RIFC preschool is a bi-lingual Spanish-English preschool with many teachers fluent in Spanish and English. Our program includes music, books and a curriculum that is delivered with our dual-language model. We take many field trips to support our experiential learning philosophy.
The teachers take into careful consideration each child's individual learning style and the overall class interest when preparing the curriculum. At the beginning of each year, teachers develop an individual development plan for each child and continue to track their progress carefully throughout the year.
Each day the children come to RIFC preschool excited to enter into this learning community and ready to embark on new adventures through song, dance, crafts, and lessons.
Parents bring their children to RIFC with confidence, knowing that every day their child is learning something new and that this preschool education is creating a positive foundation for their child's future learning experiences throughout their life.
I was born in Durango, Mexico, and I am now a citizen of Seattle, WA where I live with my family. I have three sons and have been married for 38 years. I have over 20 years of experience as a preschool teacher, program supervisor, mentor teacher and executive director. Fifteen years as a community based trainer and field coach and twelve years college adjacent faculty. I have a BA Human Development, MA organizational change and Dual Language Pedagogy - specializations in Early Childhood Education and Leadership in Education
Early Childhood Education is my passion and profession. As well as, a PhD in Christian Counseling. All of my hopes for children and families lie in this field. I believe that I am a natural teacher. I would like to share the knowledge I gather from professionals, school, and peers with those working in the field. I am always willing to respond to the needs of my teachers in terms of helping orient them with resources and by modeling best practices. I have a heavy emphasis on early literacy and numeracy that is supported in linguistically and culturally relevant ways; I have been mentored by the best.
I value diversity and I believe that all people are admirable regardless of their difference in beliefs, values, and ways of being. Supporting the development of adults and children as they discover their passion and potential – is how I knew that my call is to teach and direct.
“If I can teach a classroom with ten children I can impact the lives of ten children. If I can teach a classroom with ten teachers I can impact the lives of 100 children” - Luz Casio
My summoned name is Javier Israel Casio-Gomez, however to everyone else at Refugee and Immigrant Family Center Bilingual Preschool, I am simply known as Teacher Javie. I was born in the city of Durango, which is also the name of the state of Mexico I was so humbly given birth to, some odd years ago. I’ve been part of the SWEL/RIFC team for many, many years and enjoyed every moment of it before transitioning to Assistant Director. Although, I haven’t always been part of such an amazing organization, I did however, serve and form part of an equally life changing AmeriCorps organization called City Year. As a City Year member, I spent two years serving middle school students hands-on, supporting them both inside and outside of the classroom. I played a fundamental role in helping them reach their educational goals and potential. Once I completed my 22-month commitment with City Year, and served more than 3,400 hours, I figured it was time to get a “real job”, as I worked some odd jobs for about a year, then I was granted the opportunity to work in a childcare center. I was there for about a year when I was given the opportunity to come SWEL. My life goal has always been around trying to help people or work in human services (social work) however; through my time in early childhood education I changed that slightly. I got my AA at Seattle Central Community College, preceded to pursue my Bachelor of Arts in Community Organizing and Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education at Goddard College. I have committed my life to changing the course of history, by fostering and developing young idealist everyday during my tenure here at SWEL & RIFC. My commitment to the children has been to provide and foster an experience like no other before they have to go into the real world. I strive to document the children’s milestones and the essence of their play every day. On a personal note, I have two loving parents, whom also gave birth to two more children of the Casio-Gomez clan. I am married and have three wonderful children.
I am Karla Sofia, and I am the Supervisor at Refugee and Immigrant Family Center Bilingual Preschool. I have been part of RIFC for 11 years now! I started at our sister site and transitioned here at RIFC in 2016. I have been volunteering at RIFC/SWEL since 2011 and have been part of the team since 2013. I did my Job Shadowing Senior project from High School at SWEL in the Creekside classroom with Karina Rojas. I instantly knew that I wanted to work with young children and spark their curiosity. I started ECE classes in 2015 at Highline College and 5 years later I received my Bachelors in Teaching in Early Learning in June of 2020. I was in Washington but my roots are from Durango, Mexico. I am fluently bilingual in both Spanish and English. I enjoy traveling to new places with my family and explore new cities. I had the opportunity to travel to New Zealand in 2016 to educate myself more about the Reggio Emelia philosophy, interactions, and teaching strategies. I plan to continue to enhance my knowledge in early education and open myself up to the opportunities that come my way. One of my personal and most favorite things to do is taking pictures in action to capture all the special moments in life.
My name is Reyna Carmona. I was born in the beautiful Costa Chica of
Acapulco, Guerrero, Mexico. I moved to the U.S. when I was three years old and I have
been lucky to live in California, Florida and Washington. With the Pacific Northwest
being my favorite place with the chilly, rainy weather. In my free time I enjoy spending
time with my family, going on road trips, getting to do fun crafting projects and enjoy
being creative. I have been doing nonprofit work for the past five years and it has been
very rewarding. I enjoy helping my community and watching my community thrive. In
my Family Support Specialist position I look forward to building strong relationships
with families to help them succeed in their goals and wishes.
Hello everyone, my name is Lorena Hernández I have been married for 27 years and I have two children, I am from the state of Jalisco in Mexico and I have been living in the state of Washington for 20 years. I enjoy being in nature in my free time and I like walking with my pets and admiring the outdoors that surround me in this beautiful state. My family is my priority in my life, which is why I try to always have quality time with them. When my children were
young, I volunteered at Para Los Niños, a non-profit association. There I learned how important it is, for our children to speak their native language in addition to English and how parents are responsible for transmitting our customs, language and traditions, to our children. I joined the RIFC team and I am excited to be part of a great community. I am expanding my knowledge and am attending Highline College. I want to further my knowledge in Early Childhood Education by also attending trainings, workshops and opening myself to all the opportunities that come my way, and thus give better service to the community and a better education for our children.
My name is Maricruz, I was born in Ciudad Hidalgo Michoacan Mexico, a Very Hot place and is well known for the Carnitas. At the age of 17 I moved to live in the United States since one of my older brothers motivated me to come here and over time, I liked work and life here and decided to start my family. Since I arrived in the United States I have worked a lot in hotels and thanks to my performance I have had opportunities to always grow, I started cleaning rooms, supervising and finally I got to become a house-keeping manager. Over time I met my husband with whom I have two beautiful daughters, Mallory and Aaliyah with whom I love to spend a lot of time are what I love most in life. In my free time what I like to do the most is spend time with my family, go camping, play soccer, we also like to go on vacation, one of our favorite places is Kauai, and right now I'm learning to skate. My family is very large I have five sisters and five brothers, and almost all my brothers have children, I have many nephews, over the years I have helped my family to take care of their children from babies to twelve years. Many years ago, I realized that I liked many children, but unfortunately, I had not been presented with the opportunity to prepare and do what I like now thanks to RIFC ah given me this great opportunity I want to focus and prepare for a great future, for my daughters and for yours too.
I'm Keren Mendez from Siguatepeque, Honduras I am 30 years old. I am married and have a daughter of 2 years 9 months.
I love to visit nature forests, beach, lakes, rivers, and camping. Trinkets are my weakness. My favorite colors are yellow and aqua.
I am a teacher and have a degree in Early Childhood Education. Working with children makes me happy and excited. I look forward to seeing their growth throughout the school year.
Silvia L. Galdamez Cortez, came to Seattle when she was fourteen years old. I was born and raised in a beautiful town in El Salvador. During her time off, I enjoy going on nature walks with her family.
I strongly believe that teaching is more than a profession, it’s an opportunity to empower youth children and set them for success. I began my journey on September of 2015 searching and educating myself on how to be a positive influence in the life of youth children and their families. I have a AAS Degree in Early Childhood Education. Currently working on her BA in Early Childhood Education. While studying about different philosophies of education, I learned about Reggio Emilia Approach and Maria Montessori and her method of teaching. This led me to apply to a Montessori school to learn more about the method; I instantly fell in-love with the method. I observed how children develop the joy for learning and how beneficial and practical the method is. After reflecting and reaching I understood what the children were missing the most important thing, play. I believe that children should have the opportunity to play and create things. That children should use their own imagination and build their own knowledge! I am ready to begin my journey here at RIFC, where children are encouraged to be kids.
My name is Rosario. I arrived in the United States when I was 20 years old. I grew up in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, called the “Magic Village.” On my free time I like to exercise, go out and take nature walks. I also enjoy working with the Hispanic community, especially with women. In 2019 I started my AAS degree at Highline College in Teaching in Early Learning. I value the Reggio Emilia Approach and the holistic focus. I am excited to join the RIFC team and expand children’s learning.
My name is Patricia Diaz, I like to be called Patty, I am originally from Guatemala, where I reached my studies in the Computer Science and Business Administration Career. I am the mother of two wonderful children. For family reasons I emigrated to the United States in search of a better quality of life. I am passionate about helping others, I work as a communicator doing volunteer hours in a Christian music station. I currently have a bachelor's degree in Christian Counseling, talking to people and supporting them in their different situations is one of the things that make me feel happy. I am a grandma to a beautiful 5-year-old girl. I am extremely excited and especially grateful for the opportunity to serve as a support at RIFC.
Being with this team is becoming a motivation for my life, so I am committed to preparing myself more and more.
My name is Ena Rosa Brito, I was born on a beautiful Caribbean Island called the Dominican Republic. She studied at the Catholic University of Puerto Rico, BA, in business administration with a concentration in accounting.
When I arrived in Seattle my passion for children motivated me to continue studying at Highline College and where I completed two certificates "Washington State ECE Initial Certificate" and "State ECE Certificate". My goal is to continue my studies in education to provide more excellent work for our children.
I enjoy working with children, watching their development, and supporting them to discover how wonderful the world around us is using natural resources as our Reggio Emilia philosophy says nature is our third teacher. I carry out educational and therapeutic activities as a volunteer, supporting Hispanic communities, motivating families to feel valued, loved, and proud of who they are and where they come from (their culture).
My name is Azeneth Alvarado. I am 20 years old. I was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. I am currently a student at Highline College working towards getting my bachelor’s degree in pediatric nursing. My family is both from Honduras and Mexico. I am the oldest child, my first language was Spanish, so I am fluent in both English and Spanish. My favorite colors are white and pink. I enjoy traveling and taking pictures of all my adventures, I love visiting parks with amazing views and spending quality time with family and friends is very important to me. I am very grateful to be working at RIFC. I’ve always enjoyed working with kids and I want to use my time here to grow and learn from everyone around me.