Chelle Downey-Magee


Ms. Chelle was “sent to the office” at Issaquah Montessori nine years ago, after teaching in Montessori early childhood and lower elementary environments for more than twenty years. She loves preparing the environment for the teachers, interacting with children and parents, and only misses the classroom occasionally.

Over the years Ms. Chelle has learned to appreciate that in the Montessori environment the peaceful, purposeful child is allowed to be a curious, collaborative member of a classroom community, and then follow that path into the larger world.

​She holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Union College and a Master of Education from the University of Washington. Her Montessori credentials include an Early Childhood Certificate (3-6) as well as an Elementary Education Certificate (6-9) from the National Center for Montessori Education, and most recently an Administrator Credential from the American Montessori Society. Within the larger Montessori community Ms. Chelle serves on the board and as treasurer of the Pacific Northwest Montessori Association, as a state representative to the Montessori Public Policy Initiative and as the private school representative to the Early Learning Advisory Council for the Department of Early Learning.  Ms. Chelle enjoys travelling, fiber arts, reading about travelling, family history and walking.​

Kim Droppo

Assistant DirectorDroppo,Kimberly
Intern Teacher- Nest

The friendly face found at the front desk is Ms. Kim. She’s adept at corralling paperwork, organizing schedules, interacting with children and keeping the school generally on track. If she’s not at the desk she might be working with toddlers, on the playground, or attending to minor maintenance issues.

Ms. Kim earned her BA, with a degree in Finance, at Gonzaga University. Recently she undergraduate degree in Early Childhood and Family Studies at the University of Washington. She lives in Carnation with her husband, three very busy adolescents(20, 17, and 15), 2 dogs and a Guinea pig. In her free time, she enjoys reading, crafting, volunteering with Girl Scouts, and spending time with her family.

Ms. Kim became familiar with Montessori education in the fall of 2000 when her son attended preschool at Evergreen Academy in Woodinville. Her daughters later attended Montessori middle school at Arbor Montessori Schools. She says, “I love the Montessori philosophy for education because it allows the child to explore their natural inquisitive side, it holds them responsible for their own work, and encourages them to reach their fullest potential.”

Katelyn Gummere

Office Manager


Ms. Katelyn joined the IMS community in the fall of 2011 as an assistant teacher in the toddler room. Since then she’s completed the Infant & Toddler Credential at the Montessori Education Institute of the Pacific Northwest in Bothell. She earned an Associate’s degree at Bellevue College and a BS in Information Technology and Cybersecurity from Central Washington University.

Ms. Katelyn lives in Renton with her husband and their four dogs. When away from school she enjoys hiking, walking and finding rivers and streams for the dogs to play in, camping, and clamming. Ms. Katelyn rides her bike with a JDRF team.

Ms. Katelyn was born and raised a Montessori child, attending Pine Ranch Montessori and Arbor Montessori for a combined total of ten years. After leaving Arbor and attending a traditional school she realized her independence was cut off—she was being told what to do rather than figuring things out on her own. Ms. Katelyn most appreciates that each child has their own strengths, needs, likes, and learning style and Montessori guides each child through the learning process using the learning style and materials he may need to be successful. The child is always set up for success! She feels that the Issaquah Montessori community is a lace of love and compassion. Ms. Katelyn appreciates the families, the staff and the children, and the way that together they create a welcoming community that loves to thrive and learn.​

Marcia Hoover

Art Specialist

Ms. Marcia has been involved with Montessori teaching since 1975 as an assistant, head teacher and parent of children in public and private Montessori. She graduated with a B.A. in Social Welfare in from California State University at Long Beach and stumbled on Montessori one wonderful afternoon in Chico, California.  Ms. Marcia was totally taken with what she encountered in the classroom. Ms. Marcia got her training in the three-to-six classroom with Montessori Institute of America in 1985 after ten years of assisting and loved delving deeper into the philosophy.  She has stayed, happily, with Issaquah Montessori School for 21 years as a teacher and continues to be excited by her work.

Ms. Marcia truly believes that the greatest way to change the world is by showing children how to love themselves and the world and helping parents raise those children. She thinks the Montessori Method is the best way to expose humans to their potential and to the wonders of the world and living. By allowing children the freedom to explore academic and social life they grow into independent and responsible adults.  A love and respect for all of life is fostered through Montessori education and this can result in happy, productive people.

Ms. Marcia is married with three grown children, who she adores, two of whom are Montessori children.  She loves appreciating and teaching art, gardening in fair weather, exercising through yoga or biking, listening to music and singing, and caring for her home and family.