Meet our Team

JPA staff are friendly, nurturing and fun! Everyone is CPR & first aid certified and has cleared background checks. Lead teachers have a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Development, Elementary Education, or a related field.


Alethea Jenkins

Alethea Jenkins

Helping children learn about their world and themselves is the most amazing and rewarding thing. I enjoy working with parents to positively influence a child's sense of self worth and accomplishment.

Alethea is married and has two young adult children. She is a graduate of James Madison University with a BA in Psychology; Graduate of UNC Charlotte with a Master’s Degree in Counselor Education. Alethea is certified K-12 in school counseling and holds certification as a National Board Certified Counselor with a specialty in school counseling.

Alethea worked 3 years as a Mental Health Counselor in a school-based program, 7 years as an elementary school counselor, and 4 years as lead preschool teacher before opening Jenkins Preschool Academy in 2008.

Ashley McKibbin

Ashley McKibbin

Ashley McKibbin is the lead teacher in the 2's class. She grew up in Charlottesville, Virginia and received her BA in Psychology from the University of Virginia. She then went on to work as an Educational Support Specialist in the Charlottesville City Schools providing mental health counseling in and out of the classroom. She is married with three children, two of which have attended JPA. She has been lucky enough to live all around the country (including Charlottesville and Harrisonburg, VA, Hackensack, NJ, Lexington, KY and now Wilmington, NC), as well as out of the country on the Caribbean island of Grenada. Ashley enjoys an active lifestyle and likes to integrate physical activity and movement into the classroom as much as possible. She is incredibly excited to be teaching the 2's class and can't wait to watch all of the children change and grow.

Karin Youngquist

Karin Youngquist

Karin teaches the three year old classes at JPA. She grew up in Sweden, and moved to the U.S. to attend and graduate from Elmhurst College, IL. She stayed in the U.S. and is married with three children and her two youngest both attended JPA for preschool. Karin's oldest child is on the autism spectrum and all three children have given her a unique insight to child development, typical and atypical alike. Karin believes that watching children explore and interact with the world is an amazing privilege, and that the opportunity to help them discover new ways of learning through play is an incredibly rewarding job.

Sarah Steele

Sarah Steele

Sarah has been the teacher in the 4/5 year class since 2015. She is married with one son. Sarah graduated from East Carolina University with a BS in Child Life. She has worked with preschool children in private and public childcare settings for fifteen years. Sarah enjoys horseback riding, gardening, and going to the beach with her family. Her energy and creativity are a great asset to JPA.

Adair Flynn

Adair Flynn

Adair Flynn is the assistant in the 4/pre-K class. She graduated from Spartanburg College and is married with 3 children. Adair has been very active in her children’s classrooms and worked with 2 year olds at St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church prior to coming to JPA in the fall of 2011. Adair brings lots of laughter to JPA with her silly songs and easy going nature in the classroom.

Madeline McCrary

Madeline McCrary

Madeline McCrary is the assistant in the 3 year old class. She has an Associates in Early Childhood Education and Associates in General Education from Cape Fear Community College. When she is not teaching she enjoys volunteering at her son’s school and volunteering with the children’s ministry at her church. She lives in Wrightsville Beach with her husband and son. She enjoys spending time with her family, the beach, hiking, and the outdoors.

Ryan Elizabeth Pape

Ryan Elizabeth Pape

Mrs. Ryan Elizabeth Pape joined the JPA team in 2019 as an assistant teacher in the 2’s room. She has a degree in Social Work with a minor in Communications Psychology from West Virginia University. Ryan has worked as both a children’s advocate in a domestic violence shelter and as a medical social worker in the geriatric field.

Mrs. Ryan loves working with preschoolers and you can also find her volunteering at her children’s schools or with the large breed dog rescue she helps run. Ryan and her husband have 3 young boys who are their world!

COLLIER

COLLIER

Meet COLLIER! She is a fully trained, insured, and certified Facility Dog from paws4people, a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating and empowering people to utilize Assistance Dogs to transform their lives. She has been custom trained to work with Ms. Alethea in the classrooms of Jenkins Preschool Academy every day. She encourages and supports multiple developmental skills that we teach at the preschool by being involved in many hands-on learning activities. COLLIER also provides many opportunities for social/emotional skill development as the children learn to care for her and learn about the role of Assistance and Facility Dogs in our community.

Please take a moment to support paws4people at COLLIER's donation page! Any amount is greatly appreciated and will help change the lives of so many!

You can also keep up with COLLIER on her Instagram page preschoolpup_jpa!