Building Blocks Director
Lead Teacher Monday/Wednesday/Friday Class
Sally was born and raised in California. She received her BA in English from the University of Santa Clara and in her ongoing education has completed multiple early childhood education courses. She came to know and love the cooperative, play-based model when she found Parents Nursery School in Palo Alto with her second of four daughters. After finishing six years as a participating parent — including a year when two daughters were enrolled while she was a board co-president — she came back as the 4-5’s teacher and co-director, where she remained happily immersed for twelve years. Sally understands, respects and applauds the commitment families make when choosing a cooperative preschool! After moving to the Aptos area in 2014, Sally spent the year as a director at PNS. Moving on, while sad at the time, allowed her to find Building Blocks, and she feels blessed and excited to become a part of the community!
Lead Teacher Tuesday/Thursday Class
Nicole Gomez grew up in Santa Clara. She earned her BA degree in Child and Adolescent Development from San Jose State University and her AA in Liberal Arts at De Anza College. Nicole has been teaching early childhood music classes with Groove Academy of Drumming since 2008 and has been a substitute teacher at the SJSU preschools, overseeing not only young children, but college students as well. She spent a year volunteering at the San Jose Family Shelter childcare center and is currently a Court Appointed Special Advocate for a young foster child. Nicole moved to the mountains with her family in 2005, and her youngest daughter attended Building Blocks from 2009-2010. With one of her daughters across the street in middle school and one daughter at Los Gatos High School, Nicole looked forward to returning to Building Blocks as the Lead Teacher of the T/Th class and having the opportunity to touch the lives of so many young mountain children. Outside of school, Nicole can usually be found with her family at the softball field, watching gymnastics, or children’s theater. She also enjoys roller skating, music, reading, and spending time with her two yellow labs and two cats.
Assistant teacher Cindy Genest was born and raised in a small community in Quebec, Canada. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Nutrition from McGill University in Montreal in 2004. Cindy worked as a dietitian, mainly with pregnant women and young children from 2004 to 2011. In 2012 the Genest family moved to California from Seattle and eventually settled in the mountains. Cindy loves living in the Santa Cruz Mountains with her two children (who have both attended Building Blocks), her husband, her old lab mix Clifford, and her cat Albert. On the weekends, Cindy likes to spend time outdoors, exploring beaches with her family and visiting with friends. Assistant Teacher Cindy is excited to continue her role at Building Blocks Preschool!
Assistant Teacher Sara Cokes was born and raised in England and has lived with her family in the Santa Cruz Mountains for sixteen years, with a period of time in between in Australia. Sara loves working with children and has much experience including having three boys of her own, being involved at Loma, CT English, and Los Gatos High School as a classroom volunteer and as a gardening instructor in the Loma Garden. Her education includes studies in horticulture and professional work in IT and as a Landscape Gardener. Assistant Teacher Cokes believes that every age and stage of childhood is magical and her favorite thing in the world is having a house (or classroom) full of children!