2016-17 Faculty and Staff Bios


Fehmida Rajiwate:  Pre-K1 Teacher

Email: rajiwatef@dupeoria.org

Fehmida Rajiwate was born in Mumbai, India and have been living in the Peoria for the past 18 years. She completed her Masters degree in Arts with Economics major. She is married to Arif Rajiwate who works at Caterpillar.

After coming to Peoria, she took some classes related to education, culinary arts and computers to broaden her horizon. She helped her husband with his restaurant business venture and then moved on to retail industry. She worked with Bergner’s for a period of 6 years. Over these 6 years, she took on different roles: Sales Associate, Team Lead, Mentor, and assisting manager with planning and organizing. She enjoyed every moment of it!

She love working with Kids and have a passion for teaching. This is her sixth year in Daarul Uloom. She thought Pre-K1 for four years, and Kindergarten for one year. She is looking forward to working with your kids in Pre-K1. She is grateful to Allah S W T to have presented her with this opportunity.

When she is not working, she loves to read, cook, bake, and gardening.


Rabha Mizyed:  Pre-K1 Assistant Teacher

Email: mizyedr@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Mizyed has been an assistant teacher in the Pre-K1 classroom at Daarul Uloom for 11 years now, Alhamdulillah. Mrs. Mizyed’s tenor at DU has been an asset to Daarul Uloom.
Her affection for children is what brought Mrs. Mizyed to DU. She loves being around children and watching them grow and flourish into school-age kids. With being the assistant in the Pre-K1 classroom, she feels pleasure in knowing that she is able to play a significant role in establishing a strong foundation for the students of DU.


Sana Maryam:  Pre-K2 Teacher

Email: maryams@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Maryam is our Pre-K1 teacher for the 2016-17 school year.  She is from India and has been living in the US for past 10 years. She hold a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in Psychology & Literature. She has previously worked as a Pre School teacher before joining DU.

She is very excited to be your child’s teacher. She strives to provide a safe, comfortable, stimulating, fun & educational environment to prepare your child emotionally, socially and academically, Inshaa Allah. She will also encourage good personal hygiene skills and manners.

She believes that we need to work together as a team in order to help the child develop both physically and mentally. She looks forward to a fun filled, great productive year, Inshaa Allah.


Thuwayba Affifi:  Pre-K2 Assistant Teacher

Email: thuwayba@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Affifi began teaching at Daarul Uloom in 2005. She has taught both in the part-time and full-time capacity.  In addition, she taught Arabic, Quran, and Islamic Studies in the past. Currently, Mrs. Affifi is an assistant teacher for Pre-K2 as well as the Islamic Studies teacher for that class.

Mrs. Affifi’s love for children is what makes her passionate about teaching. She feels that building a strong foundation is the most important part of teaching. It is her belief that the hands-on approach to teaching is the best way for children to learn. She believes that the more experiences children have, the more they will learn. These experiences are what make children more curious and enthusiastic about learning.


Jalhia Diallo:  Kindergarten Teacher

Email: dialloj@dupeoria.org


Basma Juma:  Kindergarten Assistant & Islamic Studies Teacher

Email:  jumab@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Juma completed her education at Forsyth Tech in North Carolina. She joined Daarul Uloom in the 2012-2013 school year as an assistant teacher for Pre-K2; this will now be her third year assisting Kindergarten as well as being their Islamic Studies teacher. Before this Mrs. Juma was a part of Noor Al-Huda Sunday School for seven years, teaching Arabic and Quran for the preschool grades as well as being a substitute for the Hafs Program.

Mrs. Juma came to the states 28 years ago with her husband to provide a better education for their kids. She has seven children; so she loves working with kids to help them grow and aspire for big things in life. Her philosophy for teaching is to help her students express themselves and bring their own uniqueness to the class


Amber Mathis: 1st Grade Teacher

Email: mathisa@dupeoria.org

Amber Mathis will be our first grade teacher at Daarul Uloom for the remaining of 2016-17 school year. This will be her first year teaching at DU.  She is very excited about it. She enjoys sports, tv, and loves teaching Reading and Math!

Ms. Mathis grew up in Central Illinois where she completed high school and began attending college. She then transferred to Eureka College, Eureka IL. In December 2015, she graduated with a Bachelors in Elementary Education including social science, physical science, and language arts endorsements.


Robin Mathis: 2nd Grade Teacher

Email:  mathisr@dupeoria.org

Miss Robin E. Mathis comes to DU after 10 years in District 150. She graduated from Bradley University in May, 2005 with a BS in Elementary Education and a minor in science. She has taught K-5 Science, K-4 Language Arts, as well as Kindergarten and First grade. She was also a summer school teacher for several years.

Miss Mathis has two daughters, Amber and Emma. Amber, 24, is a graduate of Eureka College and teaches pre-school in Peoria. Emma, 14, is a freshman in high school.

Miss Mathis understands that the partnership between the parents and the teacher is a critical component to the child’s success. She looks forward to meeting the parents and working together to give the children the best education possible.


Saima Adnan: 3rd Grade Teacher

Email:  adnans@dupeoria.org

It is Mrs. Saima Adnan’s belief that the Quran and Sunnah lay extreme importance on knowledge – both acquiring it and then passing it on. She believes our children have natural curiosity and teachers are facilitators. It is a teacher’s responsibility to guide them, and help them achieve their full potential.

Mrs. Adnan joined Daarul Uloom in 2014 as a 3rd Grade teacher. She is excited to work with the 3rd graders again this year. 2016-17 school year marks her 3rd year with Daarul Uloom.

Mrs. Adnan received a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Karachi University, Pakistan. After coming to USA, she observed the professionalism and passion of the educators. So when she decided to return to school after her children were a little older, she decided to pursue the field of education. She graduated with honors in Spring 2014 with Associates in Science (Elementary Education) from Illinois Central College. As a student teacher, she worked in several schools in the area including Ridgeview Elementary School in Dunlap School District and Quest Academy in Peoria School District 150. She also had the opportunity to observe a 2nd grade teacher at Peoria Academy for a complete semester. In 2015, she along with a few other DU teachers attended a week-long teachers conference in Nevada. That same year, she attended another workshop on reading in East Peoria. She also attended educators’ conference organized by ISNA in 2016. Mrs. Adnan lays a lot of importance on professional development. She attends many webinars organized by other experts in education, and brings what she learns to her class in order to enhance students’ learning experience.

In the past, Mrs. Adnan was an administrator for Islamic Foundation of Peoria Sunday School from 2009-2014. She has been a part of Peoria’s Muslim community for the last 15 years. She is married and has two children. In her free time, she enjoys reading.


Joey Syed:  4th & 5th Grade LA Teacher, 4th Grade Homeroom

Email: syedj@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Syed is the homeroom teacher for fourth grade and the language arts teacher for both the fourth and fifth grades at Daarul Uloom for the 2016 -17 school year. Mrs. Syed came to Daarul Uloom in 2007 when she was first hired to teach PreK2. Her dedication and hard work made her an ideal candidate for Kindergarten which she was subsequently asked to teach. The 2016 – 2017 school year will be Mrs. Syed’s ninth year with DU. The experience that she brings to the classroom is invaluable as best teaching practices

Mrs. Syed already holds a bachelor’s degree in art from Bradley University. She recently completed a post baccalaureate program and received her Illinois Teaching License in March 0f 2016. In addition, she has completed course work directly related to working with young children and she has previous experience in child care. To further her professional development as a teacher, Mrs. Syed has attended various workshops throughout the course of her employment at DU taking what she has learned and applying it in her classroom. Mrs. Syed has proven that teaching is so much more than a license; it’s caring, dedication and passion. She is loved by her students and many of her colleagues as well. We here at Daarul Uloom find her to be an invaluable asset and important part of our team of talented teachers and staff.

Mrs. Syed is a native of the Peoria area. She is married to Yousuf Syed and the two have two children, Masha’Allah. Though the life of a teacher is very busy and she really does love teaching, she also enjoys photography, knitting, reading, watching movies and spending time with family whenever she can find the time.


Laura Stangle: 4th to 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher & 8th Grade Homeroom Teacher

Email:  stanglel@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Laura Stangle is returning to Daarul Uloom this year to specialize in teaching Social Studies. Mrs. Stangle earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Eastern Illinois University and later continued her education by earning an Elementary Education Certificate from Eureka College. She has middle school endorsements in Language Arts and Social Studies. She has also participated in professional development through Quincy University’s “Teaching with Primary Resources” program which is sponsored by the Library of Congress. This past year Mrs. Stangle also became an instructor with Quincy University’s program.


Jessica Springer: 6th and 7th Grade Language Arts, 8th Grade Writing Teacher & 7th Grade Homeroom Teacher

Email:  springerj@dupeoria.org

Jessica Springer is DU’s 6th and 7th grade Language Arts teacher. After earning her Masters degree in Education in 2007, she taught 6-8th grade in Georgia public schools. When she moved to Peoria with her family in 2011, she worked as a remediation aide in literacy and math in Dunlap CUSD before taking time off to homeschool her own children. During this time, she created and taught early elementary/preschool science and math classes at a bilingual school in Peoria Heights.

When not teaching, Jessica is busy with her three children (Aidan, 12; Ava Kate, 9; and Anders, 4) and husband, Joel, who works in innovation at CAT. Living in the Midwest is a new experience for the family, and they enjoy exploring the area by visiting museums, attending local events and trying new restaurants in central Illinois. Jessica volunteers in the community by leading a Girl Scout troop and sewing costumes for the Peoria Ballet.


Hiba Naffakh:  2nd-8th Grade Math Teacher & 6th Grade Homeroom Teacher

Email:  naffakhh@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Naffakh joined in 2008 as Daarul Uloom’s Math teacher. She graduated from Bradley University in 2004 with a BS in Computer Information Systems; however, it was her love for children and teaching that led her to seek a degree in Education at Illinois Central College. Subsequently, she graduated with a master’s degree in Elementary Mathematics Education at the University of Houston-Victoria and Graduated in 2013. She later earned her certification through the state of Illinois.

Mrs. Naffakh has been teaching 2nd through 8th grade Math for nine years. She has such great passion for the subject of Math so much that she enjoys sharing it with her students. She passes this knowledge on to her students in entertaining ways, such as telling stories, singing Math songs, and conducting many hands-on activities.


Rania Maoued: 4th -8th Grade Science Teacher & 5th Grade Homeroom Teacher

Email:  maouedr@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Maoued graduated in 2016 from Western Governors University with a Post-Baccalaureate degree in Elementary Education K-9. In addition, she graduated in 2008 from Oklahoma State University with a bachelor’s degree of Science in Human Environmental Sciences, majoring in Human Nutrition. She also has an associate degree in Medical Technology. Currently, Mrs. Maoued is working towards earning a middle school endorsement in science.

Mrs. Maoued has been teaching for 6 years at Daarul Uloom Islamic School. Outside the Education field, she worked as a medical technologist for 2 years. While attending Oklahoma State University, she worked in the nutrition research lab for one semester.

Mrs. Maoued is passionate about Science and she enjoys both learning and teaching it. When it comes to teaching Science, Mrs. Maoued believes that students will best learn the subject through many hands-on activities. Also, she believes that each student has the potential to succeed and thrive when provided with an accepting and trusting environment. Each student should be treated as an individual with unique learning abilities and requirements.

Mrs. Maoued and her family joined Peoria Muslim Community late 2008. She is happily married and has three little boys (who keep her on her toes); all of them are currently attending Daarul Uloom School. In her little free time, Mrs. Maoued likes to read about nutrition, exercise and go for walks.


Tahnia Mafiz: 1st-8th Grade Computer Teacher

Email:  mafizt@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Mafiz is Daarul Uloom Computer Studies teacher for 1st – 8th grades. The year of 2016 – 2017 marks her 2nd year teaching at DU. Mrs. Mafiz has completed her bachelor in HR & Marketing from Brac University in Bangladesh. Computer was her major subject in her higher secondary level. She is really thankful for the opportunity to explore and share her ideas and computer knowledge with Daarul Uloom Students.


Zabia Mansour:  PreK1-3rd Grade Arabic & Quran Teacher

Email:  mansourz@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Zabia Mansour has been a member of this community for 15 years. She has an associate degree in architecture and a degree in Sharea (Islamic Study, Seerah, Fiqh, and Tajweed) from Syria. She has 15 years of experience in teaching Arabic and Qur’an in the US. The year 2016-2017 marks Mrs. Mansour’s 6 years as an employee of Daarul Uloom Islamic School. Mrs. Mansour has a great passion for each individual child. She always strives to make her teaching fun by incorporating games and hands on activities.


Soukaina Sassi:  4th -8th Grade Arabic & Quran Teacher

Email: sassis@dupeoria.org

After graduating from Tunisia’s Law and Political Science University, Mrs. Soukaina Sassi worked at the Tunisian health department as Human resources manager for almost 10 years, then she moved to America where she Joined Daarul Uloom Islamic school team, as Arabic and Qur’an teacher. This year will be her 8th year there. Mrs. Sassi taught pre-school, elementary school and middle school, also she had the chance to teach Qur’an at Du Qur’an Academy since 2011.
Mrs. Sassi loves teaching Arabic and Qur’an because she cares deeply about each of her students and believes that students can grow and develop by examining the subjects she covers in class.


Khawla Al-Qudah: 1st, 2nd, & 4th Grade IS Teacher

Email: alqudahk@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Khalwa Al-Qudah is the Islamic Studies teacher for First, Second and Fourth grade at Daarul Uloom for the 2016 -17 school year. She joined Daarul Uloom in 2003 as a Quran and Arabic teacher and have 10+ years of education experience. She is also a fulltime teacher at Daarul Uloom Quran Academy.

Mrs. Alqudah holds a bachelor degree in Islamic Study from Zarka Private University and attended several conferences in Chicago on education and Islamic Studies. She completed all course work for a Masters in Islamic Studies from American Open University. In addition, she has previous experience at Noor Al-Huda Sunday School and, currently, she is the principal of Hafs Quran Memorization Center.

Mrs. Alqudah is originally from Jordan and married to Osama Alrefai, Imam of Islamic Center of Peoria. Together they have two wonderful daughters and two sons, Walhmadu LiLLAH. They both love working with the youth and look forward to raising a better future generation.


Maha Ahmed:  5th -8th Grade Islamic Studies & 4th – 8th CED/Art Teacher

Email:  ahmedm@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Maha Ahmed is teaching Islamic Studies for the second year in Daarul Uloom. She holds Bachelor degree in Medicine & Surgery, a Master’s degree in Human Physiology, a teacher certificate in Hafs and Tajweed, and a Certificate in Nooraneyah. Additionally, she comes to Daarul Uloom with four years of past teaching experience, with about 6 months out of those years teaching the same program here at Daarul Uloom.


Hassan Brik: PE Teacher

Email:  brikh@dupeoria.org

Mr. Hassan Brik is beginning his fifth year at Daarul Uloom as a Physical Education Teacher. Mr. Brik believes all of his students are special and posses a wide variety of talent and skills. It is his mission to expose the students to a wide variety of activities, as to encourage them to discover and enhance these skills. As a professional educator, Mr. Brik will present these activities in a positive and professional manner, as to maximize the self-esteem and the self-confidence of his students. As a result of physical education, his students will learn that physical fitness is crucial for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, not only now, but for the rest of their lives. Mr. Hassan has a great passion into soccer in which he specialize. Outside of DU, Mr. Brik had the opportunity to coach soccer in Morton Premier Soccer Club. Mr. Brik is originally from Morocco and he has been in the United States for six years now.


Anne Fox:  8th Grade LA & Reading Teacher, Teaching and Curriculum Excellence Coordinator

Email:  foxa@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Anne Fox has been teaching in the area of science for over 25 years. She has been involved with DU for the last 5 years in teaching High School courses. In 2016, she has become a full time staff member at DU. She is teaching High school courses, 8th grade Language Arts and Reading. In addition to the teaching, Mrs. Fox is a coordinator of teaching and curriculum excellence and is working closely with the administration to further enhance the great education here at DU. She has a Masters in Science Education with a Focus in Literacy and Learning in the Content Area. She loves the aspects of utilizing technology in the classroom to make students more globally connected. She believes everyone has potential to open the gift of learning and strives to find the ways to help others.


Musliyati Mustaffa:  Office Secretary

Email:  du@dupeoria.org

Mrs. Mustaffa graduated from University of Missouri Kansas City in Mathematical Science and received a Master of Science Degree from Illinois State University in Economics in 2002. She worked with Financial Solutions Midwest as an office manager until 2010 before joining Daarul Uloom in 2011 as an assistant teacher. She is currently in her fifth year as the school secretary for Daarul Uloom.

Mrs. Mustaffa brings years of experience in office management from her previous occupation. She is a very organized and diligent person both professionally and personally. With her strong attention to detail and her ability to deal with various situations that require tactfulness and discretion, Mrs. Mustaffa works well with fellow staff members, parents, and students to ensure the day-to-day administrative operations at Daarul Uloom remain smooth and on-time.


Nermeen Farghaly:  Interim Principal

Email:  viceprincipal@dupeoria.org, principal@dupeoria.org

The 2016-2017 school year marks Mrs. Farghaly’s 9th year as an employee of Daarul Uloom Islamic School. She started her assignment as DU’s Vice Principal in 2011. Prior to that, Mrs. Farghaly held the position of Pre-K1 teacher for three years.

After completing her BA degree in Education and before residing in the United States in 2000, she worked as a certified teacher for three years teaching English and French languages to elementary, middle and high school students. After residing in the United States, Mrs. Farghaly also acquired more experience in field of education by completing multiple trainings in Early Childhood Education and teaching at various Islamic part-time schools, such as the Saudi Arabia School and Sunday Schools. In addition, in 2014 Mrs. Farghaly successfully completed a leadership training at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Mrs. Farghaly has a great deal of passion for working with students and parents. She works hard at organizing school events and fundraisers, counseling student, working on the ins and outs of running a school, ensuring the students, staff and families have what they need to be part of a safe, intelligent and committed working environment. She is a proud and dedicated employee. She values her relationships with her coworkers and all Daarul Uloom students from whom two are of her own.