St George’s Hellenic Language School, Edmonton, AB

Our Staff

Maria Lekkos-Carrozza

Principal

Maria is a first generation Greek-Canadian born to parents who immigrated to Canada from Greece. She continues to maintain a strong relationship with her family in Greece and enjoys visiting her homeland with her family in the summer months.

Maria graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education (Major in French as a Second Language and Minor in English and Spanish).
She has completed multiple Leadership courses in the areas of Second Language Acquisition, English Language Learning, and School Leadership. Maria has experience in teaching Grades 7-12 including Special Needs, ELL, French as a Second Language, Physical Education, Math, Social Studies and Student Leadership. She is currently in her 14th year of teaching with Edmonton Public Schools.

Maria takes great pride in being a part of the Greek community of Edmonton and is a long time member of Kyklos Hellenic Performing & Literary Arts Group. She spends a lot of her time working with other non-profit organizations and organizing school wide and community events. She feels fortunate to have attended St. George’s Hellenic Language School throughout her childhood and to now return as a Principal. She has a passion for her Hellenic heritage and working with students to keep the Greek language and culture thriving for years to come.

Maria Lekkos-Carrozza

Alberta Education Principal & Advisor

Anna Manadi Stamatakis

Acting Director

Anna was born in Athens, Greece and grew up in the city of Kozani, which is located in western Macedonia. She completed a two year program in Nursing at the school of Mamatseio and fulfilled one and a half years of practice at the General Hospital of Kozani.

Volunteer work has been a huge part of Anna’s life, beginning very early on when she was a member of the Girl Guides and led one of the very first teams of children with special needs. Greek folk dance has also been one of her favorite things to do in her spare time, which she still enjoys to this day. She has been a member of Kyklos Hellenic Performing & Literary Arts Group for over twenty years.

She has been teaching the Greek language since 1996 and feels privileged to have taught all grade levels - kindergarten through to the credit classes. The love she has for her country is what keeps her passion and involvement alive in Edmonton’s Greek community. Anna loves educating our students with the language, culture and history of the country that introduced democracy to the world!

Anna Manadi Stamatakis

Acting Director

Chrisanthe Papavasiliou

Communications Facilitator

Chrisanthe was born and raised in Edmonton to parents who immigrated to Canada from Greece. She has travelled back to Greece several times and is also a member of Kyklos Hellenic Performing & Literary Arts Group.
Chrisanthe graduated with distinction from the University of Alberta in 2010, with a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education (with a major in Biological Sciences and a minor in Social Studies). She is currently a teacher with Edmonton Public Schools and has taught with them for over seven years. She has also been a part of St. George’s Hellenic Language school teaching staff for the past seven years.
An exciting opportunity has recently taken Chrisanthe to Australia where she now resides and plans on working and travelling throughout the country. She is most looking forward to experiencing life in Melbourne, which has the third largest population of Greeks living in the city after Athens and Thessaloniki. She will continue her role as Communications Facilitator with St. George’s Hellenic Language School and hopes to connect with one of the Greek schools in Melbourne. Chrisanthe is passionate about exploring the Greek language and culture, learning more about it and experiencing it through the eyes of others.
Chrisanthe Papavasiliou

Communications Facilitator

Instructors

Vasiliki (Valisia) Salmas

Preschool

Vasiliki is Greek-Canadian and has spent her childhood years playing an active part in Edmonton’s Greek communities. A graduate from St. George’s Hellenic Language School herself, she is excited to return in a teaching capacity to share her passion for Greek language and culture and educate the upcoming generations of Greek-Canadians.

She is currently in her final year as a student at MacEwan University in the Bachelor of Commerce program with a Major in Marketing and Minor in International Business. In addition to this, she has spent the last five years as a day camp and after-school program leader at the YMCA of Northern Alberta. Through this, she has garnered a wealth of experience working with early childhood-aged children and youth groups - something that is a great asset to our school as she teaches our youngest learners, the preschool class.

She is a dancer with Kyklos Hellenic Performing & Literary Arts Group and also plays the piano. In her downtime, and to decompress from a hectic school and work schedule, she enjoys watching Greek soap operas and Greece’s version of The Voice.

Vasiliki’s priority this year for the preschool students is to establish a good relationship with the students, and ensure they feel comfortable with their classmates and in the classroom setting. Through a focus on printing skills, she would love to see her students confidently grow by printing out the letters of the Greek alphabet and then eventually printing out their own names in Greek.

Vasiliki (Valisia) Salmas

Preschool

Eirini Ioakeimidi

Kindergarten

Eirini spent her early years living and studying in Thessaloniki, Greece, until she moved to Edmonton in 2017.

Eirini’s university studies were in Greek and Russian languages. She graduated with a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Philology and Russian literature and a Bachelor’s Degree from the Faculty of Balkan Slavic and Eastern Studies of the University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki.

She is an experienced educator having taught Greek and Russian as foreign and second languages since 2011. She loves to teach and pass on her love of the Greek language and the numerous cultural treasures that can be found throughout the Greek-speaking world. Her job, her students and her books are among a few of the things she loves, and she cannot imagine herself engaging in any other profession. Her greatest satisfaction is when her students achieve their goals!

Eirini Ioakeimidi

Kindergarten

Anna Manadi Stamatakis

Levels 1 & 2

Anna was born in Athens, Greece and grew up in the city of Kozani, which is located in western Macedonia. She completed a two year program in Nursing at the school of Mamatseio and fulfilled one and a half years of practice at the General Hospital of Kozani.

Volunteer work has been a huge part of Anna’s life, beginning very early on when she was a member of the Girl Guides and led one of the very first teams of children with special needs. Greek folk dance has also been one of her favorite things to do in her spare time, which she still enjoys to this day. She has been a member of Kyklos Hellenic Performing & Literary Arts Group for over twenty years.

She has been teaching the Greek language since 1996 and feels privileged to have taught all grade levels - kindergarten through to the credit classes. The love she has for her country is what keeps her passion and involvement alive in Edmonton’s Greek community. Anna loves educating our students with the language, culture and history of the country that introduced democracy to the world!

Anna Manadi Stamatakis

Levels 1 & 2

Spiros Sakellariou

Levels 3 & 4

Spiros was born in Canmore, Alberta and moved to Greece at the age of 4. He has lived in numerous cities in Greece, including Kiato and Athens, until the age of 17, when he returned to Canada.

Spiros spent some time at MacEwan University studying for his Bachelor of Jazz and Contemporary Music degree, and has since moved on to NAIT to pursue an Accounting degree through the Bachelor of Commerce program.

Spiros has an extensive background in music. His hobbies consist of playing the Bouzouki, Guitar, Bass, and Trumpet. He hopes that one day, he will be able to teach young students at the Greek school how to play traditional Greek instruments like the Bouzouki, Tzoura, and Baglama.

Spiros has been teaching at the Greek school for four years. One of the greatest reasons behind his passion for teaching at the Greek school is seeing the growth in his students from year to year. Watching his students become better in their use of the Greek language, and helping them grow within the Edmonton Greek community is the reason why he continues teaching at the school.

Spiros Sakellariou

Levels 3 & 4

Jonathan N. Collins

Level 5

Jonathan was born in the United Kingdom and moved to Athens, Greece with his family when he was five years old. There, he learned to speak the language and connect with the culture and traditions. It gave him the benefit of growing up in a very multicultural environment. Five years ago, Jonathan came to Canada to visit and ended up staying and starting a life here.

He has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration with a background in Hospitality and Tourism which he is very passionate about. He also taught English back in Greece, and now really enjoys teaching Greek to heritage language students at St. George’s Hellenic Language School because he can relate to his students.

This year he will be focusing more on enriching the students’ grammar and vocabulary skills, and incorporating speaking activities to give them the foundation to be able to use in social conversation. He is looking forward to working with his students and having an amazing school year!

Jonathan N. Collins

Level 5

Iliana Papathanasaki

Levels 6 & 7

Iliana was born and raised in the beautiful city of Sitia on the island of Crete, where she spent her childhood and early years living and studying. In 2017, she immigrated to Edmonton to pursue her Ph.D. studies.
She graduated from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece as a Geologist. During her time there, she completed a Master’s Degree in Geophysics and a Master’s Degree in Hydrocarbons Exploration and Exploitation. Iliana is currently a Geophysics Ph.D student at the University of Alberta.
She has been a teacher at St. George’s Hellenic Language School since 2018 and has been teaching the junior high/high school level students. She has a love for teaching and she enjoys being able to pass on the Greek language and heritage to her students!
Iliana Papathanasaki

Levels 6 & 7

Myrto Kavgadoulis

Level 9 & Credits

Myrto was born and raised in Athens, Greece and came to Canada in 1997. While still living in Greece, she attended the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and graduated from the Department of Physical Education and Athletics with a Degree in Science of Physical Education and Sports.

Myrto has completed multiple courses and obtained numerous certifications in the field of childhood learning. In 2002, she completed an Orientation Course for Day Care Center Staff (Pre-Childhood Development Course) and obtained a Level 1 Certificate from MacEwan University. Throughout the last several years, she has also obtained a variety of certificates from the International Heritage Languages Association (IHLA) and from the Edmonton Catholic School Division (ECSD) as part of her professional growth. Since her arrival in Canada, she has volunteered at the YMCA of Northern Alberta working with young children. She also has experience with the Edmonton Catholic School Board, where she worked as an Educational Assistant for 12 years, most of which were in junior high and high schools.

She has been teaching with St. George’s Hellenic Language School for over twenty years. The majority of these years have been spent teaching the secondary level students. She is passionate about the Greek language and dedicated to teaching to past, present and future generations to maintain and preserve Greek culture and identity.

Myrto Kavgadoulis

Level 9 & Credits

Dance Instructors

Alex Bouzetos

Dance Instructor

I am half Greek, and was raised in the Hellenic Community of Calgary, graduating from the Greek Community School of Calgary in 2014. I am currently in my fourth year of studies at the University of Alberta, majoring in Electrical Engineering with a minor in Classics. I love to dance, and I am currently a dancer with Kyklos!

I am passionate about teaching dance because it is such a beautiful representation of our culture and history. It is exciting to see some of the youngest members of our community build connections to our traditions and learn to express themselves through Greek dance.

Alex Bouzetos

Elizabeth Helmak

Dance Instructor

I was born here in Edmonton and I am half Greek and half Ukrainian. Growing up in the Greek community here has allowed me to develop a huge passion for my Greek heritage. During my childhood I was a student at St. George’s Hellenic Language School. Dancing in Kyklos has allowed me to obtain the knowledge and skills to teach dancing to the children.

Currently, I am in the final year of a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Alberta with a major in Management Information Systems. I have been involved in the dance group Kyklos for the past seven years and teaching dancing in the Greek school for the past four years has allowed me to share this passion. I feel that it is important to share our Greek heritage with the next generation.

Elizabeth Helmak

Christina Lailey

Dance Instructor

I was born in Edmonton to a first-generation Greek mother and a Canadian father. With my Greek grandparents as neighbors, and the countless summers spent in Greece throughout my youth, there was no choice but to learn Greek from an early age. I attended St. George’s Hellenic Greek School and it was here that my passion for dance began.
I have been a member of Edmonton’s premiere Greek dance group Kyklos Hellenic Performing and Literary Arts since 2004 and began instructing the group in 2013. I have been teaching dance at the Greek school since 2007. I have my Chartered Accountant designation and work at a local mid sized accounting firm and teach accounting part-time at the University of Alberta. I am currently working towards obtaining my master’s degree in accounting with a slated August 2020 completion date.
I am passionate about teaching dance because I myself learned so much about my own heritage and cultural roots through dancing – I want to be able to share that with children of the Greek diaspora, especially if they’ve never had the opportunity to go to Greece. Teaching Greek dance allows me to expose children to one of the most enchanting pieces of our culture!
Christina Lailey