The teachers at ESNS are responsible for developing the daily program, implementing our philosophy, and assisting the board of directors in establishing the school’s policies.


Eileen Prime, Teacher and Education Coordinator


Eileen Prime earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Roger Williams University and Masters of Education from Antioch New England Graduate School. She has worked with children ages 16 months to highschool. Running her own private tutoring practice, long term substitution, then finally finding her niche with preschoolers. Her son attended a co-operative preschool in California and the format was one that seemed best for her parenting style. She worked at a Co-operative preschool in Arizona, where her son attended, then another in Maine and now  in Rhode Island. She is intuitive and has great patience, two essential qualities for an early childhood education. She presently shares a home with her 21 year old son and two close friends in Portsmouth. She has stated that ESNS is the school of her dreams!


Karen Welser, Teacher and Administrator


Karen graduated from Swarthmore College, where she majored in English. She has been a member of the East Side Nursery School community since 2001, when the first of her four children began in the Tuesday/Thursday class, and has been teaching at ESNS since 2016. Children and education have been longstanding passions for Karen: she is certified in Parent and Family Coaching; she currently leads an online international adoption support group; and has previously developed, written, and taught an original religious education curriculum for children ages 3-9. Karen and her husband live near ESNS on the East Side, with one child in elementary school, one in middle school, one in high school, and one overseas in graduate school.


Sarah Dennigan, Assistant Teacher


Sarah Dennigan has previously worked as Assistant Director at Books Are Wings, a Rhode Island children’s literacy non-profit that works to mitigate the effects of poverty on literacy rates by providing free books to children. In that role, Sarah worked in different classrooms throughout the state every day, with children ranging from infants to middle school. Sarah has been involved in the East Side Nursery School community since 2008, when the first of her three children began in the Tuesday/Thursday class. She had served on the ESNS Board for five years in various roles, including two as President of the Board. Sarah graduated from the University of Rhode Island.