400 East Westminster Road | Lake Forest, IL 60045


Success in learning. Success in life.

School Leadership and Teachers

The Episcopal Preschool is under the direction of Melanie Upfold.  Melanie holds a Bachelor of Education Degree in Early Childhood from The University of Newcastle, Australia. Currently she holds both her Illinois Director Credential and Illinois Professional Educator License in Early Childhood Education (Birth through Grade 3).  Melanie has over 10 years of experience in the field of early childhood.

Message from the Director:

I believe that early childhood education offers children the chance to discover, provides opportunities for children to explore and experience their world, and encourages a sense of wonder. It is my philosophy that children are unique individuals who deserve a warm, secure environment that promotes a sense of wonder and discovery in learning. Every child is unique in terms of life experiences, developmental readiness, and cultural heritage. Children should be encouraged to develop socially, intellectually, and creatively as they grow. It is important to value an inclusive environment that respects the distinctive qualities of others and the individual aspects of each child. Partnering with parents is necessary to promote and enhance each child’s growth and development.

Our Play Based Program:

Young children learn primarily through play. They learn by doing. When children explore, investigate, and experiment through developmentally appropriate play, they acquire the necessary skills and abilities that allow them to effectively absorb from and adapt to their ever-changing environment for the rest of their lives.

My hope is that each child becomes a passionate life learner.

Melanie Upfold

Director – The Episcopal Preschool

Our Teachers:

  • Our teachers are experienced and committed educators who understand and value young minds.
  • Our teachers understand the importance of a nurturing approach to learning and social development.
  • All teachers are degreed in either early childhood or elementary education.
  • Our teachers customize their teaching methods to address each child’s strengths and interests.
  • Our teachers are supported in their work by their teaching assistants, who bring additional energy, creativity and innovation to each child’s educational experience.

The Twos

  • Teacher:  Mrs. Melanie Upfold
  • Lead Assistant: Mrs. Alexandra Cherry
  • Assistant: Mrs. Courtney Payne

The Threes

  • Teacher:  Mrs. Melanie Upfold
  • Lead Assistant:  Mrs. Alexandra Cherry
  • Assistant: Mrs. Courtney Payne


  • Teacher:  Mrs. Athena Pruim
  • Lead Assistant: Mrs. Candice Cantalupo
  • Assistant: Mrs. Tara Stevens