plato academy - an independent school inspired by hellenic ideals
Plato Academy Staff

Soraya Castro Preschool Teacher and Spanish Teacher
Soraya Castro Preschool Teacher and Spanish Teacher
Soraya taught ESL to elementary and middle school students and has her B.A. Degree in Early Childhood Education from ENA in Ags. Mexico. In addition she completed two years of ESL at Richard J. Daley College in Chicago. Soraya has credits reevaluated by ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.) from Milwaukee, WI. She is passionate about her culture and her country.
Noel Nape Preschool Teacher
Noel Nape Preschool Teacher
Noel Nape has taught Pre-Kindergarten for most of her 20+ career and has taught in many different situations and places. One of her favorite teaching positions was in Panama where she assisted in the startup of a private English instruction school in the Cocle province not far from the Pacific Ocean.
Anna Toufexis PreK/Kindergarten
Anna Toufexis PreK/Kindergarten
Anna graduated from DePaul University with a Bachelors of Science in Early Childhood Education. She has been with Plato since 2013.
Leslie Massow PreK/Kindergarten
Leslie Massow PreK/Kindergarten
Leslie grew up in Evanston, IL. She received her Bachelor's Degree in English from the University of Illinois and a Master's Degree in Elementary Education from Roosevelt University.
Jodi Marver Kindergarten/1st Grade
Jodi Marver Kindergarten/1st Grade
Jodi Marver grew up in Northbrook, IL. She received her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education from Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. Jodi recently graduated college after completing her student teaching with a 2nd grade classroom. Jodi also had the opportunity to play basketball in college, so sports are a huge part of her life. She has worked with children her whole life between being a coach, teacher's assistant, babysitter and camp counselor. She is excited to be starting her teaching career here at Plato Academy!
Teresa Pape Kindergarten/1st Grade
Teresa Pape Kindergarten/1st Grade
Teresa Pape graduated in 1990 from Illinois State University with a degree in Elementary Education. She recently received her learning behavioral specialist endorsement. During her lifelong teaching career she has taught high school special education, reading intervention, and fourth grade. Teresa says she actually started teaching at the age of seven, tutoring students at recess just for fun. She and her husband and their three high school children live in Bolingbrook. Besides teaching, Teresa most enjoys spending time with her family back on the farm where she was raised. "You can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl."
Briana Listecki 2nd/3rd Grades
Briana Listecki 2nd/3rd Grades
Briana graduated from Northern Illinois University with my Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and recently received a Special Education endorsement at Lewis University.
Dionysia Panagiotopoulos 4th/5th Grades
Dionysia Panagiotopoulos 4th/5th Grades
Dionysia received her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education (K-9) from National Louis University and an endorsement in Psychology. She graduated from Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City and received her Master's Degree in Giftedness Education. Dionysia has 13+ years of teaching experience in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. Her educational and work experience has given her valuable knowledge and helpful exposure to the variety of daily needs of children.
Alexandra Fronimos Middle School Teacher
Alexandra Fronimos Middle School Teacher
Zoe Schirmer Middle School Teacher
Zoe Schirmer Middle School Teacher
Zoe grew up in Madison, WI, and earned a Bachelor’s degree from Carleton College in Minnesota. She spent the past six years living in Athens, Greece, where she worked as an English teacher. Zoe also studied Greek at the University of Athens and then attended a three-year theater program at a Greek drama school. As a Greek-American, Zoe is very excited to pass on her love of Greece and her enthusiasm for the Greek language and culture to your children.
Despina Toufexis Greek Teacher
Despina Toufexis Greek Teacher
Despina has taught at Plato Academy since 2000. She is excited to be a part of our Plato family. She is a graduate of the Pedagogical Academy of Alexandroupolis and has been teaching at various Archdiocese of Chicago and private schools in the Chicagoland area since 1985. Despina's goal is to inspire and guide students with love and respect while fostering their intellectual development through teaching of the Greek language. She believes that with continuous effort, patience, and dedication, the sky is the limit, and she is excited for another successful school year!
Eleni Nikolakakou  Greek Teacher
Eleni Nikolakakou Greek Teacher
Eleni Nikolakakou was born and raised in Sparti, Greece. She graduated from the “Pedagogical Department of Elementary Education” to the School of Humanist and Social Science of the University of Patras, in 2007. Her working experience as a teacher since then is in greek schools as a teacher, sub-director and supervisor. She loves children because they are themselves and she believes that “when one teaches, two learn”. She is passionate with Greek philosophy and Greek language.
Efi Tsartsalis Greek Dance/Physical Education
Efi Tsartsalis Greek Dance/Physical Education
Efstathia Tsartsali was born and raised in Greece where she received her Bachelor's Degree in Science of Physical Education and Sports with a specialization in Greek Dances from Athens University. Efi was employed by the Greek Ministry of Education as a PE teacher and has 24+ years of teaching experience in Pre-K to 12th grade.
Marianthi Kortisaris, M.Ed.  Principal/ Director of Curriculum & Instruction
Marianthi Kortisaris, M.Ed. Principal/ Director of Curriculum & Instruction
Marianthi has a Master's Degree from UIC in Instructional Leadership and postgraduate credits from National Louis University. As an alumni of Plato and a parent whose three children graduated from Plato, Marian has dedicated herself to a career in education and is the core of our school and curriculum. She has a keen understanding of constructivism, how kids acquire knowledge, and curriculum development. She is a mentor to all our teachers and assists them in the development of their own teaching style. Marian is a professor of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago and an adjunct faculty at Chicago City Colleges, Triton College and DePaul University. She also mentors student teachers in the Chicago Public School system. She has served as assessor for the National Board of Professional Teaching standards and is an educational consultant . “Each time one prematurely teaches a child something he could have discovered himself, that child is kept from inventing it and consequently from understanding it completely.” -Jean Piaget
Maria Bolos, M.Ed. Director of School Operations
Maria Bolos, M.Ed. Director of School Operations
Maria obtained her Type 03 teaching certificate in Elementary Education from Eastern Illinois University. She also received a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Educational Leadership from National Louis University. She has ten years of teaching experience in Kindergarten through 3 grade. Maria has been on several curriculum committees throughout her teaching career and has been a mentor teacher in a variety of settings. She also has over 15 years of experience working for an educational consulting firm supporting dozens of school districts in the Chicagoland area. Maria keeps a positive outlook and thoroughly enjoys the time she spends at Plato. She was impressed the moment she stepped foot in the door and continues to be amazed by the teachers and their ability to implement the Project Approach effortlessly and seamlessly in their classrooms. She considers it a “dream school” for her own children who currently attend Plato Academy. She is grateful that they have the opportunity to learn in a true constructivist environment that supports the ways we know children learn best.
Georgia Voutiritsas, M.Ed. Director of School Operations
Georgia Voutiritsas, M.Ed. Director of School Operations
Georgia obtained her Type 03 teaching certificate in Elementary Education from Northeastern Illinois University. She also received a Master’s Degree in Technology for Educators from National Louis University. She has six years of teaching experience in 6th through 8th grade with a concentration in mathematics.