Marie Tessier joined the school in 2009. Previously teacher of French at Colyton Grammar School for fourteen years. French assistant at Whitchurch High School in Cardiff for three years. Employed by the Welsh office for retraining teachers of French over that time. Qualifications and achievements: PGCE in Modern Languages, Maitrise, Licence and DEUG de Lettres Modernes ( French literature, linguistics and history of language), Baccalauréat du Second Degré série B (economics), Conservatoire de Musique de Nantes with diplomas in piano, dance and music theory, Advanced Level Certificates in Latin and Ballroom dancing.
Mr R Tasker
Housemaster and Boys Games
Robert Tasker joined the school in September 2012. Educated at Bristol Cathedral School
and Marjon, Plymouth, BEd(Hons) Secondary Education and Physical Education with Geography. Rob has a wide experience of different educational settings. He arrived at the school from The British School of Villarreal in Valencia, where he was Head of PE. He and his family spent four very enjoyable years in Spain before deciding to move back to The UK. Before this he was Master in charge of Cricket and Acting Head of Boy’s Games at King Edward’s School, Bath. Rob also spent 2 years at Wyvern Community College in Weston-super-Mare helping the school rise from special measures category and ushering in new academy status. He is a keen sportsman and in 1999 travelled to Australia for a year to play both rugby and cricket before enrolling at university. While at university, he was a coach for Somerset County Cricket Club working out of the centre of excellence in Taunton, regularly visiting many primary schools in the North Somerset area in addition to being a squad coach for the North Somerset Corner. At youth level, Mr. Tasker represented Somerset in cricket, football and waterpolo as well as Bristol Schools in Rugby. He is an accomplished skier and enjoys playing golf whenever the opportunity arises however, he openly admits he has still to master this one!
Ms C Cooper
English and Drama Teacher
Catherine Cooper studied for BEd (Hons) degree in English, Theatre and Education at Strawberry Hill Twickenham, where in her fourth year she majored in Stage Direction. Much of her stagecraft she acquired whilst on a nationwide tour as an actress with the theatre company Pandemonium. This culminated in a stint of directing shows for tour, before she returned to teaching. She has had over 20 years experience of teaching, some of which has been working with pupils who display challenging behaviours. In 2000 she co-founded TWIGS a Florists and Gift Shop in Barnstaple, which is still flourishing. Up until recently, she lived in North Devon where for nearly ten years she was the Head of English and Theatre as well as covering the post of Head of Art, at St Michael’s Preparatory School. Apart from spending much of her spare time enjoying the music and arts scene both local to her Somerset Home and further afield, she rather likes our canine companions, owning a delightful, rather aged Lakeland Terrier called Ted.
Mr A Dunford
Humanities and Assistant Housemaster
Alasdair Dunford is from Musselburgh situated just outside Edinburgh. He is a graduate of the University of Aberdeen and the University of Dundee, where he obtained an MA in Politics and International Relations (Hons) and LLB, as well as completing various History and Geography modules. He originally planned to enter into the legal profession, but his experience working as a member of staff at Loretto School in 2011-12 made him reconsider his career path. He joined the school in 2012 and he is currently studying for a PGCE with the University of Buckingham, which he aims to complete in 2013. During his time at St John's, he will be teaching History, R.S., Geography, P.E. and General Studies and will also act as a Boarding Assistant. Alasdair’s hobbies include debating, running, current affairs, astronomy as well as pursuing an interest in science fiction.
Ms K Larby
EAL, ISC Teacher
Kirstin Larby was educated at Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls in Elstree. She attended Edinburgh University, during which time she studied at Leiden University (Netherlands) and, as part of her field work, lived in a small African village. After leaving Edinburgh with an MA in Social Anthropology she studied at Manchester University where she achieved an MA in Visual Anthropology. She relocated to London and worked in the television industry as a Production Manager for 8 years, working on a variety of programmes for different channels, including Channel 4 and Discovery. In 2002 she moved to Devon where she completed a CertTESOL and for the next 10 years worked at Sidmouth International School. She has taught students from 8 to 89, of all levels and many nationalities. She also mentored and taught trainee teachers and during the last three years ran the Teenage Department. She is currently studying for a DipTESOL. She has travelled throughout Africa and Asia and enjoys outdoor activities, including completing the 3 Peaks Challenge, sailing and skiing. She is a qualified Pilates Instructor, and training in Smartypilates (Pilates for children 5 – 15). She has two daughters of 10 and 7.
Miss Libby Redstone BA PGCE
Year 4 Form Tutor
Libby Redstone joined the school in September 2011. She achieved a BSc degree in Psychology at the University of the West of England. At university, she was part of the dance society and dance squad, competing in regional ballet competitions. She studied for a Post Graduate Certificate of Education in Devon. She has taught in KS1 and currently teaches in KS2. Also a games teacher within the Junior School. Each summer, for the past seven years Libby has carried out voluntary work in overseas orphanages, including Bulgaria and Myanmar, providing aid and education. She has also travelled to various parts of America, Africa, Asia and Europe. She is a keen sportswoman and in her spare time enjoys riding her horse, dancing and swimming.
Miss Bethan Cotton Bsc PGCE
Senior Science, ICT & Games
Bethan Cotton joined the school in September 2011. She was educated at Churston Ferrers Grammar school and the University of Leicester where she studies for a BSc(Hons) Chemistry with Forensic Science. Post Graduate Certificate of Education studies then followed at the University of Exeter. She competed in county and national level competitions in swimming, and was part of the University of Leicester swimming team during her time at the University. She is a qualified swimming instructor and pool lifeguard. In the 2011/12 academic year, Bethan organised and ran a trip to Valencia with various SEK and IES schools, taking five students from St. John’s International. She has travelled extensively throughout Africa in 2009 and was involved in a number of volunteer projects during that time. She ran the Cardiff half marathon in 2009 raising money for a local children’s hospice.
Mr Kieran O'Donnell BSc Hons QTS
Science, Maths and ICT Teacher
and Assistant Housemaster
Kieran O’Donnell joined the school in 2010 as the Summer Camp Manager. After three successful Summers Camps and prior involvement with boarding, he took up a teaching post at the school. Although originally from Kent, he was introduced to Devon by studying at the University of Exeter, achieving a BSc (Hons) Biological Studies with Study Abroad. During his degree, he spent one year at Montana State University, USA, where he was invited to join a Biophysics research team and subsequently had his first Scientific paper published. Despite a first degree in Biology, Kieran’s interest in Physics has grown substantially. He has also started a Masters course in Education with Canterbury Christ Church University. Kieran enjoys making the most of the amazing Devonshire landscapes, keeping active, and has recently developed an interest in photography.
Mr Alejandro Martin Teacher of MFL (Spanish)
Alejandro Martin de Vidales joined the school in January 2012. He studied at the Universidad Complutense of Madrid, training as a teacher of Physical Education. He completed his studies in June 2010. When he completed his studies in Physical Education, he joined the Universidad Camilo Jose Cela (Group SEK) as a teacher of Foreign Languages, which he completed in 2011. Alejandro has had various jobs and he has worked in different schools in Madrid. At the Calasancio school in Madrid, he worked at summer camps and coached football (2009-2011). In the Alameda school, he taught physical education (2011). In his free time, he likes playing sports. He played water polo as a professional player in Spain and has continued this interest here in the UK. He is now a member of the Exeter Water Polo team.
Mrs Mandy Saunders DPP Playgroup Practice
NVQ Level 4 Childcare & Education
Head of Nursery & Early Birds
Mandy Saunders started at the school in October 2006 as the Head of Day Care and in charge of the 2 year old room (Early Birds). July 2009 became acting Nursery Manager and Head of Day Care. August 2012 became Nursery Manager. Moved down to Devon in October 2006 from Southampton. She worked at the YMCA in Curdridge, Hampshire as Head of the Baby room after having worked at several schools and Nurseries in Hampshire. Moved from Surrey to Southampton in 1987, started her Childcare career with child minding then worked in a playgroup, school and then Nurseries. She has achieved NVQ level 3 and 4 in Childcare later in life. In a previous life, pre-children, she worked in Accounts and Computers starting as an Office Junior rising to Assistant Manager in the Computer Dept. She enjoys travelling, which stems from going to school in Brazil when she was 13. She also went to school in Calgary, Canada when she was 16. She worked in the Nursery in the British School Jakarta, Indonesia when she was 17. Worked as the Secretary to the Director in a Hotel in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil dealing with the English correspondence when she was 19. She is married with four grown up children and has two granddaughters age 1 and 3 years. She is a Music lover, enjoying all sorts including Latino, Pop, and Musicals.
Miss Charlotte Woods BTEC, ND in Social Care
FD BA Hons Early Childhood Studies
Matron and Nursery Assistant
Charlotte Woods joined St John’s School in 1987 as a Catering Assistant. After completing a BTEC National Diploma In Social Care, Charlotte became a full time member of staff in the school, her roles have included; Teaching Assistant, Nursery Practitioner, Matron and Day Matron. At present Charlotte works in the Nursery, is a Day matron and runs the School Shop. Charlotte has recently gone back to studying and has achieved a BA (Hons) in Early Childhood Studies. Charlotte has a very large and loving family and when not working she enjoys spending quality time with them.
Mrs Antonia Cheeseman NFQI Level 5
Supporting Learning in Primary Schools
Antonia Cheeseman joined the school in 2010 and supports all the primary classes as well as Food Technology In KS3. She has co-ordinated the school’s Special Needs Department. Currently Antonia is two thirds of the way through an Open University Degree in Childhood and Youth Studies. Antonia worked at Manor House School Honiton for 5 years. She was the
Learning Success Co-ordinator for 2 years. She has gained a Specialist Teaching Assistant’s Certificate from the Open University and has completed ‘Managing the Role of a SENCo’ Module 1 through Learning Works. Antonia worked at Sherborne Primary School for eight years as a Teaching Assistant supporting children with a variety of learning difficulties. She achieved NVQ Level 3 (Teaching Assistant) and ran the Infant Library. For 9 years she was a full time mother and volunteered for three years at her sons’ school and achieved an NVQ 2 in Childcare and Education. Her previous working experience has consisted of working in accounts. She lived in California, USA for 5 years and had a variety of jobs including being a nanny and manager of a professional cleaning company. Antonia was educated at Shaftesbury High School for Girls and Beaminster Comprehensive, Dorset.
Miss Kim Harlond NVQ Level 3 in Childcare Nursery Assistant
Kim Harlond joined the school in 2008. She was educated at the King's School, Ottery St. Mary with A Levels in French, Philosophy and Law and then achieved an NVQ level 3 in Early Years Care and Education at Exeter College. Kim is currently studying part time towards a Foundation Degree in Early Years whilst working in the nursery 4 days a week. Prior to her present role, Kim has worked at 2 day nurseries in Exeter as a pre-school assistant and a toddler room leader. In her spare time, Kim has an active role on her parents’ farm.
Sarah Rowe is a full Time Matron. She joined the school in September 2012. Previous to working at St John's, she lived in Spain for 4 years where she worked as a teaching assistant for Year 1 in a British International School. She is currently at college studying for a NVQ level 3 Teaching Assistant qualification. Sarah has two children, who both attend St John's International School. In her spare time she enjoys traveling and spending time with her family and friends.
Mrs Jo Mason
Admissions and Services Officer
Joanna Mason joined the school as Director of Admissions & Services in March 2008. Educated at the school when it was the Convent of the Assumption and The School of St Clare in Penzance. Joined Habitat Designs Ltd in 1984 and spend 20 years working in retail in various roles culminating as Regional Operations Manager. Jo was the School Office Manager at Badminton School in Bristol and St Margaret’s in Exeter prior to joining St John’s. Married with two grown up children. Enjoys travelling and has been involved with Ten Tors Expeditions.
Mrs Debbie Hall
Finance Officer, BA Hons, FCA, ACIS
Debbie Hall joined the school in January 2013. She completed a BA in Economics at the University of York before qualifying as a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Secretary in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. While in the North East, Debbie worked in a variety of financial and company secretarial roles for manufacturers of food colourings and flavourings, chemicals and radiators, as well as two chartered accountancy partnerships and a building society. In 1999 Debbie relocated to Devon and worked for food and transport companies, followed by nine years as Financial Accountant for an organic dairy group. Before joining St John’s she completed an on-line archaeology course with the University of Oxford. Her interests include travel, attending live music events, history and reading.
Mr Sergi Lopez MBCS Cert ICT Pract (Open)
Technological Resources Coordinator
Sergi Lopez started working for International Education Systems (IES) in December 2007 as a Web Developer and IT supporter. He studied a Diploma of Higher Education in Computer Application Development in Valladolid, Spain, the city where he was born. One year later, he moved to St John’s to work as Technological Resources Coordinator for all the IES schools. He continued studying with the Open University to get a Certificate in Business Studies and a Professional Certificate in ICT Practice in 2010. In 2012, he became a Professional Member of the British Computer Society. He was a professional swimmer for 10 years, competing in county and national championships. He likes surfing, swimming and running and he loves travelling almost as much as he loves sushi or chocolate biscuits.
Mrs Akemi Anjo
Akemi Anjo joined the school as Part-Time Finance & Administration Assistant in June 2010. She studied accounting in Japanese and English in Tokyo, Japan and started working for a Japanese bank before being employed by the British merchant bank Morgan Grenfell, Tokyo (now Deutsche Bank) as an accountant for five years. After moving to the UK she was employed for seven years by the Japanese governmental organization, JETRO in London. Akemi moved to Devon with her husband and daughter in 2006.
Louise Mayor (BA Hons) Marketing
Louise Mayor has over 25 years’ experience in advertising and marketing communications. Having completed her BA Hons degree in German Area
Studies, she undertook a Diploma in Office Information Technology at City University. She then joined a small London agency as Account Executive, working her way through the ranks of different agencies until she became Deputy Managing Director of London agency cchm:ping. She has worked on a wide variety of clients from major financial services institutions to small niche brands, including M&G, Standard Life and Karen Millen, advising clients on brand and marketing communications strategies and overseeing the implementation of integrated marketing and advertising campaigns. She is mum to two boys – who are both at St John’s and enjoys golf, badminton and salsa!
Ms Sally King
Sally King joined St John’s International School in August 2012. Educated mainly in the Middle and Far East, she went on to Padworth College before moving to Germany. She worked there as PA to a software development company for a number of years. She has previously worked as a teaching assistant, estate agent, translator and had her own antiques business. She enjoys painting and writing, having twice won short story competitions in her late teens. She is currently learning to play the saxophone and has a keen interest in photography. She has lived in China and Sri Lanka and is fluent in German. Sally was Host Mother to St John's boarders for several years and her two teenage children spent many happy years at the school.
Mr Alan French