Nursery Program Teachers

Heidi Schwarzenbach is the founding Nursery Program Director and Lead Teacher for Elves Corner. She has been at SFWS since 1999. Heidi was born and raised on the East Coast. She graduated in 1977 from Colgate University with a BA in English Literature and Biology. After working in textiles in New York City for five years, she was transferred to San Francisco. Heidi completed the Rudolf Steiner College teacher trainnig program in 2001 and is also certified by the State of California. Heidi ran a Waldorf-inspired nursery in her home before coming to SFWS.  She is an avid cycler who enjoys ocean swimming, backpacking, and reading. She is a founding member of the Magic Lantern Traveling Marionette Theatre. Her twin sons attended SFWS from Kindergarten through 12th grade and currently attend college at the University of Puget Sound and at the University of Montana.

Nichola Clark is the Lead Teacher for Elves Cottage and was a founding teacher of the Nursery program. She is a graduate of the Rudolf Steiner College teacher training program, with an emphasis on the grades and has completed 15 ECEs. Nichola was born and raised in Lincolnshire, England. Her interest in Waldorf education grew after she stepped into a kindergarten and saw how the children were content and extremely capable in this environment. She has worked in a Waldorf-inspired preschool in Palo Alto and helped to found the SFWS Nursery program, where she was a teacher for 10 years. Most recently, she was Director of the SFWS Parent-Child Program.  She enjoys taking time out to explore nature with her husband and two young children, as well as sailing, cycling, and travel. Her oldest daughter attends SFWS Nursery while her younger daughter, is still at home.

Sachi Gowe is an Assistant Teacher at Elves Cottage. She is a graduate of the Rudolf Steiner College teacher training program, with an emphasis on early childhood and holds a B.A. in English Literature from Kobe College. Sachi has completed 15 ECEs and taught at a Waldorf-inspired preschool for two years.  She has also taught in our Parent-Child Program. Sachi was born and raised in Japan. After the birth of her twin sons, she discovered Waldorf Education and knew that this would be her path. During her free time she enjoys creating handmade puppets and performs puppet shows featuring stories from Japanese folklore. Her three sons attend SFWS.

Julie Sauton is an Assistant Teacher at Elves Corner. She is a second-generation Waldorf alumni and a graduate of the residential Waldorf Teacher Training Program at Rudolf Steiner College. She also founded a Waldorf Nursery program in Fremont. Julie earned her BA from Portland State University in Community Development where her work with nonprofit education programs proved instrumental in her decision to pursue teaching. Julie is proficient in French and trained in the fine arts. She enjoys singing and playing the flute, outdoor activities, cultural events, painting and drawing.

SusannaSusanna von Rombs directs the Nursery Aftercare Program as well as assists during the morning.  She has taught in the SFWS Parent-Child Program for five years and leads both Observation and Work and Play classes. She is a graduate of the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training and ran a small Waldorf-inspired nursery program in her home in Glen Park (Little Orchard) for six years. Susanna was born and raised in Munich, Germany and attended Ludwig Maximilian University, where she completed a bachelor's degree in Special Education. Before moving to the US, she worked in public relations with a start-up company and completed a goldsmith apprenticeship. Besides baking and knitting, she enjoys gardening and exploring together with her family in nature. Susanna's three sons attend SFWS, where she is an active parent volunteer.