Our Staff

Benicia Location

Parisa Kelly

Parisa is the owner of Starlight School. She holds a California teaching credential from San Francisco State University and is a member of the American Montessori Society. Parisa holds an American Montessori Society Montessori Primary Certificate through Fountainhead Montessori and Cal-State East Bay.

She has owned Starlight School since 1998 and has worked as a Montessori teacher since 1996. She has served as a teacher in public elementary schools, a provider of in-home child care, and a behavior specialist for a private school.


Julie L.

Julie is very pleased to be part of the Starlight community and looks forward to getting to know your child and your family.

“Free the child’s potential and you will transform him into the world” – Maria Montessori

Julie developed an interest in the Montessori style of teaching over 18 years ago while completing her undergraduate studies. Julie taught briefly in the public sector, but was drawn back to Montessori environment due to the complexity of practical life, sensorial, science, math, geography, botany, zoology, language, art and cultural studies that are offered to the youngest of students. She continues to be amazed by how each and every child grows as an independent learner in the Montessori environment developing individual interests, learning to be part of a community, developing confidence and sharing knowledge with others. Julie feels that the children have a lot to teach her about living in the present, appreciating each moment, exploring the natural world and perseverance when practicing new things. Julie is a graduate of St. Mary’s College with a Master’s Degree in Education, a Multiple Subject Credential and has her American Montessori Society Certifications in the 3-6 years, 6-9 years and 9-12 age groups. She has extensive and diverse experience in teaching, mentoring and directing at the early childhood and elementary level. Furthermore, Julie has worked part-time at a local college helping to train future Montessori teachers. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, cooking, camping, backpacking, spending time with her family and traveling in North America and beyond.