Meet the Staff

We have a team of dedicated professionals who have the welfare and best interest of your child as their top priority.

Everyone on our staff is required to have the State of Florida 40-hour Child Care certification and 5-hour early literacy training offered through the Department of Children and Families, with additional 15 hours of child care related training per year. The state requires fingerprinting and an extensive background check, which is done prior to employment.  All of our staff is required to have current CPR and First Aid training with in the first year of employment.

Each classroom has a lead teacher with either a Teaching Certificate and/or Child Development Associate Credential or other advanced degree.

Educational Advancement: Young Days Child Development Center encourages all employees to further their education and become members of professional organizations.  We also pay for all required training.

 

 

Jackie Tumelty-Kaller, Director

Office Phone: 727-789-3709
Email:youngdays@eastlakeumc.org

Jackie is the Director of Young Days Christian Academy of East Lake United Methodist Church. For over 15 years Jackie has been helping young children find success in both faith based and corporate early childhood education centers. Working in the field of education has clearly defined her passion to enrich the lives of children and their families. Jackie believes that community and parental involvement is key in child development.

Jackie attended the University of Tampa as an undergraduate and the University of South Florida as a graduate. She has a degree in Business Management and Administration, along with, an advanced Director Credential and Child Development Staff Credential.  Jackie has the following certifications: Early childhood education instructor with Pinellas County Schools, food hygiene and nutritional education, CPR/First Aid and swim safety.  Jackie is a commissioned Notary and has a Florida CDL (passenger endorsement) driver’s license. Jackie has advanced knowledge and experience with early childhood education regulatory policy, quality assurance, program administration, applied behavior analysis, curriculum development and assessment and accreditation evaluation.

Prior to working in the field of early childhood education she spent years working on campus at the University of South Florida and held several positions: Supervisor of Admissions/Registrar, Supervisor of Testing and Assessment and Coordinator with Student Affairs and Advising. Her career has been student focused for many years.

Jackie is an active member in the community. She has been married for 17 years and has two children.

                         Isaiah 54:13 All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children.

divider

Kerry Raynor, Assistant Director

Kerry Raynor, Assistant Director

 

 

Kerry Raynor, Assistant Director

Office Phone: 727-789-3709
Email: youngdays@eastlakeumc.org

Kerry was born in England and received a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Sociology from the University College of Swansea. She moved to Florida to marry her husband Mark in 1994 they have one daughter who is a junior at East Lake High.Kerry is a member of East Lake United Methodist Church and serves on the Mission and Outreach team, she also assists the Children’s Ministry in their many events.

Wanting a career in which she could balance work and family she embarked on a new calling in Early Childhood. Kerry has been at Young Days since 2003, initially teaching four year old’s before transitioning into the administration side. Kerry became the Assistant director of Young Days in January 2013. 

I have the best job in the world watching the children learn, grow and flourish, experiencing God’s Love and in such a joyful and happy place.

divider

Cheryl Kirby

 

 

Cheryl Kirby

Leanne Matthews

 

 

Leanne Matthews

Leanne Matthews is a co-teacher for the M/W/F day VPK program.  She has 3 children, all of whom are ‘graduates’ of Young Days Christian Academy.  Leanne is a native Floridian of Pinellas County.  She received her Bachelor degree in Accounting from the University of South Florida. More recently, she completed  40 hours of Child Care Facility and Family Child Care Training. She have also receive her Staff Credential in Early Childhood from St. Petersburg College.

When Leanne is not in her classroom at Young Days, she is an ever present volunteer at Brooker Creek Elementary and has been a PTA Board Member for the past several years. Leanne believes in playing an active role in her children’s education and the education of yours.

divider

 Casey Kress has been the assistant two year old teacher at Young Days for the past two years. Her educational background includes a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Florida (Go Gators!). She has previously taught kindergarten and first grade in the public school system. She has a nine year old daughter who is a graduate of Young Days Christian Academy.

divider

My name is Deborah McKenzie (the children know me as Ms. Debbie.) I have been working in the childcare setting for more than fifteen years. This will be my fifth year working at Young Days Christian Academy. I believe that each child is a unique precious gift from God and I’m honored to be able to share Christ’s love with them. My philosophy that children learn best by doing and seeing, and that a child’s work is play. The more they see, discover, and manipulate, the more they will learn. I have lived in the USA for the past 20 years, and I am originally from England. My husband’s name is Kevin and I have two children Catherine and Sophie. I hold a Montessori Diploma and an Early Childhood teaching credential. I have continuing education in the following: Early Literacy Birth to age three, Special Needs and Preschool Appropriate Practices and Behavioral Observations and Screenings.

 

     Luke 18:15-17 Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the                                                                                      kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

divider

My name is Heather Cassella. I have been working at Young Days for the last four years as a VPK Assistant Teacher. I am CPR and First Aid certified. I have 60 hours of training through the Florida Department of Children and Families. I have an Early Childhood teaching Credential. I am originally from New Jersey and moved here about 10 years ago with my family.  I have two sons who are 13 and 15.

                                                      “Children are a gift from The Lord; they are a real blessing”.  Psalm 127:3-5

divider

divider

 

Ms. Linda is a VPK teacher in the M-F (9-1) classroom. Linda became part of the Young Days family in the year 2000 and brings 17  years of experience in teaching and nurturing young children.

She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and CDA in Early Childhood. Ms. Linda has completed more than 60 hours of training through the Florida Department of Children and Families and has received a Certification of Completion from Coordinated Child Care of Pinellas for participation in 35 hours of training for Project Challenge, a program that facilitates teachers in the management of children with behavioral problems. Ms. Linda has further pursued educational courses through St. Petersburg College: Observation/Record Early Childhood Behavior; Early Childhood Development; Play as Learning; Understanding Violence in the Lives of Young Children; Working with Young Children with Special Needs; Developing Cognitive and Creative Abilities in Young Children. She is also First Aid/CPR certified.

Ms. Linda came to Florida from New York in 1998. She is married with two children who attend Florida State University.

“Logic will get you from A to Z; Imagination will get you everywhere” (Albert Einstein)

divider