With teachers, teaching assistants and specialists from all corners of the globe we are incredibly proud of the talent and passion embodied by all our staff, and how it translates to a world-class learning environment for all of our students.
For more information on each member of our team, please see below.
Jessica Anderson, a native New Yorker, received a BA in Art & Art History at City College of New York. After earning a Master of Science in Early Childhood Education at Hunter College, she eagerly left the United States for international adventures. Ms. Anderson taught English in Barcelona, Spain and subsequently held positions at several IB World schools in London, England and Tokyo, Japan. At these schools, she taught Year 1 and Reception, while also acting as PYP coordinator and mentor for newly qualified teachers. Four years ago, Ms. Anderson moved back to New York and took a position at The International Preschools, where she remained until she got the exciting opportunity to work within a PYP programme once again – at BIS-NY!
In her spare time, Ms. Anderson is a music enthusiast and frequents live shows throughout Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. She also enjoys planning upcoming holidays where she can travel and learn about the rich history and culture around the world.
Ms. Anderson is thrilled to be working within the inquiry-based, collaborative and international environment that BIS-NY offers.
B.A. in Studio Art / Art History, City College of New York
MS Ed. in Early Childhood Education, Hunter College, New York, NY
New York State Public School Certification to teach Birth – Age 8
TEFL certification – ITTT, Barcelona, Spain
Mr. Campbell believes very strongly that the ethos of creativity and individuality that flourishes at BIS-NY is one of our school’s greatest strengths. Emphasizing these traits as the foundation of a rigorous program of inquiry allows all of our students, regardless of their learning style, to thrive in our happy and secure school environment.
Mr. Campbell’s much-enjoyed nine years at The British International School cap a long and impressive career in education. In addition to six years working in child and adult art education in New Zealand, he has lectured in ancient history at tertiary level, taught in the Middle East, provided professional development for teachers in South America and taught for eight years in inner-city London schools.
A firm believer in lifelong learning for all, most recently, Mr. Campbell joined Harvard’s Graduate School of Education where he worked on producing a series of class-based practical research projects that focused on pedagogy and on helping children to make the most of their learning experience.
In addition to his work in education, Mr. Campbell is a published author who has written several textbooks on the art and culture of ancient Greece and Rome, both of which are now recommended textbooks for the senior secondary school examinations in classics.
Bachelor or Arts with First Class Honours; Classical Studies/History, Victoria University, Wellington, NZ
Graduate of the Graduate Teacher Programme, Kingston University, London, UK
After studying for a specialized primary education degree, Ms. Ranger enjoyed a 15 year career in primary schools in the UK before moving to New York with her family in 2010.
As well as teaching across key stages 1 and 2, Ms. Ranger held a number of senior management positions including Key Stage Leader, Literacy Co-ordinator, Teaching and Learning Manager and mentor for Newly Qualified Teachers. She was also a Leading Teacher in Mathematics for her Local Education Authority.
Since arriving in New York, she has balanced raising her son with volunteering with the Make A Wish Foundation as a wish granter, PTA curriculum committee rep at her son’s school and co-ordinating various book clubs.
BA (QTS) in Primary Education with Creative Arts, Brunel University, London, England
Annette Ottley is a skilled and dedicated educator who is passionate about the foundation stage because in those early years the children develop the foundation of inquiry and knowledge that will carry them through their years of schooling. For her own education, Ms. Ottley completed her undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Education at the Long Island University’s Brooklyn Campus. After completing her studies and student teaching, Ms. Ottley worked at a prestigious independent school in New York City for over 6 years. Ms. Ottley is clear that her area of giftedness is with the Early Years and has been operating in this capacity at BIS-NY since 2008.
Ms. Ottley likens teaching to gardening. Her role as a teacher is to provide each and every child with the tools to cultivate his/her own garden of knowledge in fertile soil. As such, her classroom is a caring, safe, and equitable environment where each child can blossom and grow. Ms. Ottley plans “gardening” opportunities every day to allow the children to become responsible members of the classroom community. With a bit of sunshine and nurturing, the children blossom through class meetings, positive reinforcement, and democratic principles. In showing children how to become responsible for themselves as well as their own learning, Ms. Ottley gives them the tools to become successful in life, to believe in them, and to love themselves and others regardless of their differences!
Ms. Ottley is very keen of the IB PYP program because it so closely aligns with her educational approach and thinking. The PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. It also prepares students to be active participants in a lifelong journey of learning. It has been Ms. Ottley’s experience that children who are validated and valued engage positively in the process of education. Therefore, she seamlessly merges educational structure while exposing the children in her class to the Learner Profile. Overall, Ms. Ottley strives to provide an environment in which children feel safe, comfortable, important, respected and valued. She feels shaping young minds, in this holistic way, lends itself to greatness!
Ms. Ottley will continue to be the Head of the Glennie House for next year and is especially excited about continuing and enhancing the house system. Ms. Ottley is working closely with Ms. Carr and Ms. Scheiber to share her insights, skills and passions to reenergize the House System. It’s too soon to reveal any “House Secrets”, but she’s looking forward to bringing her personal love of traveling, cooking and reading to her work with Glennie and, every day, in the classroom!
B.A Early Childhood Education, Long Island University, NY
Miss. Simmons was born into a teaching family and developed a passion for education from an early age. She remembers watching her mother prepare wild and whacky teaching resources for her primary school students and knew that she would eventually follow in her footsteps!
As a lover of reading and writing, Miss. Simmons completed her BA Honours degree in English Literature and Language at Sheffield University in the UK. She then went on to complete her PGCE in Primary Education at London’s Middlesex University. After completing her teacher training at a range of London primary schools, Miss. Simmons took up a Year Two teaching post at Abercorn School, BIS-NY’s sister school in central London. It is here that her love of hands-on, inquiry based learning has flourished and she prides herself on putting a creative stamp on anything she touches!
Having taught for two years in London, Miss. Simmons has decided to combine her passion for teaching with her love of travel to make the exciting move to New York. She brings with her a comprehensive knowledge of the English National Curriculum and looks forward to fusing this with the philosophical framework of the International Baccalaureate at BIS-NY.
In addition to classroom based teaching, Miss. Simmons is a qualified lacrosse coach and has put this to good use during summers spent working as a camp counsellor in the USA. Her last two years at Abercorn School also provided Miss. Simmons with the opportunity to let her full creativity flow, and she organised two infamous (if messy!) after-school clubs, known affectionately as ‘Horrible Science’ and ‘Crazy Craft’.
B.A. (Hons) English Literature and Language at Sheffield University, UK
Swiss born and educated, Brigitte Gloor brings academic, professional and practical experience to language studies.
She received her B.A. in Education at the Lehrerseminar Solothurn, Switzerland and continued her education at the Institut Catholique in Paris, receiving a certificate in Advanced French Studies in 1975. Ms. Gloor taught and coordinated third year elementary school curriculum which included French, German and Instrumental Music among other academic subjects for Swiss national certification and was a regional judge in piano and flute competition for elementary school children.
Ms. Gloor brings practical language skills as a Berlitz certified instructor and as a translator of legal and medical research documents for a New York law firm. She has been a private tutor for both adults and children for many years.
Outside interests include world travel, skiing ( Swiss certified ski instructor ) painting, Spanish Language and different cultures.
B.A., Education, Lehrerseminar, Switzerland
Romea Hanif began her teaching career in Lahore, Pakistan as a High-School Literature Teacher. In 1993, she moved to the US with her family and decided to devote her time to raising her two children. While a stay-at-home parent, she took courses in creative writing, computing and interior design. She started working as a Substitute Teacher for the United Nations International School in 2006. She substituted for grades one through eight as a Lead and Assistant Teacher and also taught specialist subjects such as Art, Technology, Music and Science. She joined the BIS-NY staff in 2014. She brings with her an extensive knowledge of instructing and nurturing children of different age groups and diverse backgrounds.
Masters in Language and Literature.
Certification of Lecturer in English Literature.
Jose Sosa was born in Santiago, Dominican Republic. At the age of 14 he immigrated to the United States with his family and has lived here in New York since then. In 1997 he graduated from Alfred E. Smith H.S. in the Bronx. From 2002-2011, Mr. Sosa worked at Hunter College and Hunter High School. Whilst working, in 2007, he earned an associated degree in Art: Social Science and Humanities at LaGuardia Community College. Following this he went back to Hunter College to pursue his Bachelor degree in Psychology. In 2010, Mr. Sosa founded The Sosa Family Foundation, a non-profit organization to reach out the neediest and contribute to the education back in his hometown in the Dominican Republic. In 2011, Mr. Sosa joined the BIS-NY family and had made it his home ever since!
Since graduating in 2011, Mr. Buchan has spent six years in the classroom. Prior to becoming a teacher, he worked as a youth support worker in his local community, mentoring and educating those not in education, training or full time employment. At the same time Mr. Buchan worked in secondary schools across East London and Essex, running workshops designed to prepare pupils for work experience.
Mr. Buchan has an unerring dedication to providing pupils with the best possible educational experience. He has a commitment to innovation in the classroom and enjoys working with colleagues to discuss and develop the best possible classroom practice. Mr. Buchan is passionate about creating a classroom environment in which independence, resilience and growth mind-set is actively promoted and encouraged. Prior to joining the British International School Mr Buchan worked as an Initial Teacher Training Leader, assuming responsibility for the mentoring of trainee teachers and newly qualified teachers. In addition, he was responsible for moderating the mentoring provision across an alliance of local schools in East Essex. Mr Buchan has held additional responsibilities in Music, Computing, Maths and English.
Mr. Buchan has taken part in many transnational projects, visiting and working alongside primary schools in Hungary, Bulgaria and Belgium. Most recently Mr. Buchan job shadowed in Bydgoszcz, Northern Poland.
Mr. Buchan’s interests include music, film and reading. He also enjoys sports and played regular five a-side football back in England.
B.A. (Honours); Primary Education, Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford, England.
Joe Cockerell earned his qualifications to become a Primary School Teacher in 2004, graduating from Northumbria University in the UK. As well as his role as a Classroom Teacher, Mr. Cockerell has held leadership roles for both Physical Education and Mathematics.
Prior to gaining his qualified teacher status, he obtained a BA (Hons) Leisure Management and Sports Studies degree at Buckinghamshire University, and it was during this time that he also successfully completed a UEFA Football Coaching certificate. This enabled Mr. Cockerell to work for Arsenal and Wycombe Wanderers Football Clubs for their Community programmes, and in 2002 he also spent a summer working in California as a coach.
Teaching sport to children has always played a significant part in Mr. Cockerell’s teaching profession. As well as his experience as a P.E. teacher and subject leader he has coached various school sports teams, and at his previous school he was a member of a team of teachers that took pupils on an annual water sports activity week to Spain for many years. He also used his previous experiences as a community coach, to organize and manage bi-annual Easter and summer sports camps for children aged 4-12.
BA (Hons) Leisure Management and Sports Studies, Buckinghamshire New University, UK
Post Graduate Certificate in Primary Education, Northumbria University, UK
Mr Edwards grew up in South Wales and has also lived in Devon and in London, where he spent ten years before moving to New York. After a period working in staff training and development in the energy industry, he completed a degree in Musical Theatre and worked as an actor and voice-coach before qualifying as a teacher. Although he no longer gets much time for acting he is still a very keen singer and has sung tenor with a variety of classical choirs in London.
A lifelong passion for science and maths has served Mr Edwards well as a teacher. He very much enjoys finding practical and exciting ways to teach difficult concepts and is an avid reader of popular science books.
Before moving to BIS-NY, Mr Edwards worked for four years in a successful independent preparatory school in South West London. As well as being a classroom teacher he was also the school’s Head of Science and a Housemaster.
A keen amateur cook, Mr Edwards enjoys finding new recipes and he also likes to relax by hiking and enjoying the impressive landscapes that the USA has to offer.
B.A. (Hons, upper second); Musical Theatre, University of Surrey, Guildford, UK
PGCE (Distinction); Primary Education, Kingston University, London, UK
Upon completion of his degree, Mr Ferguson spent several months travelling around France including a spell harvesting grapes in the prestigious Chateauneuf Du Pape region. He returned to the UK and moved to Kingston-Upon-Thames to study for a PGCE. Mr Ferguson starting his teaching career, as Year 6 Class Teacher specialising in Sport and French. He quickly progressed to Assistant Head of Year 6 and Head of Design and Technology.
Mr Ferguson moved to Surbiton High Boys’ Preparatory School in 1999. His role was Year 6 Form Teacher and Head of Sport. He quickly raised the standard and profile of sport. Every child received the opportunity to represent the school in the core sports several times each term. Links were forged with Fulham Football Club, Esher Rugby Club and Esher Cricket Club to use their coaches to further raise the standards of sport. As the profile for sports increased, the sports department expanded, from just himself to a team of 4 staff, including a member of gymnastics troupe Spelbound who helped develop a strong and successful gymnastics programme.
In 2007 he took on the role of Holiday Club Co-ordinator. This club had always been popular, however he raised its profile to such an extent that the numbers of pupils attending each day more than doubled. A greater range of activities were introduced to accommodate the growing numbers of pupils.
The role of Head of Pastoral Care was created to give Mr Ferguson greater responsibility to deal with the needs of pupils within Surbiton High Boys’ Prep School. He undertook a Masters degree in Education and Leadership, to coincide with this new role. His primary focus was on behaviour management, specifically looking at strategies for leading behaviour. Mr Ferguson changed the culture of behaviour management within his school, introducing novel strategies for raising standards of behaviour amongst the boys.
When his sons started playing rugby at Old Cranleighans Rugby Club, he started as a helper but his passion and knowledge of rugby quickly saw him progress to the role of Head Coach, leading a year group to success in a number of tournaments and festivals. Building upon this success he was instrumental in setting up the inaugural and hugely successful minis rugby tour.
Mr Ferguson is an avid sports fan, he enjoys watching most sports and is a keen athlete himself. His primary sport is triathlon in which he has competed at distances from Sprint up to Middle distance. He has participated in a range of sports, competing in open water swimming events, running races and cycling competitions both on the road and in the London 2012 Olympic Velodrome.
B.Sc. (Hons, 2ii); Applied & Analytical Chemistry Staffordshire University, Stoke-Upon-Trent, UK
PGCE Secondary Science, Kingston University, London, England.
MA Innovation in Education and Leadership, Warwick University, Coventry, UK
Miss Hudemann was born and grew up in Fulda, Germany. After finishing school in 2001, she studied to become a teacher for Primary and Lower Secondary Schools at the University of Education in Heidelberg, Germany, specialising in Art and German language and literature. Having passed her First State Examination in summer 2005, she decided to go travelling to South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. This experience cemented her love for the English language and for other countries and cultures which ultimately led her to her decision to move to the United Kingdom after passing her Second State Examination in Germany in 2007.
Throughout the past nine years in Hertfordshire, United Kingdom, Miss Hudemann has taught at a variety of schools, both Secondary and Primary, and developed her interest in cross-curricular education through the use of the International Primary Curriculum. She has led a number of subjects, including Modern Foreign Languages, Science, ICT and Maths, and has held leadership positions with responsibilities for whole school development.
Miss Hudemann believes in the importance of being a life-long learner and aims to develop children’s independence, resilience and tolerance within a supportive and stimulating teaching environment. She is a passionate teacher with many interests and endeavours to bring these into the classroom to make learning exciting and meaningful.
In her spare time, Miss Hudemann is a keen traveller and combines this with her love for photography. She also enjoys reading and socialising. Living in New York is fulfilling her life-long dream of experiencing life in one of the world’s most exciting cities.
First State Examination, University of Education Heidelberg, Germany
Second State Examination, College for Didactics and Teacher Training, Bad Mergentheim, Germany
Miss McGrath comes from a large family, with 2 brothers and 2 sisters, and always enjoyed playing ‘teachers’ from a young age. In her teens and early twenties she was involved in leading youth groups in her hometown just outside London, and from there she decided to train as a teacher. She has been teaching in inner London schools for 6 years across key stage two.
Teaching in inner London schools has given her experience in working with children from a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures; she thrives on working in a diverse community and embraces the differing cultures, always keen and excited to learn about children’s lives and celebrate differences.
During her time working in London, Miss McGrath has taken on the role of art and display co-ordinator. She has elevated the profile of art in the school and has led projects such as the National Gallery’s ‘Take One Picture’, in which the whole school focus on one famous painting for a week, basing all work around the painting culminating in an art exhibition for parents. She has worked alongside local artists, and brought them into the school to work with children and also to deliver CPD to staff. She also has a passion for maths, and after acting as assistant maths co-ordinator in her first teaching post, in her next teaching post she involved and led the year 4 and 5 children in the Mayor for London project ‘Challenge 24’, aimed at improving mental maths skills. Miss McGrath loves to see children achieve things they didn’t think possible, and is passionate about seeing children gain a love for learning which extends outside the classroom.
After six years of teaching and having a secure understanding of the British National Curriculum, Miss McGrath is keen to combine this with the International Baccalaureate (IB), and is excited to be taking up the teaching post at BIS-NY and the new challenges and adventures it will bring.
Outside of teaching, Miss McGrath loves live music and also loves to holiday and travel, and exploring different cultures. She is thrilled to be teaching in a new country and city, and is excited to explore New York. Miss McGrath enjoys being active and loves a challenge; having recently completed Tough Mudder she is looking for a new challenge!
B.A. (Hons, 2:1); English with Media Writing, University of Greenwich, London, England.
Postgraduate Certificate in Education, University of Greenwich, London, England.
Growing up in North West London, Alexis Sobell always had a passion and enthusiasm for teaching. This led her to studying for her post graduate certificate of education in Primary Studies and consequently becoming a teacher. She has worked in 3 state schools in Greater London all boasting diverse communities.
Alexis Sobell was born in London, England and has lived there most of her life. Initially she pursued her passion for politics at Birmingham University and graduated with a BA Hons. Following this she reverted to her childhood love of teaching and completed her PGCE at the University of Hertfordshire.
Working in England, gave Ms Sobell the experience of teaching the National Curriculum in a creative and dynamic manner. At the first two schools she worked in, she taught years 5 and 6 (9-11 years old) and specialised in religious education and became the subject leader for this over 5 years.
After this Ms Sobell gained a promotion as the maths subject leader in a 3 form entry school. Here she had the opportunity to raise standards in maths and raise the profile of this subject and engagement across the school. Successfully she has led whole schools events in maths enrichment and organised trips, as well as this she has run 3 Year 6 productions which include: Oliver, Annie and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Ms Sobell is excited to take on a class teacher position at BIS-NY and she relishes the opportunity to combine her strong knowledge of the National Curriculum with the innovative and creative approach of the International Baccalaureate.
B.A. (Hons); Political Science, University of Birmingham
P.G.C.E; Primary Education, University of Hertfordshire
Qualifications B.A. (Hons) Literary Studies and Social Sciences, University of Manchester, UK Post Graduate Certificate in Primary Education, Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool, UK
Katherine Bateman is a learning enthusiast! With almost a decade of experience working as an educator in Montreal and Toronto, Ms. Bateman has a wide berth of experience and expertise including: working in experiential education settings, developing individualized learning plans and curriculum and teaching and providing counseling services in post-secondary institutions. She is passionate about inquiry-based experiential education that engages students’ strengths, develops their weaknesses and nurtures curiosity. Ms. Bateman received a BA from Concordia University, an MA from McMaster University and completed her B.Ed. at the University of Toronto. On her time off she enjoys biking, running, rock climbing, sewing and arguing! Ms. Bateman is excited to be teaching at such a beautifully situated IB school and continue her own learning journey among such curious and active minds. She is also thrilled to be heading BIS-NY’s growing debate program and nurture some of NYC’s finest arguers!
B.A. in Women’s Studies, Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec
B.Ed. University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
M.A. Cultural Studies and Critical Theory, McMaster University, Ontario
Mr. Bernard’s first great love is and has always been literature. This passion took him to the unlikely setting of Leicestershire where he read his degree and studied, what felt like, everything that has ever been written in the English language, from the times of knights and jousting to visions of dystopian futures.
As an avid reader, Mr. Bernard has always been passionate about imbuing his students with a love for stories and helping children unlock their creativity through the power of the written word. He has always enjoyed helping young budding writers on their quest to becoming the next Rowling or Collins.
Having taught English to children aged 11-18 for a year, he then moved to a boys independent school where he had the privilege of preparing students for such prestigious schools as Westminster, Harrow, Eton and City of London. Mr. Bernard places great importance on developing an understanding and appreciation of language in learners. He hopes to enrich the lives of the students placed in his care through a journey of discovery into this world of language and believes that English is one of the most important tools you’ll ever need no matter what career you choose!
P.G.C.E (English), The Institute of Education, London.
B.A. English Language and Literature, The University of Leicester.
Mr. Davies, educated at Chatham House Grammar School for Boys in Kent, earned his honours degree in Mathematical Statistics and Operational Research from the University of Exeter. He followed this with a Certificate in Education in Mathematics and Sport from the University of Bristol.
His first teaching position was at Stowe School in Buckingham, where he lived as a boarding house Under-Housemaster. After four years he was given the opportunity to run the Mathematics Department in a school in the Bahamas and then onto an American school for student-athletes on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina. Returning to the British system, he took up a post at a school in Oxford before moving on to a British school in Spain.
At BIS-NY, Mr. Davies runs the Middle School Mathematics Department and overseas the ongoing school placement for our graduates.
B.Sc. (Hons) Mathematical Statistics and Operational Research, University of Exeter, UK
P.G.C.E. (Mathematics and Sport), University of Bristol, UK
Mr. Goldstein has extensive experience of the British education system, firstly being educated King Edward VI Grammar School for Boys in Birmingham, before moving to the University of Sheffield to gain his honors degree in Music. He then moved back to study for a Post Graduate Certificate in Secondary Music Education at Birmingham City University.
He has held two posts in large English schools, where he has diversified from his passion for music, to also teach Maths, Physical Education and Drama in his eleven teaching so far. He has a passion for education and in particularly providing a wide range of musical opportunities for all his students.
Mr. Goldstein is also a keen sportsman, having played field hockey in the English National League, and hopes to contribute further to the school through sporting activities and trips.
As a middle years’ specialist, Mr. Goldstein is extremely excited to have the opportunity to lead further development of the outstanding work happening at BIS-NY in his new position as Assistant Head (Middle School).
B.Mus (Hons) Music, University of Sheffield, UK
P.G.C.E. (Music), Birmingham City University, UK
Ms. Hourigan taught Sciences in secondary schools in the UK and Ireland before moving to New York in 2013. She has held various levels of leadership including Middle School Leader and Key Stage 4 Assistant Headteacher. In June 2016, Ms. Hourigan received the Blackboard Award Honor for Excellence in Education in recognition of outstanding work for New York City students at New York Institute of Technology on Broadway and subsequently featured in New York Family.
Born and raised in rural Ireland, Ms. Hourigan knew from an early age that she wanted to teach and graduated from the University of Limerick in 2004 in Science Education. She obtained a first class Master’s Degree in the UK in 2009 and has maintained links there as a PGCE mentor (Post Graduate Certification in Education) in an international setting for The University of Sunderland.
As Head of Science at The British International School of New York, Ms. Hourigan initiated the integration of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) into the Middle Years Program. Students received nominations and won international awards for various inquiries at COBIS (Council of British International Schools) for Best Biology (nomination 2015), Best Physics (nomination 2014) and Best Scientific Investigation (winner 2014). In 2016, students received the highest number of nominations for Best Scientific Investigation, Best Scientific Theory Explanation and Best Film about Light.
Ms. Hourigan has received many opportunities to combine work with travel. Whilst in London, she visited many schools in Australia and Canada to examine the role of technology in Science teaching. In 2011, she visited the Galapagos Islands to explore first-hand the endemic species of the Ecuadorian province. In New York, Ms. Hourigan has led Year 8 excursions to London and California as part of the MYP program. In 2016, students travelled to Arizona to explore Geology at Grand Canyon National Park as well as taking part in an array of outdoor pursuits and community service work in the Navajo Indian Reservation.
One of the highlights of this past academic year for Ms. Hourigan has been co-teaching the Forensics elective. Next academic year, Ms. Hourigan is looking forward to creating the science curriculum offer for BIS-NY Upper for implementation in 2018.
Bachelor of Science Education (Biology & Chemistry) – University of Limerick, 2004
Masters of Arts (Educational Leadership) – St. Mary’s University College, Twickenham, 2009
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Laya Ballesteros is an art educator who is passionate about teaching art to young children. She loves for her students to explore and discover through the art making process. Ms. Ballesteros received her undergraduate degree in 2001 from the University of Maryland in Art Education. She went on to teach in a suburb outside of Washington D.C. for 6 years where she held annual International Nights and participated in county wide art fairs.
In 2007, Ms. Ballesteros had a great professional opportunity to be a founding art teacher for a charter school in Bushwick, Brooklyn. During the past 9 years, she has worked tirelessly to build a program that uses artistic expression to give her students a voice. She has served as a team leader where she was responsible for advocating for the arts in her school and within the network. Ms. Ballesteros has led professional development workshops for the network of classroom teachers in Connecticut and New York. She also led workshops and webinars to develop the art teachers in Brooklyn.
In 2015, Ms. Ballesteros received her M.S.Ed from Bank Street College in Educational Leadership with a focus in Technology and the Arts. She really enjoyed her time at Bank Street where she expanded her knowledge on the social-emotional needs and the developmental stages of children. She wrote her master’s thesis on student voice and the importance of building relationships with children to better meet their needs.
In her spare time she loves to go on adventures throughout the city, watch football, and is a foodie. She is also a huge Janet Jackson fan, obsessed with the Olympic Games and loves to laugh and enjoys a good joke.
M.S.Ed Educational Leadership in Technology and the Arts, Bank Street College, New York, NY
B.S. K-12 Art Education, University of Maryland, College Park, MD
Ms Sandrine Beddou is a dedicated, enthusiastic, and determined educator who takes pride in teaching languages and improving pupil’s achievement.
Her infectious love for languages and cultures make for fun and dynamic lessons, where children of all levels feel happy and successful in their progress.
Born from a North African father and a British mother and raised in the South of France close to the Italian and Spanish borders, Sandrine Beddou developed a very early passion for multiculturalism and travel.
A placement on the ERASMUS University Exchange Program in Leeds, UK, was the start of her real international adventure and in 2001 she earned her Bachelor Degree in International Business.
She then spent a year travelling Europe, and two months living and working in Madrid, Spain to improve her Spanish skills. She achieved her QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) in 2004 from Trinity and All Saints College in Leeds, and spent the first 3 years of her career teaching French, Spanish and German to secondary students in academically challenging schools. While there, she has gained great experience at working with children of all levels and needs.
Wanting to further her horizons, in 2007 Ms. Beddou accepted a position at the American International School in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E, where she spent a year teaching French to Grades 6, 7 and 8 and Spanish IB initio to Grade 11. While there, she got to experience firsthand the local culture, and discover the wonders other parts of the world have to offer. She took advantage of her geographical location to explore further other countries and continents, meeting people from all over the world.
In 2008, she was offered to return to the UK to help in developing a KS2 program and the International Dimension of the school she worked at before moving to the UAE. She spent the next year working alongside the L.E.A (Local Education Authority) and the local primary schools to introduce and train teachers in teaching languages to Years 3 to 6. Together with other teachers in the department, she also helped achieving the British Council International School Award in 2009.
She then went on to accepting her role as Head of Year, which she carried out for one year, leading a cohort of 109 year 8 Students through their academic success, and emotional and social development.
In 2010, Ms Beddou followed her New-Yorker husband home where she accepted the position of developing the international dimension of BIS-NY.
In her spare time, Ms Beddou enjoys spending time with her family, exercising, and helping others. She takes pride in participating to various charitable events, donating her time and efforts to those who need it most. In 2006, she spent a month living in the Ecuadorian jungle in Oriente with a Shuar tribe as a member of a French charitable association, and she is now looking forward to spending her vacations taking part in similar projects.
License in International Business and Languages (English and Spanish) – Universite d’Avignon, Avignon, France
P.G.C in Education, Trinity and All Saints College, Leeds, UK
The daughter of a teacher, Maria Beatty was born & educated in Greece. She attended the elite Arsakeion High School for Girls (specializing in Classical Education) on a full academic scholarship, attending classes six days a week from age 8 to 18. She graduated magna cum laude.
This prepared her for admittance to Athens University which required high scores on special entrance examinations. At Athens University, which excels in teacher training, Maria completed a degree in Classics & a degree in French Language with additional studies in Byzantine Art & Greek Folk Architecture.
In New York, Mrs. Beatty earned a Master’s Degree in French Language & Civilization from New York University.
Maria has taught in Greece & in the United States.
Mrs. Beatty is beginning her eighth year teaching Latin at BIS-NY. Previously, she taught Latin, Greek Mythology, Homer & Etymology at the United Nations International School for several years. She also taught Greek History & Mythology, Science, English & Sanskrit at The Philosophy Day School for five years. As a private tutor, she has taught Greek, Ancient Greek, French, Latin & Sanskrit.
A lover of wisdom, Mrs. Beatty studied philosophy for sixteen years at the School of Practical Philosophy & Meditation in New York City & was an assistant tutor for Plato Studies. She was also a member of the Translation Group that translated the letters of Marcilio Ficino from Latin to English. Mrs. Beatty also attended various Educational & Philosophy Workshops in New York City & Lucca, Italy.
Special areas of interest are etymology, philosophy & writing. Maria has written children’s books, stories & plays, some adapted from Greek Mythology. She is married to Glenn Beatty, an actor, director, writer & video producer.
M.A. French Literature, Language and Civilization, New York University
B.A. Greek Language and Literature, University of Athens, Greece
A love of sports, fitness, healthy living, and team work are just a few of the many things that led Mr. Eker on his journey towards working with children. Growing up on the coast of Turkey, he spent most of his days swimming in the Mediterranean Sea. Swimming came naturally to him, and his interest in other sports followed. Mr. Eker continued as an athlete throughout his schooling, participating in basketball, swimming, dance, and soccer.
Sports and physical fitness helped him to learn the importance of leadership and team work, and helped him to develop self-confidence and awareness. Mr. Eker went on to study Physical Education for his Bachelor’s degree, and he has been teaching students physical activity ever since. Mr. Eker is a big believer in the importance of self-confidence, self-awareness, and happiness for children’s success. He believes one powerful way to build self-confidence in children is through engaging them in physical education and sports, while teaching with children’s psychology in mind.
Mr. Eker has worked with very diverse populations ranging from teaching folk dance to special needs children, rehabilitation work in a shelter for abused women and children, teaching swimming to international children, and teaching Turkish Folk dance, music and culture to Turkish families living in New York and New Jersey. In all of these cases, good instruction was built around developing skill, self-confidence, and all-around happiness, and instilling a love of learning in students through sports and physical education.
B.A. Physical Education & Sports Teaching, Afyon Kocatepe University, Turkey
Alana Grainsky is a passionate educator committed to bringing out the inner artist in all of her students and growing the community outreach program at BIS-NY. Having taught in IB schools for the past seven years, Ms. Grainsky has developed a strong commitment to the holistic and inquiry based approach of the philosophy. Originally from Connecticut, Ms. Grainsky earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Art Education and Social Justice from the University of Vermont in 2007 and most recently, her Masters of Science in Educational Leadership in Technology and the Arts at the Bank Street College of Education in partnership with Parsons The New School for Design in 2015.
When Ms. Grainsky first arrived at BIS-NY in 2011 she taught MYP Art and Humanities. She was thrilled to become the Head of Art in 2013. Ms. Grainsky loves that she gets to hang out in the art room all day, work alongside the other visual and performing arts teachers, and hopes to inspire and motivate all of her students to find their unique and creative artistic identities. Other components of Ms. Grainsky’s job that she adores are working with the set-design club to design and create the sets and costumes for the annual drama performances and leading MYP excursion trips.
Prior to moving to New York, Ms. Grainsky spent three years teaching MYP humanities and visual art at the Canadian International School in Singapore. At the Canadian School, Ms. Grainsky developed the MYP Humanities curriculum and spearheaded the first PYP/MYP visual arts program. Ms. Grainsky also served as the Community Outreach Coordinator at the Canadian School where she led service trips to Cambodia and India, and engaged the school community in outreach and service initiatives to build a school culture that embraced service, diversity and awareness. Ms. Grainsky has brought this experience with her to BIS-NY and is proud of the development of the BIS-NY Community Outreach program so far.
Teaching abroad inspired Ms. Grainsky’s love for travel but she appreciates living in New York because she is closer to her family and friends. In her free time, she loves to be outside, active and adventuring. Ms. Grainsky is also a practicing artist, and you check out her work at www.alanagrainsky.com.
M.S. Educational Leadership in Technology and the Arts, Bank Street College of Education, New York, NY
B.S. K-12 Art Education, The University Of Vermont, Burlington, VT
Mónica Lachman is a dedicated, expert educator with over 20 years of teaching experience. Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Ms. Lachman graduated from the Universidad de Belgrano. She moved to New York City where she taught Spanish at all levels in reputable institutions including Adelphi Academy, Notre Dame Academy, Bank Street School for Children, The Dwight School, IDEAL School and Academy, and The Berkeley Carroll School. She has earned her MAED in Spanish and MSED in Special Education from City University of New York’s Hunter College and College of Staten Island. Ms. Lachman is also a certified International Baccalaureate School Consultant and Academy Member. Ms. Lachman incorporates her international experience into her lesson plans and practices inclusion in her holistic approach to teaching. Her teaching philosophy is “All children deserve an education that is tailored fit to their strengths, weaknesses and learning style”.
“As an educator, it is my responsibility to challenge and support all students according to their individual needs. It is my duty as an educator to pre-assess students in order to modify lessons, assignments, and assessments appropriately”. Ms. Lachman has two children, graduates of Boston University. One is a clinical psychologist and the other an advertising writer and marketing specialist.
She lives on Staten Island with her husband.
M.A.Ed, M.Sc Ed, in Special Education
DP Spanish Teacher
MYP Spanish Teacher
Ms. Rees studied at the University of Chichester on the south coast of England for four years gaining a BA(hons) QTS in Teaching Physical Education in 2007. She worked for four years at The Hayesbrook Boys School as a teacher of PE and English before becoming Head of Faculty for Physical Education in 2010. She has worked in collaboration with the University of Brighton and Canterbury Christchuch University as a subject mentor for trainee teachers. She has lectured at the University of Brighton to trainee PE teachers about being a female PE teacher in an all boys school and written in the ‘PE Matters’ publication.
Qualifications: BA (hons) Physical Education (QTS), University of Chichester, UK
Lilli Scheiber is a passionate and dedicated teacher who believes in the power of drama and its impact on social, emotional and cognitive development in children of all ages. She received her B.A. in English Literature from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst in 2007. During this time, she had the opportunity to spend six months at Regent’s College in London, where she studied two of her passions: theater and poetry.
On completing her bachelor’s degree, she spent two years living in Florida and the Dominican Republic as a kids club counselor and children’s program manager for Club Med. Through this experience, she gained a real understanding of the dedication needed to inspire and empower youth.
Upon returning to her hometown of New York, Ms. Scheiber gained her M.S. in Early Childhood Education from Hunter College while teaching in a preschool before joining BIS-NY, where she has been a T.A. in Year 2 and Reception prior to creating the drama specialty here. She is most excited for the annual school production and to continue her duties as Head of the Shakespeare House - Go Shakespeare!
Throughout all these experiences, Ms. Scheiber has taught a variety of activities to children including drama, dance (ballet, hip hop and Broadway), music, tennis, soccer, gymnastics, and swim. She spends her summers as Head of Performing Arts and Special Events Director at Elmwood Day Camp in Westchester, NY.
B.A., English and Education, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA
M.S., Early Childhood Education, Hunter College, New York, NY, USA
Gianna Viola is a committed and vibrant life long learner and educator who wholeheartedly believes in the power of the arts and education in developing well rounded and kind global citizens. The arts have always been a part of Ms. Viola's life with an early foundation in piano and voice lessons, as well as thorough experiences in musical theater. In 2013 Ms. Viola graduated magna cum laude from NYU Steinhardt School with a B.A. in Music Education and a minor in Italian Studies. While at NYU Ms. Viola followed a concentration in classical vocal studies in the studio of Kristen Ruiz and enjoyed performing in a variety of choirs at NYU and throughout New York City. Currently she is pursuing her master's degree in Music Education at Hunter College.
At BIS-NY Ms. Viola teaches Early Years and Primary general music, directs the Junior and Senior Choirs and assistant directs the school play and the Empire State of Sound. The Empire State of Sound is BIS-NY's traveling choir, which has had opportunities to perform as part of the American Young Voices concert as well as in venues throughout New York City, Los Angeles, New Orleans and Nashville.
Ms. Viola is also passionate about the social and emotional learning and well being of BIS-NY students and has enjoyed being an advisor and mentor to MYP. This year she is very excited to a be a Year 9 mentor and advisor and helping to guide Year 9 students through the placement process.
Ms. Viola's foremost aims as a music teacher is to encourage an understanding and appreciation for music while developing self confidence and expanding creativity for all students. As a life long learner, Ms. Viola is always looking forward to seize opportunities and growing with each school year!
B.A. Music Education, Concentration Voice; New York University, NY
Colince Tamoka believes in the importance of education and is a lifelong learner himself. He believes that learning to speak another language equips one with skills that will be useful throughout one’s life. Mr. Tamoka earned a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry at Bayero University in Nigeria, then went on to earn a bachelor’s degree and a masters in linguistics at the University of Rouen in France. He also possesses 17 years of teaching experience at the French International Schools in West Africa. Colince Tamoka is also a Certified Database administrator.
Mr. Tamoka believes in the IB system and aligns with its objectives of making the students lifelong learners through the implementation of the IB program. Teaching and learning go hand in hand and over the years as a teacher, he has developed the ability to learn and improve his teaching techniques, which will always remain work in progress as long as teaching is concerned.
Over the years, Mr. Tamoka has participated in several professional development programs with the aim of learning how to improve his teaching and learning techniques, which are essential tools in teaching the next generation.
He likes music and plays the alto saxophone and the lead guitar for fun. Travelling to discover new destinations and cultures is part of his hobbies.
With over sixteen years of experience as a teacher and librarian, Mr. Thomas is excited to bring his expertise and enthusiasm to BIS-NY!
Karina Azatyan, a native of Armenia, is a graduate of Manhattan School of Music and Jerusalem Rubin Academy of Music and Dance where she studied piano performance with Prof. Alexander Tamir and voice with Prof. Rashel Shulova. Karina began her music education in Ukraine where her first teacher was her grandmother, Yelena Kaminsky, a professional pianist, teacher, conductor, and a graduate of a prominent Stolyarsky School of Music for specially gifted children in Odessa and later Odessa State Konservatory. Karina grew up watching her grandmother teach piano to pupils and work with adult opera singers.
A huge passion of working with children, received from grandmother, carries on through Karina’s life. She loves sharing her musical skills and knowledge with the young generation.
Years of experience in working with children in Israel and US lead her to serve as Musical Director for Educational and Community Outreach Program at Virginia Opera Spectrum Young Artist Program in Norfolk, Virginia. Karina was involved in fully-staged children’s productions of “The Pied Piper of Hamlin” and “Alice Through the Opera Glass” where she was responsible for children’s vocal preparation before each performance. In Israel, Ms.Azatyan was a part of “Eer Menagenet” (The City Is Playing) project in Jerusalem, Israel. It was an instructional program which introduced musical education to the Jerusalem public school system, for children from pre K- 1st grade.
Besides teaching and performing Karina enjoys singing karaoke, dancing, designing and making jewelry for herself, swimming in the ocean and having friends at her house for tea or dinner with always interesting conversations about languages and history of countries.
Currently, Ms. Azatyan serves as a vocal coach and accompanist at Manhattan School of Music(MSM) and children’s chorus director at Edith & Carl Marks Jewish Community House (JCH) in Brooklyn, NY.
Yuliya Basis has been a proud New Yorker since 1999, but she was born in a small town of Orel, Russia, into a family of professional musicians. She left home at age fifteen to study piano in Moscow and earned her Masters Degree at Tchaikovsky Conservatory, where her mentors were the renowned professors Victor Merzhanov in Piano Performance and Tatiana Gaidamovich for Chamber Music.
After graduation, Ms. Basis embarked on a journey in the realm of music education. She has been successfully teaching private and group piano to students of all ages, most recently on the faculty of the United Nations International School and The Piano School of NYC. She also taught piano in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, in 2002-2003 and worked for American Language Center in Moscow in 2005-2006.
At the same time, her work as a collaborative pianist has always been an important part of her professional life. Ms. Basis has been a staff accompanist at Kaufman Center for over 10 years and has appeared in recitals at numerous New York City venues, as well as abroad. An avid chamber musician, she recently recorded a CD with her husband, violinist and composer Andrii Didorenko.
During her free time, Ms. Basis loves to travel or to explore the city where two of her favorite places to be are Metropolitan Museum and Metropolitan Opera.
M.A. Music, Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, Russia
Classically trained pianist Midori Larsen has been teaching students of all ages and backgrounds for more than 15 years. With unique trainings in Japanese taiko drumming and flamenco dancing, she is an active performer, scholar, and educator in New York City and Japan, her native country. Having studied extensively the use of the body and movement in piano playing, she wrote her dissertation titled “The Pianist’s Embodiment of Rhythm and Harmony: Incorporating Body Movement into Learning Manuel de Falla’s Fantasía Bética” at New York University where received her Ph.D. in Piano Performance.
As a performing artist she has been especially praised for her performances of music by Albéniz, Granados, and Falla in solo and chamber music in the US, Italy, Spain, and Japan. Her recent performances include chamber music concert with members of the Chiara Quartet and solo recital at Bruno Walter Auditorium in Lincoln Center. Ms. Larsen presents in conferences nationally and internationally such as the College Music Society. She is interested in research topics including piano pedagogy, music-movement connection, and musical identity.
Formerly on faculty at NYU, Ms. Larsen has been teaching at the British International School of New York since 2010. She enjoys teaching students of all levels and interests, using various genres of music and approaches to music learning. Ms. Larsen lives in New York City with her husband Charlie, daughter Erika, and their pet fish.
B.A. (Hons), Music and Art, Pizter College (The Claremont Colleges), CA, USA
M.A., Piano Performance, New York University, NY
Ph.D., Piano Performance, New York University, NY
An established creative force on the New York music scene, Dan Loomis has made his mark as a sought- after player, constant collaborator and innovative composer. Critic call him “a forceful and creative bass player” (Cadence) and “double-teaming you with style and substance”. Dan performs extensively across the world with his own band, The Dan Loomis Quartet, his collaborative projects, The Wee Trio and Spoke, and as a sideman with diverse ensembles such as the TS Monk Sextet, Vadim Neselovskyi Trio and Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop.
Dan’s musical roots lie in the historic music town of Saint Louis, Missouri where he pursued his early studies in music. He went on to do his graduate work at Eastman School of Music. By then his playing was already receiving national attention; Downbeat magazine selected The Very Tall Band, made up of Dan and his Eastman compatriots, as Best Collegiate Small Ensemble.
From this award-winning group, Dan hand-picked a quartet with the unique instrumentation of two saxophones, bass and drums to form the Dan Loomis Quartet, which would record his first two album, Tondos and I Love Paris, which was hailed as “one the top new releases of 2007” by the noted jazz historian Scott Yanow.
In between leading his own projects, Dan has kept quite busy as a sideman in New York. His large and growing discography includes styles ranging from jazz to indie-pop to eastern-European- improv music to post-punk. He has been active with a large number of artists and projects including the TS Monk Sextet/Tentet, Gary Burton, Vadim Neselovskyi Trio and Wycliffe Gordon. His work as a sideman has seen him performing in New York’s most prestigious venues including The Blue Note, The Jazz Standard, Birdland, and Jazz at Lincoln Center. He has also toured extensively though the Western and Eastern Europe, Canada, Australia, China and throughout the United States.
Dan co-leads two collaborative groups that serve as an outlet for his visions as a composer and performer. The Wee Trio has released four albums since coming together in 2008 and in the course of touring the nation has played at some of the finest North American venues including the New Orleans Jazz Festival, The Green Mill, Yoshi’s, Le Poisson Rouge and the Ottawa Jazz Festival. The band has become a favorite of music press, with calls of “definitely a group to watch” (Downbeat) and “the trio puts forth a compelling case that they are the ambassadors of the genre’s future” (Saratogian).
SPOKE, a novel jazz quartet composed of the most exciting improvisers in the new generation, recently released their third album, (r)Anthems, and took the music on the road playing in Canada, all over the US, Macao and Australia. Their touring culminated at the famous Wangaratta Jazz Festival where their one impressed reviewer beautifully summed up the band’s aesthetic, “Spoke eschewed endless parades of individual virtuosity for compact, beautifully arranged pieces that bubbled with warmth and vitality.” (The Age, Melbourne)
Recent exploits include recording a new album with The Wee Trio (featuring an expanded ensemble with special guests Nicholas Payton, Nir Felder and Fabian Almazan), a well-received tour throughout Europe with SPOKE, the premiere of his Jazz Oratorio, “Job’s Trials: Our Trials” and appearing on Broadway as an understudy on guitar and cello in the musical, “Waitress”.
Marcus Ostermiller is a dynamic and versatile interpreter of a wide range of piano repertoire spanning traditional to contemporary. Lauded as a “contemporary music champion,” his performances have been described as “virtuosic” and “compelling” (Broadway World). His recent performances include appearances at Hamilton Recital Hall (Denver), the Great Hall at Cooper Union (New York), the Nels-Atkins Museum (Kansas City), and Spectrum (New York). He made his solo debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall in 2011.
Mr. Ostermiller holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music where he studied with Alice Rybak, graduating summa cum laude in 2009. Awarded the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Scholarship to support his graduate studies at New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, Mr. Ostermiller completed the Master of Music degree in 2011 and the Ph.D. in Music Performance in 2015. While at NYU, he studied piano with Deirdre O’Donohue and Anthony de Mare, and wrote a doctoral dissertation, Musical Responses to AIDS: Meaning and Signification in Two Works for Solo Piano by Robert Savage and Kevin Oldham.
An advocate for HIV/AIDS treatment and awareness, Ostermiller has produced, hosted, and performed in benefits for organizations such as the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, New York AIDS Walk, Colorado AIDS Project, Regional AIDS Interfaith Network, Bailey House, and the Joshua Gomes Memorial Scholarship Fund. In conjunction with his musicological research interests, he specializes in the performance of works by American composers who died of complications from AIDS during the late twentieth century. Mr. Ostermiller also serves on the Community Advisory Board for the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior and Prevention Studies (CHIBPS), an institute devoted to HIV-specific behavioral research at New York University.
Active as a music educator since 2002, Mr.Ostermiller has taught private and group piano lessons to students of all ages. From 2006 to 2007, he served as Vice President of the Denver chapter for Music Teachers’ National Association (MTNA) and, from 2009 to 2011, worked as an Adjunct Instructor of Piano in the Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions at NYU Steinhardt. He currently works as a Piano Instructor at the British International School of New York, and serves as the Honors Program Co-chair for the Piano Teachers Congress of New York.
B.M. (summa cum laude), Piano Performance, University of Denver
M.M., Piano Performance, New York University
Ph.D., Piano Performance, New York University
Norwegian-Japanese cellist Egil Rostad received his B.M. in Cello Performance from the Eastman School of Music in 1999. He began his Suzuki teacher training at the Colorado Suzuki Institute and completed his training with Pamela Devenport at The School for Strings. He was awarded the Clifford-Levy Creativity Grant in his final year of study through the Diller-Quaile School of Music.
Egil is an active cellist in New York City. He performed onstage in Martha Clarke’s acclaimed dance-theater masterwork, “The Garden of Earthly Delight,” which made the New York Times Year's Top Ten. With Alvin Ailey II Dance Company, Egil performed the Bach Solo Suites; his renditions were described by The New York Times as "vibrant." Egil has composed music for several dance and film productions in New York City and has performed at a variety of venues, including the Joyce Theatre, Carnegie Hall, the Knitting Factory, Joe's Pub, Merkin, Town Hall, Guggenheim, and MoMA. His performances have appeared on numerous recordings by labels such as EMI, Ajna Records, Compass Records, and Vitamin Records. Egil is also involved in the study and practice of yoga and has been an instructor of asana, kriya, and meditation since 2001. He is currently on faculty at the Diller-Quaile School of Music and the School for Strings, and maintains a private studio in his fully-outfitted loft downtown.
B.M. Cello Performance, Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York
Violinist Svetlana Tsoneva made her Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall solo debut in February 2005. A top-prizewinner in a number of violin competitions, she was chosen to participate in radio show “From the Top”, which broadcast her performance on radio stations across the nation and brought her the “Best Choice of the Audience Award” in 1999. Ms.Tsoneva enjoys a versatile career as a performer, studio musician, and educator.
Her recent solo performance discography includes Sting’s If on a Winter’s Night, The Space Between with Chiara Civello, and Eddie Higgins’ Moonlight Becomes You, among many others. Additional highlights have included performances with Sting at Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Jazz at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis, as well as with renowned tap-dancer Savion Glover and Caetano Veloso at the Beacon Theater.
Having received a solid and extensive musical education in Europe and the United States, Ms. Tsoneva is a firm believer in passing her musical knowledge on. In addition to her position at BISNY, Ms. Tsoneva is also a Teaching Artist for the Midori and Friends Foundation and is the first violin and chamber music coach for Inter School Orchestras of New York at Morningside and Turtle Bay. She has been on the faculty of Church Street School for Music and led Riverside State Parks’ violin program.
Ms. Tsoneva started playing violin at age five and made her solo debut with orchestra at age nine in her native Plovdiv, Bulgaria. She took on her first tour at the age of thirteen, performing throughout Austria and Germany, and later on as a soloist with Chamber Orchestra “Plovdiv in Bulgaria, France, Belgium, and Greece. She earned her Masters of Music degree from Mannes College in New York and Bachelors of Music degree from New England Conservatory of Music in Boston.
B.M. New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, MA
M.M. Mannes College, New York, NY
B. Tech., Production Management, University of Limerick, Ireland
M.B.A., Finance, CUNY, Baruch College, NY
Born in New York, Rodrigo Rodriguez is passionate about technology and all that it can provide. Since a young age he showed much interest in Mathematics and Physics. He Studied Telematics Engineering at PUCMM, one of the most prestigious Universities in the Dominican Republic. Moreover he is a CCNA graduate from a Cisco Networking Academy.
During his studies he entered the workforce, as a System Administrator for a call center in the Dominican Republic, working with leading U.S. companies including Match.com, First American Corp. and its subsidiaries.
He subsequently migrated to the United States where he worked as IT Project leader for Standard and Poor’s, the US based financial services company. All this experience helped him to join The British International School of New York . He is in charge of the IT infrastructure as well as IT support for all BIS-NY students and staff. He enjoys helping others and is always keen to work with students and teachers on the use of technology in the classroom.
Since his arrival at BIS-NY in December 2010 has played an important role in the development of ICT. Mr. Rodriguez believes in the ongoing study which he enjoys and he is always willing to learn.
In his spare time he enjoys studying, reading, spending time with his family and also enjoys playing the guitar.
Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP)
Microsoft Certified IT Professional Enterprise Desktop support (MCITP)
Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS)
A + Certified
Ms. Kia Andreadou loves everyday that she spends with her students. She enjoys building strong relationships with them in order to maximize learning. She has a contagious passion for her curriculum, which she passes along to those in her classroom. She creates an enjoyable learning environment where each unique personality and learning style flourishes.
Ms. Andreadou was fortunate to grow up all around the world due to her father’s career as a diplomat. She was able to immerse herself in different cultures, to learn several languages and to live in different continents.
Ms. Andreadou attended University of Athens in Greece where she studied Political Sciences and Public Administration. During that time she studied international law in Paris for a semester. After being awarded her bachelor’s degree she moved to the United States where she continued her studies and received a Masters of Art in International Relations. As a hobby she taught students during her free time. She was captivated by her students’ natural curiosity to learn. She was also impressed that she left an indelible impression years after she taught students. Thus, she decided that her true calling was a career in education and she pursued a teaching credential along with a Masters of Art in Teaching from University of California Irvine. Throughout her career in teaching she has attended numerous conferences. The most memorable ones were the White House Institute for Teachers, the Stanford Program on International and Cross-Cultural Education, and the National Council for Social Studies.
Mrs. Andreadou had a varied repertoire of employment experience ranging from the U.S. Congress House of Representatives to the Consulate General of France to San Francisco. Prior to moving to New York Mrs. Andreadou taught at a high-performing school district in Palo Alto, California. She always held high standards in her classroom and taught rigorous content that helped her students meet their potential. Last year she served as Project Based Learning Coordinator for Grades K-8 at a small private school in Brooklyn. In this role she developed projects that deepened students’ understanding and showed them the real-world connections of their lessons. Her essential functions included planning units of inquiry, which embedded 21st century skills.
When she is not in the classroom teaching she enjoys devouring classical or current events books, doing yoga, and attending theater performances.
M.A.T. in Elementary Education, University of California Irvine, Irvine, California
M.A. in International Relations, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California
B.A. in Political Sciences, University of Athens, Athens, Greece
Ms Coutaud is a qualified Primary teacher with 4 years teaching experience in Reception class and one year in Nursery class.
In the last five years as a Reception and Nursery class teacher and during a short-term cover as Foundation Stage Coordinator she has enjoyed learning the ins and outs of the EYFS curriculum and consolidate her knowledge and teaching techniques of the EYFS.
Ms Coutaud is a French native from Toulouse in the South of France and her first language is French. She developed a real passion for languages listening to opera music with her mother, and now has an excellent command of English, and also studied Spanish, German and Mandarin at university. With this personal interest in languages and other cultures, she chose to specialise her teacher training in teaching and coordinating foreign languages in primary schools to provide children with the best learning opportunities from the very beginning of their education.
On a personal level, she has always sought to gain a broad teaching experience. She studied in France, and knows the French education system well. She has also been trained and taught in the UK, providing her with both knowledge and first-hand experience of the British education system. She is now feeling really excited that her dream of becoming an international school teacher is coming true, and is very eager to learn all about BISNY and New York City!
In her free time, Ms Coutaud loves running after her daughter, singing and playing the piano with her. She is also a keen yogi and loves to go to the ballet and live music concerts.
Baccelareat, Literaire - St. Sernin - Toulouse
MA - Children's Literature - Toulouse Le Mirail
MA - Publishing - University of Plymouth
PGCE - French Specialism and Primary - University of Reading
After finishing school in London, which included a fantastic stint as an exchange student at the British International School, Thailand, Miss Diamond read English Language and Literature at the University of Oxford. After graduating, she worked for a children’s education non-profit in Oxford, which supported children living in Oxford who spoke English as an Additional Language.
Miss Diamond then moved to France to pursue her passion for teaching and working with children, and taught across the primary age range at two schools in the Loire Valley, Central France. Before returning to the U.K, Miss Diamond worked in Burkina Faso, West Africa, at a non-profit for women’s rights. Miss Diamond has been teaching in a London primary school for two years, where she was involved in leading trips around London, alongside taking a Masters in Leadership at UCL.
Miss Diamond is looking forward to the BISNY approach of teaching through enquiry-based learning, which aligns with her own teaching philosophy and values. She brings with her a thorough knowledge of the English National Curriculum, combined with an international perspective.
Outside the classroom, Miss Diamond spent several summers working at a summer camp in New Hampshire, leading backpacking trips in the White Mountains and canoeing trips in New England, including a trip along the Maine-Canada border. Miss Diamond enjoys travelling to exciting places, and has recently returned from a trek through the Himalayas. She is excited to be living in such a diverse and vibrant city as New York and working with the enthusiastic and curious students of BISNY.
BA English Language and Literature, Magdalen College, University of Oxford
PGCE, UCL Institute of Education
Miss Fortet completed her BSc. Honours in Psychology at Loughborough University, where she focussed her interest in learning theories and language acquisition. She then went on to complete her Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) at St. Mary’s University, London and began teaching as a Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT) in West London. Miss. Fortet has taught in both Key Stage 1 and 2 and has held a number of senior management roles including Key Stage Leader, NQT mentor, Deputy Safeguarding Officer and Assistant Headteacher. Furthermore, she has been certified as a Specialist Leader of Education by the National College for Teaching and Leadership.
Miss Fortet is passionate about global access to education. She spent last summer volunteering with an organisation in Uganda, delivering teacher training in rural communities in the rainforest. Miss Fortet worked with leaders from the community to understand different approaches to teaching and learning, in an effort to combine best practice in a way that would suit the schools and the challenges they face.
Outside of school Miss Fortet enjoys keeping fit, most recently taking up 'boxercise' classes, and enjoys writing illustrated stories for children. She has travelled extensively with Antartica being the only continent yet to visit and moving to New York to work at BIS-NY is the perfect way to combine a love of travel and education.
BSc. Psychology - Loughborough University
PGCE - St. Mary’s University, London
Justine Garforth studied Music Education in Australia and attended The University of Queensland where she graduated in 2013. She has been an avid musician since the tender age of 5, playing piano alongside her sisters and fellow musicians alike, and competing in local competitions with a focus of classical and contemporary pieces.
During her studies at university, Justine also worked on her piano and music theory skills and completed her Licentiate in Music Diploma in piano performance (LMusA) with the Australian Guild of Music in 2012. She has also taught students privately at both her small studio and at students’ homes.
Following her achievements in university, Justine and her family relocated to New South Wales, where she worked as a high school performing arts teacher in Sydney’s exclusive region of the Lower North Shore.
From 2017, Justine joins British International School of New York as part of the Early Years teaching community where she believes learning is a lifelong journey. She is a strong believer that all students deserve holistic learning experiences and that learning should be fun and engaging yet challenging at all times. Justine is looking forward to working closely with fellow staff, parents and guardians on achieving the best outcome from every child.
Justine’s passions include music, travelling, animals, cooking at home and trying new foods from various cultures.
Bachelor of Arts (Extended Music) - University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
Bachelor of Education (Secondary Years) - University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
Paige Weiss was born and raised in New York. At the age of 5, her parents moved their family out to Long Island but Paige always knew she belonged back in the Big Apple. When she turned 18, she moved back to New York City where she attended New York University. She received her two degrees from NYU - her Bachelor's in Science in Applied Psychology as well her Master's in Arts in Counseling and Guidance.
Since her teenage years, Paige has worked with children in many different settings. She has worked as a high school college counselor, as a special education itinerant teacher and as a private tutor. Most recently, she worked as a preschool teacher at a private preschool in New York City and as a divisional head counselor at a day camp in Westchester.
During this time, Paige married her wonderful husband and they now have a 3 year old son. When she got the opportunity to work in the Student Support team at BIS-NY, she jumped at the chance and didn't look back.
Paige is very excited to be part of BIS-NY and the Student Support team and have the opportunity to work with the students and faculty. She is looking forward to helping students become more "knowledgeable, kind, committed, globally minded and confident".
BSc - Applied Psychology - NYU
Master's Degree - Arts in Counseling and Guidance - NYU
Mrs. Jarman is a fully qualified Teacher with over 10 years of experience teaching students from the age of 3 – 18 years old. She was born in England and studied for a degree in Sports Science at the University of Wales, Bangor. After studying she returned to England to complete her teacher training, and taught in Birmingham for 5 years where she was given the opportunity to take on the role of Head of Girls PE. She also took on the role of mentor to the trainee and newly qualified teachers.
As well as teaching Mrs. Jarman also loves to travel and was curious to explore how she could merge her two passions. She searched the International Job Circuit for openings and accepted a position teaching at the Doha British School, Qatar. In 2009 she moved out to the Middle East with two suitcases and two dogs! And she hasn’t looked back since. Whilst in Qatar she taught P.E to students from the age of 4 – 18, but again took on an additional responsibility as the assistant head of the secondary school. She met her husband whilst working there and after 4 years in the Middle East they were ready for a new challenge. Her husband was given the opportunity of moving to Brazil to work on the World Cup, so once again she packed up the suitcases and the dogs and headed for Rio de Janiero.
She spent two years in Brazil, where her first daughter was born, and took a break from teaching to be at home with her. During this time she also learnt Portuguese and set up a boot camp for new/ expectant mothers which ran three mornings a week on Ipaneama Beach.
In February 2015 she moved to New York with the two dogs, a baby and slightly more than two suitcases! Over the past two years she has had the privilege of working in a couple of Manhattan’s top private schools, as well as receiving formal dance training from the prestigious Julliard School of Manhattan. This year also saw the arrival of her second daughter. She is thrilled to be living in this marvelous city and excited to become part of the community at BIS-NY
Mimi Liu-Leyco is thrilled to have the opportunity to shape the new STEM program at BIS-NY. As a graduate of the Bank Street School of Education, she is keen to bring her philosophy of hands-on experiential learning as a way to engage students and grow their confidence in technological and engineering concepts.
Originally from Southern California, Mrs. Liu-Leyco always wanted to teach and discovered the joy of teaching coding at her first assistant teaching position after she graduated from New York University. Now entering her 9th year of teaching, she most recently held the position of Educational Technologist at the Hewitt School, where she taught technology grades K-4, coached middle school robotics and collaborated with teachers across many disciplines. She is proud to have innovated the lower school STEM program, having created curriculum to introduce 3D printing, circuitry, Scratch programming and Lego robotics to younger grades. In addition to her experience Mrs. Liu-Leyco holds certifications as a Google educator and a Seesaw ambassador. Prior to working in educational technology full time, Mrs. Liu-Leyco was a classroom teacher in grades 1-4 in various NYC schools, where she was known for her love of hands-on mathematics, emphasis on socio-emotional learning, and interdisciplinary collaboration.
Outside of her work as a maker educator, Mrs. Liu-Leyco teaches, performs and deejays swing dancing regionally. She lives in Queens with her husband and their two cats. In her free time, she enjoys theater productions, trying international cuisines and playing board games.
Mr Parkes-Reeves is not only an enthusiastic teacher but his passion for implementing a high quality holistic education alongside a perceptible focus on developing enquiring minds and a life-long love of learning has made him an outstanding practitioner.
Mr Parkes-Reeves was born and grew up in Brighton, United Kingdom. After finishing school he was integral in establishing Pupil Voice in Brighton and was a consultant to the UK Government on Children’s Rights. He went on to study to become a Primary Teacher and had the privilege to train in some of the top UK Independent Schools. He specialized in Mathematics education at University and was awarded scholarships for having the highest academic and professional achievements for all of his four years of study.
He started his teaching career working at an Independent Preparatory School in London and rapidly received recognition for his hard work and commitment. He became Director of Drama and was also promoted to Head of Lower Prep in 2015 with responsibility for the pastoral care and academic progress of children from Years 3 through to 6. In addition to this, Mr Parkes-Reeves was also made Head of Personal Development spanning Nursery through to Year 8. He is well-versed with the entry requirements to many of the UK’s top Independent Senior Schools and has supported many children in obtaining entry and scholarships to these schools.
Outside of the classroom he enjoys traveling and musical theatre. His skills as a chocolatier are impressive and he enjoys making couture chocolate (sea salt caramels are a particular speciality).
He looks forward to commencing employment at BIS-NY, embracing the BIS-NY community and inspiring the classes he teaches.
Steve Picataggio is a jazz, cabaret and theater drummer and educator in NYC. Since finishing his Master’s Degree in Jazz Performance at New York University in 2013, he released his debut album "Two Feet On The Ground" and has performed at such clubs as The Blue Note Jazz Club, The Kitano, Cornelia Street Cafe and Birdland Jazz Club. He is the drummer for Broadway actress Lesli Margherita and has played in a variety of Off-Broadway shows in New York.
Steve Picataggio has a strong passion for Music Education and is an active teacher, ranging from early childhood percussion classes as well as private drum lessons for all ages from ages 3 years old to adults.
Suzan Sayder was born and raised in the US and lived in London for two decades. In the UK, she trained and worked as a child and adolescent psychotherapist at the Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Trust, a leading centre for supporting children and young people.
Suzan has worked in clinics and private practice in both London and New York. She has specialized in working in schools and providing therapeutic support to pupils, staff and families. In addition, Suzan has taught numerous post-masters level courses at psychoanalytic and psychotherapy institutes. She currently teaches child psychotherapy courses in New York at IPTAR and PPSC.
Having lived and worked in both the US and the UK she has an in-depth understanding of the cultural and academic curriculum differences.
Suzan brings to the position of Student Support Counsellor a thorough understanding of the emotional needs, demands and tasks of children in all age groups as they manage transitions, develop and grow.
M. Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Tavistock/ University of East London, UK
M.A. Psychoanalytic Observational Studies, Tavistock University of East London, UK
B.A. International Relations, Mount Holyoke College, USA
Sybil Swain graduated with a B.S. in Accounting from State University of New York Empire State College. She carries over 25 years of accounting experience.
Sybil has worked in several industries including insurance, gas and oil, e-commerce and education. She is most enthusiastic to be working in education as it offers her the opportunity of serving the next generation. While working in education, she previously developed, managed and trained directors in over 20 charter schools with a team throughout New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Illinois.
Sybil is the Business and Human Resource Manager at BIS-NY. She supports all efforts of continued growth and success for the scholar students at BIS-NY.
Sybil was born in New York City and always loved and appreciated that Central Park was her ‘backyard’ and playground growing up. As an adult it’s where she finds her peace and serenity. When not busy working, Sybil cherishes time with her family. She enjoys parks, museums, libraries, bookstores and roller-skating when free time allows.
Gus Donnelly was born in New Jersey. After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree at Saint Joseph's University in 2013, Gus traveled to Guilin, China to teach English at Guangxi Normal University. After falling in love with Chinese culture, traditions, food and language, Gus decided to extend his contract with the university and taught for a total of three years. An experienced EAL educator, Gus' personal teaching philosophy is reflected by his care for student success and happiness. He has also worked countless hours as a tutor for students of all ages. Gus is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and has developed a love for language learning.
In the summer of 2016 Gus began working as an Outreach Manger for the Chinese Language Institute (CLI). He helped to design and lead faculty-led trips to China for American students and their teachers.
Gus loves running, playing Ultimate Frisbee and Disc Golf and enjoys cooking vegetarian food. He is a frequent traveler and enjoys experiencing different cultures. He is a triplet and loves spending time with his family and friends.
- B.A from Saint Joseph's University.
- HSK Level 5 certified.
Miss Willmott studied History at the University of York and then volunteered as a School Coordinator in Cambodia before completing her PGCE in London. Since completing her PGCE she worked at a diverse inner city school that promoted creative and enquiry based learning.
Miss Willmott has a passion for Early Year’s education and has spent the majority of her teaching career working in KS1. She was responsible for overseeing phonics testing and collection of data and became the Key Stage 1 mentor. This previous year has seen her take on the role as Science Coordinator and working alongside senior management to organize and strengthen the planning and teaching of science across both key stages.
She has a keen interest in helping children to foster a growth mindset and believes that children with a growth mindset understand that their talents and abilities can be developed through effort and persistence. Praising children for their hard work and helping them to acknowledge alternative ways to learn, encourages them to persevere with something by trying out different strategies. Last year she was presented an award by OSIRIS Educational for ‘Developing Independence in Young Children’.
Outside of school Miss Willmott enjoys travelling and is looking forward to exploring the US. In her spare time she works with Shoal Games and Roo Play as a Teaching consultant, combining her knowledge of teaching and the British Curriculum with their gaming expertise in order to help them create a platform of educational computer games.
Miss Webb attended the University of Cambridge for her undergraduate degree to read Education Studies and English and stayed on to complete her Post Graduate Certificate in Education. She moved to London to take up her first teaching post and has since worked in three primary schools over the past six years.
During this time, Miss Webb has been passionately committed to fostering academic excellence through innovative and creative teaching of both pupils and staff. Working as an Assistant Headteacher for the past two years, Miss Webb has been responsible for leading teams of staff towards developing outstanding practice and provision for pupils. Miss Webb has also been excited to support other professionals working within the local London borough and also in national and international schools.
Miss Webb has extensive experience of supporting children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, additionally undertaking the National Award for SEND Coordination at the Institute of Education. Miss Webb is focussed on raising the profile of SEND in schools and is driven to develop inclusive practice. She is dedicated to developing educational provision for children in partnership with their families.
Miss Webb's interests include practising yoga, running and reading. She loves nothing more than active days spent exploring new places in the city.
- National Award for SEND co-ordination, Institute of Education: University of London
- Postgraduate Certificate in Education, Faculty of Education: University of Cambridge
- Education studies with English, BA (Hons), Homerton College: University of Cambridge
- Masters of Arts, Homerton College: University of Cambridge
Bulgarian-born violinist Svetlana Tsoneva made her solo debut at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in February 2005. A top-prizewinner in violin competitions throughout Europe and the US, she has performed at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Jordan Hall and Royal Festival Hall, among others. She has been featured on WQXR/NPR radio as well as on Bulgarian National Radio and Television.
A passionate educator, Ms. Tsoneva enjoys sharing the knowledge with pupils ages 4-24 and finds it particularly rewarding and challenging to work with the youngest of students, feeling the responsibility and joy of starting someone on the violin. A teacher since she was just an undergraduate student herself, she believes in taking an individual approach with each student and works hard to give each and every one the time and attention needed. Prior to becoming a peri lessons and ensemble teacher at BIS-NY, Ms. Tsoneva worked as First Violin Coach for the Interschool Orchestras of NY, and a Teaching Artist for the Midori and Friends Organization. She has also held a private studio in NYC since 2004.
In the 2016/17 season, Ms. Tsoneva played First Violin in Sunset Boulevard on Broadway, and appeared in various chamber and orchestral series throughout the country. Her discography includes Sting's "If On A Winter's Night" (Deutsche Grammophon 2009), The Space Between (Chiara Civello, Decca/Universal 2007), Mannes College's "A Performance Sampler" (2005), and Eddie Higgins' "Moonlight Becomes You" (2003), among others.
Svetlana Tsoneva started playing the violin at age five and made her solo debut at age nine in her native Plovdiv, Bulgaria. She holds a Master of Music degree from Mannes College and a Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory of Music.
Miss Arndt believes that rather than cause undue anxiety, language ought to be an outlet for expression, a means of empathizing with people of other cultures and a source of empowerment. She encourages her students to develop not only their critical language skills, but their self-confidence and compassion.
Born and raised in rural Wisconsin, Miss Arndt began her pursuit of becoming a teacher of English and Spanish while obtaining her BA in Literature and International Relations at a Swiss-American university. The multicultural nature of the school, in terms of students, faculty and academic travels spanning the globe, developed her cultural awareness and appreciation. While in Switzerland she then taught English to a classroom of young English learners, crafting her lessons to respond to her students’ individual needs and inquiries.
Miss Arndt returned to the US for her MA in English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University to nurture her passion for world literature and cross-comparative cultural analysis. Throughout her studies, she continued to tutor students in English writing and literacy skills as well as Spanish. She travels to Spain often, always eager to exercise her Spanish language skills.
Miss Arndt most recently taught English to children of all different ages and skill sets at a school in Chinatown. She has come to learn the importance of first inspiring in students a love for the language—with the underlying belief that true learning can only flourish from a curious mind.
MA English and Comparative Literature; Columbia University; New York, NY
BA Literature; Franklin University Switzerland; Lugano, CH
BA International Relations; Franklin University Switzerland; Lugano, CH
Hector is joining BISNY for one year as a Gap Year Assistant, having finished Secondary School in Canterbury, England in July and before he starts university in the U.K. in October 2018. Hector will be working in the PE department helping with lessons and games sessions in sports such as soccer, running and tennis, which he has loved and played throughout his own childhood and schooling. During his year out, he wanted to get teaching experience in a new environment and face different challenges to those he is familiar with as a student in the UK, while offering insight from his own education there and the skills he has picked up, both while volunteering at a local school and taking on responsibility and leadership as Head Boy of his secondary school - and BISNY is the perfect fit!
Hector lived in several countries during his childhood, where he studied at international-minded schools including Lycées in New York and in Brussels, so he is attracted by BISNY's international outlook and its combination of the IB system with the English National Curriculum. He is particularly excited to be in the US for a year, having spent eight years here when he was younger. Having experienced a placement scheme at primary school for gap year students from Australia and South Africa, Hector was inspired to try and make a similar contribution to BISNY and enhance the children's school experience in the same way as his was.
Outside of his passion for modern languages and literature - he hopes to study French and Russian at University - Hector loves travelling: he spent the summer touring Europe and is currently planning trips to South America and Russia. He is also a huge sports fan, both playing and watching soccer, rugby and tennis and is a staunch Chelsea supporter.
Sasha Spare is a Brooklyn-based artist and educator with special interests in social justice art education, STEM to STEAM, narrative art and creative writing. Before joining British International School, Sasha taught visual arts education as a Teaching Artist affiliated with New York City schools, community centers and international programs such as ArtsAction Group and Creative Art Start.
In addition to collaborating with youth, educators and artists, Sasha has enjoyed eclectic work experiences involving supportive art services, which include providing patina artistry for K.C. Fabrications Inc. Art and Architectural Fabrication, photography for Jane Goddall's Roots and Shoots and fabrication assistance for diverse artists.
Spare received her MA in Art Education from New York University and her BFA in Painting from the San Francisco Art Institute. In her own work she experiments with tools and media that range from bronze lost wax casting, hand-cut and digitally-cut wood sculpture, porcelain ceramics, collaborative zines and plenty of drawing with text. She has held artist residencies at Iceland's Hafnarfjordur Center of Culture and Fine Art and at One New York Plaza. Her work has been shown at The Commons Gallery at New York University, School of Visual Arts MFA Art Writing and Criticism Library, Interstate Projects, The Degenerate Craft Fair, and Flux Factory. She is very excited to be a part of British International School.
Geanelle Torres is a third generation New Yorker currently residing across the river in Brooklyn. For the last four years she worked with The United Nations International School in their Athletic after care program teaching volleyball and supervising other sports to various age groups ranging from 1st to 4th grade.
During her two summers as a counselor at BIS-NY's Summer Camp, Ms.Torres created the curriculum for her class of ambitious five years olds, providing unique competitive learning games, creative arts and shared with the campers her deeper passion: animal life science, where her love for wildlife brought exotic animals big and small directly into children's hands.
Ms.Torres strongly believes that early interaction with all living things contribute to one's character and provides an opportunity to practice compassion and kindness and gives children a starting point to how they will choose both to approach and treat others.
Ms. Torres is looking forward to her new duties as a Teaching Assistant in Nursery!
Jo Wilkes was born and raised in England and gained a BA Honors Degree in Geography at Royal Holloway University of London. nAt university she also met her husband David. Jo then worked as an Assistant Buyer at Harrods Limited in London before moving to Henley Royal Regatta as the Commercial Manager. Responsibilities included own-label product design, running several shops, an art gallery and event management.
In 2013 Jo relocated to New York City with her husband and daughter Matilda. Jo is now enjoying the opportunity to work in education here at BISNY.