2016
    BA, Education & Sociology, Swarthmore College

    Chloe is a recent transplant to Freeport from the rural coast of Maine, where she spent a decade raising two children, farming, gardening, organizing mothers' support groups, coaching youth sports, volunteering at local schools and non-profits, and teaching Spanish and English to individuals of all ages. She is delighted to be joining a community working together to nourish and nurture children. Chloe enjoys practicing yoga, walking the neighborhood dogs, cycling, running, gardening, playing with her family, and travel, especially to Spanish-speaking countries.

  • David Barham
    David BarhamHigh School Humanities, HS Faculty Chair
    David Barham

    David Barham

    High School Humanities, HS Faculty Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2008
    BA, English & Religion, Tufts University; MEd, Waldorf Teacher Certification, NH State Teacher Certification, Antioch University New England

    David discovered the teachings of Rudolf Steiner and Anthroposophy through work as a Biodynamic farmer in California. His desire was to change the world and he felt that first Biodynamic agriculture and later life in Camphill Village and in Waldorf Education was the way to marry his professional, political and spiritual life. David loves to sing and play music as well as being outdoors, reading fantastic books and spending as much time as possible with his family. He still believes in the power of Waldorf education to change the world!

  • David Eichler
    David EichlerPedagogical Director
    David Eichler

    David Eichler

    Pedagogical Director

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2017
    BA, Psychology & Human Development, MA, Human Development and Family Life, University of Kansas; MAT, Special Education, Pittsburg State University; Education Support Program Certificate, Extra Lesson, Association for a Healing Education

    David and his wife, Monika, moved their family from Kansas to Maine in 2016 so their daughters could attend Maine Coast Waldorf School. Co-founding a Waldorf school in Kansas in 2001 was David’s introduction into Waldorf education. He was an active member of the Board of Trustees and faculty during his time involved with that school, Prairie Moon Waldorf School. David has worked as a Behavior Analyst for the last 30 years, the last 20 of which he provided technical assistance to public and private schools across Kansas at the levels of the individual student, classroom, building , district, and state. David has been an amateur magician for many decades and, when he is not at school, is likely exploring the beauty of Maine.

     

     

  • Joshua Lytle
    Joshua LytleHigh School Humanities, College Chair
    Joshua Lytle

    Joshua Lytle

    High School Humanities, College Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2019
    BA, English and Philosophy, Hobart and William Smith Colleges; Waldorf High School Teacher Training Certification, English and History, Center for Anthroposophy

    Joshua was born and raised in Saratoga Springs, NY at the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. After college he spent three years teaching English in Japan, and has taught high school humanities in Waldorf high schools for 18 years (Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs, and most recently Shining Mountain Waldorf School in Boulder, Colorado). In his free time he loves being with his family (wife, Kim and daughter, Forest) in the outdoors, reading, writing, and carpentry. He comes to Maine Coast Waldorf School with a passion for seeking out truth and meaning in life and the world with his students.

  • Marta Rackmales
    Marta RackmalesMiddle School Math Teacher, Math Support, Grades 1-8 Faculty Co-Chair
    Marta Rackmales

    Marta Rackmales

    Middle School Math Teacher, Math Support, Grades 1-8 Faculty Co-Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2009
    BA, Religion, Hamilton College; MEd, Elementary Education, Sunbridge College

    Marta grew up on Cape Cod where her family ran a fish market; she shared the work of filleting and preparing seafoods from an early age. It was on a hilltop in Avignon (following a semester in Stockholm) that she learned of Waldorf education from her travel-mate. She began teaching in Washington, D.C., where she met her husband and enjoyed 10 years of city life. They ventured up to Maine where Marta taught in the Bath Public Schools. Marta and Tom grew their family by adoption; experiencing their children's birth cultures of Kazakhstan and Ethiopia and raising these two wonderful children has broadened their world infinitely. Marta continues to love the ocean, her family, and her two sweet cats.

  • Melissa Watson
    Melissa WatsonOperations Manager
    Melissa Watson

    Melissa Watson

    Operations Manager

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2019
    Certificate, Administration with Spirit, Waldorf Administration Program, Rudolf Steiner College; MFA, Painting, Queens College, CUNY

    Melissa and her family moved to Maine in 2019 so that their son could continue his Waldorf education through high school. The couple discovered Waldorf education at Prairie Moon Waldorf School in Lawrence, Kansas, where their son attended from Parent/Child Class through 8th grade. Melissa joined the board and then served as Administrative Director for 10 years.

    Serving in leadership alongside faculty and parents, Melissa found her calling in supporting the adult community—in turn supporting the student and world communities. Organizational dynamics is a topic she never tires of.

    Outside of her work at the school, Melissa enjoys any form of puzzle or brain teaser as well as knitting and weaving. Escape rooms and yarn stores are her happy places.

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is responsible for the legal and fiscal health of the school and draws its members from parents, faculty and friends of the school. The Board partners with the College of Teachers, faculty, and staff in setting budgets and managing the school’s financial health, addressing legal matters, and designing long-range plans. Board members chair Finance, Campus Planning, Communications/Marketing, Compensations and Benefits, Nominations, and Development Committees.

Tay Veitch, Board President
Frank Chessa, Vice President
Derek Blackburn, Treasurer
Jeannie Mattson, Development Committee Chair
Mary Bloch, Climate Action Committee Chair
Karl Schatz, Equity and Inclusion (CEI) Chair
Caitlin Pow, Voting Faculty Member
Chloe Dowley, Voting Faculty Member
David Barham, Voting Faculty Member
Joshua Lytle, Voting Faculty Member
Dan Walker, Risk Management Committee Chair
Kari Guddeck, Co-Chair, Parent Association
Justin Cochoran
Phoebe Dolan
John Manganello
Lisa Lukis

Executive Governance Committee (EGC)

The Executive Governance Committee meets every month to ensure that the school’s goals are being supported. This group is made up of the four board officers, the Pedagogical Director, the Business Director and faculty Branch Chairs. The EGC sets priorities for the board agenda and integrates and informs the work of faculty and administration, with the work of the board.

The Executive Governances Committee includes everyone listed above in Leadership Council plus: 

Tay Veitch, President of the Board of Directors, Chair of EGC
Frank Chessa, Vice-President of the Board of Directors
Derek Blackburn, Treasurer of the Board of Directors

College of Teachers

The College of Teachers is the vessel for the spiritual life, health, and long-term visioning of the school. Through weekly study and discussion, College members identify common values and goals, make pedagogical mission-driven decisions regarding the school and provide strength for the school’s philosophical foundation. The College is specifically involved in affirming decisions regarding faculty and staff, giving final affirmation for changes in the curriculum. The College holds the mandates for Leadership Council and The Teacher Development Committee.
Chair: Joshua Lytle

  • Caitlin Pow
    Caitlin PowEighth Grade Teacher
    Caitlin Pow

    Caitlin Pow

    Eighth Grade Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2014
    BA, Anthropology, University of Massachusetts Amherst; BA, Spanish, University of Massachusetts Amherst; M.Ed & Waldorf Teaching Certificate, Antioch University New England

    Caitlin grew up in the beautiful Berkshire Hills of Western Massachusetts. After completing her undergraduate degrees at UMass Amherst, where she studied anthropology and Spanish, she was lucky enough to be hired at a nearby Waldorf school as an assistant. Inspired by her work, she went on to complete a M.Ed and Waldorf teacher training through Antioch University in Keene, NH. When not with her students, Caitlin can be found gardening, knitting, sewing, and walking her dog.

  • Chloe Dowley
    Chloe DowleyEarly Childhood Teacher, EC Faculty Chair
    Chloe Dowley

    Chloe Dowley

    Early Childhood Teacher, EC Faculty Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2016
    BA, Education & Sociology, Swarthmore College

    Chloe is a recent transplant to Freeport from the rural coast of Maine, where she spent a decade raising two children, farming, gardening, organizing mothers' support groups, coaching youth sports, volunteering at local schools and non-profits, and teaching Spanish and English to individuals of all ages. She is delighted to be joining a community working together to nourish and nurture children. Chloe enjoys practicing yoga, walking the neighborhood dogs, cycling, running, gardening, playing with her family, and travel, especially to Spanish-speaking countries.

  • David Barham
    David BarhamHigh School Humanities, HS Faculty Chair
    David Barham

    David Barham

    High School Humanities, HS Faculty Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2008
    BA, English & Religion, Tufts University; MEd, Waldorf Teacher Certification, NH State Teacher Certification, Antioch University New England

    David discovered the teachings of Rudolf Steiner and Anthroposophy through work as a Biodynamic farmer in California. His desire was to change the world and he felt that first Biodynamic agriculture and later life in Camphill Village and in Waldorf Education was the way to marry his professional, political and spiritual life. David loves to sing and play music as well as being outdoors, reading fantastic books and spending as much time as possible with his family. He still believes in the power of Waldorf education to change the world!

  • David Eichler
    David EichlerPedagogical Director
    David Eichler

    David Eichler

    Pedagogical Director

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2017
    BA, Psychology & Human Development, MA, Human Development and Family Life, University of Kansas; MAT, Special Education, Pittsburg State University; Education Support Program Certificate, Extra Lesson, Association for a Healing Education

    David and his wife, Monika, moved their family from Kansas to Maine in 2016 so their daughters could attend Maine Coast Waldorf School. Co-founding a Waldorf school in Kansas in 2001 was David’s introduction into Waldorf education. He was an active member of the Board of Trustees and faculty during his time involved with that school, Prairie Moon Waldorf School. David has worked as a Behavior Analyst for the last 30 years, the last 20 of which he provided technical assistance to public and private schools across Kansas at the levels of the individual student, classroom, building , district, and state. David has been an amateur magician for many decades and, when he is not at school, is likely exploring the beauty of Maine.

     

     

  • Ezra Smith
    Ezra SmithWoodworking, Physics
    Ezra Smith

    Ezra Smith

    Woodworking, Physics

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2016
    BA, Physics, Earlham College; MAT, Math and Physics, Earlham College

    Ezra grew up at the Himalayan Institute, a yoga ashram in Northeastern Pennsylvania in the company of people dedicated to spiritual striving. This inspired him to focus his life on learning and improvement. He relishes designing authentic learning experiences for his students. Ezra is from a Quaker background and welcomes challenging questions. He loves most things, specifically math, science, woodworking, and wildcrafting.

  • Jeffrey O’Brien
    Jeffrey O’BrienHigh School Math and Science
    Jeffrey O’Brien

    Jeffrey O’Brien

    High School Math and Science

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2007
    BA, Mathematics, Colby College;, M.Ed, Antioch University New England; Waldorf High School Teacher Certification, Center for Anthroposophy

    Jeff grew up six miles south of Freeport in Yarmouth. Jeff has been teaching high school math and science since 1987. He is a founding faculty member of MCWS's high school and has been teaching math and phenomenological science since its inception. Prior to that he taught at North Yarmouth Academy, The Academy at Charlemont, Northfield Mount Hermon School, and The White Mountain School. He also plays bass and sings in an adult "garage band". At one time he was a fly fishing guide in Montana.

  • Jill Fox
    Jill FoxThird Grade Teacher
    Jill Fox

    Jill Fox

    Third Grade Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 1994
    BA, History, Carleton College; MEd, Antioch University New England; Spacial Dynamics® Institute - Level I

    Jill grew up in a family that loved traveling and hiking. A year spent in Switzerland, just before college, brought fluency in French and her first experiences working on organic farms. Her work as a naturalist exploring the redwood forests with children led her to Waldorf education. Long stretches in the wilderness—canoe trips in Labrador and the Boundary Waters, backpacking trips in the Wind Rivers and Cascades—as well as travel in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Central America continue to give her perspective and inspire her love of teaching. When she is home, she spends as much time as she can outdoors.

  • Johanna Flath
    Johanna FlathHigh School Art
    Johanna Flath

    Johanna Flath

    High School Art

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2010
    BFA, Rhode Island School of Design

    Johanna grew up on the island of Bermuda and had an active and creative childhood. She moved to Maine in 2001, along with her husband, to restore a 225 year old house, a place to live out their artistic ambitions. She has shared her joy of painting with children and adults for over a decade, teaching in many different private schools and institutions, both in Maine and Bermuda. She loves working with the high school students at Maine Coast Waldorf School, inspiring them to look deeper into the beauty of the natural world. She feels passionately that art-making is a vital skill of communication and self-expression for young people. She has two young children of her own and spends her time with her family cooking, playing, painting and in nature as much as possible.

  • Joshua Lytle
    Joshua LytleHigh School Humanities, College Chair
    Joshua Lytle

    Joshua Lytle

    High School Humanities, College Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2019
    BA, English and Philosophy, Hobart and William Smith Colleges; Waldorf High School Teacher Training Certification, English and History, Center for Anthroposophy

    Joshua was born and raised in Saratoga Springs, NY at the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. After college he spent three years teaching English in Japan, and has taught high school humanities in Waldorf high schools for 18 years (Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs, and most recently Shining Mountain Waldorf School in Boulder, Colorado). In his free time he loves being with his family (wife, Kim and daughter, Forest) in the outdoors, reading, writing, and carpentry. He comes to Maine Coast Waldorf School with a passion for seeking out truth and meaning in life and the world with his students.

  • Lauren Kerr
    Lauren KerrFourth Grade Teacher
    Lauren Kerr

    Lauren Kerr

    Fourth Grade Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2020

    Lauren Kerr was raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she was a student for six years at the Rudolf Steiner School of Ann Arbor. She studied elementary education at University, and in her early professional life worked in the public schools of Ann Arbor and Chicago. She attended the Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, California, and then took a class from first to eighth grade at the Bright Water Waldorf School in Seattle. After graduating her class, Lauren traveled internationally for a year, and then moved to Madrid, Spain, where she taught English at the Escuela Waldorf de Aravaca. 

    In addition to traveling, Lauren loves to hike, bike, and relax with a nice cup of tea and a good book. She has enjoyed exploring Maine and discovering the natural wonders of this beautiful state.

     

  • Lynn Thurrell
    Lynn ThurrellMiddle School Support Teacher
    Lynn Thurrell

    Lynn Thurrell

    Middle School Support Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 1991
    BS, Education, English, Keuka College; MEd & Waldorf Teaching Certificate, Antioch University New England

    When plucked suddenly from her complacent New England habitat in early adolescence and immersed in the warp and weft of life in South Africa, Lynn's eyes and interests were opened to a very different world perspective. Though primed for the adventure by her father's stories from annual sojourns to the Far East, experience proved the more immediate educator. After graduating from high school in Hong Kong, she once again became a mostly settled, slightly restless New Englander. It was on meeting Waldorf Education that she found a reflection of her early experiences in the exploration of the world's cultures as they unfold in the elementary curriculum. Besides her continuing fascination with indigenous peoples everywhere, she brings her love of the arts, a pleasure in the world of nature, and an enthusiasm for creating with her hands into her classroom.

  • Lynn Wetterhorn
    Lynn WetterhornKindergarten Teacher
    Lynn Wetterhorn

    Lynn Wetterhorn

    Kindergarten Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2014
    BS, Plant and Soil Science, University of Vermont; MEd, Antioch University New England; Waldorf Certification in Early Childhood

    Lynn has worked in both Waldorf and non-Waldorf schools for the past 20 years where she taught Parent-Child Classes, Young Nursery, Nursery, Kindergarten and Handwork. She has also worked as a parent educator for families with young children. Her enthusiastic love of gardening and the outdoors permeates her work with children. She and her husband built and restored houses, raised sheep and chickens, and enjoyed outdoor activities while raising their two children in southwestern New Hampshire. They are happy to now be living near the ocean and are restoring yet another home. In her spare time, Lynn enjoys weaving, knitting, cooking, hiking, and kayaking.

  • Margaret Samuelson
    Margaret SamuelsonSeventh Grade Teacher
    Margaret Samuelson

    Margaret Samuelson

    Seventh Grade Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2013
    BA, Classics, Bowdoin College; MEd, Antioch University New England

    Margaret found her way to Maine by way of Cincinnati, Ohio, to attend Bowdoin College. While there, she studied Latin and Greek, and met a great guy, upon graduation married him, and has been in New England ever since. She is still not so sure about the cold, cold winters, but she does love the Maine summers, and the gorgeous landscape of the Maine coastline. When she and her family spent a year abroad in Australia, she found her way to Waldorf education there as well, and it was in Melbourne, Australia that she began her studies to become a Waldorf teacher. She finished her M.Ed with a specialty in Waldorf Teaching when she returned to the United States. Margaret began with her current class in first grade in the Fall of 2013.

  • Marta Rackmales
    Marta RackmalesMiddle School Math Teacher, Math Support, Grades 1-8 Faculty Co-Chair
    Marta Rackmales

    Marta Rackmales

    Middle School Math Teacher, Math Support, Grades 1-8 Faculty Co-Chair

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2009
    BA, Religion, Hamilton College; MEd, Elementary Education, Sunbridge College

    Marta grew up on Cape Cod where her family ran a fish market; she shared the work of filleting and preparing seafoods from an early age. It was on a hilltop in Avignon (following a semester in Stockholm) that she learned of Waldorf education from her travel-mate. She began teaching in Washington, D.C., where she met her husband and enjoyed 10 years of city life. They ventured up to Maine where Marta taught in the Bath Public Schools. Marta and Tom grew their family by adoption; experiencing their children's birth cultures of Kazakhstan and Ethiopia and raising these two wonderful children has broadened their world infinitely. Marta continues to love the ocean, her family, and her two sweet cats.

  • Melissa Watson
    Melissa WatsonOperations Manager
    Melissa Watson

    Melissa Watson

    Operations Manager

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2019
    Certificate, Administration with Spirit, Waldorf Administration Program, Rudolf Steiner College; MFA, Painting, Queens College, CUNY

    Melissa and her family moved to Maine in 2019 so that their son could continue his Waldorf education through high school. The couple discovered Waldorf education at Prairie Moon Waldorf School in Lawrence, Kansas, where their son attended from Parent/Child Class through 8th grade. Melissa joined the board and then served as Administrative Director for 10 years.

    Serving in leadership alongside faculty and parents, Melissa found her calling in supporting the adult community—in turn supporting the student and world communities. Organizational dynamics is a topic she never tires of.

    Outside of her work at the school, Melissa enjoys any form of puzzle or brain teaser as well as knitting and weaving. Escape rooms and yarn stores are her happy places.

  • Michael Fenderson
    Michael FendersonFrench Teacher, EC - Grade 8
    Michael Fenderson

    Michael Fenderson

    French Teacher, EC - Grade 8

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 1998
    BA, International Affairs/Political Science and French, University of Maine; MA, French Literature, University of Massachusetts

    A love of travel and adventures abroad, beginning with a high school exchange to Brazil led Michael to study and then teach both French and Spanish. He has enjoyed living and teaching in France and leading student trips to Central America and Quebec; experiences which have inspired a strong passion for world cultures that he brings to his students in stories, songs, and games. His favorite pastimes include spending time with family and friends, working outdoors building and landscaping, playing guitar, and singing songs late into the night.

  • Nancy Goldberg
    Nancy GoldbergHigh School Humanities Teacher
    Nancy Goldberg

    Nancy Goldberg

    High School Humanities Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2018
    B.A., English, Colby College; M.A., English, Boston College; M.S., Education, University of Southern Maine; Waldorf High School Certification, Center for Anthroposophy

    A coin toss landed Nancy in Portland after graduate school, and she has called Maine home ever since.  After teaching at the college level for five years, Nancy decided she wanted to teach adolescents and started teaching in public high schools.  Nancy and her husband discovered Maine Coast Waldorf School when they were searching for a nursery program for their daughters eighteen years ago. Foundation Studies deepened Nancy’s understanding of Waldorf education and prepared her for Waldorf high school teacher training. Nancy enjoys helping bring plays to life, inspiring students to appreciate literature and transforming their thoughts to the written word. She loves spending time with her family, reading novels, writing poetry, and immersing herself in nature.

  • Suzie Peirson
    Suzie PeirsonHandwork Teacher
    Suzie Peirson

    Suzie Peirson

    Handwork Teacher

    Joined Maine Coast Waldorf School in 2004
    BA, Elementary Education, Ohio Wesleyan University; Waldorf Teacher Training, Antioch University New England

    Suzie is a native New Englander who knew from a very young age that she wanted to be a teacher.  During her first career, Suzie had a wide range of experience in the hospitality industry. She discovered a way to nurture her love of the outdoors by shifting from the sales department of the Four Seasons Hotel in Boston, to a management position supporting the back country huts for the Appalachian Mountain Club in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.  Marriage and motherhood brought Suzie to Maine, where her family grew to four children and many pets. Suzie readily admits her current career direction was inspired by the experiences of her four children, all educated at Maine Coast Waldorf School, from the early childhood program onward. Her own Waldorf faculty experience includes time as a volunteer, full time handwork instructor and classroom teacher.  Suzie loves to knit, swim and spend time with her family.