WORLD CLASS TEACHERS
Mrs. Sterna Ivry - Judaic Studies Teacher
Mrs. Ivry born in Paris, France graduated with honors from the Beth Rivka Teachers Seminary of Higher Education in Yerres France. She taught and directed at various Talmud Torah Hebrew Schools and Jewish Day Schools in Paris. She was also the acclaimed teacher of the Pre-school and 1stgrade classes and director of Judaic studies at the newly opened Jewish Day School in Dijon, France. In 2001, she moved with her husband Rabbi Yochanan Ivry to Staten Island, NY to begin their outreach efforts in the South and East Shore Areas at Congregation Toras Emes. She has opened a Hebrew Sunday School for children ages 5 to 12 and taught many children from family with little to no Jewish educational background. Many of her students have graduated and celebrated their Bar/Bat Mitzvah. These students maintain a connection to their Jewish roots and participate in Judaic projects. Some are now teaching themselves at the Hebrew school. In the fall of 2003, Mrs. Ivry founded a group family daycare. Mrs. Ivry has connected with many children and families who are unaffiliated and who are happy to give their children a Jewish education in a warm and caring environment! Mrs. Ivry also opened a Jewish Day Camp four years ago that is opened to Jewish children from very different backgrounds. Children all learn from each other and enjoy their summer in a Jewish environment. Many children come from public school and go home singing Hebrew songs and report the many different aspects of Judaism they picked up through games, songs and discussions throughout the summer. It is Mrs. Ivry's most rewarding prize to see Jewish children connect with their heritage with pride and joy.
Ms. Jordana Syetta - Kindergarten General Studies Teacher
Ms. Syetta has a dual Bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education and Science, Letters, and Society from the College of Staten Island. She also has a Masters degree in Early Childhood Special and General Education from Touro College. Ms. Syetta has extensive experience as an Early Intervention Service provider, Special Education Teacher Support Service provider and has worked for three years as a substitute teacher with the DOE and private preschools prior to joining SIHA. Ms. Syetta uses multi-sensory approach to teaching to support each students unique way of learning.
Mrs. Shaindy Spiegel - 2nd grade Judaic Studies Teacher
Mrs. Spiegel is a graduate of Maimonides College and Beth Jacob Teachers Seminary of Toronto. She also studied at Midrasha Ohr Yerushalim in Israel. She has many years of teaching experience serving as preschool teacher, Sunday school teacher, afternoon school teacher and adult education instructor. Her love for Yiddishkeit can be seen in her approach to teaching. She always sees the good in every child and her Yideshe Mama really shines through. As a result, the children greatly enjoy learning about their heritage.
Ms. Svjetlana Tatic - 2nd grade General Studies Teacher
For Ms. Tatic art and education go hand in hand. She has always been passionate about both. After receiving her degree in Art Design from the Art Institute of Phoenix, she has attended Youngstown State University and took classes in Art History, English Literature, and Fine Arts. Currently, she is working on obtaining her Early Childhood Education Master's degree. Ms. Tatic is constantly perfecting her teaching skills. Since the beginning of 2016, she has worked as a tutor for English Language Learners from China. She has worked one on one and in small group settings. She has taken many courses to refine her classroom management and pedagogy. Ms. Tatic’s first day at SIHA was last year. She came in as a substitute teacher for first grade and instantly fell in love with the school. Her teaching philosophy perfectly matches the school’s values. Ms. Tatic believes in an individualized approach to each child, as well as taking into consideration children’s strengths and interests. She also believes that building strong relationships with families tremendously benefits students. Ms. Tatic is hoping to build strong bonds with all SIHA families to make sure that her students will have only positive learning experiences. Ms. Tatic is looking forward to being a member of the SIHA family and help her students develop a love of learning every day!
Mrs. Alla Shats - Math Teacher
Mrs. Shats has over 13 years of teaching experience working with children from k to 6th grade and has obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in elementary education, with concentration in Math, from St. John's University. After graduation, she continued to pursue a Master’s Degree in Childhood Education/Special Education at Touro College. Mrs. Shats believes that education is the key to success for young children. As a teacher, she hopes to motivate students, promote effective learning environment, build curiosity, and foster confidence in all of her students. She is eager to commit and encourage children's interests in different subject areas, and is determined to challenge their abilities and inner strengths to discover and explore what truly inspires them. Mrs. Shats loves working with children and will continue to strive to be a positive influence in their lives. She hopes that her passion for teaching will create a desire for constant learning within each child.
Mrs. Suncica Hazen - ELA Teacher
Mrs. Hazen joined SIHA as Ms. Tatic in 2016, and from the first day was impressed by both the level of care and attention shown by all the staff in regards to the students, and by the brightness and inventiveness of her students.
She is a graduate of Youngstown State University and hold a B.A. in Professional Writing and Editing, as well as a B.S. in Integrated Language Arts Education.
Her degree, certification, and previous experience were all with high school students. Making the change to elementary school has been exciting and truly enjoyable. Mrs. Hazen sincerely looks forward to seeing her students shine in learning every day!
Mrs. Valbona Belli - Science
Ms. Belli is an expert teacher with more than 15 years of experience in early childhood and elementary education field. Ms. Belli is an expert on early literacy and reading comprehension, which is very helpful in her current field. Presently, Ms. Belli’s concentration is science. She has improved the science curriculum by enriching it with lots of hands-on activities for the kids. Every lesson culminates in a lab, which ensures long-term retention. She has worked in the schools in Florida and New York City, and all her former
employers consider her a great asset to the school because she truly cares about each child, is very organized, and communicates her expectations clearly to students and parents alike.
Ms. Sasha Ortiz - Math Co-teacher
Ms. Ortiz is currently pursuing a Bachelors in Mathematics with a minor in Secondary Education. She graduated New Dorp High School as the Salutatorian. Ms. Ortiz was on the varsity soccer team for four years, on the junior varsity basket ball team for two years, and varsity track for a year. She had a passion for teaching since her childhood and working at SIHA is re-affirming the passion every day.
Ms. Regina Iannizzotto - Nachas Program Director
Ms. Iannizzotto received her dual undergraduate degree in General/Special Education from the College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY and a Masters degree in literacy from Touro College. Ms. Iannizzotto is a Reading Specialist with specific training in Orton Gillingham methodology and has been working at SIHA for 4 years. She prides herself in building lessons that are hands-on. Interactive learning is Ms. Iannizzotto's main mission for her classes because it keeps the students interested and allows for them to facilitate their own education in a way that works best for them. In her class, the students are always working together to solve problems, answer questions, and lead their own learning.