“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it.” – H.E. Luccock
EBS is served by a dedicated and caring group of education professionals:
Karen Milanese – Principal
I am very happy to be joining Elizabeth Buckley School until January as the Principal. I come with 20 years teaching experience and 5 years as a Principal. Most of my career has been spent in the Central Interior of BC working in remote communities. I recently moved to Victoria to be closer to my adult children and grandchild. Victoria is a beautiful city, with opportunities to do the activities I love such as, gardening, kayaking, camping, going to live theatre, attending concerts and just sitting in a coffee shop visiting with friends and making new acquaintances. Thank you for accepting me as part of the EBS team and thank you to the many parents that have come forward to show support and a warm welcome. The office door is always open for any input for your child/ren’s learning goals and I am also available to do home visits to talk in a less formal environment. The home visits have always been a major part of my previous practice as a teacher and administrator.
The Elizabeth Buckley philosophy is exactly what I believe, when educating children. The inquiry based, discovery, exploration interwoven with literacy, math, science humanities, art and physical activity has been a part of my teaching practice, it is refreshing to witness this style of teaching as the foundation for EBS. I also strongly believe the students are the focal point of the program and they take responsibility for, as well as have input into the planning of their learning program. As I get to know the children and spend time in the classrooms, I am very impressed at their deep level thinking skills, knowledge of the world around them, and being able to articulate their thoughts and ideas. It is an honor to be part of such a great school, thank you for this amazing opportunity.
Roberta MacDonald – Vice Principal | Teacher, Garry Oak (6/7/8)
Roberta has a B.A. in French Language and Literature from the University of Victoria, a Diploma in Elementary Education from McGill University, and a M.Ed. in Special Education with a focus on autism and developmental disabilities from UBC. She is trained in Applied Behaviour Analysis and Positive Behaviour support. Roberta has been an educator for 25 years and has worked in elementary, middle and high school, independent and public school, community education, and university environments. She has taught in classrooms from Montessori preschool to grade 9, brought STEM outreach programs to Vancouver Island Youth as Director of Science Venture at UVic, and developed life-long learning programs for the Sooke Region as Community School Coordinator at Edward Milne Community School. During her career, Roberta has successfully partnered with organizations and individuals in the community to enhance learning opportunities for her students. In 2014, she was honoured as Community Living Victoria’s Educator of the Year for her outstanding work supporting children with special needs.
Roberta has been part of the EBS team since 2009. She is passionate about science, math, music, art, and all things geeky, and loves to share this with her students. Outside of school, she enjoys spending time with her family, hiking, photography, and playing African music with her band Chikoro Marimba at various events around Victoria.
Rachel Bales – Vice-Principal | Teacher, Arbutus (K/1)
Rachel has been part of the vibrant learning community at Elizabeth Buckley School since 2013. She completed her Bachelor of Education degree and Professional Specialization Certificate in Special Education through the University of Victoria. Education topics that she is interested in include social justice and advocacy education, project-based learning, and social-emotional development. Outside the classroom, Rachel loves camping, hiking, reading, and hanging out with her two kitties.
Ann Lockley – Office Manager
Ann comes to us with a diverse background in corporate communications, marketing, travel writing and photography for a wide variety of magazines, and was even the “Dear Abby” of the dog world for many years. Her most significant life moment was teaching photography in a remote location in the Navajo Nation to a group of youth at risk who went from never holding a camera in their entire lives to hosting their own art show in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Laura Busby – Administrative Assistant
Laura comes to EBS with ten years of festival and event planning experience with the Victoria Jazz Society and is a lover of all styles of music. She plays competitive women’s fastball and enjoys camping, reading, and spending time with her family in nature.
Heather Sasaki – Teacher, Maple (2/3)
Heather completed her B.Ed. at the University of Regina and a Certificate of French as a Second Language at Laval University. She taught K-7 Core French before moving to Japan to teach various elementary grades at Fukuoka International School. In addition to teaching, she has worked in the area of school accreditation with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. After 18 years in Japan, she moved her family back to Canada to live in beautiful Victoria. Heather has traveled extensively throughout Asia and loves exploring other cultures and cuisines. She also enjoys camping, reading, walking her dog and spending time with her family.
Alyce Holland – Teacher, Cedar (4/5)
Alyce was born and raised in Victoria, Australia. She has spent a large amount of time exploring the world and meeting people from many different cultures including a year of exchange in Sweden. Alyce completed a Bachelor of Biomedical Science / Bachelor of Science, majoring in Chemistry and Physiology, before seriously dipping her toe into the world of teaching through aquatics. She completed her Masters of Teaching (K-12) and spent the next two years working with students of all ages at a K-12 college in country Victoria (Australia). Fast forward a couple more years and here she is, still in a Victoria, but starting to learn words with a Canadian twang.
Alyce loves learning new things and exploring ways to build passion in her students. When she isn’t in the classroom, you might see her swimming around the pools of Victoria, reading a fantastic book, or playing with some textiles trying to build a new quilting project.
Rhea Reimer – Teacher, Garry Oak (6, 7, 8)
Rhea is a University of Victoria graduate from the Bachelor of Education program. She has also completed an Arts and Science Diploma at Camosun College in 2011, with a focus in creative writing. In 2010, she completed an International Outdoor Certificate at the University of Trinity St. David’s in Wales, U.K. She is from Victoria and enjoys outdoor pursuits such as rock climbing, hiking, and camping. She is also interested in the benefits of inquiry based learning and considers herself creative, as well as passionate, about furthering her growth as a teacher.
Renata Shaw – Education Assistant
Renata has been working and volunteering with adults and children with disabilities for many years and has been an Education Assistant at Elizabeth Buckley School since September of 2000. Her background includes a Community Support Worker/Teaching Assistant Diploma, as well as courses in Psychology, Social Work, and American Sign Language. Renata is passionate about incorporating mindful practices at school and in her own life, and is trained in the Mindful Schools Curriculum. Outside of the classroom, Renata enjoys being in nature, painting, creating music, and spending time with family.
Julia Baranek – Education Assistant
Julia completed her Community Education Assistant certificate last year. After some further education she worked as a Behavioral Interventionist. Her passion is making inclusion happen for everybody.
Erica Anne LeBrun – Education Assistant
Erica is from Montreal, where she attended Concordia University. Erica moved to British Columbia three years ago to pursue mountain guide training in the Rockies. Her love of the ocean and kayaking brought her to Victoria where she now works as Educational Assistant. This is Erica’s first year at Elizabeth Buckley.
Elyse Longair – Education Assistant
Elyse completed her BFA with a double major in painting and art history from the University of Victoria. Over the past ten years, she has enjoyed working with people with special needs in a variety of roles. Her foundation always remains the same: “Every child needs at least one person who is crazy about them” – Urie Bronfenbrenner. When not painting in her studio, Elyse plays on two teams (soccer and bastetball) and also enjoys gardening at her community garden.
Anna Schellenberg – Education Assistant
Anna grew up in Victoria and loves Vancouver Island. She has a diploma in Community, Family and Child Studies and a Bachelor’s Degree in Child and Youth Care. She also holds an Early Childhood Educator Assistant certificate. When Anna is not assisting students in the classroom or making them laugh on the playground, she likes to spend time with her family, her cat, and a cup of tea. She also really enjoys making crafts and will spend hours browsing in Michael’s craft store.