top of page

OUR STAFF

Our early childhood program is led by our Director and inspired through collaboration between our teachers.

Professional, dedicated, and loving—these words speak volumes about the team at Burbank Jewish Preschool. Equipped with years of study and professional experience, our staff strives continuously to respond to the individual needs of each child and offer cutting-edge methodology in education.

In order to uphold the high standards of our program, staff meetings and constant development are ongoing throughout the year. This ensures that our teachers remain alert to the ever-changing needs of today's families and to the findings of current research.

 

Our coordinated curriculum has both English and Hebrew, which leads to a high level of academic rigor and an opportunity for interdisciplinary learning that is engaging and meaningful. Current research shows that second language acquisition is highly beneficial to the development of brain functions and cognitive skills.

 

Our teachers are an unusually dedicated group of professionals whose level of commitment to each child does not stop at the classroom door, and whose commitment to early childhood education is truly an avocation. As a result, they bring to their jobs a unique and special blend of professional skills and personal experience.

Rabbi Shmuly Kornfeld

Administrator

I grew up in Seattle, Washington where my father is a leading Rabbi of the Jewish community and serves as the Educational Director of Chabad of Greater Seattle. Growing up in the warm and giving environment of Chabad outreach profoundly affected my dreams and goals.  I attended school in Detroit and at the educational institute Oholei Torah in Brooklyn, NY.  I served as a mentor to students in Kfar Chabad, Israel, worked in several day and overnight camps and headed the learning department in Camp Gan Israel, Montreal.  I visited many cities in the United States, but my favorite travel experience was a summer spent in Ireland, where I was able to provide educational programs and holiday events benefiting the Jewish community there. I studied for my Rabbinical Degree at the Rabbinical College of America, and received it in 1997.

Elana and I married in 1998, and just six months later we opened Chabad of Burbank.  We started out small, in our home, grew into a storefront, and approximately six years ago, bought the building we are currently in, with dreams of the future.  Walking into Chabad daily, gives me personal pleasure, because it serves as a multi-purpose institution for adults and children alike.  All are welcome to our Chabad, and I feel blessed to be able to do what I love—to teach and inspire others, and hopefully add in acts of goodness and kindness into this world, making it a better place for all.

00214.JPG

Elana Kornfeld

Director

From a very young age, I always knew I wanted to work with children.  My father is a Cardiologist/Nephrologist and my mother has her PhD in Art Therapy and Counseling.  My parents brought us up in a loving home, with good values and a strong work ethic.  I met my husband, Rabbi Shmuly, in 1997 and we married in 1998. We moved to Burbank just six months later, as soon as I finished college, and opened the Chabad Burbank Jewish Center. We have eight children, and we work together as a family. I can honestly speak on their behalf to say that we all feel blessed to be a part of such a special community. 

 

I originally got my Degree in Speech & Language Pathology & Communication Disorders, interning with special needs children.  I loved playing with them and seeing their wonder and excitement for the world around them.  I slowly transitioned into general education have been involved with teaching children of various ages for the last 14 years.  I found my calling when we opened  Burbank Jewish Preschool.  Together with our wonderful staff, families and children, we have created a school where each child is cherished and loved. I absolutely love coming to school every day (with some of my own children), and it is truly an honor being able to participate and watch the children in our school grow and flourish.

shayna.jpg

Shayna Perlman

Office Administrator

My name is Shayna Perlman, and my journey has been woven with a love for family, a passion for children, and a commitment to community. Growing up as the oldest girl in a large household, my affection for nurturing and caring for others was cultivated early on.

As a teenager, I was the go-to babysitter for my younger siblings. I received my bachelor's in psychology, focusing on communication disorders.

 

When I'm home, you'll find me experimenting  healthy recipes. I also love exploring new cities. My husband, family and freinds are everything to me.

 

I'm honored to be Office Administrator at Chabad of Burbank. I get to work with the Burbank community, the same place I grew up. It's like working with one big extended family.

Herman_Stacy_P1_S4S5ZQQU.jpg

Morah Stacy

My name is Stacy Herman and I am so excited to be teaching in BJP! I have been working in Burbank Jewish Preschool since 2010 and I am proud that I was BJP's first teacher hire. I have been here since the beginning and helped build the foundation of our school and I am beyond thrilled to come here every day and see the beautiful faces of your children.

I started working in a preschool when I was 17 and I loved everything about it. Working with children is definitely my calling, and I received my degree in Early Childhood Education from Long Beach Community College.

When I'm not in the classroom (my happy place!) you can find me spending quality time with my husband and four children, and two grandbabies. We are often at Disneyland (the “Happiest Place on Earth” ™ … outside of the classroom)!

Morah Mari 

IMG-8713.jpg

I have been an Early Childhood Development Educator for
nearly 38 years. My first experience in a classroom setting was
my summer job earning my para-professional credentials for
my senior year in high school, so I would be able to work half-
day during my senior year to get hands on experience working
with special needs children within the school district classroom
setting. As the years have passed on I have continued my
education by pursuing a Child Development Associate
(CDA) Credential from Rasmussen College and my Director’s
Credentials from Traits of a Child.


"We leave traces of ourselves wherever we go, and on whom
ever we teach" (Lewis Thomas)


"Who dares to teach must never cease to learn" (Anonymous)


I am a mother of two adult children whom I love dearly and I am so
proud of all their accomplishments. I am native from Texas. I
enjoy reading a great book, hiking, and volunteering for non-profit
organizations.

Photo Sep 06 2023, 6 35 49 PM_edited.jpg

Morah Ellesheva

Hi! My name is Ellesheva Mintz and this is my first year teaching at BJP. After graduating high school I studied for a year abroad in Israel. Currently, I am working towards my bachelors degree in psychology. Working with children has always been my passion and joy. 
Over the past summers I have worked with children of all ages and children with special needs. 


This year has started great and I am excited to work with the incredible staff and the families at BJP. The children are excited and eager to learn, making it a rewarding and special opportunity to teach them.

Hagopian_Isabelle_P1.jpg

Morah Isabelle

Hi, my name is Isabelle and I feel honored and privileged to have the opportunity to love coming into work evey day. ! I was born in Armenia and moved here when I was 5 years old. I've always had a passion for children and have played and worked with them my whole life. I knew that early childhood, and educating young children was my calling. I was a student teacher in Adat Ariel and then worked there as a lead teacher for 4 years. I also worked in Christopher Robbins Preschool, a boutique Reggio school and when I moved to Burbank and applied for a position at Burbank Jewish Preschool, it was love at first sight and I knew I found my new  home. I worked here for 5 years and then took a 3 year hiatus to birth and raise my twins, Sam and Nola. I'm so excited to be back here with them as students and walk into the building every single day, knowing that my children are in the most spectacular preschool in Burbank!

I look forward to meeting your children and giving them a year filled with love and warmth, helping them find their confidence and creativity within, in the most meaningful environment where they can construct new ideas, learn to think and problem-solve as they discover who they are and the world around them.

Photo Sep 07 2023, 7 04 50 PM_edited.jpg

Morah Mara 

Hello! My name is Mara Lopez Higuera. I am excited to be part of the Burbank Jewish Preschool family enriching the lives of the students we are so blessed to teach every day. It has been an amazing journey learning alongside the children and families we serve. 

 

I am a proud mother of six incredible children. While raising my children, I had the privilege of volunteering as much as possible at their schools and learned a lot from their teachers and staff.  Additionally, I babysat several wonderful children at home for eight years. Once my children were older, I decided to pursue a career in early childhood education. I received my
training through the West Valley Occupational Center in their Early Childhood Education and Development Program. Throughout my career, I have worked with children of all ages and backgrounds. 

 

In my free time you will find me working on a variety of different projects and crafts. Pinterest is my go-to inspiration app! I enjoy singing, cooking new recipes, and spending time with my amazing family, and dogs Nutella and Fluffy.

Photo Sep 06 2023, 7 22 28 PM_edited.jpg

Morah Tzivi

Hi, my name is Tzivi Kreitenberg. I recently moved to Los Angeles from Canada and I’m super excited to be joining the BJP team! 

I’m the oldest of five children, and I have always had a passion for working with kids. My mother was a preschool teacher for over 20 years so you could definitely say it runs in the family. 

I completed a bachelors degree in psychology. I have gained valuable experience through working with children in multiple preschools and day camps over the years.

In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family, working on my photography business and cooking. 

received_312414449332473_edited.jpg

Morah Kendall

Hi, my name is Kendall and I am overjoyed to be part of the Burbank Jewish Preschool family. 

Although I have taken a long hiatus from working with children, within the first few weeks of being here, I knew this is where I was meant to be. I have been a volunteer at the Boys and Girls Club of America as an afterschool tutor for elementary aged children and I have also been a volunteer at Children's Hospital Los Angeles primarily working with kids in the Ambulatory Surgical Center.

In my free time, I love to hike, go to the beach, and spend time with my family and friends. But currently, I am spending as much time as I can with my newborn niece.

I am grateful and honored to be a part of your child's development and watch them grow into amazing little humans.
 

Morah Maria

Photo Sep 07 2023, 6 06 22 PM_edited.jpg

Hi, my name is Maria Perez. I was born and raised in Alabama and Georgia and moved to Burbank when I was in highschool.

My passion for teaching stems from the very fond memories I have of preschool and I hope to impact my student’s lives as my teachers impacted mine and to enrich the lives of every child I have the privilege of teaching. 

This is my second year working at Burbank Jewish Preschool and I absolutely love it. We have such a great team of fantastic staff and everyone helps eachother be the best Morahs they can be. The children also teach me new things everyday and I truly feel blessed to be here and grow as a teacher and person. It is a privilege I cherish.

In my free time, I love running! I played soccer and ran track during high school, and am hoping to do a 10k for the first time soon. I also enjoy painting and spending time with my mother. 

SKMBT_C364 19101813020_0001.jpg

Morah Blanca

Hi, my name is Blanca, and I have been working in Burbank Jewish Preschool since they opened in 2010. We have so many fun activities and lessons planned for this year; I can’t wait to get started!

 

I got my teaching degree in Guatemala in 2002, and worked for three years there. Since that time I have spent my career working with babies and children, and I absolutely love my job!

 

A few facts about me: My favorite store is Target, and I love listening to music! My favorite drink is tea and my favorite season is winter.

 

I am thrilled to be back in the Nook, and am looking forward to a special and exciting year ahead!

Photo Sep 06 2023, 7 02 00 PM_edited.jpg

Morah Shannon

Hello, my name is Shannon Traxel. I am very proud and honored to be a part of the team here. The love, dedication, passion and teamwork is so inspiring to be around on a daily basis here at the preschool. Being greeted by sweet smiles, faces, hugs and stories of mitzvah notes makes it feel like a family. Making learning fun for the children and helping build skills for future life events is a passion. 

I am a mom of three wonderful children, Blaine who is 22 and a graduate from CSUN, Brooklyn age 13 who keeps me on my toes, and my third Jimmy is 7 and an all around sporty kid. 
I have volunteered for many years at the children’s school, campus supervisor, unit director at the Boys and Girls Club, and safety coordinator at the Burbank Adult School. I have a bachelors in child development through Valley college.


I’m an extreme bike rider, when given the chance you’ll catch me on the path on my skates. I love animals, so much so that I have 18 pets (which includes a few fish). 
Thanks for the opportunity to share my passion with your children 
 

unnamed_edited_edited.jpg

Morah Jocelyn

Hi Bjp Families,

I'm Morah Jocelyn my interest in working with young children started when I was 18 years old. I have worked in child development for 11 years working. I am a proud wife and mother to 3 beautiful children that keep me busy at all times.

 

When I'm not working, I love spending time with my extended family and going on adventures together. I also love cooking. My kids call me the best chef in town.


I am passionate about education and watching young minds develop and being part of that process is truly something I cherish.

 

Thank you to the BJP community for welcoming me with open arms. It’s truly a blessing being part of this special family.

Photo Jun 14 2023, 14 33 11_edited.jpg

Morah Meaghan

Hi, my name is Meaghan and I’ve been working with children for over 15 years. I received my B.A. in Child and Adolescent Development from California State University, Fullerton.

While attending college I went into my degree intending to work in elementary education but it was during this time I realized my passion was working with little ones. I have worked with a variety of ages ranging from infancy to 3rd grade. I have been a student teacher, a youth water polo coach, babysitter, and a teacher for a variety of preschool ages. All of which have led me to my position at Burbank Jewish Preschool.

I am so happy to be a member of this team and a part of the BJP community.

Morah Ilana

Ilana.jpg

I’m Ilana Gindi-Coen. I grew up in LA surrounded by a big family. I now have 21 nieces and nephews and more to come. I love to tend to my garden and indoor plants. I also work part time as a private chef. I’m grateful to be working together with the BJP family.

PHOTO-2023-09-07-17-21-40_edited.jpg

Morah Amanda

Shalom, I'm Morah Amanda and I'm so enthusiastic to be a part of the BJP team! I have been working with preschoolers and infants for over 20 years. I have even owned my own daycare center. I have always had a passion for teaching and children. I'm a lover of life, children, and Gd! 

bottom of page