FACULTY AND STAFF
Ms Lutfiya Mamadsafoeva is from Tajikistan and has been living in North Vancouver for with her family since 2021. Lutfiya completed her bachelor’s degree in Linguistics at Khorog State University in Tajikistan, and her Master of Arts in Teaching at the Institute of Education (IOE), University of London. Her interest in early childhood education started with having children, and she has worked as a teaching assistant in the early year program at an International IB School in Mozambique. Lutfiya received her ECEA and ECE from the Pacific Rim Institute of Early Childhood Education and Vancouver Career College, and believes in quality education and how it empowers children to become independent learners. She loves hiking, exploring nature with her family, gardening, and learning languages.
Ms Andrea Walker grew up in a small town in Eastern Ontario and, being passionate about the outdoors, moved to British Columbia in 2018. Andrea completed a Bachelor of Arts in Child and Youth Studies and a Bachelor of Education at Brock University, in Ontario. After graduation she had the opportunity to teach English in Namibia and China. Andrea looks to create an inclusive and positive learning environment for her students while fostering a love of learning. Andrea enjoys hiking, skiing, being out on the water, and likes to paint and draw in her spare time. She makes this love of creativity part of her classroom experience.
Ms Rohini Gandhi is a friendly and energetic preschool teacher with extensive experience in early childhood education. Rohini is highly motivated to help children develop their social, academic and creative abilities, and is well-versed in developmental milestones and activities to promote curiosity. Rohini completed her undergraduate studies in Mumbai, India, with Child Development and Child Psychology as her major subjects, and has 22 years of experience as a preschool teacher on the North Shore. Rohini is a wife, a mother of two wonderful adult sons, and a caring grandmother to two beautiful grandsons. She enjoys being with her family and friends, loves gardening, reading, cooking, and travelling, and delights in spending quality time with her grandchildren whenever possible.
Mr Alan Ross grew up in North Vancouver and is one of Brockton School’s very first alumni. Alan joined Brockton’s staff in late 2019 after several years volunteering after his graduation. Alan is currently completing a B.A. at the University of British Columbia in Political Science and Urban Studies. In the past he has studied engineering with a focus on software development, and spent time working in the software industry developing mobile and web applications. Throughout this time, Alan has been developing his passion for using technology as a key tool in the creative arts world, primarily through filmmaking and photography. In his free time Alan can be found exploring the local mountains or geeking-out over train systems in Europe, likely with a camera in hand.
Mr Andrew Konkov’s motivation to teach Physics is deeply rooted in his belief that this subject offers a gateway to understanding the fundamental principles governing our universe. Andrew holds a Master’s degree in Education and a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from the National University of Kyiv, Ukraine. Before becoming part of the Brockton School faculty, he taught in Shenzhen, China, gaining valuable experience and cross-cultural insights. Beyond his passion for teaching, Andrew finds joy and relaxation in hiking and cycling. With his knowledge, enthusiasm, and love for adventure, Andrew is determined to create an engaging and rewarding learning experience for his students, empowering them to embrace the beauty of Physics and the world around them.
Ms Caitlin Shepard was born and raised right here in beautiful North Vancouver. She has a Bachelor’s degree in English and History from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, and earned her Post-Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) from Roehampton University in England. After completing her PGCE, Caitlin lived in England for several more years working as a high school history teacher. Upon returning back to Vancouver in 2010 Caitlin started working at an independent school in Vancouver as an IB Diploma Program (DP) English teacher. However she soon learned that her favourite role was one where she combined her extensive IB knowledge with her love of building strong interpersonal connections with students, thus her shift into Post-Secondary counselling. When not working with students Caitlin can be found running in Lynn Canyon, skiing on the mountains, cruising on her e-bike, or walking her dog in Hunter Park.
Ms Lauren Reinhardt grew up in Cambridge, Ontario, attended Griffith University in Australia, and earned her teaching degree at the University of Ottawa. Lauren strives to make sure all students feel included, heard and special. She aims to make school a fun, safe and inclusive environment. Lauren loves to read, spend time outdoors and travel in her free time.
Mr Ben Raine grew up in London, England, and earned a degree in Economics from Durham University in the UK in 2018. After beginning his career as a management consultant at IBM, Ben soon realized that he wanted to share his love of mathematics with young people and have a positive impact on their lives. After teaching for a few years in the UK, he decided to expand his horizons, and moved to Vancouver in 2023. Ben loves the outdoors and enjoys sports such as skiing, badminton and table tennis. He’s also an avid chess player and an all-around board game enthusiast! Ben is committed to ensuring that all students have a positive relationship with the subject, whilst attempting to bring a touch of humour to the classroom!
Ms Nikki Carey is a prairie girl who came to BC and fell in love with the mountains, oceans and rivers of Vancouver’s North Shore. Nikki has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Brandon University in Manitoba, and a Masters of Early Childhood Education from Western University in Ontario. Prior to teaching at Brockton, Nikki taught both as a homeroom teacher and as a Physical Education specialist overseas in China, Qatar, the UAE, and Vietnam. Nikki is a lifelong learner, enjoys challenging herself, taking risks and conquering life with laughter (snowboarding lessons piqued her interest, but it was all downhill from there). When she’s not teaching, Nikki loves spending her time hiking, swimming, and paddling with her rescue dog Ru. Nikki believes that movement, belonging and laughter are all essential to a playful learning environment.
Mr Tom Hopkins grew up outside of London, England and moved to Vancouver with his husband in 2021. Tom has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry from the University of Portsmouth, England, and a Masters in Educational Research from the University of Cambridge, England. Before moving to Vancouver, Tom had been teaching in a range of inner-city London schools, an experience that he found thoroughly rewarding. In his classroom, Tom focuses on fostering and encouraging curiosity, with students developing an independent approach to problem solving. Tom’s passions outside of education include hiking, skiing and spending time with his English Springer Spaniel, Gethin.
Joseph Abou Zeid
Mr Joseph Abou Zeid was born and raised in Beruit, Lebanon, and holds a Master’s degree in engineering from CNAM, Paris. He has lived in Armenia, Hong Kong, and Lebanon, where he designed and managed construction projects in multiple countries in the Middle East. Joseph brings this global perspective to his classrooms, with his first teaching experience in Hong Kong involving guiding students through Mathematics and Physics. Joseph is an avid explorer of mathematics, physics, and sciences, and believes that viewing the universe through the lens of the scientific method reveals a world of beauty, kindness, and collaboration. His love for learning extends to philosophy, psychology, political science, and music. Outside of academia, he finds joy in intellectual debates, backcountry camping, and training his dog, Orbit. A culinary enthusiast, he is often found experimenting with traditional Lebanese dishes in his kitchen.
Ms Allison Bruce grew up in Calgary, and from a young age enjoyed exploring and skiing in the Rocky Mountains. Allison has a Bachelor of Arts from Western University and a Bachelor of Education and Masters of Education from the University of Alberta. She loves to travel and has combined her interests in travel and education by teaching in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and Shanghai, China. Allison enjoys most outdoor activities, especially hiking, skiing, and paddle boarding, as well as reading and teaching literacy skills. She joined Brockton in 2023, and is always curious to learn something new and enjoys sharing the excitement of learning with her students.
Mr Thomas Garcia grew up in Los Angeles, California and joined Brockton in late 2022. Thomas has a Bachelor of Science in Chemical and Materials Science Engineering from the University of California, Davis, and a Masters of Arts in Science Education from California State University, Northridge. Prior to becoming a teacher, Thomas worked in the solar industry, but he quickly realized he would rather be teaching. He is a self-described ‘massive nerd’, with interests in board games, comics, videogames, and TTRPGs, and brings this creativity and fun to the classroom whenever possible. Thomas believes creating safe and positive environments are crucial to students’ education, and looks for diverse learning opportunities for his students.
Ms. Tanya Linau is a highly experienced Advancement specialist, with over 17 years of experience. Tanya joined Brockton School in 2023, after spending 11 years working in fundraising at BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. She has a strong passion for engaging with community members, and works hard to align the strategic vision of an organization to create long-lasting, and impactful success. Tanya lives on the North Shore with her husband and son.
Ms Jocelyn Reid grew up in North Vancouver, before attending my University of Alberta to major in Elementary Education. Jocelyn began her teaching career at Brockton in 2016. Since then she has held a Junior School PE teacher role, and spent 3 years abroad as a Teacher on Call and Grade 1 teacher in England before returning to Brockton in 2022. When Jocelyn is not teaching you can find her on the field hockey pitch or hiking in the mountains.
Ms. Bahareh Behdad has been teaching French since 2015. Bahareh earned her Bachelor of French Language and Literature and Masters of French Translation abroad, as well as a certificate in Children’s Literature in France, and a Professional Development Programme certificate from Simon Fraser University. Prior to becoming a teacher, Bahareh was a librarian and translator. She enjoys making French fun for students and creating an active and interactive classroom environment. When Bahareh is not teaching, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters, biking, and hiking.
Ms Brooke Taylor was raised in northern BC and on Vancouver Island, where she developed an appreciation for the beauty of nature. Her love for Canadian literature, especially feminist, diasporic and postcolonial stories, led her to complete a Masters in English Literature at the University of Calgary. Brooke enjoyed learning about other cultures while working in Korea, Mexico, east Africa, before returning to the west coast where she taught literature, composition, speech, and debate in several local private schools. Now in an administrative role for over six years, she is proud to continue to support students and families in their academic goals. Brooke joined Brockton in 2021, and when not working, enjoys traveling, snowshoeing, paddle boarding on both warm and glacial lakes, gardening, and North Shore dog hikes.
Ms. Jess Johnston hails from Aotearoa New Zealand, where she was born and raised in Ōtautahi Christchurch before moving to Pōneke Wellington where she completed a Bachelor of Design Innovation. After her studies, Jess moved to BC on a two year working visa in 2019, before securing her Permanent Residency in 2021. She joined Brockton in 2022. She enjoys exploring with her dog, Grass, who is much more interesting than she is.
Ms Grass Johnston came to Canada as a rescue from Texas in April 2021. Her full story is a mystery, but since arriving in Canada she has completed Puppy Preschool and explored many BC forests and parks. She enjoys carrots, hates racoons, and loves playing an absurd amount of fetch.
Hooman Ghasemi joined Brockton in 2022 after many years in the business world. Hooman has more than 10 years experience providing customer support and troubleshooting complex end-user IT issues. His son is his greatest inspiration and fuels the energy Hooman brings to everything. Outside of Brockton, Hooman and his family enjoy discovering new aspects of the Vancouver area, and outdoor activities including camping, biking, swimming and hiking.
Ms. Kathy Findlay joined Brockton in 2017 and has been an invaluable support ever since. Kathy has a diverse set of skills including a background in early childhood education and a number of years within the business sector in insurance. She inspires Brockton’s students in the library department, and her creative and engaging ways are ever present in her work.
Ms Sonia Chao grew up in Vancouver and upon completing her AMI Montessori qualification, she began her teaching career in Hong Kong. She spent over a decade working in International Schools in teaching, administrative, events planning, and program management roles. Sonia returned to Canada in 2018 and worked in the public school system before joining the Brockton community in 2022. She currently resides in Lynn Valley with her husband, son and miniature poodle. They enjoy spending their family time doing outdoor activities like hiking, golfing and skiing.
After working and living around the world, Madeleine is happy to have found a home in beautiful North Vancouver and a warm and engaging community at Brockton School.
Ms Kailee Deacon completed her Master’s degree in Education at the University of Toronto (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education), and has worked in independent schools across Canada and overseas. In past summers, she has worked as the Program Coordinator at the International American School in Lugano, Switzerland. Working and leading children from all over the world has instilled a passion for global citizenship, which is of course an important theme in the IB community. Kailee joined Brockton in 2018. When away from school, you’ll find Kailee with a backpack on and ready to travel to a new part of the world.
Ms Jamie Morris is passionate about working with students, families, and educators on supporting mental health and wellbeing in education. Jamie completed her Masters in Child Study and Education (with a specialization in Special Education) at the University of Toronto (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education), and joined Brockton in 2013. She also leads the Mental Health and Wellbeing educator collaboration group within the Independent Schools Association of BC (ISABC), and she works with the Federation of Independent Schools Association of British Columbia (FISA BC) as a Mental Health Coordinator.
Ms Karen Keech is a graduate of McMaster University and the University of Windsor. She has been in the education field at public and independent schools in Ontario, Alberta, and at home here in British Columbia in both teaching and administrative roles. She joined Brockton in 2006 and is passionate about sharing her enthusiasm for Brockton School with others. Karen wholeheartedly cares about the welfare of each child and family at Brockton School. Supporting and getting to know all of Brockton’s new students and their families with their transition into the Brockton community brings her joy.
Ms Nichole Carrigan is passionate about inspiring teachers and students to be curious and critical thinkers, to face challenges and take action, and to act with compassion and integrity. She is a graduate from Trent University (Ontario) and Griffith University (Australia) where she gained her Masters of Primary Teaching. She is a qualified Montessori teacher and IB Academy teacher. Teaching in Australia, Thailand, Mexico, and Canada has offered Nichole incredible opportunities to learn from other cultures, as well as different approaches to teaching and learning. She joined Brockton in 2006.
Ms Svetlana Catia was born in Slovakia where she completed her Masters in Education with a focus on teaching Mathematics and Physics from Charles University in Prague. In 2012, she also completed her Masters of Arts in Counselling Psychology. Svetlana joined Brockton in 2018, prior to which she had worked in research in Los Angeles, and various senior school teaching positions in Vancouver. She is an authentic individual who encourages her students to love and value their studies, to be curious about the world around them, and to actively search for answers to all questions that arise. As a mother to her daughter, Svetlana spends most of her free time exploring outdoor parks, swimming, playing tennis, or skiing. She loves to travel, explore different cultures, and spend quality time with friends and family.
Mr Stuart Allester has spent over a decade guiding staff and students within the ISABC community as a teacher and vice principal. Stuart values the holistic growth of students and the role a strong academic foundation can play in that development. He joined Brockton in 2021, bringing with him his experience in curriculum design and implementation, technology integration and cultivating leaders. Stuart is also a Registered Clinical Counsellor with his Masters of Arts in Counselling Psychology, and is a consultant with the Ministry of Education’s assessment team. Stuart is father to three children and is an active member of the Lynn Valley community, volunteering with both the Lynn Valley Little League and the North Vancouver Football Club.
Ms Karen McCulla began her teaching career in the classrooms of New York City before making her way back to her home province of BC and taking on appointments in the Okanagan Valley and then the Lower Mainland. Karen moved into the leadership realm early in her career, taking on Department Head and Director positions at schools such as Vancouver College and Crofton House. Karen joined Brockton in 2014 and has embraced the opportunity to grow and guide this extraordinary community. Despite her busy role, Karen continues to serve where she can and presently sits on the board of the ISABC (Independent School Association of BC) and maintains involvement in several youth sporting programs. Karen is passionate about much in life and is blessed with amazing friends and family (including her two children).
Ms Jessica Silberg has been a part of the Junior Kindergarten programme at Brockton School since its inaugural year in 2016, and in 2019 joined the Student Services team (Learning Resources). Originally from Ottawa, Jessica moved westward in 2012 and is happy to now call North Vancouver her home. She earned a Bachelor of Education from Nippising University, and completed a B.A. (honours) in Child Studies at Carleton University. Jessica is certified in Early Childhood Education and has completed Special Education training in Ontario. She has taught in independent schools, public schools, daycares, as well as provided individualized educational support to students with special needs. When she is not teaching, Jessica enjoys crafting, hiking, and going on adventures with her family and dog Jack.
Ms. Jules (Julie) Payne is in her 8th year at Brockton. Ms. Payne has a Masters degree in Counselling Psychology from Yorkville University, and a Bachelor of Education from McGill University. She has been a school counsellor for 13 years, after teaching for over a decade in both the independent and public school systems in BC. Ms. Payne is enthusiastic to support the personal and academic development, mental health and wellbeing of all of the children, families, and teachers in our Brockton community. Ms. Payne has been living in Lynn Valley for over 20 years with her family, and loves playing tennis, hiking the local trails with her dog, and watching her boys play hockey.
Ms Hannah McCormack joined Brockton in 2019 and is a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC). Hannah has been serving children, youth and their families in counselling roles since 2007, including 9 years as a Personal Counsellor and Team Lead of Post-Secondary Planning at Fraser Academy. She is dedicated to helping students feel included, supported, and cared for each day they are at school. Hannah has a MA in Counselling Psychology from Yorkville University, a Diploma of Professional Counselling from the Vancouver College of Counsellor Training, and a BA from the University of British Columbia. She is a member of the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors, the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, and holds a non-expiring Independent School Teaching Certificate. Hannah is a proud resident of Lynn Valley and is the mother of twin boys.
Ms Yuko Keane is a positive, patient, and dedicated teacher, and has been at Brockton since 2007. She is a graduate of the University of British Columbia where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology before continuing her studies to complete a Bachelor of Education degree. Her experience in schools inspired her to learn more about supporting students with diverse needs. She has completed coursework in Special Education at Simon Fraser University, and Orton-Gillingham training to teach multi-sensory language and math. Yuko is committed to collaboratively working with students, teachers, and families to provide an inclusive learning environment.
Ms Bri Bishop joined the Brockton team in 2020 from Calgary AB, but is a born and raised British Columbian! Teaching in the junior and senior high school levels, Bri has a background in gifted education, specifically working with the English and Social Studies curriculum. Bri has her Master’s degree, with a concentration in gifted education, focusing on this field through the lens of school and counselling psychology, and mental health. As an avid hiker, road biker, skier, and camper, she makes the most out of the beautiful North Vancouver mountains, along with her husband and puppy!
Ms Laila Zandi’s passion lies in language acquisition. With her academic and professional journey weaving through Canada, the United States, France, Chile, and Spain, she teaches through a multicultural lens to help her students develop cultural and communicative competencies. She has two B.A. degrees, in Spanish and International Studies, from the University of California Irvine and her M.A. in teaching from New York University. Laila brings energy and enthusiasm to her teaching and enjoys creating a positive learning environment for all.
Mr Jeff Yeo has had a lifelong passion for the sciences as a way to help explain and appreciate the beautiful world around us. Jeff holds a BSc from the University of Michigan (leaders and best), and a MSc in Environmental Engineering from the National University of Singapore. Before rediscovering his love of teaching, Jeff has explored multiple careers from science journalism, to managing projects in the energy industry, to research in sedimentology and paleoclimatology. Now Jeff injects his real world experience into his classes, where he aims to help his students grow confident about their abilities on their path to pursue their own passions. Jeff joined Brockton in 2022, and beyond the classroom, plays hockey and tennis, and follows Michigan football and the greatest hockey team in the multiverse, the Detroit Red Wings.
Mr Adam Wilson grew up in North Vancouver and is a first-year teacher with a Bachelor of Education from the University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in psychology from Simon Fraser University. Prior to becoming a teacher, Adam was an Education Assistant in both the public and independent school systems for eight years. Adam joined Brockton in 2020 and believes learning is a lifelong endeavour. He wants to inspire and encourage young learners to develop a sense of creativity that will help them think critically in their learning explorations. Adam believes social-emotional and physical health and activity are foundational elements to children’s successful development, and that providing diverse learning opportunities to inspire personal, social and cultural awareness creates a healthy environment for children to enhance their social-emotional health, interpersonal, and collaboration skills.
Ms Julia Wellman comes originally from Saskatchewan where she completed her BSc in Kinesiology and Health Studies at the University of Regina. Julia loved learning about health and wellness and how the body moves, however she felt something was still missing. She went back to school and completed her Education degree in Calgary, AB, before moving to Vancouver in 2018. Julia is passionate about creating a safe and inclusive classroom space that fosters movement, curiosity, and a joy for learning. Julia joined Brockton in 2022, and loves living in BC, spending time in nature, travelling and good coffee.
Dr Natalia Trotman, who joined Brockton in 2020 from Colorado, has been teaching French and Spanish for over ten years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston College specializing in French and secondary education, as well as a Master’s Degree in French from Columbia University, and a Doctorate in Language Acquisition from Middlebury College. In addition to teaching French and Spanish, Natalia has coached teachers, led district-wide training sessions around effective and engaging classroom instruction, and co-developed curriculum in language instruction. She grew up in a bi-lingual French/English household and has lived in the US, France, London, Argentina. Outside of the classroom Natalia is very passionate about running, cycling, soccer, and linguistics.
Ms Alizé Thiercelin holds a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages from France as well as a Bachelor of Education specializing in French as a second language from UQAM in Montréal. She began instructing in Québec to children from different countries with diverse backgrounds, however, Alizé’s desire to discover other ways to teach and expand her knowledge brought her to the other side of Canada. She enjoys educating through games, literature, music and activities that create good memories for the students and give them the confidence to speak in French. Alizé joined Brockton in 2020, and when she is not teaching, can be found somewhere in the mountains, climbing a multi-pitch, or walking a highline above a canyon!
Cheryl Taylor Lee
Ms Cheryl Taylor Lee is a mom of two amazing boys, and has enjoyed being an Early Childhood Educator for over 20 years. Cheryl graduated from Capilano University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Early Childhood and Care program and completed the Professional Development Program, Imagination Education module at Simon Fraser University in the spring of 2021. She joined Brockton in 2021. Cheryl loves hiking, biking, yoga, cooking, gardening, walking her dog Griff. Her family’s happy place is exploring the beautiful outdoors. Cheryl really enjoys finding out what interests learners and following their lead to discover what possibilities can be created.
Ms Micah Stern joined Brockton School in 2020 after 4 years of teaching at Crofton House School in Vancouver. Micah prides herself on creating a welcoming, safe and inclusive classroom environment where students can show up everyday as their true selves. Micah is passionate about Indigenous Education and the SOGI (Sexual Orientation Gender Identity) curriculum, and naturally weaves it into her teaching practices. Outside of the classroom you can ask Micah about her favourite vegan recipes and best spots in the city for ice cream!
Ms Kendle Sohier is an experienced, passionate IB educator, with experience teaching and learning in independent IB schools in Toronto, Melbourne Australia, Frankfurt Germany, and Singapore. Always teaching through a lens of inquiry and play, she aims to make learning FUN, and embeds math into all aspects of learning. She joined Brockton in 2022, and lives in beautiful North Vancouver with her husband and two children. In her spare time, she plans on hiking, biking and/or skiing in the mountains with her family.
Ms Darhen Sing joined the Brockton family in 2019 when she moved to Vancouver to pursue a Masters of Arts in Literacy Education at UBC. She received her Bachelor of Arts (double major in English and History conjoint with a Diploma in Performance and Communications Media) and her Bachelor of Education (Intermediate/Secondary) from the Memorial University of Newfoundland. She then travelled to the United Kingdom to teach abroad and take Creative Writing courses at Cambridge University. Growing up on the rugged coast of Newfoundland gave her love and respect for the great outdoors so she constantly seeks ways to incorporate critical eco-pedagogies into her practice and getting outside with her students as much as possible. Darhen loves exploring – especially if her adventures take her to the sea – as well as reading fantasy novels, writing poetry, and playing violin.
Ms Tanja Scott has been teaching in the Humanities for over fifteen years. Whether in English or Social Studies courses, Tanja prioritizes diversity, critical approaches to learning, and student “voice and choice”. She is passionate about creative writing, water sports, and her children. Tanja joined Brockton in 2018, and recently completed her Masters of Education through the University of British Columbia.
Ms Karly O’Connor is a motivated, enthusiastic educator with a passion for lifelong learning, and joined Brockton in 2020. Her degrees in Environmental Biology, Urban Planning, and Education reflect her diverse interests and rich life experiences that she brings to the classroom. Inspired by her own children’s natural curiosity and sense of wonder, Karly’s goal is to foster independent, motivated learners through relevant, inquiry-based learning in a safe and supportive class environment. Karly has an athletic background as a NCAA Division 1 field hockey player and has coached children and youth. She shares her passion for movement, teamwork and a growth mindset in the classroom and helps young learners develop confidence in their own unique strengths and abilities.
Ms Lindsay Mowat developed a love and passion for Outdoor Learning very early on, spending summer months attending Camp and participating in canoe and sea kayaking trips in Georgian Bay. She has led experiential, leadership, and adventure education programs across Canada for over 10 years, and before joining the Brockton Community, spent 3 years traveling and teaching in Southeast Asia. Lindsay joined Brockton in 2018, is a member of the Forest School Practitioners, and has completed a year-long Forest School Program through the Child and Nature Alliance of Canada.
Mr Liam Montgomery is a dedicated educator with a passion for business, technology, and the great outdoors. Growing up in North Vancouver, Liam developed a love for skiing and mountain biking at a young age, competing in ski racing at Cypress Mountain and mountain bike racing. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in Business Technology Management, Liam embarked on an adventurous journey, riding his bike down to South America, gaining valuable life experience along the way. Now, Liam brings his unique perspective and enthusiasm for learning to the classroom, where he strives to inspire and engage students every day.
Ms Dina Moinian joined Brockton in 2021, and is a dedicated and responsive teacher with proven skills in classroom management, behavior modification, and individualized support. With nearly a decade of experience teaching in the upper primary and middle school years at independent schools both locally and internationally, she has the tools to work with students of all skill levels to promote learning and boost educational success. Having taught in an IB setting for most of her teaching career, Dina considers herself a lifelong learner, always keeping her knowledge and practice up to date in order to serve students in the best way possible. In her spare time Dina enjoys hiking, cycling, yoga, and reading.
Ms Megan Miller joined Brockton in 2019. Megan’s career in school-based education came after many years of leading, managing, and guiding in experiential, leadership, and adventure education programs. Her passion for outdoor recreation and travel have brought her hiking in Nepal, surfing in Sri Lanka and Indonesia, backcountry splitboarding in our own Garibaldi Mountain ranges, mountain biking along the Sea to Sky Corridor, rock climbing in Red Rocks Nevada, and extended paddling trips down the Yukon and Fraser River. In the world of teaching Megan has been teaching and coordinating Outdoor Education and Adventure programs in an independent school environment for 10 years with a special commitment and passion for student leadership development. Megan obtained her Bachelor of Education from University of British Columbia and her Master of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads.
Ms Heleen McMullan was born and raised in The Netherlands and came to Canada in 2002. For over a decade, she has worked in a wide range of early childhood teaching environments where she practised different approaches including Reggio Emilia, High Scope, Outdoor Education and the IB curriculum.. Heleen’s focus is on experiential, play-based learning and she believes that every child is unique. She is committed to individual student development and establishing productive, child centred learning environments where inquiry-based learning happens through play. She came to Brockton in 2017 from Mulgrave, and she combines her passion for outdoor and environmental learning with her love for young students.
Ms Nicole McDonnell did her undergraduate degree in Applied Behaviour Analysis and holds a diploma in Special Education. As an educator, Nicole strives to form strong connections with her students to help create a welcoming and inclusive environment. When she is not working Nicole enjoys hiking, biking, and travelling.
Mr Read Marlatte joined Brockton in 2022. Before finishing his teacher training, Read completed a BA Hons in Classics at UBC, as well as an Masters in Judaism and Christianity in the Greco-Roman World and Doctorate in Theology and Religion, both at the University of Oxford. He also worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Oxford where he designed and delivered programs to undergraduate students in preparation for their exams. This role involved working in university admissions, both reviewing applications and interviewing applicants. Read is passionate about language and text and how reading literature helps us to read the world around us.
Ms Dana MacRae hails from Sydney, Nova Scotia and has been an educator for over 28 years. Her extensive teaching experiences range from grades 3 to 8 in both the independent and the public school systems. In addition to her classroom experience, she has provided leadership as Acting Vice-Principal and Middle Years Coordinator. Dana’s objective is to teach and learn in a growth-oriented environment as a qualified educator who can inspire students to reach their true potential. She joined Brockton in 2015 and is a team-player who is attentive to the unique needs of her students and their parents.
Ms Abbie Lu-Grahn is a graduate of UBC where she obtained a Bachelor of Music in piano performance. She furthered her studies later with a Bachelor of Education with a concentration in fine arts integration (media art, drama and dance) and Orff methodology. Prior to her university studies, Abbie received her ARCT Performance from the Royal Conservatory of Toronto. Her music journey has taken her to Bratislava, Salzburg, and Vienna. Abbie joined Brockton in 2006. She strongly believes in the guiding principles of Orff Schulwerk and is eager to share her passion and enthusiasm with children of all ages.
Ms June Marshall joined Brockton in 2022, and holds a BA (Hons) degree in Teaching English as a Second Language and an MA in Mandarin education. She has taught Mandarin at international schools in Hong Kong, Beijing and Seoul. June believes that learning Mandarin is greatly enhanced when students become better acquainted with Chinese culture. She grew up in Taiwan and has experienced a number of diverse cultures, having lived in Turkey, the United States, Canada, Hong Kong SAR, China, and Korea. In her free time June enjoys travelling, hiking, practising yoga and mindfulness meditation, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.
Ms Shannon Leggett has been an educator for over 30 years, at public and independent schools on the North Shore, and abroad at the International School of Prague. Shannon joined Brockton in 2017, and her objective is to teach and collaborate with students in authentic, innovative ways that are relevant to students’ lives. Shannon is a DP History examiner, teacher training workshop leader, and a co-author of course textbooks. Shannon has played a large role in the communities of the schools she has worked at including being a sports and improv coach, MUN sponsor, and developing various new activities and courses, such as starting film programs at two schools.
Ms Marcha Koren grew up in Ontario and graduated from Queen’s University with her Bachelor of Science (psychology major and math minor) and Bachelor of Education (international education specialization). Marcha joined Brockton in 2021, and as a teacher, always puts students at the centre of her teaching and believes that student safety, wellness, and mental health should be one of the main priorities in the classroom. She believes every child matters and has something unique to bring. She also holds a global mindset obtained through her exchange in Australia and immigration from the Netherlands. Marcha is known for being active in the outdoors through hiking, camping, rock climbing and swimming as well as her optimism and friendly personality.
Mr Noble Kelly has been a BC high school educator since 1991 specifically in business, computer science and ICT courses.Noble’s education started in the Honours Computer Science program at University of Manitoba, after which he completed his Commerce degree at the University of Texas, and his Secondary Teaching and Masters of Adult Learning and Global Change degrees at UBC. In 2006, he founded the NGO, Education Beyond Borders, that trains and mentors teachers in under-resourced regions internationally in global best practices in teaching and learning. Noble joined Brockton in 2019, and advocates for learning in real-world contexts whether local or global. As an avid traveller (66 countries and counting) and amateur photographer, he believes you never stop learning.
Ms Tovah Kay holds Bachelor degrees in Anthropology and Education from UBC, and a Masters in Teaching from the University of Alcala (Spain). Tovah joined Brockton in 2018, and has been teaching for over 10 years, including international posts in Vietnam, Spain, and Ukraine. Tovah has a true appreciation for international-mindedness and embraces the concepts of global citizenship, critical thinking, and a growth mindset. She looks forward to inspiring curiosity, open-mindedness, and responsibility in each of her students. Tovah enjoys teaching with a hands-on approach and loves to integrate literacy and art into everyday lessons. When not in the classroom, she enjoys exploring cultural festivals, cooking, and spending time with friends.
Having grown up in B.C. and with a first job as a ski instructor at the age of 16, Mr. Angus Johnston has a firmly established love of outdoors and teaching. Having completed a Diploma in Outdoor Leadership and spent a few years guiding in rafting, sea kayaking, hiking, biking, and team building, Angus turned his sights to the University of Victoria for their Earth and Ocean Science program. He graduated from the program with a major in physics and a minor in math and continued into the post-degree teacher education program for those specialties. Angus joined Brockton in 2020, and loves combining technology with inquiry and student creativity. His focus while teaching is helping students feel able to perform, comfortable to challenge, and interested to pursue no matter what the topic. When not working, Angus can be found skiing, year-round running, and hiking!
Ms Jill Hird joined Brockton School in 2014 as Brockton’s Junior School Visual Art Specialist. She enjoys the natural curiosity and creativity of young people. Her passion for art started as a child and grew during her term abroad in Italy studying Art History. She graduated from UBC with a Fine Arts and Family Studies degree and went on to complete her B.Ed in the Fine Arts and Media cohort. Prior to being at Brockton, Jill worked at various independent schools around Vancouver. She enjoys many things outside of school, including spending time with her two sons, dancing, hiking, and of course creating art whenever she can!
Ms Thea Gow-Jarrett’s love of community and education led her to obtain a Bachelor of Arts Honours in English from Trent University, and a Bachelor of Education in primary and junior levels from Queen’s University. Thea began her teaching career at independent schools in Montreal and Toronto, before her desire to expand her education portfolio brought her to London, England, where she taught at various elementary schools. Thea joined Brockton in 2018, and is passionate about yoga, dance, and performance as a form of self-expression and self-discovery. As a parent to two young children herself, Thea has a deep awareness that each student’s relationship to learning is based on the foundation she is providing for them today.
Ms Paige Freeborn is a long-time educator who has been at Brockton since its founding in 2004. Paige earned her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Alberta and her Master of Music degree in Piano Performance from the University of British Columbia. While completing her graduate studies, Paige furthered her studies in Europe, spent five years as a teaching assistant at UBC, and was awarded a Graduate Fellowship. She has taught, toured, and performed in North America, Europe, and Asia as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician. Paige enjoys volunteering in her local community, and is a Director and Past President of the North Shore’s professional orchestra, Lions Gate Sinfonia.
Mr Adrian Dyck is a passionate educator who has been at Brockton since its founding in 2004. Adrian earned his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Alberta and a Master of Music degree from the University of British Columbia, specializing in Violin Performance. Since graduating in 2001, Adrian has performed with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Film Orchestra, the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, and has studied and performed throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. When not teaching, he continues to work with Lions Gate Sinfonia, the North Shore’s professional chamber orchestra.
Mr Matt Dochniak is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable Physical and Health educator. Matt gained his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Bath and his teaching qualification through the University of Exeter. He began his teaching career in Bath, England, before going on to lead the Physical Education department there for 3.5 years. After relocating to Vancouver, Matt joined the Brockton community in 2018, and brought fresh ideas to the school and in his position as Athletic Director. He values the importance of Physical and Health Education and believes that every student should have the opportunity to create memorable and positive experiences through athletics.
Ms Rojia Dadashzadeh holds an Honours degree in Fine Arts from the University of Waterloo, a postgraduate degree in New Media Design from Sheridan, Le Grand Diploma in cuisine and pastry from Le Cordon Bleu, Paris, and Bachelor of Education from UBC in Art Education. In addition to her role as a teacher, Rojia is a practicing artist who is represented by Art Interiors Gallery in Toronto and other various exhibits. Her teaching and artistic practice are closely intertwined in ways that one is informative of the other. Rojia joined Brockton in 2012, and in her teaching, incorporates the works of many contemporary artists to emphasise the importance and responsibility of artists in the 21st century.
Ms Nikki Burge is a passionate educator with an eclectic background. After completing a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts at Dalhousie University, she spent a period as an au pair in rural France before obtaining her degree in Education from UBC. Having spent her recent years working at a variety of schools and programs, she has taught everything from the French languagem English writing and composition, dribbling soccer balls to shooting baskets, portaging canoes on Lake Temagami, and the fine art of boiling water over a woodfire in minus 25 degree weather. Nikki joined Brockton in 2021, and strives to create a fun, dynamic learning environment, where students feel comfortable taking on new challenges, building their self-confidence and resilience.
Ms Jasmine Bryan holds a Bachelor of Early Childhood Education degree from Capilano University, and a Bachelor of Education degree from UBC (specializing in Primary Years). As a teacher, she strives towards creating a positive, inclusive, and engaging learning environment for her students. She joined Brockton in 2020, and is passionate about creating a safe, welcoming space where she can connect with her students and have fun. When Jasmine isn’t in the classroom she enjoys outdoor activities such as camping, mountain biking, and snowboarding.
Ms Gayethree Bojnauth hails from Mauritius, where she has served as a qualified senior educator in high school Sciences and Mathematics. With 21 years’ experience in the IB domain, Gayethree has extensive experience in teaching Biology at MYP and DP level, and joined Brockton in 2018. She has also been involved in the supervision of Extended Essay, Personal Project and has undertaken the role of an IB workshop leader, as well as authoring textbooks for DP Biology students. In her free time, she has been an active member of the Lions Club in Mauritius, with a strong involvement in community projects.
Ms Haily Augustine has her Bachelor of Arts degree in Child and Youth Care from the University of the Fraser Valley, and joined Brockton in 2022. Haily strives to create an inclusive approach to education and truly values the importance of care and connection with all the students to maintain a positive, loving, fun environment. When Haily isn’t in the classroom she enjoys outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, and skiing.