Our Team at Grand River
Heather White ~ Site Leader
Mrs. Heather started with M&M as an Enrichment Specialist in 2015, in 2nd grade class. She was assistant Site Leader in 2016 and then became the Site Leader in 2017. She returned to school in 2018 to pursue a degree in Early Childhood Education thanks to all the support of her husband Terry. She absolutely loves her job and being able to work with all the different children. She has worked with children for over 20 years and feels that she has brought new experiences to GRA. She is super excited for the new school year and can’t wait to see what this year should bring and what is to come! “What we learn becomes a part of who we are.”—Kathy R. Jeffords
Yulissa Casique ~ First & Second Grade Specialist
Ms. Yulissa is from Southgate, Michigan. This is gonna be her second year with M & M and she couldn’t be any more excited! She is currently at Henry Ford College studying for Pre-Elementary Education Degree. Ever since she was young, children has made her happy. She has experience with children since she has babysat from a young age & has been in Youth Clubs/Church Teen Leader. She loves to be part of the M & M Team to make new friends, new discoveries, new adventures & most of all, educate & have an amazing time with students! In her spare time she likes to be with her family and listen to music and go to the gym. She is pleased to be able to share her passion for education with M&M students and help empower them to create a better future.
Marjorie Baldwin ~ 1st & 2nd Grade Specialist.
Mrs. B works as a paraprofessional at GRA, She had the pleasure of joining the M&M team in 2018 and she is excited for what adventures she will go on with kids. She truly believe that it takes a village to enrich the life of a child. She feels honored to be part of the village here. When she is away from children on her spare time she likes sitting by the water and enjoying mother nature's beauty.
Cynthia Sandusky ~ 3rd & 4th Grade Specialist
Ms. Cynthia was born and raised in California. This is her third year with GRA M&M. She has experience working with infants and also school age kids. She had the opportunity of working with military family and the USAF for five years. She also worked with after-school programs here in Michigan. She is a proud parent of two boys. On her weekends, she loves to spend time with her family and explore new places. She also likes to travel. She loves working with kids and believe there is always something to learn from them. She likes to be there for them, listening, and encouraging them. We can make a difference in their lives and she want to be part of that experience.
Deja Spencer -
Terry White "Mr. Heather" ~ "Super volunteer"
He is Mr. Heather and he loves being around children. If he can make kids smile, then he knows he did his job right. He think it is important to teach them responsibilities to becoming young adults. He help a lot in different areas too, like answering the door as well as assisting in some of the after-care rooms as it
is needed. “No child should be left behind, only the bad choices should”.
Chyna Tookes ~ 4th & 5th Grade Specialist
Ms. Chyna Tookes is returning at M&M. She is from Detroit, Michigan and She is a senior at Wayne State University, pursuing Elementary Education. A few of her hobbies are coloring, singing, volunteering and traveling. Chyna enjoys meeting new people and finding ways to help them as best as she can. She is very dedicated, outgoing, and a team player.
Jena Rushton ~ Customer Care Specialist
Jena started as an Enrichment Specialist with M&M in 2013 at South Pointe Scholars. A year later, Jena helped M&M Extra Care grow, as the new Site Leader at Grand River Academy. In 2015 she became our Customer Care Specialist. Jena’s bubbly personality can be felt through the phone or email and she is loved by all! Jena recently had a life change and moved to Atlanta, but thanks to the wonderful world of technology, she has been able to remain, to help families navigate the registration, billing, and scheduling practices of M&M.
Tara Ball ~ Operations Manager
Tara has been with M & M since 2009 and also began as an Enrichment Specialist. But with Tara’s extensive experience and expertise in School-Age programming, it was clear her role was to include so much more. Tara is instrumental in providing high quality care at M&M. Tara is a valuable coach and leader to all Specialists, Site Leaders and even the Administrative Team. Tara will often step into a classroom to cover a shift, to help train a new specialist, or even just because she LOVES working with the kids! Tara’s greatest love—planning and working summer camp!
Madonna Mrocca ~ Owner
As the owner of M&M Daycare, Inc., Madonna has been providing care for children since 1995. As a parent of two children who attended NHA Schools, Madonna understands the important role that M&M Plays in providing a quality school-age program. She believes that each child shall be treated as an individual and will have caring professionals provide a safe, nurturing environment. Additionally, independence, exploration, and a feeling of self-worth will be encouraged and opportunities for social-emotional growth, recreational activities and educational learning will be provided.
What kind of background checks are performed?
As a Licensed Childcare Program, all staff must complete comprehensive background checks, which include fingerprinting, FBI, CPS, DHS and State Police record searches. The State of Michigan administers and provides the systems for these checks.
What kind of training do the Enrichment Specialists and Site Leaders complete?
Many of our Enrichment Specialists have completed or are pursuing degrees in Education or other Child Related fields. All Staff are required to participate in ongoing Continuing Education throughout the year. Although the minimum requirement of licensing is 16 clock hours per year, all M & M Team Members are required to complete at least 24 clock hours annually within the following Core Knowledge Areas:
- Child Development
- Teaching and Learning
- Health, Safety and Nutrition
- Observation, Documentation and Assessment
- Family and Community Engagement
- Interactions and Guidance
What do we expect of our Enrichment Specialists?
It is imperative that our specialists play an active role in lesson planning to provide a diverse and enriching experience in before and after-school care. Time is provided for the Enrichment Specialists to prepare for their day with supplies and planning for at least 30 minutes prior to and 30 minutes after the students are present.
We expect our Specialists to develop relationships with their students and their families, to promote a safe and nurturing environment and to foster a supportive partnership with the parents or guardians in the role of caring for each student.
What do we expect from our Site Leaders?
Our Site Leaders are there to provide support to our staff, the students in our program and to their parents. On a daily basis, they monitor Enrichment Specialist classrooms to ensure that our specialists are meeting or exceeding our quality expectations. The Site Leaders work closely with the enrichment specialists to establish that they have quality lesson plans which include a variety of educational and social activities. The Site Leader also maintains the flow of communication between M & M Extra Care and the school sites, speaking to teachers and other school staff about how we can work together to best support the students in our care.
Site Leaders also work with the students to help them remember the moral focus and help encourage positive behavior choices.
Additionally, Site Leaders are present to provide support and resources for our M & M Parents, working with them to guarantee that their student is given the opportunities and activities to keep them engaged and involved during the before and after-school care program.