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About Us

Founded in 2000, Petite École Internationale is the only French immersion Montessori pre-school in Austin. Serving children ages 2-5, our graduates continue on to other language immersion schools in the community as well as public and private elementary programs, always carrying with them a love of the French language.


PEI is a non-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors largely made up of parents. The Board of Directors is responsible for policy-making and conducting the routine business of the school.  The structure of the school allows parents to be very involved by volunteering as a Board Member, Committee Chair or in a wide variety of other capacities.


Our non-profit status allows us to keep our fees as low as possible and ensures that 100% of our earnings and donations are funneled back into the school. We also offer a scholarship program for families in need of financial assistance.

Our Staff


Carrie Schonaerts

Director/Lead Teacher

Carrie has been with PEI since its creation in 2000, first as an Assistant Teacher, then Lead Teacher and now as both our Lead Teacher and Director. Her long tenure with the school has enabled us to ensure a remarkable continuity in our methods and in the school experience for our students. Carrie has lived in France and holds a Bachelors in French from Southwestern University in Georgetown, TX. She travels back to France as often as possible!


Lynda Molinari

Classroom Assistant & Extended Day Leader

Lynda Molinari has worked with children for 21 years, including 9 years at the Austin Children Shelter for abused and neglected children. She worked with children (ages newborn to 19) with physical, emotional and developmental challenges. She was a direct care staff for 7 years, followed by 3 years as a team manager for the teen mother cottage. At the shelter she used sign language to assist the young children in communicating their needs and continues to use this method to reinforce communication at Petite Ecole. It takes a village to raise a child and Lynda feels very fortunate to be part of the village.

Outside of school she enjoys riding her bicycle throughout Austin, lifting weights and Yoga. Lynda is also a proud mother and grandmother.


Sabrina Meddassi

Pre-Primary Lead Teacher

Sabrina joined the Petite Ecole team in the fall of 2022. She was born and raised in Normandy, France. She graduated school as a HR major and worked for 10 years as an account executive and project manager for multiple national staffing companies.

Sabrina took time from the corporate world to volunteer in a non-profit primary Moroccan school where she helped implement the French language program. She enjoyed it so much so that when she moved to Austin she decided to continue pursuing education and more specifically the French language and culture education. Sabrina enjoys tennis, paddling on lady bird lake, and very good cheese!

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