Sophia Moros was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois where she completed her studies at St. Xavier University earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Literature and a Master of Arts Degree in Reading. Sophia began her career teaching second and third grades in Illinois (1998 - 2001), and after obtaining her M.A. in Reading she worked as a Reading Specialist (2001-2005) between grades K-8 and had the honor to work with Sony Corporation Education to implement an interactive reading program called Lightspan. Through the use of the Sony Playstation, she used educational software as her main tool to successfully bring the lowest twenty-fifth percentile students up to state standards. She has also worked as a Reading Literacy Teacher to ESL students (2007 - 2008), between grades K-6, and worked closely with her colleagues in order to reach literacy goals through team-teaching strategies.
After 9 years of teaching Sophia seized the opportunity to study at Trinity College, Barcelona, and earned both a TESOL Certificate and Business English Certificate. She also taught temporarily at this institute before deciding to move to Athens where she had accepted a position as the Director of English Studies in a large private language school. With sufficient international experience and an open mind to possibilities, Ms. Moros began working at the American Community Schools, Athens in 2009, and provided a nurturing, creative, and empowering environment to her elementary students.
During this time, her professional growth included online certification classes focused on Dyslexia through Buffalo State University of New York (2010), participated in AERO International training for mathematics and social studies standards (2011), took part in the European Council of International Schools (ECIS) conferences –the first in Athens, Greece (2012) and presented in Zurich, Switzerland (2015). In addition to this, she presented at the 9th Annual Learning Difference Conference to showcase an ACS Athens Elementary School initiative program she and Ms. Stavi Dimas created for second grade, called "iteach2!.” In April 2016 she had the privilege of presenting alongside Dr. Andreas Tsokos, the Academy Mathematics educator and Division Chair of Mathematics & Technology, at the ACS Athens Colloquium, in order to demonstrate how Conceptual Mathematics builds computational accuracy.
By June 2016, Sophia was already enrolled in the Academic Leadership Course for Standards-Based Curriculum in Arlington, Virginia U.S.A. in order to pursue her career goal of becoming principal. In the summer of 2017, she revisited Virginia for continued training through the Office of Overseas Schools, AERO, U.S. Department of State Mathematic Workshop.
She takes great pride in being a member of ACS Athens and is always looking forward to implementing best practices and aligning curricular advances in the elementary school. It is with this boundless enthusiasm and great honor she embraces her continued role as the Elementary School Principal for the fifth consecutive year.
Valeria Laitinen earned a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Harvard College and a Master’s degree in International Affairs from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. She is currently working toward a Master’s degree in International Educational Leadership through Endicott University. Ms. Laitinen was born and raised in Milan, Italy until the age of 13 and moved to Newton, Massachusetts for high school.
Prior to becoming a teacher, Ms. Laitinen worked on promoting democratic practices and free and fair elections in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Nigeria, and Bangladesh through internationally funded NGOs. In Bangladesh, Ms. Laitinen also designed and taught a course on resume writing and interviewing skills at East-West University and served as a study abroad advisor in The American Center in Dhaka.
Ms. Laitinen has taught in international schools in Slovakia, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine and spent three years at a Title I school in Springfield, Virginia that had a large ESL population. She has used the rich cultural and linguistic diversity in each of her classrooms to promote open-mindedness and empathy.
Ms. Laitinen is passionate about creating a culture of thinking and has used visible thinking strategies and routines from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education's Project Zero in the classroom. She has pursued training in Responsive Classroom, a classroom management approach that is designed to create a classroom community in which students feel safe, challenged, and supported. In her previous schools, Ms. Laitinen led staff development sessions on Growth Mindset, effective teacher language, and inquiry as well as professional book discussions. Growth Mindset is an educational theory that emphasizes that all students can learn through dedication and hard work and promotes resilience by encouraging students to take academic risks and learn through their mistakes. In addition to English, Ms. Laitinen speaks Italian, French, Russian, a little German, and is eagerly learning Greek.
Ms. Chryssoula Xiggi holds a Teaching English License in ESL recognized by the Greek Ministry of Education and a Certificate in Translation (English - Greek general and specialized translations).
At ACS Athens she has held the following positions: Middle School Counseling Secretary, Middle School Principal’s Secretary, Registrar, and Assistant to the IB Director. She currently holds the position of Administrative Assistant to the Elementary School Principal and she provides the translation services at ACS Athens. Ms. Xiggi was born and raised in Athens, Greece.
Demetri Pelidis earned his Bachelor of Education from Boston College, a Master of Education (M.Ed), in Counseling Psychology, from Keene State College of New Hampshire, and his Advanced Graduate Degree in School Counseling from Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts. Born in Zimbabwe, Africa, and reared in Athens, Greece, Demetri is a proud graduate of ACS Athens.
Mr. Pelidis first started working at ACS as a High School Counselor and has served in many capacities with both in the Middle School and Academy Counseling Departments. In his role this year as Pre-Junior Kindergarten-5th grade School Counselor he is responsible for approximately 400 students. As the Elementary School Counselor, he works with school personnel, secretaries, and administrators to meet the needs of our students. Demetri serves as a consultant to teachers and parents by providing support in regard to meeting student academic and emotional needs. While working together with teachers and administrators he will strive to build a partnership between the school and the home life.
Demetri has interned and worked in various school systems both in Boston, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire School Districts. Demetri has completed over 25 years of professional experience in counseling and teaching students in middle school, high school, undergraduate, and graduate school levels. He is a certified school counselor from the state of Massachusetts, and actively enjoys his professional affiliation with ASCA-The American School Counselor Association.
Mr. Pelidis also assists our ACS athletic department as the Boys Varsity Soccer Coach. It has been a very rewarding experience for him! Over the years our Lancer Boys Soccer Teams have earned first place gold medals in ISST championships. Prior to coaching soccer for ACS, Athens, Coach Pelidis played his collegiate soccer for the Boston College Eagles, where he was named Senior Athlete of the Year. He also played professionally in the American Soccer League for the Boston Bolts.
Ms. Roula Stefanidou completed her Bachelor of Science in Education (Elementary Education grades 1 – 8) with a minor in Child Psychology at the University of Houston.
Prior to moving to Greece, Ms. Stefanidou was working with Gifted and Talented Kindergarten and First Grade children. She holds three endorsements, Early Childhood, Kindergarten, and Gifted and Talented. As a kindergarten teacher, she participated in an Early Literacy Writing Project where she was a writing advisor in other elementary schools. This will be her fourth year as a teacher in the PJ/JK classroom at ACS.
Ms. Stefanidou was an active member and presenter of KToT (Kindergarten Teachers of Texas). Her presentations focused on encouraging other colleagues to include writing in their early childhood curriculum. In 1986, she was voted "Teacher of the Year" in the Houston Independent School District.
Apart from teaching, Ms. Stefanidou also filled the part-time position of assistant principal in the elementary school where she was teaching. Her summers were spent coordinating activities for young children at the Greek Orthodox Community Center Summer Camp in Houston, Texas.
Ms. Stefanidou strives to help every child grow as a learner and as a person.
Ms. Korinna Kokkali completed her studies at the University of Illinois, in Urbana-Champaign, where she graduated with honors in her education courses. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood Education and received her certification from the State of Illinois. In addition to her degree, she also holds approval for Special Education. Ms. Kokkalis was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois.
Ms. Kokkali has been teaching children in both first grade and primarily in Junior Kindergarten since 2001. Having first worked in the Chicago Public School system and then moving on to ACS Athens in 2006, she has had much experience working with young children who come from diverse backgrounds, many of which were students who spoke English as a second language. This will be her fifteenth year teaching Junior Kindergarten with ACS Athens.
Ms. Kokkali is always pursuing new and innovative methods of facilitating the learning process so that she can enhance and improve her own teaching style. She has attended many conferences since attaining her certification, including the annual conference on Learning Differences and Innovative Summit held at ACS Athens, as well as the ECIS conference which was held in 2012. In 2015-16, Ms. Kokkali conducted and concluded an action research project on how she could facilitate her students’ conceptual understanding of number sense through a variety of methods, techniques, and activities. She then had the opportunity to present her findings and conclusions with two of her colleagues at the ACS Colloquium on Sharing Best Practices. In 2019 Ms. Kokkali had the opportunity to attend the Play on Early Education Conference, an International Conference where best practices were shared regarding Early Childhood Education and the importance of play at this age. Ms. Kokkali continues to conduct action research and is currently investigating the most effective and appropriate practices of visual and written language development with JK students while preserving and cherishing the enthusiasm of learning through play and discovery in all her students.
Ms. Dimitri received her BA (Honors) in Psychology from Deree College and afterwards attended McGill University in Montreal, Canada where she completed her Masters in Education. Ms. Dimitri is an ACS Athens alumna. She has been teaching kindergarten at ACS Athens for seventeen years and truly enjoys working with this unique, rewarding age group. Being a fervent child advocate, she continually tries to keep abreast of best practices in the classroom and related child care issues.
Ms. Eleftheria Ferentinos holds a Bachelor’s degree in Science from St. John’s University. Ms. Ferentinos is certified in Early Childhood from the state of Florida. As well, she has completed the Educator Preparation Institute at NCATE, the accredited Professional Education Unit of the University of West Florida. Ms. Ferentinos has been a part of the ACS family and the Early Childhood Department since 2002.
Ms. Ferentinos participated in the ACS Athens Colloquium where she presented, along with Ms. Kokkalis and Ms. Lamprou, strategies of conceptual and constructive teaching in mathematics for Early Childhood. Ms. Ferentinos completed an online program on teaching math conceptually provided by Stanford University. Through her Action Research, she researched ways of effectively teaching writing in Kindergarten while using the Writing Workshop method. Ms. Ferentinos has participated in several conferences to further her professional development, including the ACS annual Conference on Learning Differences, the ECIS conference held at ACS Athens. Last year Ms. Ferentinos attended the first international conference on Play in Early Education held in Athens. She has participated in workshops held at ACS Athens such as the Reflection and Revision course held by Mr. Medeiros, the Creating Respectful and Productive Learning Communities course held by Dr. Pelonis, and the training program on teaching STEM in Elementary Education with Dr. Cherif. Furthermore, she has completed courses towards her masters in Effectively Teaching in Early Childhood, Social media in the Classroom, and Teaching Children with Learning Difficulties and Disabilities.
Ms. Ferentinos believes in keeping up to date with new ideas and innovations in Early Childhood and has developed curriculum changes in the Kindergarten Program. Ms. Ferentinos is passionate about helping children grow during the early years and is continually looking at elements of effective teaching.
On temporary assignment to the Technology Office for the 2020-21 academic year.
Ms. Angela Kiki Spiliot earned a B.Sc. in Education, and a M.Sc. in Education at St. John’s University, School of Education, in New York City. She taught Technology for two years in New York then moved to Rhode Island, where she continued to teach Technology K-12 in Newport. She holds a United States Life Teaching Certification, from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Ms. Spiliot has taught Kindergarten through the 12th grade, adult after school Technology Programs, Microsoft Office and at the University level, Technology in Education. She graduated from ACS Athens in 1983.
After university, she moved back to Athens and taught Information Technology and was the Information Technology Coordinator K-12 at ACS Athens. She has also taught for ten years at the University of Laverne, Athens, in the Masters Program 1990 - 2000. She led Master candidates towards their degree in M.Sc. in Education & Psychology. Ms. Spiliot has attended many educational seminars in the Athens area and overseas in the past 26 years. These seminars have improved her specific educational techniques and have translated into great success stories for her students. Her knowledge on the field of Technology has also taken her on Greek TV, where she has spoken about the positive and negative aspects of Technology and the Child. One of her strengths is "using technology in the classroom to build self-esteem". Building positive self-esteem into her students is a major aspect of who she is, whether she is in the classroom or in a computer lab.
Teaching in the Elementary School since 2012 has brought an abundance of joy into her life. Her love for teaching is evident and widely seen every day from her students. She builds character, love, support and ethics. She finds each child’s strengths and builds on that. As a second grade teacher she developed "Happy Hats Writing in Style with Juicy Word". Her students participated in the Athens ACS, colloquium, where they showcased their writing work, live, to other international schools that were present. This year she is excited to be teaching kindergarten, again!
Ms. Maglara has been a Kindergarten Aide, Day Care Supervisor, and Bus Monitor at ACS Athens Elementary School since 1983. Ms. Maglara was born in Athens, Greece and moved to New York at a young age with her family. She graduated high school In the States and then returned to Athens.
Ms. Katsipi has been working for thirty-three years at ACS Athens Elementary School. She was an aide in the Elementary School for ten years and has been working for the past twenty-three years as an aide and Day Care supervisor in the JK and Kindergarten classrooms. Ms. Katsipi holds a Diploma in the Tourist Business from T.E.I. of Patras. She has also volunteered as a nurse for Red Cross Hospital.
Ms. Katerina Demoulini is an ACS Athens graduate. She has been a teacher's aide at ACS Athens Elementary School since 1981.