The Early Learning Center is state-licensed and led by a full-time Director with a Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education. The teaching staff is a committed to providing a safe, secure, and loving environment for our children. We have a highly qualified staff of certified teachers, many of whom hold Master's Degrees in Early Childhood Education. Our low student-to-teacher ratio fosters the children's development as individuals. Our teachers are trained in CPR and pediatric first aid. We place an emphasis on continuing learning programs for our staff by having them participate in workshops for Early Childhood Educators throughout the year.


Hello! My name is Allison Tankel and I am proud to be be a part of the Congregation Ohr Shalom community as  Director of the Early Childhood Program. I currently live in Warren with my husband and our three sons  Josh (a  junior at UT Austin.. GO LONGHORNS), Matt ( a freshman at Wisconsin.. GO BADGERS) and Ben (H.S. Sophomore). and my daughter, our golden retriever Scarlet Knight. Sometimes as children we dream and hope to grow up to be a particular profession. For me, my dreams aspired to reality. 

I began my Career as a Kindergarten teacher working in New York. Once I began raising my three boys as a stay at home mom I continued to teach religious school and early intervention. I spent many summers as a Division Head in the youngest division at a local day camp.

In between driving carpools and sitting on the sidelines of soccer, I enjoy exercising( love my Peloton)  reading, reality TV volunteering in my synagogue and cooking! Your children are "our" children and I look forward to watching them grow, smile, laugh and learn. Nothing is better than a hug or high five from a happy student! I love receiving tons of them!




Hi!  I'm Amy Weinstock and I am excited to return for my second year at the Early Learning Center.  I have been an Early Childhood Educator for the past 20 years having taught 2 year olds, 3's, Mommy and Me, Tot Shabbat and Kindergarten Enrichment.  I have simultaneously taught religious school and been an assistant to the director of a preschool as well as the Assistant Director at Gesher Summer Camp for 11 years until it closed. "By doing what you love, you inspire and awaken the hearts of others."  I love working with children and am fortunate to do so every day.

I live in Randolph with the husband Eric, daughter Beryn (sophomore at the University of Michigan) and our Havanese, Puddles (who lives up to her name). My family means the world to me! IN my spare time I volunteer at my synagogue as the chair of our youth committee and as a board member. I love spending time with my family and friends, traveling, movies and being creative. 

Assistant Director



My passion is working with children, and I am excited to join the Summit JCC teaching staff. My husband Ken and I have two wonderful children. In the fall, Sam will be a senior at Miami University, studying Accounting and Information Systems. Louis will be a sophomore at Brandeis University, studying biology and health, science, society, and policy (HSSP). In my free time, I love cooking, baking, traveling, sports, and going to the movies.

After graduating from college, I worked in advertising and public relations at the St. Louis
Jewish Light Newspaper. (Feel free to ask me about St. Louis, home to the 2019 Stanley Cup champions and the St. Louis Cardinals, which I still call “home”.) For eight summers, I worked at B’nai B’rith Perlman Camp, where, I coordinated administration of the main office, managed the canteen, and coordinated the visiting day scholarship auction.

I know its going to be a great year, and I look
forward to being on this journey with your children.

Teacher, Seedlings (two's)



Hi there! My name is Vanessa. Your children won't just be learning at school this year, they'll be doing quite a bit of teaching too, because this is my second year at the JCC. and I couldn't be more thrilled to be a part of it! I've always worked with children, in fact my very first job when I was 16 years old was at a day care and I couldn't imagine ever working in another field. I love the joy, wonder and excitement in a child's face when they accomplish or discover something new, and I don't mind drying the occasional tears either! I'm a huge fan of arts and crafts, and learning through play. My purpose at the JCC is not just to teach our little ones, but to provide them with a safe and fun environment that promotes creativity, confidence and independence. In my free time, I like to read, travel, shop and spend my days outside (as long as it isn't cold)! I'm so excited to for the educational adventure that awaits, and I can't wait to watch your little ones grow!

Teacher, Seedlings (two's)


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Hi!  I’m Miss Nancy and I’m so excited to be teaching the Seedlings with Miss Emmy!  This is my second year as a teacher at the Early Learning Center. I graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Elementary Education and Special Education and taught pre-K age students at a school in New Providence before I took a break from teaching when my kids were born, to be a stay at home mom. I love exercising and walking, going to the beach in New Jersey and Martha’s Vineyard, and spending time with my husband, our 20 and 17 year old sons, and our orange tabby, Nittany

Teacher, Seedlings (two's)



Hi I’m Emmy Atlas and I am so excited to be teaching the 2’s (Seedlings) this year with Miss Nancy! Although I am new to teaching in the ELC I am NOT new to teaching or to the synagogue! I have previously taught in the JLC religious school here at Ohr Shalom/SJCC!  Prior to working in the synagogue, I did young family outreach and engagement for the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest. I also spent 8 summers working for Gesher Summer Day Camp. 

In my spare time I volunteer with our community Rishonim (Israeli teens who spend a gap year here before they begin their IDF service). I live in Livingston with my husband Harry and my daughter  Elana , my son Noah and  my cat Tigger.

Teacher, Seedlings (two's)



Hi! My name is Jen Arnel and I’m so happy to be working with the 2’s. After teaching in a Manhattan preschool and raising my own two children, I’m ready for yours. I love interacting with the children, watching them learn and grow and seeing the looks on their faces when they do something themselves for the first time. When not in school, I enjoy all kinds of physical fitness, skiing, traveling, spending time with my family, and walking our two dogs. I can’t wait to see what the school year brings.

Teacher, Seedlings & Doodlebugs (two's & junior two's)


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Hi! I'm Karen Leviss and I am so excited to be assistant teacher in the 2's this year with Miss Jen. This is my second year working at the Early Learning Center but I have been substitute teaching at other pre-schools for several years.  I also work during the summers at a local day camp with the 3's.  In my free time, I love exercising, walking with friends, reading at the beach and spending time with my husband and our two children.  I am looking forward to interacting with the kids and watching them grow and explore new things.  

Teacher, Doodlebugs


Hi!  My name is Miss Lisa. Hi! My name is Lisa Irving and I am so excited to be a part of the Summit JCC! I have my Masters Degree in Education and over the past ten years I have been busy teaching Kindergarten, Pre-K and 3 year olds classes. I am passionate about education and believe children learn best through active play and exploration. As a teacher I love watching children grow, play, learn and build friendships throughout the year. I live nearby in Watchung with my husband Rich, and our 15 year old twins Jordan and Tyler. When I am not at school I enjoy traveling, spending time at the beach, reading and baking.

Teacher, Sprouts (three's)


Hi! My name is Randi Dorman, and I am so excited to begin my first year at the Summit JCC in the three’s with Miss Lisa. I recently graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in Human Development and Family Science, and a concentration in Early Child Development. I have spent many of my summers working at a local camp and this year enjoyed my role as a Group Leader. My favorite thing about working with children is being able to watch them grow and develop. Outside of school, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, reading, and traveling. I am looking forward to a great school year

Teacher, Sprouts (three's)



Hello, my name is Irene Rubinshtein and I am so excited to be teaching the 3’s this year. I was a pre-k teacher as well as a 4th grade religious school teacher. I am married and have four children ages 22, 20, 18, and 16. Two boys and 2 girls. My oldest daughter is a Doctor of Optometry , my oldest son is curretnly pursuing his degree in PT and my and younger daughter  and my youngest son are in college. In my spare time I enjoy reading, traveling, and spending time with my family. This Summer I took a wonderful trip to Europe. I look forward to sharing my adventure with your child and hearing about all of theirs!

Teacher, Sprouts (three's)



Hi! I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself.  My name is Sheila Weisman and I am one of the 3 year old teachers here at the Early Learning Center.  I live in Springfield with my husband, Steve, and we have 2 grown children - Jared and Jaime.  Family is very important to me!  I love spending time with my children - dining, vacationing, or just visiting with them in NYC where they currently live.   A few of my favorite past times are shopping, reading and playing "Words With Friends." 

I have been a part of the Summit JCC family for the past 25 years. Teaching at the SJCC has been a very rewarding experience for me. I love that this is the place where many of the children have their first school experience.  As their teacher, I try to create a warm, caring environment as well as a sense of excitement and curiosity about learning.  The SJCC is a very special place for me!  The staff that I work with, the families I come in contact with, and the smiling faces of the children - make each day a wonderful experience for me!  I am looking forward to another wonderful year at the SJCC Early Learning Center!

Teacher, Sprouts (three's)



Hello, I'm Dawn Wasserman, a lead teacher in the pre-K. This is my fifth year here at the Summit JCC and my fifth year in New Jersey.  Although my husband I and are from Philadelphia, we lived in Phoenix, Arizona for 18 years. We relocated back to the east coast which was a shock for our two children who only knew the desert!  This is my fifteenth year teaching preschool and I love it because every day is an adventure! I truly enjoy seeing things through the eyes of the children every day.  In my spare time I love to read, spend time with my family and our cat, Mooshka!

Teacher, Trees (Pre-K)


Hi! My name is Miss Debi and I am thrilled to be back for my third year at the Summit JCC. Three years ago I had the privilege of working one day a week in each of the grade level classes at the ELC.  That was when I realized how special the ELC is. Prior to coming to the ELC I spent the last 10 summers working with children at a sleep away camp in Upstate New York.  I enjoy the warm weather, going to the beach, reading, shopping and spending time with my family. My husband Bryan and I have four wonderful children.  I have triplet daughters (Jamie, Lauren & Emily) who are juniors in college and a son (Jake) who is a junior in High School.  I look forward watching your child grow and flourish this year.  Thank you for sharing your precious little ones with us!!!

Teacher, Trees (Pre-K)



Hello, my name is Miss Eileen and I am excited to be teaching Pre-K this year.  I like being "Summer Fun" camp director but I am looking forward to being back in the classroom because teaching is my true love. It is something I had wanted to do since I was a young girl. I love children! In fact I have two married daughters with families of their own and five grandchildren, three of which keep me busy since they live in the same town as I do.  I am married but because my husband  lives and works in Afghanistan I live with my cat BeBe. My other daughter has two boys and a husband who is a major in the army. They live in South Korea. They have lived in many different places both stateside and foreign, so because of this I visit them when I can. I love to travel! ️It's interesting to visit different places, meet new people and see how they live. Other things I love doing are drawing️, painting, gardening, yoga, riding my bike and of course reading.

Teacher, Trees (Pre-K)



Hello - I'm Miss Rachel and this is my fourth year at the ELC!  I'm so excited to be back in preschool...  It's such a magical place.  I love creating, reading stories, using my imagination and working hard to learn new things.  I spent most of my summer at Camp Riverbend.  I like to explore new places with my family.  Since June, we've visited Boston, Killington VT, NJ beaches and Pawleys Island SC.  I am married and we have 12 year old miracle triplets that keep us very busy.  My children love animals and 4 years ago we completed the family by rescuing an adorable dog Ginger. I look forward to a fabulous school year together!

Teacher, Trees (Pre-K)



Hello - I'm Miss Rhoda and this is my 32nd year teaching at the ELC! I love teaching science to your children.  They are curious and love to explore the world around them. I have two children and six grandchildren and a cock-a-poo named Missy!  I look forward to a great year.

Teacher, Science


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