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Meet the VCSC team

Our preschool program is led by three certified Early Childhood Educators who each bring their unique specializations to the classroom. With a ratio of one teacher to no more than six students, VCSC has one of the – if not the – best teacher-child ratios around. Our Anchor program is facilitated by two passionate teachers and overseen by Dr. Christianne Hayward, PhD.

Families are an integral part of the Vancouver Child Study Centre Preschool community. Parents and caregivers are invited to volunteer in the classroom and during special events as their schedules permit. VCSC is a not-for-profit society whose operations are run by a volunteer board of directors made up of parents of current students.

Dr. Christianne Hayward, PhD

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Pedagogista for our Preschool Program
Parent Educator for our Anchor Parent-Toddler Program

Christianne has been educating children and adults for over 35 years. Her relationship with the Vancouver Child Study Centre goes back to 1992 when she began her doctoral studies at UBC. She conducted much of her research at the centre when it was still housed on campus and part of the Faculty of Education. At that time her two sons went through all three years of the program, an experience, which sealed her commitment to its guiding principles and seeded her continued involvement over the past 25 years. In her capacity as parent room facilitator for the Anchor program, Christianne feels passionate about the strength and delicacy of the parent teacher relationship in the education of young children. She believes in the enduring efficacy of co-constructing curriculum with all learners, no matter what their ages may be. She is also director and founder of the Christianne’s Lyceum of Literature and Art, where she works to build transparency around Reggio inspired principles in the creation of lifelong learning communities.

Her Ph.D studies in education (UBC, 2000) focused on using select children’s literature to develop socially relevant curriculum in early childhood settings through to high school. Christianne’s M.Ed studies (Bristol, 1982) centered around the use of literary theming in nursery schools and its effect on children’s attitudes toward reading. Christianne completed her B.Ed (U of A, 1978) in Special Education and received her Diploma in Early Childhood Education in the same year.


Hélène Dussaux

Early Childhood Educator, Preschool Program
Hélène has been a passionate and dedicated Early Childhood Educator for over fifteen years with a specialization in Visual Arts and French Second Language. Born and raised in Paris, France, she has worked in various multicultural settings. In addition to her areas of specialization, she is also keenly interested in linguistic development and second language acquisition. After obtaining her Provincial Instructor Diploma she developed online courses for educational leaders to manage early childhood centres.

Hélène loves fostering a classroom community that is rich in possibilities, full of creative expression, social and emotional learning, and empowerment for children to take care of themselves and each other.

She is a respectful, enthusiastic professional who believes in collaborative approach and strives to provide a caring, exciting and enlightening environment where she can share her love for art, nature and design. She enjoys following the children’s individual interests and tailoring the program to “fit the children” instead of “fitting children” into the program.


Jannel Shute

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Early Childhood Educator, Preschool Program
Jannel has been working alongside children and their families for over 15 years and as an early childhood educator for 10 years. While she has studied and practiced many different childcare philosophies, her passion lies within the emergent model.

Jannel believes that all children are capable, independent researchers who deserve present, patient and caring adults to guide and nurture them along the way. She believes when given choices and encouragement children gain a sense of accomplishment and empowerment that allows them to succeed and fail with confidence.

When not learning and exploring alongside children in the classroom, Jannel enjoys reading (she re-reads the Harry Potter series every year), yoga, dancing and walking in Steveston where she resides with her husband and two children.


Megan Thiesen

Early Childhood Educator, Preschool Program
Megan graduated with distinction from the Langara ECE diploma program. She loves doing things to better herself and further her passion for early childhood education such as, attending workshops, reading articles and “pinteresting”!

Megan has been in the Early Childhood Education field for 5 years. She has also taught gymnastics to young children for 7+ years, during that time she has also ran summer camps, park programs, afterschool programs and has worked with special needs youth.

For Megan, working in the Early Childhood field makes each day an exciting adventure. She uses her creative mind to turn children’s interests into activities that help the children grow in each developmental domain. She loves to be curious with the children and looks forward to providing experiences that inspire passion and a love for learning.

On her own time, Megan loves to travel and explore the outdoors! She also loves crafting and is working on creating her own natural face and candle products.


Geraldine Franquet

Anchor Parent-Toddler Program Teacher
Geraldine (aka Gigi) has a diploma in Early Childhood Education from Langara specializing in special needs and infant and toddler care. She is currently completing her degree in Child and Youth Care through the University of Victoria.

Gigi has been in the Early Childhood Education field for five years. She has had the opportunity to work in a variety of settings with children at different stages of development, with varying abilities and the incredible people in their lives. She looks forward to going to work every day, because you never know what the day will bring.  Her job is forever changing along with the children in her care. She has had the opportunity to witness children’s reactions to new experiences, their first words and first steps, their incredible dance moves and their developing personalities. She is fascinated by children's innate ability and desire to learn, grow and develop. Things that might otherwise be taken for granted are continuously brought back to her attention. Needless to say, working with children has altered her perspective of the world and the things within it that truly matter.

On her own time, Gigi loves to create and explore. She is an aspiring ukulele player, potter and artist. She loves to climb walls and mountains (it makes her feel like a ninja).  She also loves being outdoors and traveling.


Jocelyn Li

Anchor Parent-Toddler Program Teacher
Jocelyn has been working in the Early Childhood Education field for 2 years. Prior to this she worked with young children on the autism spectrum, and teens and adults with a disability. Jocelyn feels so much joy when witnessing the growth and development of those around her which led her to pursue an Early Childhood Education diploma at Langara. Her favourite moments in the classroom are when the children are bursting with a story to tell, when they discover something funny or interesting that everyone must come see, and seeing the proud face of a child who accomplished a task they hadn't been able to do before.

When not at VCSC, Jocelyn works in the forest as a preschool forest educator. She is passionate about taking care of the earth and its beings, and draws inspiration from the beauty and wonders of nature. In her free time, she enjoys reading, hiking, cooking new foods, and spending time with her husband and their dog.


If you are an Early Childhood Educator interested in being added to our roster of substitutes or if you are an ECE student who is interested in doing your practicum with us, please email us at VCSCentre@gmail.com.