Teachers

A native of Strasbourg, Eléonore has a Master’s degree in French and Music. She has taught in immersion schools for many years including the Portland French School, and in Houston at the Awty International School in pre-k and kindergarten. As a teacher and a mother of a three-year-old, Eléonore loves creating new activities that spark enthusiasm and the desire to learn more. Her first love is music, which infuses many of her activities in the classroom. She is a proponent of open and guided play, experimentation, exploration, expression, and learning by doing.


Originally from Seine-et-Marne, Camille earned her masters degree in education from the University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne. Before coming to the United States she taught in French schools for 5 years. Her passion for travel and the discovery of new cultures led her to Portland, her first teaching experience abroad.


Emilie moved to Jordan to study archeology but discovered the pleasure of teaching while at the Lycée Français in Amman. Her passion is to focus on each child’s individual talents and strengths, and to apply a forward-looking pedagogical path. She seeks to shed light on the world around the children through discovery and experimentation, while also creating a caring and nourishing environment.


Joëlle began teaching in 1995 in France. While teaching, she completed a Master’s degree in clinical psychology at the University of Nancy II. In 2013, her interest in teaching abroad brought her to Portland. At L’Etoile, Joëlle strives to create a nurturing, engaging environment where the children can feel secure and learn at their own pace, in harmony with their personalities.


Carine Zimber is originally from Montpellier in the South of France. She has been living in Portland for almost 20 years with her husband, two children and two cats. Her youngest is still attending l’Etoile, while her oldest graduated in 2019. Carine started teaching at L’Etoile soon after the school was founded. During the past seven years, she has been teaching to both Preschool and Kindergarten students, and had the great pleasure to watch her former pupils graduate from l’Etoile! Her teaching philosophy is to support a child’s natural curiosity to learn, by focusing on hands-on experiences filled with movement, imagination, play, and thoughtful reflection. When she is not teaching, Carine enjoys gardening, going on family bike rides, and hiking.


Amandine was born in the French Alps. She has a degree in sports education and her French teaching certification. Amandine worked in the south of France for 10 years before realizing her dream of working abroad and relocating to San Diego and then to Portland. Amandine loves to incorporate her passion for travel to the classroom. Her approach to teaching French involves exploring and discovering the world and its many diverse cultures. In her spare time Amandine enjoys hiking, skiing, and playing ultimate frisbee.


A native from the south of France, specifically from the Montpellier region, Fabien earned his teaching license and master’s degree from the University of Montpellier. Interested in discovering new cultures he chose to work abroad. For seven years he taught 1st and 2nd grade at the Lycée Français de Mexico, and prior to that in French schools in Chile and Ecuador.


Laure Dutirou-Mason, 3rd Grade (CE2)

Laure grew up in the rolling hills of Gascogne in Southwest France. After studying English and Spanish in France, Spain and Northern-Ireland, she moved to Canada for graduate studies in translation studies, specializing in translation pedagogy. After a year of teaching French for all ages at Alliance Française in South India, she began a career as a translator with the Government of Canada in Ottawa. When she moved to Chicago, she returned to teaching while also working as a freelance translator. Following a period of training at the University of Chicago, she joined the Department of Romance Languages and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago as a lecturer. From there she relocated to Portland to begin teaching at Lewis & Clark College and the Alliance Française de Portland.


Julien, originally from the region of Franche-Comté, obtained a degree in Cognitive Science in 2005 and his teaching certification in 2007. Since 2013, he has taught in a number of countries: Poland (CM1); the French American School of Princeton (middle school math, physics, chemistry); the French School of Manila (CE2 and CM2); and the International Bilingual School of the Côte d’Azur. Building self-confidence and independence are primary goals for his students. While not working, Julien enjoys discovering new food specialties and traveling.



A seasoned first grade teacher with a Master’s degree in teaching, Sarah comes to L’Etoile from the Beaverton school district. Prior to that she was at the International School of Denver, where she taught 1st grade ELA for 3 language tracks (French, Chinese, Spanish), applying the IB curriculum. Sarah strives to build self-confidence in her students by providing a warm environment where questions and the exchange of ideas are welcomed.


Theresa loves teaching elementary grade students, who present unique challenges as they establish their independence and craft their identities. From her teaching experience at Portland Public Schools and the Portland Village School, Theresa understands what it takes to build a solid foundation in writing, reading, and grammar, and how to best apply those skills in constructive ways. Her students have put on full-length Shakespeare plays, have hosted Open Mic nights in which they’ve read their creative writing, and have built model cathedrals to contribute to their understanding of Medieval history. She loves including parents in the classroom to both visit and celebrate their children’s work.


Sebastien Durandeu, PE

Administrative Team

Joëlle brings her deep experience as both an educator and administrator to her new role.  With an undergraduate degree from Stanford and a master’s degree in education from PSU, Joëlle spent nearly a decade teaching elementary aged children, first in Portland Public Schools and later at the Bryn Mawr School, a recognized leader among independent, college-preparatory schools on the east coast.  For over nine years she directed her efforts to advancing the needs of children emphasizing experiential and collaborative learning methods. Subsequent to her teaching role she began as an administrator at L’Etoile in 2017, but still maintained an anchor in the classroom. As both a L’Etoile parent and administrator, Joëlle is delighted to be part of this vibrant community.


After receiving her teaching degree in Aix-en-Provence, Nathalie moved to La Réunion, a French island in the Indian Ocean, where she taught maternelle from 2000 to 2004. She went on from there to teach elementary at the Lycée Français de Caracas in Venezuela from 2004-2010. Her desire to explore America led her to the International school of Arizona and then to Portland.  At L’Etoile her experience includes teaching 4/5 grade and directing pedagogy.


Susan graduated with honors from the University of Puget Sound with a degree in French Language and Literature and spent 6 months studying in Dijon, France.  She has a strong background working in customer service and administration, including 2.5 years as the office manager at the Alliance Française de Portland.  Susan is excited to be a part of L’Etoile and is looking forward to working with everyone in the L’Etoile community.  In her free time, Susan enjoys fostering pups for a local animal rescue, planning her next trip to France, and biking around Portland.


Inspire, Nurture, Achieve

At L'Etoile French Immersion School we aim to develop capable, independent thinkers.

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