Meet the Teachers


Preschool director

Lisa Kampwirth fell in love with teaching over 20 years ago when her career began as an aid in a summer program during college. She has been in many different classrooms over the years, including three years teaching in Spain, and learning Spanish. She spent the past nine years working at Baker Demonstration School as a preschool teacher, transforming her room into a green classroom. The play-based, Reggio Emilia philosophy that guides the preschool program at North Park is very much aligned with her beliefs about what makes a stellar early childhood program. She received her masters degree in early childhood development and education from the Erikson Institute, and she now provides professional development training for teachers at many schools throughout the city and suburbs. Lisa lives in Wilmette with her husband Mark and her two children, Finn and Veronica, and her very adorable cockapoo, Shadow. She loves to tell stories to the students about her family and spends a lot of time with her family playing cards and reading.

elan frankel (frankel@NPESCHOOL.ORG) 
PRESCHOOL assistant

Elan came to North Park Elementary School in 1999 as a kindergartener in the first class to spend all nine years in our current building. He earned his undergraduate degree in English Literature at DePaul University and has been working with the NPES after care program since 2015. Elan currently assists in the preschool program as well. In his free time you can find him playing guitar, bicycling, cooking, and listening to/obsessively talking about music of all sorts.

PRESCHOOL assistant

Ms. Megean Gallagher is the preschool associate. She has a BA in Telecommunications and Gender Studies from Indiana University. She has been apart of the North Park community working with families for the past eight years. Ms. Gallagher works with the preschoolers on a variety of hands-on activities such as math, literacy, science, and the fundamentals of gross motor activities including storytime yoga, parachute, and obstacle courses. Her personal interests include yoga or attending an Orange Theory class, her new workout obsession!


Sheri is new to the North Park preschool team but she brings more than 20 years of experience working in day care, preschool, and as a nanny for a number of families. Sheri assists the school at lunch and with after school activities. She loves to help the students with art projects, games, and physical activities. Sheri lives right around the corner from the school and in her spare time she likes to cook, exercise, and entertain her nieces and nephews.



Anna is the preschool visual art teacher, or "atelierista." In the Reggio Emilia inspired program, she helps students utilize and source art materials to express their ideas about the world. Anna works with young artists creating, discussing, and appreciating art of all different types. Anna loves working with preschool students in a variety of media and learning alongside them as they explore and observe in nature. Her favorite thing about teaching preschool art is seeing the enthusiasm and joy the students show while creating art. She earned her BFA degrees in Art Education and Painting and her MA in Art Education from the University of Illinois in Urbana/Champaign. In her own time, Anna loves to paint, make jewelry, travel, and spend time with her three children exploring Chicago. 


Lauren joined NPES in 2017 as the preschool 4 lead teacher. This is her fifth year teaching after working with students at St. Benedict Preparatory School and Latin School of Chicago. She earned a Masters in Early Childhood Education at DePaul University and a Bachelors of Science in Adolescent Kinesiology at Miami University. Originally from Grosse Pointe, Michigan, Lauren has always enjoyed spending time on the water. Whether it be the lake, ocean, or pool, she can usually be found relaxing in the sun and reading a good book.

nicole smart (
preschool 3 lead teacher

Ms. Nicole Smart is the lead teacher of the three year old class in the preschool program. She has been at NPES since 2015. Miss Smart has a BA in Early Childhood Education and a BS in Psychology and Human Development from National-Louis University. She has more than 19 years of teaching experience in early childhood, elementary (K-2nd), and special education. Ms. Smart has taught in private and independent schools, as well as public elementary schools in the North Shore area. Nicole enjoys working with preschool-aged children because of their curious nature, pure enthusiasm for everything, and their intrinsic joy of learning. In her own time, she likes to attend art shows/festivals, swim, water aerobics, attend concerts and sporting events, spend time with her friends and family, and spend summers in Pentwater, Michigan. 


Contact Us

North Park Elementary School 2017 W Montrose Chicago, Illinois 60618
Phone: 773.327.3144      Fax: 773.327.0331