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Meet The Staff

Mount Carmel Kindergarten is a family run nursery school and our staff form part of this family.  We pride ourself on the diversity of our staff team and the broad range of experiences they bring to the setting.

Lucia Federici

Director of Education 

Lucia established Mount Carmel Kindergarten with her husband Franco in 1985.  As a mother of ten children herself she is considered, by many, as a guru in the Early Years sector. 

Qualifications: Early Years Professional Status (2009), BA (Hons) Educational Studies 2007.

Franco Federici


Franco deals with the administration, fee enquiries and general maintenance of the nursery school.   He grew up in Rome and has a passion for pizza (he even installed a wood burning pizza oven in his kitchen).

Gabriella Spooner

Principal - Sandpit House 

Gabriella Spooner (nee Federici) has worked in Early Years since 2008 and brings her experience from a number of different roles within the sector. Now as a mother of 2 children she has gained a new perspective and understanding of the pressures on modern Mums. In her ‘spare’ time she enjoys singing and dancing with the St Albans Musical Theatre Company. 

Qualifications: Early Years Professional Status (2013), BA (Hons) Educational Studies and Early Years (2013)

Roberto Federici

Principal - Kinder Lodge 

Roberto had initially pursued a career in law and qualified as a Solicitor in 2014. However, not enthused about a lifetime behind an office desk he retrained as an Early Years Teacher and joined the family business. Roberto brings a male perspective into the nursery and has enhanced the parents’ experience through introducing online learning journals, weekly blogs and social media. 

Qualifications: Early Years Teacher Status (2015), Solicitor (non-practising), LLB Law (2010). 

Publications: M.Sakr, R. Federici, N.Hall, B. Trivedy, L.O'Brien, Creativity and Making in Early Childhood, 1st ed. Bloomsbury, 2018

Natalie Rayment

Miss Natalie joined Mount Carmel in 2008.  She organises one to one sessions with the preschool children to develop their maths, literacy and reading skills in the classroom.  Outside of nursery she runs her own face painting company which is a big hit at our holiday club.  She also has an interest for indoor skydiving! 

Qualifications: BA (Hons) Educational Studies (2014)

Stacey Cannell

Mrs Cannell joined Mount Carmel in 2012.  She is a mother to two girls and brings her insight as a parent when supporting families at the nursery.  Mrs Cannell loves to be outdoors, riding horses or walking her dog, and shares this interest with the children at every opportunity. 

Qualifications: CACHE Level 3 Childcare

Tegan Beechey

Mrs Beechey joined Mount Carmel in 2015.  She has a natural affinity with children and enhances their experience with her energy and enthusiasm. Before working at the nursery Mrs Beechey sailed the seven seas working on cruise ships, then working her magic at the Harry Potter tour in Leavesden. 

Qualifications: CACHE Level 3 in Childcare

Barbara Fordos

Mrs Fordos joined the nursery in 2016, bringing her energetic spirit and natural rapport with the children. Mrs Fordos is Hugarian but comes from Slovakia, and outside of nursery has an interest in photography. 

Qualifications: Currently undertaking CACHE Level 3 Childcare

Megan Richards

Miss Richards joined Mount Carmel in 2016.  She has been a dancer since the age of 5 and has competed in events around the country, bagging her over 50 trophies in disciplines including street, ballet, tap and modern.  Miss Richards brings her energy and enthusiasm into everything she does in the nursery, particularly when leading dance activities in the gym. 

Qualifications: CACHE Level 2 in Childcare and currently undertaking Level 3.

Marta Coronado Colorado

Marta Coronado Colorado

Miss Marta joined Mount Carmel in 2017.  Originally from Spain, Marta brings a wealth of knowledge and experience from a range of different settings across the continent, together with her zest for life and beaming smile. She turns any session into a fiesta and loves to show the children her flamenco at every opportunity! 

Qualifications: BA (Hons) Early Years (2011), Early Years Teacher Certificate (Spain, 2012), BA (Hons) Primary Education (2016)

Cristina Baker

Mrs Baker worked at Mount Carmel from 2007 to 2009 when she moved to Dorchester with her young family. She returned to St Albans and in 2018 rejoined Mount Carmel as a drama and dancing teacher.  Cristina is a member of Equity and her passion lies in Italian opera. In her spare time she loves to perform at local events, including the St Albans Christmas Lights switch on. 

Qualifications: BA (Hons) Drama and Theatre Studies

Susan Wilkins

Mrs Wilkins joined the nursery in 2018. She brings a wonderfully personal degree of warmth and experience, having watched her own children enjoy their nursery years at Mount Carmel. After they started school she just couldn't stay away! Before moving to St Albans, Susan worked as a PA at Google and L'Oréal. 

Qualifications: MA (Hons) Sociology (2004).

Hannah Axworthy

Miss Hannah joined Mount Carmel in 2018.  She previously undertook her university placement with us in 2016. She has a wealth of experience and is always thinking of new ideas for fun activities and games; there’s never a dull day! 

Qualifications: Level 3 in CACHE Childcare Learning and Development, BA (Hons) Education Studies (2017).

Ishanka Fernando

Mrs Fernando joined Mount Carmel in 2018. She has previous experience working with children with additional needs and is currently developing her skills in Makaton signing and Downs Syndrome.  Outside of nursery Ishanka is an avid baker, creating celebration cakes and other baked treats for friends and family – watch out Great British Bake Off! 

Qualifications: CACHE Level 3 in Childcare

Maria Campagna

Mrs Campagna joined us in 2019. She is a mother to two young daughters (and a puppy!), so brings a parent’s perspective and an insatiable sense of fun. Maria’s family come from Sicily so she shares the Federici family’s passion for all things Italian! 

Qualifications: BA (Hons) Geography (2004).