At Kids Cottage, we pride ourselves on providing the highest quality early childhood education available.  Our staff is carefully chosen to ensure our students enter Kindergarten with the skills and confidence necessary to excel throughout the remainder of their education.  Our teachers have college degrees and backgrounds in education.  To attract the best teachers, Kids Cottage provides significantly higher compensation than other preschools in the area, as well as a team-oriented philosophy.  Our extraordinary staff allows us to prepare our students with a solid Foundation of Excellence.

Both Lori Schell and Taryn Burris are the Chief Administrators/Owners of Kids Cottage. Our staff also includes a Director of Operations, 3 Administrative Managers, Teachers, Assistant Teachers, Supervisors, and Assistant Supervisors.

Kids Cottage business partners, Lori Schell and Taryn Burris, are native Delawareans and have traveled and lived in various cities. After living in different states, they have both returned to live near their families in Lewes, Delaware. Lori and Taryn are active members of the community.

All Lead Teachers must have a college degree and a background in education. Several of our teachers and Chief Administrators have a Master’s degree in Education and have satisfied the Delaware licensing requirement. All staff members are trained in CPR and First Aid and have successfully passed a Criminal Background Check. Most staff have been trained in TCIT and PCIT as well.

Number of Staff/Ratios
As required by the State of Delaware, the staff child ratio for mixed age groups will be that required for the age group with the largest number of children present in the group.

Age of Child Minimum Staff / Child Ratio Our Ratios
2 - 3 years 1:8 1:7
3 - 4 years 1:10 1:8
4 - 5 years 1:12 1:8
5 years and up 1:15 1:12


Staff Bios

Taryn Burris, Chief Administrator

Taryn graduated from the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science in Education. She received a Master of Education degree for Special Education from the University of Maryland. She taught in Anne Arundel County in Maryland for three years as a special education teacher for grades K-5. In 2003, she returned to Delaware with her husband where she taught sixth grade language arts and reading for one year. Taryn is licensed and certified in Delaware in the areas of Elementary K-6, Middle Level Teacher 5-8, Teacher of Early Childhood/Primary K-4, Teacher of Exceptional Children-LD, SED, MH (Elementary 1-8). Taryn also has her Delaware Department of Education Administrator Credential, Director Credential, and is trained in TCIT and PCIT.

Lori Schell, Chief Administrator

Lori graduated from the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science in Education and was later certified to teach Special Education (Elementary 1-8). She is a Delaware Department of Education certified Early Childhood Teacher and School Age Administrator. Lori started her career as a third and fourth grade teacher at Rehoboth Elementary School in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware where she specialized in Math and Language Arts. Lori also has her Delaware Department of Education Administrator Credential and is trained in TCIT and PCIT. Lori has always immersed herself in her work within the education field, and is dedicated to creating the most fun, innovative, and academically focused children's center in the area.

Sheri Mark, Director of Operations

Prior to starting at Kids Cottage, Sheri was the Regional Manager at Knowledge Universe/Kindercare Learning Centers where she was responsible for strategic planning, development, operations, sales, marketing, and customer service for 20 years. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Education and her Master's Degree in School Leadership. Sheri is a life member of NAEYC, affiliated with DAEYC, and was recently a Delaware Stars Technical Assistant. She has also been trained in TCIT and PCIT.

Jessica Ryan, Teacher, Infant Program (4-12 months)

Jessica is originally from Howard County, Maryland where she worked as a Lead Teacher for 10 years. She recently moved to Delaware in September 2016 with her two children. She has been working with children for over 15 years, and is excited to be the Lead Teacher in the Infant Room at Kids Cottage where she enjoys watching the babies grow and develop.

Amanda Cutshaw, Teacher, Toddler Program (12 - 18 months)

Amanda "Mandy" Cutshaw has been in the Early Childhood field for 15 years, and 6 of those years have been here at Kids Cottage. Mandy has her Early Childhood Teacher certification through Delaware and she absolutely loves working with children. SHe is a mother of 3 amazing kids, Hayden (12), Brailyn (9), and Axtyn (1). We love going to the beach, family game nights, and being artsy! 

Lindsay Runne, Teacher, Toddler Program (12-18 months)

Lindsay graduated from Sussex Central High School in 2017. She is certified in Early Childcare and has received her certification from TECE 1 and 2. She has been working at Kids Cottage for almost 3 years. She worked in the 12-18 month old classroom prior to being diagnosed with cancer in 2017. She beat cancer (!!) and started right back where she left off. She loves seeing the babies grow and learn. It makes her heart happy!

Michaelina Jones, Teacher, Minnows Full Day Preschool (18 - 24 months)

Michaelina "Mikey" has been working at Kids Cottage since 2015 and has her TECE 1 & 2 credentials. Michaelina started  as an assistant teacher, helping other rooms along the way and is  proud to be the Lead Teacher in the Minnow’s Room assisting  young minds to grow and develop.  Michaelina was awarded the Gold Award from Girl Scouting, which is the highest award to be achieved.  Michaelina is newly wedded since October 2018 and enjoys her arts & crafts and gardening during her spare time!

Teacher, Sea Turtles Half/Full Day Preschool


Nimita Chayhan, Teacher, Sandcrabs Half/Full Day Preschool (2 - 3 years)

Nimita has been working with children for over 8 years now! She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Early Elementary and Special Education. Her favorite thing to do is spend time with her family. She is the Lead Teacher in the Sand Crabs classroom with Mrs. Denise and loves working with this age group.

Katherine Eckrich, Jellyfish Full Day Preschool (3 - 4 years)

 Katherine graduated from Eastern University in May 2017. There she majored in Middle Level Education with a concentration in Math & Science. She has been with the Kids Cottage family since May 2016, working with all different ages. She spent one year up in Newark as a 4th grade teacher. Ms. Katherine knows her passion is working with children. 

Rebecca Timmons, Starfish Half Day Preschool (3-4 years) 

Mrs. "Becca" has been working at Kids Cottage for 12 years! She absolutely loves working with children and has a 2 year old daughter of her own. She completed TECE 1 and 2, and has obtained various Professional Development credits. In her free time, she enjoys going to the beach with her family, reading, and gardening. She looks forward to every new school year!

Kelli Trice, Teacher, Marlins Full Day Preschool (4-5 years)

Kelli has been working at Kids Cottage since 2015 and has her CDA Credential. Kelli has worked in several classrooms here at Kids Cottage and has found her "home" in the Dolphin room. Kelli is a wonderful, fun-loving caregiver who loves her little ones!

Miranda Kollock, Teacher, Dolphin Full Day Preschool (4 - 5 years)

Miranda graduated from Sussex Central High School in 2015. She attended 2 years at University of DE, and now takes classes at Wilmington University to obtain her Bachelor's in Early Childhood Education. Miranda spent a lot of time volunteering with children prior to working at Kids Cottage. She has been with Kids Cottage for over a year

Jenny Mannon, Teacher, Starfish, Full Day Preschool (3-4 years)

 Jenny has been working inthe field of Early Education for more than 10 years. Her favorite part of teaching is the "aaah" moment when children have applied the skills they have learned in her classroom. Her favorite children's book is "The Pout Fish". Jenny's bubbly personality brings a lot of energy, love, and excitement to her classroom.

Regina Kroll ,Teacher, Seahorse Half Day Preschool (4 - 5 years) 

 Regina and her husband Griff recently moved to the beach from Baltimore, MD. Together they have 3 boys, one being a newborn baby! She graduated from Stevenson University with a Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Education. In Baltimore, she taught mostly Kindergarten at THe Odyssey School, and worked with preschool and Pre-K classes at Children's Manor Montessori School. Regina has been part of the Kids Cottage team for 3 years!

5star quality

Kids Cottage is Celebrating
its extraordinary high DE STARS scores,
earning the highest award as

What Others Say...

"We have been extremely happy with Kids Cottage and how well our kids have done since being there. Our son was just enrolled in Rehoboth Elementary School and the staff there was very impressed with how well he did on his DIAL screening. When we told them he just graduated from Kids Cottage, they had nothing but good things to say about you all and the children who have come to them from there and how well those children have done. Thank you!"

The Thompsons


Preschool Registration 2019-20

Preschool and Pre-K Registration for the 2019-2020 is underway! Call us today at 302-644-7690 to register!