Faculty and Administration

Our full-time teaching staff at St. John Paul II Regional School holds New Jersey State Certifications in Education.

Mrs. Helen Persing – Principal
Telephone: 856-783-3088
Email: principal@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Persing holds an M.A. in educational administration from Rider University along with a B.S. in business management. She has both her NJ State Principal/Supervisor Standard Certification and NJ State Elementary School Teacher Standard Certification, and she completed the New Jersey Leaders to Leaders Program in October 2008. Mrs. Persing was nominated 2013 Camden Diocese Principal of the Year.  She is beginning her seventeenth school year as Principal of St. John Paul II Regional School since its inception in 2008 and was Principal at Queen of Heaven School in Cherry Hill for two years prior.  Mrs. Persing taught middle school math, science and language arts as well as second grade in the Diocese of Trenton where she was named Outstanding Catholic Educator. Mrs. Persing is passionate about Catholic Education and continues to devote her time to meeting the needs of the students at St. John Paul II R.S.

Mrs. Dianette Delgado- Administrative Assistant
Email: ddelgado@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Delgado holds an Associates degree in Office Systems Technology Administrative Assistant from Camden County College. She brings several years of  business administration, human resources, and clerical experience to our school office.  Mrs. Delgado feel privileged to work in a Catholic elementary school, and enjoys interacting with students and parents. Mrs. Delgado is beginning her fifth year here at JPII.

Mrs. Kathy Chesnut – Advancement Director

Email: kchesnut@jp2rs.org

Learning Center

Mrs. Joanne Bertini
Email:  jbertini@jp2rs.org

Mrs. JoAnne Bertini holds a B.A. in sociology and elementary education from Rutgers University as well as Teacher of Students with Disabilities degree from Rowan University. With over 15 years of teaching experience in the Camden Diocese, she brings a fun and creative style to ensure that all types of learners succeed. Mrs. Bertini believes that every child has a special talent or interest and she works to tap into those areas for students to love attending school every day. She infuses religion into all subjects through books, Bible stories, Saint of the day or a proverb that relates to a present topic. Students will learn through hands-on activities to enhance math and science skills and promote curiosity. In her spare time, Mrs. Bertini enjoys time with her family, walking her dog and attending education workshops to stay up with current trends.


Mrs. Dana Carlin – PreSchool 3
Email: dcarlin@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Carlin has an associates degree in Early Childhood Education.  She has taught children in preschool for 36 years.  Mrs. Carlin has two children in college.  Her favorite hobbies are walking, reading and attempting to garden.  She also enjoys spending time with family and friends, training her puppy and hopefully doing some traveling.


Mrs. Christine Lambertino – PreSchool 4
Email: clambertino@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Lambertino is a graduate of Wesley College. She has completed numerous classes in Early Childhood Education at CCCC. Mrs. Lambertino taught for 12 years at St. Joseph’s Elementary Regional School in Hammonton. She loves teaching preschool because she has witnessed their wonder and excitement. Outside of school, she enjoys spending time with family and watching her 4 children play sports. She also enjoys the beach and reading a good book.


Ms. Sophia Baldino – Kindergarten

Email: sbaldino@jp2rs.org

Ms. Baldino graduated from Rowan University with a degree in elementary education.  She also holds a reading endorsement certificate.  Ms. Baldino loves working with children and is very excited to start her teaching career at St. John Paul II.


Grades 1 to 5

Mrs. Patricia Babnew-First Grade
Email: pbabnew@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Babnew holds a B.A. in early childhood education from Holy Family University.  She has over 11 years of teaching experience teaching second grade in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and also in the public school system working with autistic children. Mrs. Babnew believes in active learning where children benefit from hands-on activities and are an integral part of the learning process. She wants her students to be excited about learning every day. She looks forward to first grades’ traditional Saints Project and developing strong math and literacy skills in her students. Most importantly, Mrs. Babnew wants their love of God and each other to grow in our great school community!  Mrs. Babnew teaches Children’s Liturgy at her parish on Sundays and enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time at the beach with her family.

Ms. Brittney Morello-Second Grade
Email: bmorello@jp2rs.org

Ms. Morello studied Early Education with Special Education at Cabrini University from 2016-2020. She completed her student teaching at Cardinal Foley Catholic School in Havertown, PA. This is her first year teaching and she is super excited to have a great school year!

Her students will be studying new sight words and everyday words. She has a wonderful way to remember all those words and it will be a lot of fun! Kindergarten is going to be great because the students are going to learn how to read so many enjoyable and interesting books.  Personally, she thinks the best thing about kindergarten is that we can and will have fun while learning important things such as sight words, phonics and number sense. “Our classroom is going to be a positive place where everyone will feel safe and happy while learning.”

Ms. Morello played Field Hockey at Cabrini University while studying education. She wanted
to keep doing something with field hockey and is an assistant field hockey coach at
Sterling High School. In her free time, she likes to spend most of her time at the park with her dog as well as reading new books and cooking!

Mrs. Brenda King – Third Grade 
Email: bking@jp2rs.org

Mrs. King holds a B.A. in elementary education with over 25 years of K-8 teaching experience. She is eager to engage her class in writing workshops to encourage students to be lifelong writers. Mrs. King believes third grade is an exciting and challenging year when students learn many new skills across the curriculum.  In her personal time, Mrs. King enjoys reading, spending time with her grandson and “glamping.”

Ms. Alaina Logan – 4th Grade
Email: alogan@jp2rs.org

Ms. Logan studied Elementary Education, Special Education and American Studies at La Salle University from 2017-2021.  She completed her student teaching, then working as a learning support teacher, at Freedom Prep Charter School in Camden, New Jersey.  Prior to her college career, Ms. Logan was educated in Catholic schools from preschool through grade 12, attending St. Mary’s School in Williamstown and Paul VI High School. This is her second-year teaching, and she is excited to have a wonderful school year with her 4th grade students!

Ms. Logan looks forward to helping her students grow in their faith, while furthering their academic skills, promoting independence and responsibility, and preparing them for the challenges and exciting times that lie ahead in 5th to 8th grade.

In her personal time, she loves spending time with family, including her two dogs. She loves reading in a cozy spot, cooking, and crafting!

Middle School – Grades 5-8

Mr. Christian Kelly – Fifth A Grade Homeroom; Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth Social Studies
Email: ckelly@jp2rs.org

Mr. Kelly has a degree in biology from Rowan University.   He maintains CE and has taken several teaching classes at the graduate level at Rowan.  He loves playing ultimate frisbee.  In high school he won 3 state championships.  He presently coaches a team for Rowan University.   He is very interested in environmentalism and doing his part to protect the environment

Ms. Zuleika Fernandez – Fifth B Grade Homeroom; Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth Religion
Email: zfernandez@jp2rs.org


Mr. Matthew Frankunas – Sixth Grade Homeroom; Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth Language Arts
Email: mfrankunas@jp2rs.org

Mr. Frankunas holds a B.A. in elementary education and social studies from Rowan University and has over 10 years teaching experience. Mr. Frankunas has been an ABA Facilitator for the Washington Township School District since 2001, where he provides at-home instruction to students with autism. He is a member of Phi Alpha Theta (National Historical Honor Society) and Honor Society.org. ‘Mr. Frank” provides students in his classroom with a skill set to develop strong research, writing and public speaking skills. He motivates students to think for themselves and develop strong problem-solving skills. In the classroom, while learning the traditional components of Language Arts, students will also learn various historical periods, issues, and cultures based on the novels they read. Mr. Frankunas is the director of our school’s spring plays, which have included: Aladdin, Snow White, The Little Mermaid, and The Lion King. He feels theater is an excellent way for students to express their creativity and to build a sense of community within the student body. His interests also include: zoology, mythology, and film/art history and brings his love of learning to the classroom.

Mrs. Mary McKeown – Seventh Grade Homeroom; Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth Math
Email: mmckeown@jp2rs.org

Mrs. McKeown holds a B.A. in elementary education and history from Nazareth College, Michigan.  With over 35 years of experience, Mrs. McKeown focuses her teaching on the belief that children should feel comfortable learning, asking questions, and knowing that they will get the help they need. She is excited to begin teaching a new math curriculum to students that she helped develop for the Camden Diocese.  Mrs. McKeown works to prepares middle school students with the rigors of high school math by teaching two levels of Algebra based on students’ abilities.

Mrs. Danielle Hurd – Eighth Grade Homeroom; Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth Science
Email: dhurd@jp2rs.org

Mrs. Hurd holds a B.A. in elementary education and psychology with over 15 years of teaching experience. In addition to science, she has taught language arts, mathematics, and religion in fifth through eighth grade. Mrs. Hurd motivates her students by incorporating creative, educational programs into her science lessons. Her science classes frequently work in our new Science Center with laboratory experiments and observations to follow up on material taught in the classroom. Mrs. Hurd also enjoys using the smart board with her students, sharing PowerPoint presentations, and using Science World magazines that are internet friendly.  Mrs. Hurd runs Science Explorers after-school club for Grades 1-5 and facilitates student council activities.

Mrs. Ana Curiel-Spanish
Email: acuriel@jp2rs.org

Ms. Curiel was born in Spain and has lived in several different counties such as England, France, and Mexico. She holds an Associate degree and has worked as a Technical Nurse Aide and a Clinical Laboratory Technician. She has been a volunteer Spanish teacher for adults in France and has been a Spanish tutor in the United States for two years teaching grammar and conversational Spanish. Ms. Curiel wants her students to learn Spanish, its culture and to have fun with activities and plays. She wants her students to be able to communicate with each other and other Spanish-speaking individuals. Ms, Curiel is married with two boys and a cute cat. She likes to spend time with her family traveling and playing tennis. She enjoys reading and crocheting.

Ms. Nichole Ayala- Art, Gym and Technology
Email: n.ayala@jp2rs.org
Ms. Ayala has a B.A. in Art from the College of St. Elizabeth (now Saint Elizabeth University).  She taught K-8 Art for 12 years at St. Joseph Regional Elementary and is very excited to continue her teaching career in a Catholic school. Ms. Ayala believes that when students experiment with different art mediums and make “mistakes” they create amazing works of art and find their individual styles.  Outside of school, Ms. Ayala enjoys painting, spending time with her cats and dogs, and reading.

Teacher Assistants


Mrs. Angela Lipenta-Pre School 3 Aide





Mrs. Diana Peralta-Pre School 4 Aide





Mrs. Tricia Bonagura-Kindergarten & First Grade Aide





Mrs. Cinthia Recarte-Aide





Mrs. Lynda Chesterton-Outdoor Recess