• Pre-K

    Georgia’s Pre-K Program provides appropriate activities and learning experiences that help prepare young children for school. The term school readiness means that children are socially, emotionally, physically, and cognitively prepared for success in kindergarten. Georgia’s Pre-K Program helps children become independent, self-confident, enthusiastic learners. Participation in the program encourages children to develop good habits and daily routines. Georgia’s Pre-K Program encourages teachers to adopt child-centered instructional practices based on the interests and the skill levels of each child. Research shows that children benefit most when instruction is child-centered. Child-centered instruction allows teachers to facilitate learning in a rich environment that fosters children’s initiative, exploration, and collaborative interaction with other children and adults. You are encouraged to become involved in what your child is learning and experiencing in Pre-K, because your participation contributes to your child’s success in school. A parent is a child’s first and most important teacher. For registration and enrollment information, please click here.

    Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning
    10 Park Place South, Suite 200
    Atlanta, Georgia 30303

    Meet Our Pre-Kindergarten Teachers

    Charmaine Courtney
    I am so excited to be joining the Burch Bears Pre-K Team. Our Integrated Pre-K program has played at other schools, and now I am happy to be here. I have taught Special Needs Pre-K for over twenty years; beginning in New York, with the last 13 years in Fayette County. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood and Special Education (dual) at St. John’s University and my Master of Science degree in Early Childhood Special Education at Hofstra University. My husband and I moved to Fayetteville to give our two children a great education and now I can proudly call them graduates of Fayette County Schools. My daughter is also a recent graduate of Wake Forest University and now teaches middle school science. My son attends college at the University of South Florida. I can’t tell you exactly why I have never left preschool. I guess it’s a combination of the pride I feel while watching my students learn, grow, and become thinkers, as well as my selfish reason of keeping my soul young. You can’t grow old when you are always learning something new from the little ones! I can’t wait to continue learning and growing with your little ones!

    Lori O’Bar – Everything you need to learn is learned in preschool.  I am delighted to begin my 25th year of teaching and learning here at R.J Burch Elementary.  The staff has been very welcoming and in turn I welcome working together with my students and their families.    After 20 years as a preschool special educator, I am a firm believer that it does take a village to raise a child.  Together we can create a variety of purposeful, creative, educational and knowledge expanding experiences in the home and in the classroom to prepare “our kids” for kindergarten and life.

    Learning is a by-product of experience.  My four daughters taught me volumes and my students continue to teach me as I work to move each child closer to meet their individual potential.   As your child’s first teacher, your input is essential.  My proverbial door (email) is always open.  Please share ideas, thoughts or concerns so we can make this a year a successful educational experience for all. Blessings, Lori O’Bar M.Ed

    Heather Sapienza
    Hello, my name is Heather Sapienza and this is my third year teaching Pre-K at Robert J. Burch Elementary. I am excited to be a Burch Bear! This is my 18th year in the classroom; I completed my National Boards for Professional Teaching Standards in 2005, and I completed my Master’s Degree in 2011. I am originally from Florida and spent a few years in New England and North Carolina before moving to Fayette County in 2008. I am married with two children and enjoy spending my summers reading on the beach.

    Meet Our Pre-Kindergarten Paraprofessionals


    Malia Isaac – Hi!  My name is Malia Isaac and this is my third year as an Integrated Pre-K parapro and my first year as a Burch Bear.  Previously, I was a Pre-K Special Ed parapro for four years at Hood Avenue Elementary School.  My first two years in Integrated Pre-K were spent at Crabapple Lane Elementary School. I have a degree in Business Administration and love learning from my students!  I have a daughter and son-in-law, a granddog, and a cat. Originally, I am from Kentucky, but I have also lived in Missouri and Minnesota. In addition, I work a part-time retail job and enjoy reading, scrapbooking and movies.