To whom it may concern,
My childhood was spent in the Lake District, UK enjoying interests such as playing badminton for the North of England, tennis, sailing, and football (soccer!). I have always been an adventure seeker; I have inter-railed across Europe, been a sailing/tennis instructor in an American Summer Camp, explored nearly every part of Southeast Asia and more recently the Middle East. I am an outgoing and positive individual who loves a challenge.
I started my teaching career in the south of England after graduating from the College of St Mark & St John. After three years teaching in London, My wife and I decided that there was so much more of the world to explore! We experienced an exciting start to international teaching with five years in an International School in the Philippines and, with both our son (Josh) and daughter (Abi), we spent six years with GEMS World Academy, Dubai. We are now starting our third year in Zambia at the American International School of Lusaka.
Over the past few years I have held various positions of leadership ranging from Team leader at International School Manila for a total fifteen teachers, including EAL, SEN specialists to a member of the Senior Leadership Team as Pre-School to Grade 12 Director of Digital Learning at GEMS World Academy. Within this particular role, I was continuously supporting, advising and training 180 teachers and staff, 1800 students, admin and parents. The role involved coordinating teacher Professional Development, overseeing a budget of over 400,000 dollars, assisting the build of a schedule for Secondary School, managing student information systems and developing a whole school Digital Citizenship program.
In my previous post, I worked alongside the Senior Leadership Team to develop an appraisal process that was appropriate, and above all, easy to understand, administer and provide effective feedback for both teachers and leaders alike. By recording the evaluations using an online form, data gathered could be tracked, compared and was easily accessible by the entire Senior Leadership Team.
Throughout the last two years in Dubai, I was also the GEMS ICT Network Leader, coordinating and developing the use of technology in education in over 20 GEMS schools. In this role, I regularly provided workshops and advice to multiple schools as well as leading meetings on best practices, developmentally appropriate activities, curriculum development, pedagogy and assessment, not just within the IB but for a range of curriculum frameworks. I have presented at the Middle Eastern International Baccalaureate Association (MEIBA) Conference, at a TEDx Event in Dubai, at the previous two ISAZ Conferences and also presented at the Learning2Africa Conference in Johannesburg last November.
I pride myself in having a great working relationship with all staff at the school – including admin, technicians, support staff and teachers. Being a problem solver and having strong communication skills are essential when dealing with teachers but are even more important when it comes to connecting with students and parents. Being there to support families through their educational experiences, and the responsibilities that come with it, is of paramount importance.
I have always been interested in a whole school approach. I have coached Varsity sports, taken a real interest in PYP, MYP and DP projects, and make a point of getting to know student names. I like to be involved in school events and I have a genuine interest in how AISL is growing and developing. With technology playing an increasing role both in the infrastructure of the school and best practices, I believe my background will continue to be an asset to AISL.
I believe that the ability to lead comes from being valued, respected and approachable by the people around them and I believe that in the relatively short time I have been at AISL, I have begun to prove that I have the qualities necessary to be leader. I have already completed three Principal Training Center courses, participated in the GEMS Leadership Program and been invited to become an Apple Educator. The next step in my professional development is to formalise my leadership qualifications with a Masters in Educational Leadership certification, which I will be starting next month.
I am eager to learn new things – an inevitable part of being an international teacher in the 21st Century. Trying to keep pace with quick-learning students, interested teachers and whole school projects are all exciting prospects. I believe I have sufficient hands-on experience to help support and guide a cohesive program. Working in education is not a job for me but a passion, which I love sharing with others.
Strengths & Skills