At St. Patrick’s, your child is known. Our highly qualified and dedicated faculty and staff are deeply committed to the growth and development of each child through individualized attention and support. 

Mrs. Suzanne Gardella

Kindergarten Teacher

Mrs. Gardella is in her fourth year at St. Patrick’s.  She brings a vast knowledge of this age group as she enters her twentieth year of teaching.

What Mrs. Gardella loves most about teaching:
“I love the feeling of community that develops each year in my class and at our school.  The children are so excited to learn. I’m proud of how the children respect each other, work together, and use kind words.  I loved kindergarten as a child and am so happy I’m still in kindergarten.”

Mrs. Susan Lohuaru

1st Grade Teacher

Mrs. Lohuaru has experience working at various grade levels, but enjoys working with our younger students.  

Her Love for Teaching:
“I wanted to be a teacher ever since I was very young.  My mother was a private school teacher as well, and I spent many years helping my mom.  I love seeing my students grow and learn each day. Teaching is truly a rewarding profession.”

Miss Clare Miller

2nd Grade Teacher

Miss Miller is new to the St. Patrick’s family this year.  She is enjoying getting to know everyone.

As a young girl, Miss Miller attended another Episcopal School in Southern California from fourth to eighth grades.  Her mom is also a second grade teacher, and she is proud to be following her footsteps. Her mother told her that “second grade is the best,” and she definitely agrees. 

Mrs. Tracy Borkovec

3rd Grade Teacher

Having both public and private school experience, Mrs. Borkovec enjoys the small class sizes at St. Patrick’s.  It allows her to get to know each of her students really well.  

“I love teaching the third grade.  The students enjoy a rich curriculum in all subject areas.  Especially noteworthy is the work the third graders do with connecting service learning to science and literature.” 

Mrs. Mary Sullivan

3rd Grade Teacher

Mrs. Sullivan is new to St. Patrick’s this year.  She has been teaching abroad in Spain for the last three years, and now has returned home to Southern California.  Mrs. Sullivan has a strong background in elementary education with an emphasis on Reading Development.  She is excited to work with our third grade class this year.

Mrs. Jackie Ruchman

4th Grade Teacher

Mrs. Ruchman has been teaching at St. Patrick’s for eight years.  She brings creativity to every project and lesson, and the fourth graders love being in her class.  The study of California history through literature, art, and field trips has never been so exciting!

Something for which she is most proud: 
“In fourth grade we focus on helping others and bringing a little hope and sunshine to those in need.  Our work with the homeless feeding program, the senior care packages, pastoral care for the elderly, and other annual projects, allow our students to be active participants in their community.” 

Mrs. Cecile Butters

5th Grade Teacher

Mrs. Butters has been teaching for twenty years at St. Patrick’s.  She is a beloved teacher on campus.

What Mrs. Butters loves most about teaching:
“I love connecting with the students and seeing them accomplish new goals.  I try to create a fun and positive environment so that each child can flourish socially, emotionally, and academically.  There’s nothing like seeing a child have that “ah-hah” moment!”

Something for which Mrs. Butters is proud:
“I am proud that I have managed to stay in touch with many of my students and have been able to be a part of their journey.  It is an honor to teach, and I would not want to do anything else.”

Mrs. Renee Pantoja

6th Grade Teacher

Mrs. Pantoja has just the right experience and knowledge of this age group.  She prepares her students well and effectively guides them in making a smooth transition to the next step of their educational careers.

What Mrs. Pantoja loves most about teaching: 
“I love teaching because watching children develop into life-long learners is thrilling to experience. My students’ growth through the school year always amazes me and brings me joy.”

Something for which Mrs. Pantoja is proud:
“While at dinner with my family one evening, I ran into a former student who is now in his twenties. As we were catching up, he chuckled and said, ‘Wow, seeing you has made me feel star-struck. You were such a great teacher, and I have the best memories of your class.’ This student’s sentiment was the best compliment ever and made me feel proud to have had such an impact on a student.”

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