Coon Rapids

Create. Laugh. Learn.

Lisa Ward
School Director
EFC Coon Rapids

Welcome to Especially for Children’s Coon Rapids Child Development Center. We serve infant through preschool age children in a caring and educational environment. A warm and friendly teaching staff is here to provide support for your child as well as engage him in learning activities that foster all areas of development.


Through the play-based Creative Curriculum®, your child will experience wonderful opportunities to grow socially, intellectually, physically, and emotionally, and will prepare for entering kindergarten. Find out more about the Learning Curriculum and Developmental Goals here. Throughout the year we invite families to connect with one another at fun-filled events including the Mother’s Day Breakfast, Ice Cream Social, Holiday Concert and Halloween Party.


We have been serving families in the Coon Rapids area since 1995 in the quiet Evergreen Business Park behind the YMCA, just blocks away from Springbrook Nature Center. We invite you to visit the Especially for Children Coon Rapids School to see for yourself what a positive learning environment this can be for your child and family.


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Hours and Map

8885 Evergreen Blvd
Coon Rapids, MN 55433



6:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., M-F

Meet Our Teaching Staff



Hi, my name is Lisa Ward, and I am the Director at Especially for Children Coon Rapids. I started with EFC in December 2015. I have my degree in Early Childhood and have been in the field since 1986, working as a director since 1991. In my spare time, I enjoy time at the cabin, gardening and exploring the state on the motorcycle. I love getting to know the children and their families that entrust their most valuable possessions to my amazing team of teachers and me.


Infant Teaching Staff


Hello, my name is Brenda and I work in the preschool room. I studied Child Development at Anoka Hennepin Technical College. I have been apart of the EFC team since 2001. I enjoy watching each child learn and the excitement they get from each new experience. I enjoy walking outside and supporting Minnesota sports teams.



Hi, my name is Ms. Ebere. I am a mum, wife, daughter, and sister. I have three amazing boys, Joshua 12, Jason 10, and Jayden is 7. I live in Coon Rapids. I am currently studying for my Master’s degree in Child & Family Studies and licensure in Parent Education from St. Cloud State University. I love children and enjoy teaching young children.



I was born and raised in South Minneapolis and relocated to Coon Rapids 20 years ago. I retired from Xcel Energy, where I worked in the Corporate Compliance and Business Ethics Department and was also a Contracts Specialist. I became bored with retirement and took a position as Nursery Supervisor at Faith Lutheran. I started working at EFC in January of 2015. I am very much enjoying my second career in childcare. I love to read and do scrapbooking. My real passion is my grand daughter, who is now a senior at Blaine High School and is on the Varsity Dance Team – Go Bengals!



Hello! My name is Anissa. I have 3 wonderful children. 2 of them go to school and my youngest one is here at the center. In our free time we love to be outside whenever possible. We love swimming, going to parks, going on walks. In the winter, we enjoy going to museums and indoor playgrounds.

I have been in childcare for almost 6 years! I’ve worked with all ages. I love being a teacher. I enjoy watching each child develop, learn and grow. I love being a part of watching them hit milestones and celebrating those milestones with them. Being an early childhood teacher is such a rewarding experience.

I can’t wait to get to know you and your children!


Toddler Teaching Staff


Hi my name is Emily Sampson and I work in the toddler room. I am currently a full time student double majoring in Psychology and Sociology with a minor in Early Childhood Education. I love sports and I am currently running collegiate track and field. I love working with children and making a positive impact on their lives is a long term goal I wish to continually achieve. I am excited for the opportunity to teach and guide our future leaders.



Hello! My name is Dacota. I am a toddler teacher here at Especially for Children. I have my bachelor’s degrees in Anthropology and American Indigenous Studies from Minnesota State University, Mankato. I love working with children and helping them learn about the world and community we live in. In my free time I love reading, quilting and playing with my 6 crazy pets , two cats and four ferrets.


Preschool/Pre-K Teaching Staff


Hi my name is Hala. I have about 20 years of hands-on experience in early childcare, including working in pre-schools and as the director of a center. In my roles I have developed emergent curriculum to help children reach their fullest potential, while fostering a safe and loving environment for children. I love watching the new skills kids learn throughout the year and the bond we form along the way. I truly have a passion for childcare and giving kids a nurturing environment to play learn. When I’m not working with kids I’m spoiling my own grandkids!



Hello, my name is Susan. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from St. Cloud State University. I have taught preschool and toddlers in the past and have also run an in-home childcare. I am very much looking forward to the opportunity to teach pre-kindergarten and EFC! I have 2 children of my own who are also enrolled at EFC. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, and crafting.


Float Staff


Hello, I am Susan (Sue) I attended North Suburban Hennepin Technical Center for Child Development in 1977. I married in 1979, raised 4 daughters in Oak Grove on 7 acres. I continue to enjoy maintaining our property, caring for one of our daughter’s 2 horses, our 2 small dogs and 1 cat. I worked in St. Francis ISD 15 from 1989-1991 in various positions, ranging from the summer Kids Connection, Title I math/reading program to office professional – attendance/ enrollment. I retired in April 2019. I missed working with small children here at EFC and am so pleased to be working once again in the field I started in. I have a deep passion for children, their growth and learning. Life is grand.


Lisa K.

Hi my name is Lisa K. I have been working with children for 25+ years. I have an early childhood education. I enjoy working with all ages. I have three children of my own. I live in Andover.



Hi, my name is Simone and I studied Music Education at the University of Wisconsin River Falls, and love finding different ways to use music in the classroom! I’m very excited to work in our toddlers room, and grow with them!


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