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Some of our teachers have international experience, some are alumni, and all are Montessori / International Baccalaureate-trained. It’s this diversity and shared commitment that makes our school so collegial and brings our programs such rich experiences.
Maria enjoys giving things a go, so she encourages children in her pre-primary environment to do the same. Maria, who is originally from New Zealand, was completely sold on the Montessori approach after attending a University Lecture and seeing children demonstrating their love and knowledge of Montessori equipment. She loves seeing her students really satisfied when they complete a job on their own and then go back and chose it again and again, and eventually start to show another child how to do it – “that’s so rewarding!” Maria and her family have a black and white cat called ChaCha and pet fish. In her spare time, she loves exploring markets and beaches, as well as enjoying local community events in Perth with her family.
Ria is from Carrickmacross, a small town in Co Monaghan (Ireland), which is the birthplace of Irish poet Patrick Kavanagh. As a teacher, she feels lucky to be able to observe children who have been working on a challenging task over time, she loves seeing the look on their face when they finally get it – the ‘ah ha’ moment. Her favourite quote is: “One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child” – Dr Maria Montessori. She enjoys long-distance running, and she loves the water as she is a keen surfboat rower, competes with surfboats for her local surf club, and rows riverboats. When she is not on the water, she loves spending time with her family and their loveable labradoodle called Arthur.
Ciara loves seeing the joy that the Montessori method brings to children and, in her classroom, she is always amazed when she witnesses the wonder on a child’s face as they complete a task for the first time. Her favourite Montessori quote is: “The education of a small child, therefore, does not aim at preparing [them] for school, but for life.” Ciara is originally from County Cork (Ireland) and, in addition to English, also speaks Gaeilge. Ciara loves to go snorkelling and swimming at our amazing beaches; and during the school holidays, she loves travelling to new countries and experiencing new cultures.
Shanie has worked at our school for a few years now and loves seeing the students arriving at school with a smile on their faces. The best advice she’s ever received was: “do your best and never give up,” which we think is a very good one. Shanie feels lucky that her daughter is a student at our school as it makes the school drop-offs a breeze! She is originally from Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), and she loves cooking, sewing, and gardening.
Eavan enjoys skydiving, open water diving, and bungy jumping – she even holds the record for the highest bungee jump in New Zealand! She is originally from Ireland but has travelled extensively through South East Asia and New Zealand. Eavan has worked in childcare; with children and adults with severe to profound autism and learning difficulties; as a kindy teacher; and she’s been an Education Assistant at our school for a few years. Eavan feels the best part of her work is seeing the children develop and grow, not only academically, but also emotionally, socially, and spiritually.
Audré loves to see her students’ eyes light up when they grasp new concepts or experience new things. She is originally from South Africa and also lived in Canada prior to moving to Australia. She has worked in various industries, from a wildlife sanctuary in South Africa to running her own before and after school care in Canada. There, a friend introduced her to the Montessori method and she has worked in education ever since. Audré started working at our school in 2011 and her favourite Maria Montessori quote is: “The essence of independence is to be able to do something for one's self.” When she is not at work, Audré likes to do oil painting and explore the countryside.
Lower Primary Teacher
Salwa is the longest-serving teacher at our school, having been a teacher here since 1999. She feels inspired when she gives a lesson to a student and gets to see the joy in their eyes when they understand it. Her favourite quote is: “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou. She is originally from Alexandria, Egypt and, in addition to English, Salwa speaks Arabic. Salwa loves fashion and enjoys sewing. We also know that she is an amazing cook and we always enjoy her food at our school gatherings!
Lower Primary Teacher
Kate loves watching children discover, grow and learn along their own unique pathway. Her favourite quote is: "Though she be but little, she is fierce." – Helena, from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, a quote that reflects her fascination with the determination and strength found in every child. Kate has been working at our school since 2010 but took some time off to teach in Mumbai (India) and to have her twin girls, who will become students at our school this year. When she is not teaching, Kate likes gardening, sewing, art, cycling, and hiking – she once hiked across Spain for a month!
Lower Primary Teacher
The best advice Ian was ever given was: "take a look at Montessori you will love it" – and we could not agree more with this statement! Once he did look at the Montessori method, he knew he wanted to become a Montessori teacher and now, an experienced Montessori teacher, his favourite Maria Montessori quote is: “The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, "The children are now working as if I did not exist.” His favourite word is ‘peace,’ which we think speaks to his calm character. In his spare time, Ian likes to run, cycle, read, and watch sports.
Lower Primary Teacher
Through a good friend, Sunny found out about our school and thereby discovered the Montessori method – she was hooked! Indeed, Sunny’s association with our school goes back to 1999, when she started working as an Education Assistant and later worked here as a Teacher – she even worked and trained with our founder, Mrs Duyker De Vries. After living and teaching in Albany for a few years, she moved back to Perth and was keen to teach at our school again – and luck would have it we needed a new teacher for our newest lower primary class at the time! Her favourite saying is: "before you speak, ask yourself: is it kind, is it necessary and is it true,” which makes her one of the nicest people we know. When she is not teaching, Sunny keeps busy doing gardening, yoga, swimming, Zumba, and Pilates.
Julie loves observing her students’ joy when they work hard at something and are so proud of themselves afterward – “and when they are struggling with a concept and suddenly it all clicks, that is priceless.” The best advice that Julie has ever received is: "everyone has something to teach you, be open-minded." Both of her children have been students at our school, with her youngest currently in our International Baccalaureate. Julie's favourite saying is: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou. When she’s at home, she loves to paint, run, read, and sometimes knit.
Zoe has a long history with us as she spent most of her academic journey at our school. She has also worked here for many years across all age groups and strongly believes that educators have the power to make such a positive impact on children’s lives. Zoe has always enjoyed working with children and she loves helping a child to understand a concept and hearing them say “I can do it.” Her favourite quote is: “Establishing lasting peace is the work of education, all politics do is keep us out of war.” – Maria Montessori, which is also one of our favourites! Both of her children are students at our school and we feel privileged to have a second-generation addition to our Montessori family.
Debra is very passionate about the Montessori education method. Having sent her three sons to a Montessori school, she decided to become a Montessori teacher over 30 years ago. She is originally from the small town of Hartlepool in England and the best advice she’s ever been given is: "it’s nice to be nice." Debra’s favourite word is supercalifragilisticexpialidocious – so we think she may be a Mary Poppins’ fan! At home, Debra likes reading, spending time with her grandchildren (children as well!), going on rides on the three-wheel motorbike, watching drag racing, as well as going to the ballet and the opera.
Upper Primary Teacher
Sue began her teaching career at our school many years ago as our International Baccalaureate Anthropology Teacher. This is why it is no surprise her favourite quote is: “anthropology is philosophy with the people in it.” by Tim Ingold, the famous British anthropologist. Sue has, over the years, taught at the primary and secondary levels and been a teacher in England, Sri Lanka, and Australia, including the Northern Territory. Both of her daughters have been students at our school, and when she is not spending time with her family, Sue loves to do pottery.
Upper Primary Teacher
Michelle’s Montessori journey began in Namibia many years ago when she decided to send her children to the local Montessori school. She loved the philosophy so much that she soon after completed her training to become a Montessori teacher and then taught for many years in Namibia. The most inspiring part of her job is seeing the children learn and grow, and enjoy their school life – especially over the course of the three years she spends with each child. Michelle loves travelling the world and has lived in Namibia, England and Australia. Her favourite animals are horses and she also loves aardwolves (don’t worry, we had to Google that one as well!).
After working in different industries and jobs, Chantal feels like she has finally landed her dream job at our school! She loves helping students learn and feels she learns so much from the children, as they are so inspiring and knowledgeable. Her favourite quote is: “Every child is an artist.” – Pablo Picasso, and we most certainly agree with this statement. Chantal is originally from South Africa and, at home with her family, she speaks Afrikaans. She has rabbits and enjoys watching movies and documentaries.
Vicky fell in love with the Montessori philosophy years ago when she lived in Madras (India), and she has been working at our school since 2016. Vicky loves working with students, especially loves seeing their curiosity leading to great things. She is from Venezuela and therefore speaks Spanish – and we just love her accent! Her favourite quote is: “Be the change you want to see.” – Mahatma Gandhi. In her spare time, Vicky keeps busy traveling, bushwalking, reading books and discussing them at book club, listening to music and podcast, and she also has an interest in astronomy and scrapbooking.
Lower Secondary Advisor
Lena has taught drama, languages, humanities, German, as well as the upper primary curriculum at our school, and she has been the Lower Secondary Generalist since 2016. She loves working alongside young adults, hearing their ideas, and seeing them grow. Helping them navigate, at times, treacherous waters and finally seeing them sail away to explore gives her joy. She is originally from Zurich (Switzerland) and her favourite saying is: "Alles wird gut," which translates to "All will be well." She speaks Swiss German, German, and a little bit of French. Lena loves travelling as well as learning and trying out new things. She enjoys performing arts and attends a choir that engages with reconciliation.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme Coordinator
Katharina started teaching at our school in 2010 as the German Teacher in the Lower Secondary Class and in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. She is now the Coordinator of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, but also teaches German and English. When we asked her about her favourite quote, Katharina chose Gandhi's words: “You must be the change you want to see in the world.” Originally from Berlin (Germany), Katharina also lived in England before moving to Perth and making Australia her home. Katharina is passionate about languages, loves travelling, reading, playing the piano, gardening, and crafting – and she recently added a Labrador puppy to her family, who keeps her very busy on the weekend.
Visual Arts Teacher
Fern is originally from Perth and, after living overseas and interstate, she now lives in the suburb where she grew up. As a visual arts teacher, she loves seeing the amazing artworks that her students make. Her favourite quote is “All you need is love” – The Beatles, which is one of our favourite songs ever! When she is not attending art exhibitions, she loves gardening, cooking, bushwalking, and travelling.
Science / Chemistry / Biology Teacher
Diana has been a teacher in England, Germany, and Australia and is originally from Colombia, so she also speaks Spanish. She tells us that the most inspiring part of her work is seeing students' faces light up when they carry out experiments. Her favourite poem is 'The Road Not Taken' by Robert Frost. When she’s not teaching our students about biology, chemistry, and science, she loves cooking and hiking.
Geography / Theory of Knowledge Teacher
Jaromir’s favourite quote is: “Invest some time to get to know yourself,” by his favourite author, Yuval N. Harari. He is originally from the Czech Republic, a small town on the border with Austria, so Czech is his native language. Having lived in Australia for some time, he feels he has found a great new home in Western Australia – a place of stunning nature and an extraordinary mixing pot of people from many cultures and walks of life. As a Geography Teacher, you might not be surprised to know that his favourite hobby is, and always has been GEOGRAPHY! He also enjoys history and has plenty of other non-academic hobbies, such as chess, footy (go Freo!), cricket (go Scorchers!), gardening, bushwalking – just to name a few.
German Teacher / Creative Expression Teacher
Anja come from a town in Germany called Bad Kissingen, which is named as such for being a ‘spa’ town, one where people go to relax, which we hope makes it a stress-free town! In addition to English, Anja speaks German and dabbles in French, Italian, and Spanish. She believes the most inspiring part of being a teacher is observing enthusiasm and growth in the children she teaches. She teaches German, English as a second language, visual arts, and music, and has worked at the primary and secondary levels. When she is not teaching, Anja loves painting and drawing, listening to music and dancing, playing the flute and the guitar, as well as do yoga, and going on long walks. The best advice she’s ever been given was: "everything will be ok in the end; if it’s not ok it’s not the end" – and we think it’s a good one to follow.
Physical Expression Teacher
Adin is from Sarajevo, Bosnia, and Herzegovina and, in addition to English, he speaks Bosnian and Italian. His favourite word in the English language is ‘freedom’. He got a taste for the Montessori philosophy many years ago after doing an observation at a Montessori school: “I was blown away by all of the independent work going on all at once!” When he is not teaching physical expression, Adin also teaches Tae Kwon Do and, in his spare time, he likes tinkering with cars. Adin’s favourite quote is: “you miss 100% of the shots you don't take.” – Wayne Gretzky (aka The Great One, The Gretz or the Great Gretzky!).
Creative Expression Teacher
Anja is the eldest of five children and migrated from Bosnia to Australia with her family from Bosnia in 1971. She had a wholesome childhood upbringing and wanted to give the same hands-on approach and richer life philosophy to her daughter; hence she chose the Montessori education for her daughter. After enrolling her daughter at our school, she studied the Montessori philosophy under our founder, Mrs Duyker De Vries, and also worked as a Teacher Assistant as well as a Teacher for a few years. Her favourite Montessori quote is: “Help me to help myself.” Since leaving our school, Anja has been working at various schools teaching Drama, English, Dance, Music, and Art. She is also a singer, songwriter and play the ukulele in a band and solo for the community.
Just as our diverse teaching group defines our unique and inspiring learning experience, our administration team is at the heart of our school community, supporting our teachers, students and parents.
Des is delighted to have been given the opportunity to lead The Montessori School Kingsley, a Montessori school with such a long and proud history. He was the Deputy Principal at Melbourne Montessori for three years before coming to our school in 2020. He is a passionate and dedicated Montessorian who has held various roles in educational leadership for over 20 years. Des regards the completion of the Association Montessori Internationale Orientation to Adolescent Studies, at the Hershey School in Ohio (United States), as the most beneficial training he has ever undertaken.
Upon his arrival at our school, he enabled many changes to occur at the school, such as chess club and netball, as well as improved many of our internal processes and expanded the School’s social media presence. He has introduced new programs such as creative expression and physical expression for the primary students and has expanded the program at the farm for our lower secondary students. With a growing interest in the Montessori philosophy and our school, as well as low attrition, Des is now busy looking at the sustainability of our buildings, most recently being the new lower secondary space, to ensure we will be able to meet the ever-increasing demand.
A people person, Des is also a woodworking enthusiast and a novice luthier, with an interest in the great philosophers. Des listens to a variety of musical genres. A shy musician, Des constantly tries to improve his guitar and bass playing skills. Sport has been an ever-present passion, especially cricket. He has enjoyed playing cricket, golf, Australian rules football, volleyball, and a variety of other sports over many years. He hopes to improve one day!
Queenie is our Business Manager and, if you’re not sure what that is, well, it means that she looks after just about every aspect of our school – so she is a busy person! She is originally from Goa (India) and, in addition to English, speaks Hindi, Konkani, Marathi. Her favourite saying is: "there is a light at the end of the tunnel," which, let’s face it, is one that we’ve all used, especially in difficult situations. In her spare time, Queenie looks after her beautiful garden – and we love that she brings us fruits and flowers from it from time to time!
Alison discovered the Montessori philosophy when she started working at our school many years ago – and now, she is our Office Manager, which means she keeps the day-to-day operations of our school running smoothly. She comes from South Africa and lived in New Zealand for a number of years before making Australia home. The best advice she’s ever received is: "measure twice, cut once," because it applies to all areas of life! At home, Alison loves being creative and riding her motorbike through the countryside.
As our Bookkeeper, Rachelle is the person that makes sure our day-to-day finances are in order. She is originally from South Africa, so she also speaks Afrikaans. The best advice she ever received was: “don’t strive for perfection, strive for results,” which we think is one we should all put on our fridge! Rachelle uses both sides of her brain as, in addition to being good with numbers, she is also an artist. She is a glass artist who designs and creates artwork by fusing and slumping art glass. She also makes platters, bowls, art pieces, and jewellery, both on a commission basis and to supply to galleries. On top of that, she also teaches glass art to young and old people.
Personal Assistant to the Principal / Marketing Administrator
Julie is from Quebec City (Canada), but calls Western Australia ‘home’ now, after having been here for over 15 years. She began working at our school to manage our rebranding and marketing, bringing with her over a decade of experience in communication and marketing, and he now also works as the Personal Assistant to the Principal, making sure Des stays on top of his busy schedule. Her favourite quote is: “Don't write so that you can be understood, write so that you can't be misunderstood.” – William Howard Taft, which is fitting given her marketing background. She has had a connection to the School since 2016 when her daughter began her Montessori journey in our pre-primary program. She loves dogs and her favourite word is ‘pedantic’. In her spare time, Julie enjoys crafting and decorating, gardening, as well as walking around Lake Goollelal.
Felicity is from Perth and the most inspiring part of her job is seeing all the happy faces on the children as they work and play together. She is currently learning Italian, which we think is awesome seeing our favourite scientist (Dr Maria Montessori) was from Italy! Felicity‘s favourite quote is: “The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts” – Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius. In her spare time, she loves going to the beach, listening to live music, riding her bike, reading, and spending time with her children.
Graham, who is originally from New Zealand, is our Grounds Person, which means that in addition to looking after our gardens, he fixes anything that gets broken. The best advice he was ever given was: "look after others the way you would look after yourself," which we think is very sensible advice. Before starting to work at our school in 2020, he worked at another Montessori school for many years. When he is not tinkering in his garage or working on his garden, Graham likes to ride his three-wheel motorbike.
Learn more about our progressive culture and joining our close-knit team.