Our Staff

Founder & Executive Director

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”  – Malcolm X

Sharifa Hodges

Sharifa Hodges is Co-Founder and Educational Director at Seneca Village Montessori. She graduated from Brooklyn College with her Bachelors of Science in Business Management & Finance. After starting a family, she decided to move on from her career as a Marketing Manager and pursue her dreams of becoming an educator. Despite working full time, being a wife and a new mother, she tackled graduate school head on. Graduating from Touro College with her Masters degree in Childhood Education and Special Education was one of her proudest moments.

Sharifa has over 10 years of experience working with children. From her days as a teenager helping out in her mother’s day care to her time as a NYC public school teacher working with special needs students….not to mention raising her own two sons Allen and Oliver.

Working in the public school system, made it overly apparent to her that an alternative learning environment was needed for our children. A learning environment that was academically rigorous but also focused on fostering confidence, encouraging creativity, and teaching knowledge of self. Sharifa became more active in her community, volunteering her time to work with groups that were trying to make a difference. Through her work in the community she was introduced to and later became friends with Mama Isis. That was how Seneca Village Montessori School was born…two friends wanting to make a real difference for our youth.

Educational Director

Mama Taswya

Mama Taswya graduated from Borough of Manhattan Community College with her degree in Social Work. After realizing she wanted a more hands on approach with fostering the development of children, she went on to get her BA in Early Childhood General and Special Education from Brooklyn College. She has also completed the NAMC Montessori Educators Program. Taswya has over 10 years of early childhood experience and her philosophy on teaching is to “appeal to the whole child”, which benefits their social, emotional, physical and cognitive development. She loves her people and understands that her contribution towards the goal of Black Liberation will come in the form of educating our youth!