Falls Church - McLean Children's Center






Crystal F. Jean, who has served Children’s Center assistant director for the last 18 months, has been selected by the Children’s Center’s board of directors as the Executive Director. She becomes the seventh executive director to lead the Children’s Center in its 50-year-history.

“I was drawn to the Children’s Center because its mission of serving all children aligns with my own philosophy of education,” Jean said.

“I believe all children deserve a strong educational start to prepare them for kindergarten and beyond. I love that the Children’s Center is diverse and inclusive, and also equitable. Every child has access to the same highly qualified teachers, curriculum, and support services.”

Jean, who holds a Master’s Degree in Education with a focus on child development from Southern New Hampshire University, brings more than a decade of experience as a preschool educator to the top position. Prior to joining the Children’s Center, she was the director of Rock Spring Preschool, a half-day cooperative, in Arlington, VA, for two years and its resource teacher for one year. Before moving to northern Virginia, Jean, who holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology, taught special education in New Hampshire public schools.

She was chosen by the Children’s Center Board of Directors after a competitive review process this spring.

“The search for our new director attracted several very good candidates,” according to  Susan Poretz, Children’s Center Board President. “Crystal was the clear choice because she knew our mission, staff, children and families already and we knew that her values and work style fit the Children’s Center.

“We are confident Crystal will lead the Center well as it starts the next 50 years of giving young children, particularly those who are at-risk, the strong start they need.”

As Jean assumes the executive director position, Lucy Allca-Pelletier, former education coordinator and long-time Children’s Center teacher, becomes assistant director.  

Jean replaces Elizabeth Page who will return to retirement, having completed two years as the Children’s Center executive director, in a second term.




Lucy Allca-Pelletier

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