​​​​​St. David's Episcopal Day School

​​301 E 8th St. 
Austin, TX

Kelli McLaughlin, Director of St. David's Day School

​​Jennifer Wheatley, Assistant Director of St. David’s Day School

Mrs. Jennifer has  of being part of the St. David’s Episcopal Day School since 1998 when her oldest son attended the Toddler 1 class. Six years later, she joined the St. David’s Day School staff and was a lead teacher for more than 10 years. In 2015, she became the Director of the Day School and continued the legacy of providing a safe play-based school. Jennifer became Assistant Director in 2019. She earned her B.A. in Biology, with a minor in Chemistry from the University of Austin and uses this in my weekly science lessons taught to students 3 and older. Over the years, Mrs. Jennifer earned her CDA and continued her Early Childhood Education earning 100s of hours in various topics. Mrs. Jennifer is married and has two sons, Christopher and Aaron. Christopher is an Eagle Scout and attends college in Montreal at McGill University teaching fencing to college athletes. Aaron, also an Eagle Scout, is a student at the Liberal Arts and Sciences Academy. He is a competitive fencer and is continuing to compete at the national level.  Mrs. Jennifer's husband, Travis, keeps many of the arcane arts alive, striving to bring beauty and functionality together on a low-tech basis. He is a senior software engineer. Mrs. Jennifer is a lover of books, movies, baking and Middle Eastern dance. She looks forward to serving you and your children as Director. My door is open, and I welcome your comments and conversation.

Tara Gidden, Ones Lead teacher

Tara has been married 20 years; she has 2 children, a daughter who attends St. Edwards University and a son, Byron Philip, who is in the ninth grade. Tara and her family live on a ranch near Elgin. There they run a Wildlife Rescue Sanctuary with all sorts of wild animals. Tara has 16 years’ experience working in Child Development.  She loves to volunteer at her son’s school and her church.  Teaching and working with children is one of the biggest joys in her life.  Tara really enjoys being a part of this very important stage in your child’s life.


Lauren Waters,  Younger twos, Lead teacher

Lauren began teaching at St. David’s Episcopal Day School in August 1997. She was the Lead teacher in our Toddler 1’s class for three years where she was loved by both children and their parents. She left the Day school when her daughter Frances was born but continued to work in the St. David’s Childcare program. After a few years, Lauren returned to St. David’s Day School, too much excitement. Lauren has been a nanny for more than 17 years and earned her CDA 4 years ago. This will be Lauren’s 13th year teaching in a two’s classroom. Her daughter Frances, is now a sophomore at Highland Park college prep high school and plays the French horn.

Monique Medina – Older Twos Lead Teacher

Monique has been at St. David’s for the past four years.  She is 34 years old, married for 13 years and has four children ranging from 10 to 19 years old.  She has been working with children in childcare for about 10 years and has an Associate’s Degree in Human Services Management.  In addition, Ms. Monique is working towards a Bachelor’s degree in childhood development. She enjoys working with toddlers to preschool because she believes it is a crucial time in their learning experience.

Kathie Clark – Pre K fours Lead teacher

Ms. Kathie has been teaching at St. David’s Episcopal Day School for 3 years. She began her career her as an assistant in the Older 3’s class and has been the Pre K4’s lead teacher for the last 3 years. Ms. Kathie has been a teacher for 7 years has taught students ranging from one-year-olds to 1st grade. Kathie earned her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Mississippi College in Jackson, MS where she was born and raised. She has lived in Austin for 10 years and loves being a teacher and feels honored to be part of a child’s early education.

Julie Johnson-Carson- Lead Montessori Teacher

Julie Johnson-Carson was born in Austin when her father was a student at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary and her mother taught third grade.  The eldest of 5 children born 7 years apart, she lived in Overton, Odessa, and Pasadena, Texas, when growing up.  Having a stay-at-home mother and so many siblings to play with she had a great childhood and spent a lot of time playing outdoors. Julie received her B.A. from Austin College in Sherman, Texas, in 1974.  After receiving her certificate in Contemporary Montessori Education in 1987 from The Albanesi Educational Center in Dallas, Texas, she worked at schools in Dallas and Coppell before moving to Austin to enroll her 3 children in The Waldorf School.  She worked at White Bird Montessori and The Children's School.  In 1993 she married Keith Carson and gained another son.  Rebekah was born in 1994 and she stopped teaching for a while. She began teaching in the new Montessori Mother's Day Out program at St. David's Episcopal Church in 1997 and has been here ever since. Julie received training from Sherry Mock in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at St. David's.
Mrs. Julie always wanted to be a mother and God blessed her with Jessie, Micah, Isaac, Jules, and Rebekah. She and Keith now have a son-in-law and 3 daughters-in-law and have been blessed with 3 lovely granddaughters. Each child is a precious gift from God to be cherished, guided, and loved by us. Mrs. Julie feels blessed each day through the children and their parents.  She believes it is a privilege to be with you at St. David's Episcopal Day School.