Meet The Preschool Educators


Preschool Director, Rebecca Lockwood, M.A. in Clinical Psychology with a child/family concentration and a B.S. in Psychology with a minor in PreK/Primary Education has been employed at Forty Carrots since 2006.  Rebecca's background includes a strong emphasis on PreK/Primary years and Montessori training, as well as child development and family systems. Prior to becoming Preschool Director, Rebecca most recently worked as a Parenting Educator at Riverview High School, SOLVE Maternity Homes in Manatee County, First Step Mothers and Infants Program and Sarasota and Manatee County Libraries. Previously, she also worked in the Preschool in Wing 1, as well as many other Parenting Program classes. Rebecca brings with her a long history and firm commitment to the mission of Forty Carrots. 


Alexis, B.F.A. in Art Education from Tufts University. Alexis has been working at Forty Carrots since 2012 with experience in all age groups. During that time she has had the opportunity to loop with many of the same children since age 2. She will be teaching in the Daisy room with Ms. Rachel. Alexis has taught and worked with children in New Jersey. Massachusetts, India and Florida. She is looking forward to creating a 360 degree learning environment in which the children learn from her and she continues to grow and learn from the children.


Amanda W., M.A. in Psychology, Elementary Education (K-6), Certified Elementary K-6 and VPK, Management and HR Training and Development. Amanda joined the Forty Carrots staff in 2005 and has enjoyed teaching in the Charlie, Dart and Davis rooms over the past 9 years. She has also taught kindergarten and middle school science. Prior to working at Forty Carrots, Amanda worked as a caregiver for special needs preschoolers. When Amanda is not at Forty Carrots she enjoys cooking, traveling, swimming and spending time with her two school-age daughters.


Debbie, C.D.A. has been with Forty Carrots since it opened in 1993 and has been teaching for 25 years.  Her passion is working with children and their families. Debbie loves her job and looks forward to each and every day.  She has been married for 39 years with two grown children and a four year old granddaughter, who attends the Preschool.  When not working, Debbie loves to read, boat, cook and spend time with her family.


Debra S., M.A.T in Elementary Education (K-6), Certified Elementary K-6 and ESOL, and B.A. in Anthropology, Debra is excited to join Forty Carrots in the Dart Classroom this year. She has previously taught kindergarten in Sarasota County and has recently been home raising her two sons. When Debra is not at Forty Carrots, she enjoys spending time with her family, volunteering in her son's classroom, cooking, and swimming. 


Laura, B.S. in Social Work and is currently working on completing her Master's in Social Work online through Florida State University. She also has completed classes and training in Early Childcare and Education at State College of Florida. Laura loves working with children and wants to continue to work with them throughout her career path. Art and science are her favorite activities to do with the children in her classroom. When not working, Laura loves spending time outdoors camping or at the beach, doing art, writing, sewing and cooking.


Lauren, B.S. in Elementary Education has been teaching at Forty Carrots for 6 years, and is excited to be reunited with Ms. Debbie in the Grace Classroom. Lauren has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from The University of South Florida. She is originally from Chicago, but has been in Florida for 17 years. Teaching is her passion, and she has been working with children for almost 9 years. You will often find her working on writing and dancing with the children, getting messy with art, or reading a book in the library.


Mary Jane has been working at Forty Carrots since 1995.  During this time, she has facilitated classes in the Parenting Center and On Wheels, has been a classroom teacher in the preschool, and a floater, which she continues to be for this year. She describes her floater position as “a true gift to be able to be involved with all the classes and get to know all the children."  Mary Jane enjoys interacting with the children, and watching and helping them grow through their time at Forty Carrots.  Mary Jane has two grown children, who have both graduated from college.


Rachel, B.A. in Child & Family Studies has been working at Forty Carrots since 2013 in the Daisy Class.  She was born and raised in Nashville, TN, but relocated to Sarasota three years ago.  She earned her degree from the University of Tennessee and has taught children from Pre-K through 5th Grade over the last nine years. Her passion is working with children and introducing them to new and exciting ideas every day.  Rachel's goals in the classroom are to keep the children challenged and engaged, while still maintaining a fun and entertaining learning environment.


Therese, B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the University of South Florida. This is Therese's fourth year at Forty Carrots. She is very excited to be in the new role of a Wing Two floater. While teaching, she liked to share and incorporate experiences from her native Sweden and other places she has traveled while working in the fly-fishing industry. When not at Forty Carrots, Therese enjoys spending time with her family.    


Trish, B.A., Elementary Education from Elon University in North Carolina. She joined the Forty Carrots family at the end of the 2013-2014 school year. Prior to that she was home with her twin boys for almost six years and worked part time as an aide at their preschool. Her background includes work in the fields of elementary education, early childhood development, child protection, and adult education. She loves working with children and enjoys seeing them learn and grow through a variety of experiences including play, exploration and creativity. When she is not at Forty Carrots, Trish loves spending time with her family, reading, crafting, cooking and walking.