Our qualified and dedicated teachers are at the core of the program. The school employs two full-time preschool teachers and two part-time teachers, as well as three teacher's aides. All are native or fully bilingual German speakers and are also fluent in English. Every teacher/teacher's aide has extensive credentials in early childhood education. A high teacher-child ratio (1:6) ensures that each child gets the attention s/he needs. The monthly staff meetings and yearly staff training inspire new ideas and resources for the program. Each staff member brings special skills to the table, contributing with their unique rich life and work experience.
BAKS is administered by the director under the guidance of a volunteer board of directors made up of four parents.
Ute Dawe (director)
Ute was born in Berlin, raised near Hamburg and has lived in London, Geneva and the United States. She has been in the field of education for over 30 years.
She first became intrigued with early childhood education after working as an au pair in London, just after finishing her Abitur. There she discovered her love for teaching young children, went on to study at a Montessori college and became a Montessori teacher in London. Some years later, she moved back to Hamburg and began working with special needs children at a Montessori preschool in Hamburg. This experience cemented her decision to dedicate her life to education, and led her to enroll at the University of Hamburg to study special education. As soon as she completed the first state exam, she moved to San Francisco with her finance and took an opportunity to return to preschool teaching in the beautiful Pacific Heights neighborhood. There, she discovered the play-based curriculum for herself and has since been a strong supporter of developmentally appropriate practices.
In 2012, Ute became the director at Bay Area Kinderstube and enjoyed four wonderful years with the program. In mid-2016, her husband’s work took the family to Geneva for a couple of years, but upon her return to the Bay Area in 2018, she recommenced her work with Kinderstube.
She is excited to be part of a team of progressive teachers who continually strive to improve, innovate and enrich the program while preserving the warm, personal and community-oriented atmosphere that Kinderstube has become known for over the years.
Ute lives in Oakland with her husband and three energetic children.
Vanessa Wild (assistant director)
Vanessa joined the teaching staff in December 2018. She moved from Germany to the Bay Area just a few months ago. Vanessa received her bachelors and masters degree from the University of Mainz in Germany, where she studied to be a German, Biology, Politics and Educational Science teacher for secondary schools. She has been working for several years with children aged two or more in a German Kindergarten and led early childhood development projects for the City of Mainz.
At Kinderstube Vanessa is happy to share her passion for teaching and foster the children in their social, emotional and language development. Therefore, she will lead the “Hasen” in special activities such as science and literacy class and share the other curricular activities with the rest of the team.
For the school year 2019-2020 Vanessa is assuming the role of assistant director at Kinderstube and will also teach a class at BAKS plus.
Alexandra Aubertin (teacher)
Alexandra Aubertin is in her 6th year at Kinderstube. Alexandra was a teacher at Kinderstube when her daughter Fabienne enrolled and she is happy to be back in the team. Alexandra is originally from Germany (near Frankfurt) and grew up in Switzerland (near Zurich). She attended City College of San Francisco to study Early Childhood Education. She has also taken classes at Merritt College in Oakland. Alexandra enjoys the Kinderstube community very much and is always amazed how quickly children learn a second language. She likes that the children at Kinderstube not only grow up bilingual but also bicultural and she believes that it will help them to be open minded about other cultures. Since the parents of the Kinderstube come from different cultural backgrounds, some of our kids grow up trilingual.
Alexandra especially enjoys conducting the science class with the children and teaching them to be independent. Alexandra has a 15 year old daughter, Fabienne, and a little dog with the name Lolabella. She lives at Marina Bay in Richmond and has a scenic commute to Kinderstube on the days She takes her bike. In her free time She likes to explore new places in the Bay Area, go biking/hiking and spending time with her daughter. She also enjoys baking and she is looking forward to do some baking with the children in the future. Alexandra believes that the parents are the child's first and best teacher. Her role as a teacher is to create a partnership with the parents to continue to foster what the parents have already begun to teach them. Alexandra is looking forward to working together to help all children reach their full potential.
Sunita Bajracharya (assistant teacher)
Sunita grew up in Nepal and moved she moved to Germany where her husband after marrying comes from. She worked as an intern in preschools in Leipzig and in Vienna before moving to Berkeley eleven years ago, where she has studied Early Childhood Education. She has two daughters with whom she speaks German (and Newari, her mother tongue) at home. Sunita likes early morning walks, cooking, brewing beer, and spending time with her family and friends. She works part-time at Kinderstube and enriches the classroom with her warm and caring way.
Beatrix Lehmann (teacher)
Bea was born and raised in Austria, received a degree in economics at the WU in Vienna. She worked in marketing in Vienna and in various business capacities in San Francisco. She earned 12 ECE units at Merritt College in Oakland. At Kinderstube she is involved in cooking with the children, biweekly science projects with the foxes and the learning garden. She loves being around children and see them grow, and very much enjoys being part of the Kinder Stube community. Her work with children began as a teenager when she worked as a summer camp counselor. For many years she volunteered in the classroom at a Berkeley public school. In the Bay area she also volunteered at the San Francisco Zoo, the Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors and at the moment as a feline foster provider with the East Bay Humane Society. In her free time she enjoys the outdoors, hiking, bicycling, camping, sailing and gardening.