Early Childhood Center Staff

 

Sandi Bettan, Director

I am so proud to be the Director here at Midway Jewish Center ECC. At Midway we provide a loving and educationally appropropriate program incorporating Judaic values and traditions. Our staff, along with Rabbi Rank and Rabbi Levenson form connections with children and families to provide a warm, team approach to early childhood. Our children learn through an intentional play program. They are engaged and have the opportunity for individual growth.

I have been an educator since 1990. I earned a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education-Nursery through 6th grade at Oswego and earned a Master's degree in Reading from Adelphi University. I am constantly learning and collaborate with other educators through The Jewish Education Project and the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. I live in Plainview with my husband and three sons and am involved with various community and school organizations. When I have free time I enjoy being with family and friends. You can often find me at the movies or a new restaurant. Although it does not happen often, when I have time alone I love to read and shop. Mostly, I just love being with the wonderful children I am lucky enough to share this school with. 

 

 

 

Adrienne Aldorisio 

I am very happy to be here as Sandi's administrative assistant.  I love working with her as well as with the rest of the staff and the families here at Midway. It's great to see the children's smiles as they walk in the door in the morning.

I earned a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education - Nursery through 6th grade from Queens College as well as a Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education from St. John's University.  I taught for ten years in the NYC public school system as a Kindergarten, Second Grade and a Computer Teacher.  I left teaching to bring up my four children in Plainview and have recently just reentered the workplace.

In my (very) spare time I enjoy going to the movies with my husband, reading and going out with friends.  I also attend many sporting events that my children are involved in.  

 

 

 

Susie Stark-Brust

I am one of the Pre-K teachers this year.  I graduated from the University of Maryland and received my masters degree in Elementary Education from Adelphi University.  I started my teaching career as a NYC Public School teacher for 10 years, and also taught elementary education for 6 years in the Great Neck Public School System. I worked as a lead instructor for Pee Wee Pro's , which provides nursery school children physical education programs throughout Long Island.  I enjoy my summer as a Group Leader at Camp Pontiac - a renowned sleepaway camp located in upstate New York catering to children throughout the tri-state area.

I live on Long Island with my husband Jonathan, twin girls, Haley and Sari, and my adorable Maltipoo puppy, Charlie.  I enjoy hiking, shopping and spending time with my family and friends.

 

 

 

Amy Hariton 

This is my 16th year as a toddler teacher .  I have also taught in the enrichment programs for the three and four year olds and have been a Mommy & Me teacher.  Working with toddlers is exciting as we see them developing independence and confidence.  My philosophy to reach these goals is to provide guidance and support to the children on a daily basis. 

I received my BA from Queen’s College.  I have lived in Plainview with my husband and daughter for the past eleven years.  My daughter was a graduate of Midway.   

In my spare time I love to cook, travel, vacation, go to movies and take zumba classes. 

 

 

 

Amy LoBocchiaro

I am an assistant teacher in the Pre-K program.  Being in the classroom with children is an extremely satisfying and rewarding way to spend my time; it is an incredible feeling knowing that I help the children grow and mature.

Prior to Midway, I enjoyed raising my own children for 15 years. I love spending time with my family and friends, and I coached girls volleyball for a number of years and enjoy watching my girls play high school sports.      

 

 

Jessica Meltzer

I am an Instructional Assistant in the Toddler Program.  I received my BS in Elementary Education as well as my MS in Special Education and Reading from LIU - CW Post.  I taught in NYC for 14 years until I became a stay at home mom to my son.

I am not a stranger to Midway Jewish Center.  I grew up in Syosset, and attended the Religious school as a child.  I have made a return and teach Judaic studies to third grade students.  I currently live in Plainview with my husband, son and dog Winston.  When I am not teaching, you can find me surfing the internet looking for new recipes to try, sales at my favorite stores or even watching a baseball game.

I am excited to be part of the Midway team and look forward to watching your children grow.

 

Arlene Pickus 

I am one of the three year old teachers. Prior to my employment here I sent my own daughters to the nursery school.  My husband and I have been Plainview residents for 18 years. 

I had the pleasure of taking part in the ENGAJE Long Island study group. We participated in both secular and Judaic studies. Half way thru the two year program I had the privilege of traveling to Israel with Midway staff and other Long Island Early Childhood educators. It was a wonderful and enriching trip.  I have been able to bring my love of Israel into the classroom. 
I have a BA from Hofstra University.  In my spare time I enjoy playing tennis, Mahjongg and baking. 

 

 

 

Kerri Raab

I am the teacher for the Purple Toddler class.  I worked at Temple Sons of Israel in Manalapan, New Jersey as a Threes teacher before I moved back to Plainview. I have been teaching the Anyone & Me class for the past year at Midway.  I graduated from CW Post - LIU with a degree in Education.  I grew up in Plainview and am currently living here with my husband and two boys.  I love watching the children learn and grow at school over the year.

In my free time I enjoy spending time with friends and family.  I like to do hot yoga, go to the city and watch my boys play their sports. 

 

Jennie Riegler

I feel very lucky to be working at Midway Jewish Center for my third year as an assistant teacher.  I love coming to work each day with my fellow amazin teachers and seeing the children's smiling faces.  It is a joy to watch them learn and grow throughout the year.  It gives me great pleasure to be working at the same nursery school where I placed my trust many years ago with my own two daughters.

I grew up in Syosset and have been living in Plainview for the past fourteen years with my husband Steve and our two daughters Olivia and Emily.  My husband and I attended Midway Jewish Center's Hebrew school as children, were Bar and Bat Mitzvah'd at Midway and we met here during the 1997 high holidays culminating in our marriage by Rabbi Finklestein.  We recently enjoyed celebrating our daughter Olivia's Bat Mitzvah here as well.  Midway has been and will always be a very special part of our family's life.

 

 

 

Shelly Rosen

I am one of the Pre-K teachers.  I have been a part of the staff at Midway for 15 years.  My goal with the children is to make them feel more independent and successful in all they do. I hope to accomplish this through designating responsibilities and positive reinforcement which also builds their self-esteem. I believe in the philosophy of the school that "play is the work of young children" which helps to achieve my goal.  

I have lived in Syosset for 23 years with my husband and 4 children.  My youngest child attended Midway ECC and Miss Linda was one of her teachers!  I have a Bachelor of Science degree from Queens College.  I enjoy watching sports, going to the gym and playing Mahjongg. 

 

 

Stefanie Rovinsky

I am  one of the three year old teachers. In 2015, I received my Bachelor’s degree from Ithaca College and then my Master’s degree in Early Childhood from Brooklyn College.  I was a first grade teacher and for the past 9 years I have been in the nursery school setting teaching Pre-K and 3’s programs. 

I was born and raised in Brooklyn and I have been living in Plainview for the past 16 years with my husband and 2 children. Watching children learn and grow is a meaningful way to spend my day. I am an avid sports fan and an admitted reality TV junkie. 

 

 

Wendy Treidel 

I began teaching at Midway in 1999 as an assistant in the three year old class.  In addition to that I have worked the summer program, led enrichment classes for both three’s and Pre-K and helped to develop our Mommy & Me program. In 2005 I assumed the role of lead teacher for our toddlers. 

I hold a BA in psychology from Hofstra University, my MBA in marketing from Pace University and have additional credits in education from CW Post and SUNY Westbury. My husband David and I have three children and reside in Syosset.  In my spare time I enjoy running and photography. 

 

 

Randy Widelitz

 

I am one of the  instructional assistants at the Janice M. Lustig Early Childhood Center.  My family and I have lived in Syosset for 36 years and have been members of Midway Jewish Center for that time.  Both of my children attended nursery school here. 

My philosophy in the classroom is to encourage a child centered curriculum.  As part of the ENGAJE Long Island program, I studied with a group of Early Childhood Educators in Israel.  As a result of that experience, it has made it possible to incorporate Judaic and Secular ideas on a daily basis in the classroom. 

When time allows, I enjoy playing Mahjongg and Canasta.