Skip to main content

Can Do! Funded MCSD Specialists

Can Do! directly funds the following Instructional Specialists who support the 1,800+ students at Lucas Valley, Mary E. Silveira, and Vallecito Elementary schools as well as Miller Creek Middle School.  Meet your children's Instructional Specialists and see what you fund. 

2021-2022 SCHOOL YEAR

Can Do! Programs are only available as a result of parent and community support and generosity.  Help us provide the best possible environment, tools & resources to our children.  Your support is needed now, more than ever!

Can Do! funds, but is not limited to, these Elementary School Programs:  

  • Elementary Art Specialists and supplies at each site
  • Elementary PE Specialist and equipment at each site
  • K-2 Music and Movement Specialist and supplies at each site
  • Lunch Clubs/Additional Social Emotional Learning - NEW!
  • Elementary Counseling Services - NEW!
  • Environmental Sciences via site gardens
  • Technology

Can Do! funds, but is not limited to, these Middle School Programs: 

  • Academic, Leadership, & Arts clubs and supplies
  • After school intramural sports
  • Counseling services, including a NEW Wellness Center and Coordinator
  • Environmental Sciences via the site garden
  • Student/Teacher planners
  • Technology

laura winter









 Art K-5, Laura Winter (Mary Silveira & Lucas Valley) 

My name is Laura Winter. I am originally from Ireland and became fascinated with clay while studying art therapy as part of her Psychology degree. I moved to SF and took classes in ceramic design at Fort Mason. This is my 14th year teaching art and my 4th with the district. I was teaching at my own art studio prior to that for 10 years. I believe in child led art education where I encourage each child to find their artist's voice and express it freely. I am passionate about collaborations and have successfully created many school and district wide collaborations over the years. I led our remote art program during Covid and provided a much needed outlet for our young artists during our most challenging year. In addition, I brought joy to the community and honored our front line heroes by sharing students' artwork through the HeARTwalk, Unite With Light, the Miller creek Kindness Rock Project, Wish Trees, and more. I lead a fun and engaging classroom environment where every student feels confident to express themselves fully. 


K-5 PE Specialist, Alex Wahl (Lucas Valley) 

Hello, my name is Alex Wahl. Born and raised in Marin County, I attended K-8 at Gallinas School (now known as Venetia Valley), Terra Linda High School, College of Marin, and eventually graduated from UCLA. For the past 10 years, I have worked with kids as a daycare counselor, a summer camp counselor, a wrestling coach, and a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu instructor. All these experiences have taught me the importance of teaching physical activity and healthy competition. These help students to develop life skills such as confidence, focus, teamwork, and sportsmanship. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to teach the students of Lucas Valley Elementary as their PE specialist.


K-5 Physical Education, Sarah Paoli (Vallecito) 

My name is Sarah Paoli.  I am originally from Denver, Colorado but this is my home. I  have lived in Marini since I was in 8th grade.  I have a daughter who graduated in 2018 from TLHS, my alma mater. She is currently studying Marketing and Real Estate in Santa Barbara.  I studied Business Management and Recreation and found my passion in the Recreation side. I have been fortunate to work in the education and aquatics fields for almost 30 years.  I coach for a year round swim team, Thunder Coast Aquatics, and am the head coach for Novato Riptide, an MSL. In PE, I will teach games that reinforce sportsmanship, team building, and fair play. Physical activity helps the students' bodies and minds grow!  I hope to instill a love of physical activity in all students! I am so fortunate to be a part of the Vallecito family.  I look forward to another year with all of your children.  

K-5 Garden, Elizabeth Etienne (Lucas Valley)

My name is Elizabeth Etienne and I am so excited to re-enliven our incredible garden at LVE. Originally from Louisiana, I have been in the Bay Area for the last 20 years. Our family moved from Oakland to Lucas Valley during the summer of 2020. I am an Exhibition Designer and Project Manager turned Independent Cultural Producer. I spent 7 years designing and producing exhibitions at the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, then another 7 years at Chabot Space and Science Center. I recently opened a co-creative office space in Lucas Valley, called Enchanted Lands. We offer wellness services and space rental, as well as programs and partnerships devoted to integrating personal inspiration and a heart-centered connection to nature into our families, communities, and livelihoods. Gardens are an incredible way to learn about the world around us and enjoy time together. I hope to see you in the garden soon.

K-5 Physical Education, Mercedes Valtierra (Mary Silveira) 

K-5 Art, Paula Ockner (Lucas Valley) 

K-5 Art, Jamie Newman (Vallecito) 

6-8 Garden, Nina Cunnan (Miller Creek) 


K-5 Counseling Support, Katrina Villena

My name is Katrina Villena, and I am thrilled to be supporting MCSD as a K5 School Counselor at all three elementary schools. I am originally from Anaheim, CA. I received my B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Sociology from UC Merced and a Masters in Counseling Psychology with a dual concentration in School Counseling and Clinical Counseling from the University of San Francisco. I have worked as a bilingual community liaison, a tutor, and a private school teacher. Most recently, I worked as a School Counseling Trainee with San Rafael City Schools and Novato Unified. I have worked with all age groups and am so excited to be at the elementary level. This year, I am implementing our district-wide social-emotional curriculum, meeting students individually and running small groups, and planning school-wide and community events in support of these goals. I am excited to support our elementary students this year!