Special Education Services

Sherwood Montessori is proud to announce that we are now formally our own LEA (local education agency). We have contracted with El Dorado Charter SELPA (Special Education Local Plan Area) www.edcoecharterselpa.org. The SELPA is a consortia of LEAs responsible for the development of special education policies and procedures, distribution of federal and state special education funds, and providing a range of professional development pertaining to special education.

What this means for students and families at Sherwood Montessori is that when a student requires Special Education Services, we are able to provide those services in a way that is aligned with Montessori philosophy.


Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS)

The California Department of Education’s (CDE) definition of Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) provides a basis for understanding how California educators can work together to ensure equitable access and opportunity for all students to achieve the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). MTSS includes Response to Instruction and Intervention (RtI2) as well as additional, distinct philosophies and concepts.


In California, MTSS is an integrated, comprehensive framework that focuses on CCSS, core instruction, differentiated learning, student-centered learning, individualized student needs, and the alignment of systems necessary for all students’ academic, behavioral, and social success. California has a long history of providing numerous systems of support. These include the interventions within the RtI2 processes, supports for Special Education, Title I, Title III, support services for English Learners, American-Indian students, and those in gifted and talented programs. MTSS offers the potential to create needed systematic change through intentional design and redesign of services and supports that quickly identify and match the needs of all students.


Our Special Education Staff

Jessica Ordaz is our Director of Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS). This includes supervision of our Intervention and Special Education Services and staff.  She was previously our School-Based Intervention Coordinator and has been working in the field of education for over 15 years. She has served infants to adults in various positions and roles. Jessica has a strong passion for helping each unique individual achieve their fullest potential by providing them with a specialized plan for growth that meets the needs of the whole child. She received her Special Education teaching credential and Masters of Education at Chico State. Jessica and her two children have been a part of the Sherwood community for the past few years and feel honored to be a part of such a great group of parents and educators who truly have a passion for Montessori education. When she is not at Sherwood, Jessica enjoys gardening, spending time with family, and serving in the community. 

Anne Marie Brown is the speech and language pathologist in our Special Education Services program. She has been practicing as a speech and language pathologist for the past 13 years working in a variety of settings serving infants to adults in public schools, rehabilitation hospitals, preschools and as a home visitor. Anne Marie is honored and excited to become a part of a school providing Montessori education as the focus upon critical thinking, empathy, life-long learning, skillful problem solving in the context of mutual respect and joy resounds deeply within her professional and personal life. Anne Marie received her Bachelor of Arts in Communication at the University of California, San Diego and went on to receive her Masters of Science in Communicative Sciences and Disorders at California State University, East Bay. Anne Marie treasures her family that includes three beautiful children, appreciating the natural world around her and early morning running.

Jen Moreno is a registered and licensed occupational therapist. She has worked in the Chico area in a wide variety of settings since 2000, including education, outpatient, acute care and extended care. Jen received her occupational therapy degree with an emphasis on pediatrics from Colorado State University in 1998. She feels it is important to keep current taking and participating in continuing education courses in her field. For fun, Jen enjoys spending time with her family, the outdoors, hiking, running, traveling, cooking and gardening. Oh yes, and she loves animals!

Julissa Chavez is our Resource Specialist. Julie, as she prefers to be known, came to Sherwood Montessori from San Francisco, where she spent 12 years as a Resource Specialist and Inclusion Support Teacher. Coming back to the Chico area is sort of a homecoming for Julie, where her family has been since the 1950s. She earned her bachelor’s degree at SF State and her Education Specialist credential at University of San Francisco. She also holds a bilingual credential in Spanish. Outside of teaching, Julie enjoys traveling, reading and spending time with her 13 year old daughter and their poodle mix, Rosie.

Peggy Hicks is our School Nurse.  She has worked 34 years as a Registered Nurse; the last 15 years as School Nurse at many schools in Colusa County.  In addition to managing state mandated health requirements and student health needs, Peggy has worked extensively with Special Education and medically fragile children, from infancy to age 22 years. Peggy graduated from Chico State with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing/ Public Health Certificate in 1982.  She obtained her School Audiometry Certificate in 2002.  In 2008, she completed her School Nurse Credential  through Fresno State.  Peggy loves to stay up to date on health issues, and feels it important to always consider the whole child in the greater context of their family and community. In her free time, Peggy loves the water-- be it the ocean or her time spent swimming with her Master's swim group.   She also loves yoga, spending time with family, and visiting with her amazing adult children!  She is excited to join the Sherwood team, and see firsthand what Montessori is all about.

Gabrielle Chaplin,  School Psychologist -- bio coming soon


Rachal Hambrock, Paraprofessional -- bio coming soon