Cathy is thrilled to be back at Playschool in a new role where she can welcome and support all of the teachers, directors and parents. Cathy spent many years as a teacher in the Green Room at Playschool, and was also a parent at the school, so she is familiar with the joys and challenges that each day can bring. She is a problem-solver, naturalist, and master tie-dyer as well as a Quickbooks quick study. During the summer Cathy is the co-Director of Miss Betty's Day Camp.
Read the Staff Spotlight Interview with Cathy!
School Staff Emiritus
Miss Jean has been a resident of Charlestown Township her entire life (90 years!). She met Miss Betty initially when she was 10 years old on a visit to Broadwater Farm (Miss Betty’s former home) and began helping at Playschool when she was 14 years old. One summer, Jean worked at a preschool in Santa Fe, New Mexico while her husband Elmer was working and attending college, returning again to Charlestown. During her years at Playschool Jean progressed from a helper to a teacher’s aide and was Miss Betty’s assistant for many years, which is how she received her certification as a teacher. Jean eventually became the lead teacher in the Twos Room (now the Yellow Room) for well over 20 years.
From 1983 to 1992 Jean and her husband lived in Houston, Texas. While in Texas, Jean volunteered at St. Jerome’s Early Childhood Center for eight years. During the years they lived in Houston, Jean returned to their home in Charlestown three or four times each year where she continued to help at Playschool. Until the spring of 2020, Jean continued to come to school every day to support our teachers in the classrooms, primarily by reading with children on the couch in the Orange Room. Jean was also very involved with the Charlestown Sale and the Alumni Children’s Committee for the Bazaar. Jean says her claim to fame is having both Faith Koons and Kevin Bacon as former students in her Twos class!
Jean is currently living in an assisted living home and dreaming of Playschool. She is grateful for cards and any reminders of her beloved students! Please send cards to school or contact us for the address.
Permanent Substitute Teacher, Extended and Camp Staff
Pam started her children at Playschool in 1964 having learned about it from her neighbor. Pam says that she learned so much from Miss Betty and all the teachers and other parents. The Charlestown Sale was the twice-a-year reason to go through your house and sell what you were not using. All the many work parties were times to make friends and help the school with fundraising. Playschool was a big part of her and her family’s lives. Pam has had four children and six grandchildren graduate from Playschool and also from Miss Betty’s camp, including her daughter, Miss Alyssa (Orange Room teacher). When she is not working at Playschool, Pam also works at Gheel House, a residential mental health facility, helping with cleaning, cooking, and laundry, and providing friendly support to the residents. For two weeks each spring and fall you can find Pam spending most of her spare time volunteering at the Charlestown Sale, and each summer you’ll find her running our summer camp program with Miss Alyssa.
Allegra is proud to help the school that her grandmother, Miss Betty, founded. While some parts of school have evolved since Miss Betty's time, the laughter of children in the play yard never ceases to sound the same and to bring joy. Allegra enjoys raising money for Playschool so that it can have high quality programming, support amazing teachers, be accessible and welcoming to a diversity of families, and give back to the greater Phoenixville community. Her two boys are now in elementary school but love to come back and play.