Meet the Administration & Lead Teachers




Group photo administration and teachers


Lorayne CarbonLorayne Carbon

Lorayne Carbon has been the Director of the Early Childhood Center since 2003.  Lorayne is a graduate of SUNY Buffalo and holds a MSEd from Bank Street College of Education.  Her prior work includes teaching Head Start, preschool and kindergarten and directing childcare programs in Westchester County.  Lorayne was an adjunct for many years at Westchester Community College, teaching coursework in early childhood foundations and curriculum. She currently facilitates a graduate advisement seminar in the Art of Teaching graduate program and is a faculty advisory member of the SLC Child Development Institute.  Supporting children and families within a caring, kind community, coupled with the ability to nurture the progressive, play based program at the Early Childhood Center is what keeps Lorayne excited about the work she does on a daily basis.

"A child's natural sense of wonder thrives at the ECC. Immersed in hands-on experiences, guided by teachers who are sensitive to their ideas, strengths, and passions, they become makers of meaning, developing a deep understanding of the world. The amazing thing about the Early Childhood Center is that it encourages this deep understanding from adults as well. College students, parents, and teachers can engage fully with the ECC community, learning from the children and each other."

E-mail Lorayne

Jan Drucker

Jan has a BA from Radcliffe College and a PhD from New York University. She has been a member of the Sarah Lawrence psychology faculty since 1972. Jan teaches both undergraduate psychology and graduate Art of Teaching courses, and is the former Director of the Child Development Institute. Her areas of academic focus include developmental theory; development of personality; symbolization; narrative of life experience; and the professional development of preschool and elementary teachers. Jan is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst, specializing in the development of normal and emotionally disturbed young children. She is also an author and researcher on play and other symbolic processes and aspects of clinical practice.

 "There are no one-way vision screens at the ECC, as there are at most lab schools. Student observers are directly involved in the life of the classroom. They get a richer experience of observation by interacting with the kids over time, and the children benefit from having more adults around, especially since the students bring their own talents – from dancing to art to cooking – to classroom activities."

E-mail Jan

Lead Teachers

Robbin Hawkins

Robbin Hawkins has been a lead teacher at the ECC since 1998, but she has actually been teaching at the ECC since 1991.  She began her tenure as a fieldwork student while studying early childhood education at Westchester Community College.  She moved into a teaching assistant position as she finished her undergraduate degree at Sarah Lawrence College, and then became a lead teacher as she entered the Art of Teaching graduate program pursuing her MSEd.  Robbin is the lead teacher in the Tuesday/Thursday Threes class, one of the Monday/Wednesday/Friday Threes classes, and the afternoon Threes/Fours class.  Robbin enjoys cooking in the classroom and creating muffins out of almost anything.  Robbin leads graduate seminars and workshops on cooking in the classroom, loose parts play and using intentional language with children. Sarah Lawrence, 1991–

Sarah Phillips Mathews

Sarah Phillips Mathews has taught at the Early Childhood Center since 1992.  She is the lead teacher in the morning Fours Class and the afternoon Twos and Parents class.  Sarah is a graduate of Vassar College and holds an MSEd from the Sarah Lawrence College Art of Teaching program.  Her previous experience includes research at the Children’s Hospital in Boston on early brain development, as well as teaching at the Harvard Law School Child Care Center and the Bank Street School for Children.  She leads graduate seminars and workshops in the areas of block building and using intentional language in teaching children.  Her interests include community building in the classroom, conflict resolution, dramatic play and separation/adjustment to school. Sarah Lawrence, 1992–

Debi Riessen

Debi Riessen has been lead teacher of the morning Twos and Parent class and one of the Monday/Wednesday/Friday Threes classes since 2012.  She discovered Sarah Lawrence College by attending the Child Development Institute’s Summer Empowering Teachers Program.  Debi taught previously at the Larchmont Temple Nursery School.  She graduated from SUNY New Paltz and earned her MSEd in Early Childhood Education at Hunter College.  Debi especially enjoys working alongside the Sarah Lawrence College students and seeing the life of the classroom through their eyes as they integrate theory and practice.  Debi delights in the wonder of seeing children make discoveries for themselves.  Her goal is for the children to be comfortable enough to take ownership of the room and their experience.  The children’s experience is everything to Debi. Sarah Lawrence, 2012–

Cassandra Santos

Cassandra Santos became the lead teacher for the Five/Sixes class in 2019.  She began teaching at the ECC in 2011, while a field work student at Westchester Community College.  She continued to work as an assistant teacher at the ECC while she earned a degree in Childhood Studies from City College of New York and during her graduate studies in the Art of Teaching program at Sarah Lawrence College.  She recently discovered that she enjoys leading seminars and workshops and hopes to do more of this work in the future.  Cassandra’s passions are books, cooking, and nature.  She is thrilled to be sharing those interests through her teaching. Sarah Lawrence, 2019–

Susan Schwimmer

Susan Schwimmer marks the beginning of each school year with the migration of monarch butterflies from Canada to Mexico as their path follows the Hudson River through Yonkers.  She has brought monarch eggs into the classroom, where children observe their lifecycle since the fall of 1989.  Susan graduated from Sarah Lawrence College and received an MA from Bank Street College.  She is lead teacher for the morning Fours/Fives class and is also the ECC Art Archivist (@sarahlawrencecollegeeccart).  Susan was an outdoor educator for 25 years at Fieldston Outdoors.  She is currently a member of the Sarah Lawrence College Sustainability Committee and a board member at SLC’s Center for the Urban River at Beczak (CURB). Sarah Lawrence, 1989–

Guest Teachers

Tricia Hanley

Tricia Hanley fell in love with toddlers while working in a twos classroom as an undergraduate student at Columbia University and has been working with two year olds and their parents in some capacity ever since.  Tricia is a graduate of both the Art of Teaching and the Child Development masters programs at Sarah Lawrence College.  She was the lead teacher of the Twos and Parent program from 2007-2012.  Tricia was a senior supervising teacher at the Barnard College Center for Toddler Development from 2012-2018, when she came back to Sarah Lawrence College as the Director of the Child Development Institute. Tricia is delighted to be in the classroom again as a guest teacher in the morning Twos and Parent program for this academic year.

Sarah Curtis

Sarah Curtis attended the ECC as a preschooler before returning to Sarah Lawrence College to earn her MA in Child Development after earning her BA at Harvard College.  While in the Child Development master’s program at Sarah Lawrence College, Sarah worked as an assistant teacher in the Fours/Fives classroom with Susan Schwimmer.  Sarah has taught kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grades at St. Ann’s School in Brooklyn.  She also worked at Books of Wonder in Manhattan and loves to study and discuss children’s literature.  Sarah is thrilled to be back at the ECC as a guest teacher in one of the Monday/Wednesday/Friday Threes classes.