INTERNATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD K12 Digest is privileged to have the valued counsel of the following experts.

Chris Wright
Former International School Principal, Former Group Project Director at a World Class Learning Group, Education Consultant - Wright Solutions,
United Kingdom

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Zeljana Radojicic Lukic
Exceptional Educator from Serbia, Founder of Association of the Best Teachers of the Former Yugoslavia, Founder of Magical Intercultural Friendship Network, Founder of Creative Magic - Children’s International Festival, Founder of Magic Village,
Serbia

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Asst. Prof. Dr. Poonsri Vate-U-Lan
Assistant Professor in Education, Ph.D. Supervisor and Researcher,
Thailand

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Dr. Stuart Grant Colesky
Principal, Rundle College,
South Africa

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Maarit Rossi
Founder & CEO - Paths to Math Ltd, Former Mathematics Teacher and Principal, Global Teacher Prize Finalist,
Finland

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Dr. Lilian Bacich
Senior Educationist, Author, Keynote Speaker, Co-founder - Tríade Educacional,
Brazil

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Servatius (Servee) Palmans
Former Director School Administration & Business Operations (Large Education Group), Chief Operating Officer - BBD Education,
Netherlands & UAE

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Ralph Valenzisi
Chief of Digital Learning and Development, Norwalk Public Schools, Connecticut,
United States

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Liljana Luani
Senior Teacher - ‘Pashko Vasa’ school Shkodra, Exceptional Volunteer,
Albania

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Elena Shramkova
English and Literature teacher, Owner of “The Smart Teens Studio of English” in Belgorod,
Russia

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Stephen Cox
Chief Education Officer, New Nordic School,
Finland

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Shady Elkassas
Director of Innovation, Al Ittihad National Private School - Al Ain,
United Arab Emirates

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Ian Deakin
Deputy Head and Dean of Faculty, Dalton Academy, Beijing,
China

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Angus Duthie
Former Vice President Security (Large Education Group), Former British Army Officer (Airborne Forces), Senior Advisor – Resilience and Crisis Management (Emerald Solutions Group),
United Kingdom & UAE

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Hidekazu Shoto
Innovative English and ICT Teacher, Author,
Japan

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Kihyun Park
Innovative Educator of Online Classroom, Pungsaeng Middle School,
South Korea

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Leonilo Basas Capulso
Master Teacher, Speaker and Researcher,
Philippines

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Ha Nga
Revolutionary English Educator, Globally Connected English Studio - Hanoi,
Vietnam

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Herwin Hamid
EdTech Specialist, Speaker and Teacher Trainer, Innovative ICT Educator, ICT learning multimedia developer,
Indonesia

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Fethy Letaief
Distinguished Senior EFL Teacher, ISA Coordinator with the British Council, Motivational Speaker,
Tunisia

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Dr. Venus M. Alboruto, PhD
Master Teacher, Researcher, Innovator, Trainer
Philippines

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Mr. Ngô Thành Nam
Teacher, Technology Academy Manager, Microsoft Learning Consultant, Global Trainer,
Vietnam

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Rania Lampou
Global Teacher Prize Finalist 2019, 15 International Awards on STEM, STEM Instructor, Greek Neuroscience Researcher, Educator, Trainer & Author
Dr. Manoj Varghese
Senior Director of Strategy & Partnerships – Connecta Education Ltd., Former Global Director - Technology & Risk Management - GEMS Education, Former Regional Committee Member – Varkey Foundation,
UK, UAE & India

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Chris Wright
Former International School Principal
Former Group Project Director at a World Class Learning Group
Education Consultant - Wright Solutions
United Kingdom

Chris Wright is a well-known independent education consultant specializing in the setup of new schools or the development of existing facilities. Having worked with some of the world's leading architects on school design Chris is able to provide a one-stop shop for investors looking to enter the independent international education market from design through pre-operational activities to successful school opening. Chris is dedicated to ensuring profitability for private school owners with good outcomes for students.

For existing schools, Chris is very experienced in the construction and monitoring of operational practices, school budgeting and quality assurance. Through UK and International experience, he has been involved in the recruitment and retention of staff. This has included CEO’s, Senior Directors with direct responsibility for Principals and Teaching staff recruitment. Chris has also had direct responsibility for introducing new policies and processes relating to Performance management and appraisal systems that add value to an organization.

As Group Project Director at World Class Learning Group, an owner and operator of schools in USA and Middle East, Chris had overall responsibility for the successful development, control, execution and completion of projects which fall in the following categories - site development, IT, regulatory compliance and information management.

Chris has also been involved in a number of Pre-acquisition and technical due diligence studies of existing education assets and has prepared and delivered improvement programs for school operators to bring existing buildings up to regulatory and code compliance.

Specialities: Project Development, Project Management, School design and start-up, Construction Management, School Business Planning and Budgeting, School Operations, School Information Management systems, School Improvement, Quality Assurance, Teacher and School Leader recruitment.

Zeljana Radojicic Lukic
Exceptional Educator from Serbia,
Founder of Association of the Best Teachers of the Former Yugoslavia,
Founder of Magical Intercultural Friendship Network,
Founder of Creative Magic - Children’s International Festival,
Founder of Magic Village,
Serbia

Zeljana is a Western Balkans education leader, who has come a long way from her teacher role to her country's assistant education minister and later return to her student’s world again.

She has an amazing power of motivation and inspiration, both for students and teachers, various target groups within the non-governmental sector also been benefited with her initiatives on these for decades.

She is a multi-award winning educator from Serbia with an incredible passion for everything she does on teaching and learning.

Zeljana is the recipient of many national and international awards and prizes. One of the most prestigious among those was she become one among the 50 finalists of Global Teacher Prize award in 2018, an annual US $1 million award.  She is also one of the recipients of the AKS Global Teacher Awards 2019.

She was given the greatest national award in education, Svetosavska Prize, awarded by the government sector, and she has a title of “The Best educators of Serbia” which is the greatest achievement in education awarded by the non-government sector in the country.

Zeljana joined hand with a fellow Global Teacher Prize finalist from Macedonia and founded an “Association of the Best Teachers of the Former Yugoslavia”, a network of Balkan teachers for networking, sharing resources and ideas.

She is recognized by “Creative Magic”, the largest educational festival in the Western Balkans, this project reflects everything Zeljana has been creating for 30 years in and out of the classroom.

Zeljan’s popular project “The Magical Village” is a concept of learning under the open sky is based on innovative teaching resources close to children’s interests and their culture of learning. Children learn under the open sky in creative workshops taught by teachers dressed as fairies from Slavic mythology. The fairy tale setting motivates the children to acquire applicable knowledge easily. Across the Magical Village, resources also include ambient classrooms like a crafting centre, magical gardens, weather station, solar dryers, sundial, orchards, vegetable farms, fields, and forests.

Children can see the big picture of the world and this can be used as a method of reforming the existing formal education. In the Magical Village, she has tried to create a symbiosis of the things she experienced through her teaching practice, but also by removing factors that made the learning of her students difficult.

Magical village project was funded by UNICEF within the joint UN programme “Sustainable Tourism for Rural Development “. The programme is designed for children 5-12 years’ old who actively learn about real-life situations through integrated educational activities and acquire functional knowledge.

She is currently working on two revolutionary projects. One is the "Magical Intercultural Friendship Network", which she co-founded. This network has nearly 1,000 creative teachers and 35,000 of their students from 1,000 schools, from 57 countries around the world. Another important project she is working on now is the “Association of the Best Formers of the Former Yugoslavia”. This project is focusing on professional development and support for educators and parents. Her desire is to create a Balkans Resource Center to professionally train teachers and education leaders from the Western Balkans for providing a better learning opportunity for the future generation.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Poonsri Vate-U-Lan
Assistant Professor in Education,
Ph.D. Supervisor and Researcher,
Thailand

Asst. Prof. Dr. Poonsri Vate-U-Lan has over two decades of research experience in e-Learning, m-Learning, Phygital Learning and Blended Learning. She is a Ph.D. Supervisor and Researcher in Technology-Enhanced Learning, Educational Technology and Innovation. Her responsibility is to supervise Ph.D. candidate in the development of research in Technology-Enhanced Learning, eLearning technology. She has guided and supervised more than 15 doctoral candidates to obtain their degree and more Ph.D. students are in the process.

Her specialist covers in Technology-Enhanced Learning, Educational Technology, Instructional Design, Artificial Intelligent in Education, Augmented reality in Education, Game-based Education, Gamification, Social Learning, Social Network Disorder, Research and Development, Mixed method research, Quantitative Research and Qualitative Research.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Vate-U-Lan has achieved many recognitions, awards and scholarships in education.

She was the presenter of “Empowering Education by Artificial Intelligence” in The Belt and Road Shanghai Autumn 2019 Study Project: Policy and Practice: Teacher Professional Development at International and Comparative Education Research Institute, Shanghai Normal University, Teacher Education Center, UNESCO during 5-19 October 2019.

She was the member in the panel discussion of Pedagogical Innovation in Education ICT Forum 2019 hosted by Ministry of Digital Economy and Society of Thailand on April 25-26, 2019 at Centara Government Complex Hotel & Convention Centre, Chaeng Watthana, Bangkok

Dr. Poonsri was a guest Speaker of Thailand Education 4.0: External Quality Assurance in Higher Education, on behalf of ONESQA (Thailand) at 2018 ASEAN Quality Assurance Network (AQAN) Seminar 27 Sept 2018 Pulau Pinang, Malaysia

In 2011, she earned a Research Grant for development of an Augmented Reality Book in English for elementary school students, awarded by Bangkok Metropolitan Administration School Board, Bangkok, Thailand.

In 2007, she was a Guest Speaker for Trends in Mobile Learning: Major Challenges, University of Regina, Faculty of Education, Saskatchewan, Canada.

In 2002, she was a Visiting International Scholar, the Communications and Information Technology Group Laboratory, Brock University, Faculty of Applied Health Science, St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada.

She was invited to translate Don't Make Me Think! A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability written by Steve Krug into Thai, published by SE-ED.

Currently, Asst. Prof. Dr. Vate-U-Lan is a Full-time Lecturer for Ph.D. in eLearning Methodology Program (English Program) which soon will be Ph.D. in Technology, Education, and Management at Graduate School of Advanced Technology Management, Assumption University of Thailand.

Dr. Stuart Grant Colesky
Principal
Rundle College
South Africa

Dr. Stuart leading Rundle College South Africa as Principal, Stuart is based in South Africa. Rundle College is a private K-12 registered school following Cambridge Assessment offering. The school has a unique academic and sports focus with several top academic and sporting awards.

Previously, Stuart was Senior Education Manager for Managed Schools with GEMS Education Solutions based in Dubai. Stuart’s focus was across the Middle East but specialized in Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Stuart joined GEMS as a Management Adviser in 2009 on the PPP project with the Abu Dhabi Education Council, prior to spending 9 years in Kuwait working as a Head Teacher for a private school and in the computer training skills sector, with New Horizons.

He has in-depth knowledge and understanding of school improvement, training and auditing. He holds a doctorate in Education focusing on educational trends in the Middle East.

Currently, Stuart provides professional consulting support to investors and schools in the Gulf and Middle East region. This includes supporting schools in preparing for inspection and school improvement.

Stuart qualifications include Doctorate in Education, MA TESOL, Diploma TESOL, Bachelor Degree in Education, Diploma Marketing Management, Diploma in Professional Salesmanship & Diploma in Personnel Management.

Maarit Rossi
Founder & CEO - Paths to Math Ltd,
Former Mathematics Teacher and Principal,
Global Teacher Prize Finalist,
Finland

Ms. Maarit Rossi is the Founder & CEO of Paths to Math Ltd. Her broad experience in the education field is grounded based on her career and expertise in the world popular Finnish education system.

She is a former Mathematics teacher and Principal. She is an author of nine Mathematics textbooks, several pedagogic articles and publications. Ms. Maarit has done an e-Learning Math material also for the grades 6 to 9. She has been running many international projects in co-operation with the Finnish industry and also in her school. She was one of the top 10 finalists in Global Teacher Prize 2016 and she was one of the judges of the Global Teacher Prize Academy 2017.

She has contributed articles related to Mathematics in many national and international publications. Ms. Maarit is one of the Top Teacher Bloggers in The Global Search for Education authored by C M Rubin, which was reported in the famous Huffington Post news media.

She is a seasoned keynote speaker in international conferences and conducted many successful teachers’ workshops globally.

Dr. Lilian Bacich
Senior Educationist,
Author, Keynote Speaker,
Co-founder - Tríade Educacional
Brazil

Dr. Lilian Bacich is a passionate senior educator and the co-founder of Tríade Educacional, a Brazilian educational consulting firm focused on implementing blended and active learning practices.

She has 28 years of experience in working with basic education, undergraduate and graduate education and is Coordinator of the Active Learning Post Graduation Course at Instituto Singularidades.

Lilian produces educational material for several institutes and foundations. Lilian has published 2 books, “Ensino Híbrido: personalização e tecnologia na educação” and “Metodologias ativas para uma educação inovadora” and those are very popular among teachers in Brasil.

She believes that changing the mindset to use technology and active learning in favor of the school and teaching depends on personalized teacher training. She knows that this process is not easy and engaging teachers to implement an innovative and personalized project involves all the school community.

Lilian has been invited to attend numerous Brazilian events as a key speaker.

She holds a doctorate degree in School and Human Development Psychology from University of São Paulo (USP).

Servatius (Servee) Palmans
Former Director School Administration & Business Operations (Large Education Group)
Chief Operating Officer - BBD Education
Netherlands & UAE

Servee is a well experienced School Administration & Business Operations Director. He has managed a portfolio of 40 plus international schools reporting to the Group Chief Executive Officer.

He served as a member of the Executive Committee of one of the world largest international schools group, on a corporate level fully responsible for the school administration and business operations coordination in the fields of pre-operations, school risk management (health, hygiene, safety), security, facility management & preventive maintenance, school ventures (catering, uniforms, transport, and value added extra-curricular activities).

He led and mentor a team of 70 plus school-based Manager School Operations and Manager School Facilities.
Servee is certified in Business Excellence skills (EFQM, Balanced Scorecard, Lean & Six Sigma, and Operational Innovation) for guiding schools towards achieving and sustaining outstanding levels of performance that meet or exceed the expectations of all their stakeholders.

He has extensive international work experiences on business unit and corporate level in major international hospitality, sports event management, education and event rental companies.

Servee is an active amateur (tri-)athlete, enjoying running, cycling, and swimming.

Ralph Valenzisi
Chief of Digital Learning and Development
Norwalk Public Schools, Connecticut
United States

Ralph Valenzisi is the Chief of Digital Learning and Development for Norwalk Public Schools in Connecticut, United States. His responsibilities include areas such as Educational Technology, supervision and the development of new initiatives. Ralph currently is the co-chair of the Connecticut Educational Technology Leaders (CTETL), the state affiliate for the Consortium of School Networking (COSN). He is currently a member of the K-12 Advisory Group for Microsoft.

Ralph was formerly the Vice President responsible for Information Technology at Global Partnership Schools. Ralph’s experience in K-12 Educational and Instructional Technology has spanned over 15 years. Prior to Norwalk and Global Partnership Schools, Ralph was the Educational Technology Coordinator for the New Haven Public Schools.

Ralph also has served as an adjunct faculty member at the University of New Haven and currently teaches at Fairfield University. He was an Educational Technology Consultant for Imperial Software in New York for two years, and first and foremost, he was a classroom teacher for 9 years in Stamford, CT. Ralph’s degrees include a B.A form DePaul University, M.S from the University of Bridgeport and 6th year in Educational Administration from Southern CT State University.

 

Liljana Luani
Senior Teacher - ‘Pashko Vasa’ school Shkodra,
Exceptional Volunteer,
Albania

Liljana Luani is world-famous Albanian multi-award winning teacher with over 38 years of teaching experience and out of which past 15 years she volunteered to educate children held by blood feud, these children are in remote mountain villages of Albania.

She has been honored with several awards and certificates for her work with children and families isolated by blood feud phenomenon. In 2012, she was honored with the Universal Peace Ambassador Award and in 2013, the Golden Rose Award in the field of Education. Later in 2017, she was honored with the Courageous Woman Award, presented by Ambassador Donald Lu on behalf of the US Secretary of State. In October 2018, she was awarded the National Teacher of the Year Award in Albania. Later in the same year (December 2018), she was selected as one of the 50 best teachers in the world by the organizers of the world-famous Global Teacher Prize, an annual US $1 million award.

Her work with this contingent of children and their families has never been easy and often to the limit of the impossible, but she has worked hard to give basics of future education to these children affected by the blood feud so that when they come out of this situation they will be able to attend regular school with their peers and could feel equal.

In addition to working with children, she also works as an activist with the families of these affected children especially with their mothers as she strongly believes that mothers are the key factor to promote the education of their children and teach them tolerance, forgiveness and make them trust and follow the law.

Liljana has tried hard to be their voice to the local and national level institutions for the rights of this contingent, as she strongly believes that intervening with education and education policies for this contingent of children, with social policies, employment policies and integration for families and with the strict application of the law by the rule of law structures to this phenomenon would lead to the elimination of blood feuds.

Elena Shramkova
English and Literature teacher,
Owner of “The Smart Teens Studio of English” in Belgorod,
Russia.

Elena Shramkova is an English and Literature teacher with over 30 years of teaching experience from Russia. She also owns “The Smart Teens Studio of English” in Belgorod, Russia.

She has graduated from Kharkov State University, Foreign Languages Department, Kharkov, Ukraine and conferred a University Diploma of proficiency in the English Language and Literature.

She is a Certified Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert, Skype Master Teacher, Teacher Trainer and AKS Global Teacher Award 2019 Winner,

Being an innovative educator, she tries to develop the 21st-century skills such as collaboration, critical thinking, communication and creativity by utilizing the current education supported platforms like Skype in the classroom, Flipgrid, Wakelet, Kahoot, Sway, PowerPoint and others amplifying her students’ voice and helping them to become global citizens.

She organizes international Skype calls with classes and educators from different countries and continents collaborating on different projects, sharing ideas and working out possible solutions. To raise students’ awareness of the diversity and specific features of cultures, they share their cultural heritage by performing their national songs and dances, playing national musical instruments, cooking national dishes online. Lots of local community members are involved in their activities, too. Their most favorite activity is a Box Exchange Project when students exchange their national items sending boxes to each other. To promote these ideas, she became an ELT Conference Speaker sharing her experience with other teachers from Russia and around the world. She has created a personal educational platform to help students get ready for their National English exams, in 2015.

Elena Shramkova is a lifelong learner and regular presence in national and internal conferences as an attendee and as a speaker.

Stephen Cox
Chief Education Officer
New Nordic School
Finland

After a highly successful career in both medicine and education in the UK, for the last ten years, Stephen has worked at a senior/board level for 3 of the largest K-12 organizations in the Middle East region in all aspects of school improvement, professional development, business development, technology, and school start-up.

More recently, as a consultant, Stephen has supported the government and private sector on projects related to corporate and school leadership, education consultancy, change management, school start-up, IT digital strategy, future of learning and innovation in the MENA region and Internationally.

He has led year on year education improvement both in and across schools through a strong vision, culture and ethos, International Leadership, Coaching, Teacher Training, Digital Technology, drawing upon best practice internationally. He also introduced and delivered self-evaluation and performance management frameworks into and across schools for effective school improvement and accreditation.

Stephen has significant experience in business development, HR, marketing and the financial side of education and is commercially savvy. He is an Apple Distinguished Educator having led on many future learning innovating technology initiatives which have led to sustainable change across the region and internationally.

Stephen has recently been working with the Finnish government and Ministry of Education who are ranked one of the best education systems in the world. As Regional Director, he designed a ‘Best of Finland International K-12 Concept School’ to bring to the Gulf.

Stephen is also working in the future of learning space designing blended solutions in education and has recently started working with New Nordic School as Chief Education Officer.

Specialities: Leadership, Education, Innovation, Professional Development, Future Learning, Technology, Business Development, Coaching, eLearning, mLearning, Change Management, Haematology, Medicine.

Shady Elkassas
Director of Innovation
Al Ittihad National Private School - Al Ain
United Arab Emirates

Shady Elkassas is a multiple award-winning and passionate Egyptian educator working in United Arab Emirates. Since his childhood, he looked forward to a career in teaching, and become a committed educator providing high standards and practices in the education of young people.

He believes that the capstone of education is to give every student equal opportunities to learn and for this reason, a true educator according to his is the one who acknowledges, respects, and appreciates students' diverse backgrounds, learning styles, intelligence, and abilities. Following this perspective, he has centred his teaching repertoire around the concept of searching for the best way to meeting students' individual needs. As a school leader, he communicated the same message to his team members.

Shady is a popular STEM advocate and speaker in the Middle East region. He has taken initiatives to adopt project-based learning (PBL) and inquiry-based learning (IBL) methodologies to create a new foundation of STEM learning in school.

He strongly believes that leadership has a strong influence on education reform and he takes initiatives to communicate is vision not only inside his school but also outside.

Shady had been selected to be a speaker in three international education conferences in the region - GESS-Dubai 2016, 2017, and Fatih Educational Summit in Turkey 2016.

He was awared the prestegiouse Khalifa Presidency Award for Education (2017) and Middle East Education influencer Award (2018). He was also a GESS education award finalist for two years (2016 & 17).

For the past few years, Shady has been associated with Sharjah American International School.

With Robotics being of particular interest to him, Shady led the School Robotics team and helped them win many awards at international events. He has also been invited to speak at events like TEDx and GESS (Global Educational Supplies and Solutions Exhibition).

He is Microsoft Innovative educator and Google Certified Educator and Apple Teacher.

Shady qualifications include Masters of Science in Education, Executive Management Diploma and Bachelor of Science.

Ian Deakin
Former International School Principal
Deputy Head and Dean of Faculty
Dalton Academy, Beijing
China

Ian is proud to an educator with over 35th years of experiencing in teaching and leading in International Schools.

He generated value and made a difference in every community and company he served by improving operational and financial performance and by generating desired results.

He believes in three pillars of strength - culture, people and systems. Ian led vision and goal setting exercises, established compelling professional cultures and communities, help people grow (building capacity, understanding and confidence) and built better professional systems/protocols for tracking and results (enhance efficiency and/or effectiveness, quality assurance, transparency and accountability).

Specialities: He enjoyed great experiences in public and private schools in Canada and in international schools. He works well in organizations that employ/desire a strategic perspective focused on results. He is particularly effective in schools that gauge success by looking most acutely at measured student learning outcomes and ratings of overall "client" satisfaction.

Angus Duthie
Former Vice President Security (Large Education Group)
Former British Army Officer (Airborne Forces)
Senior Advisor – Resilience and Crisis Management (Emerald Solutions Group)
United Kingdom & United Arab Emirates

Angus is a dedicated, committed and professional ‘C’ Suite Security Executive with over 20 years of international experience in security, risk & crisis management, and general management. Has consistently produced unprecedented results with a proven track record of security-related success, often in high-risk countries. Exceptional interpersonal and communication skills with expansive experience in managing process improvements, change management and facilitation of multiple projects while ensuring compliance with international best practices.

As a former British Army Officer (Airborne Forces), extremely adept at keeping calm under pressure. He was responsible for overseeing the security of a large number of children (115,000+) in over 60 sites. Angus has vast experience in setting up and growing the security function in organisations and has won internal and external awards for his contribution.

As VP Security of a large education group, he was responsible for the complete security and crisis management of all People, Environment, Assets and Reputation (PEAR) by ensuring all security is appropriate, effective and measured.

Angus was also responsible for reviewing the Child Safeguarding protocols and having taken a view on international best practices. He was a pioneer in setting up Multi-Agency Support Hubs (MASH) to help and support child protection practitioners in the UAE.

As a technical expert, Angus was responsible for design, plan and implement the overall security strategy for all schools (Over 60 schools in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East), and to cascade the strategy throughout the security team. Undertake risk assessments and make recommendations to mitigate risks through preventative measures to PEAR. Angus was responsible to ensure all appropriate staff are trained in Corporate Crisis Management Planning. Provide security awareness training for key staff travelling to high-risk countries. He has completed the Chartered Institute of International Security and Crisis Management (CiiSCM) studies at the Emergency Planning Center (York).

Hidekazu Shoto
Innovative English and ICT Teacher,

Author,
Japan.

Hidekazu Shoto is an innovative educator from Japan. He works at Ritsumeikan Primary School, Kyoto, Japan. His teaching career started at High school and later he moved to junior high school.

Hidekazu is an Award-winning educator. He is recognized as a Global Teacher by Microsoft for using technology in the classroom for better teaching & learning. They have awarded him Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert certification in 2016. He also got a Minecraft Education Award which is Microsoft’s most prestigious award in Education for improving learnings in the classroom.

He was nominated as one of the Global Teacher Prize 2019 Top10 finalists for his innovative & outstanding contribution to education. His method of using technology in his English class has a big impact on the education system in Japan.

Shoto has published 4 books and those are very popular among teachers in Japan.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Foreign Language (English) from Kansai Foreign Language University, Osaka, Japan and a Master Degree in Foreign Language Education at Kansai University, Osaka, Japan.

Kihyun Park
Innovative Educator of Online Classroom,
Pungsaeng Middle School,
South Korea

Kihyun Park is an innovative English teacher in charge of International Students Exchange program in Pungsaeng Middle School, South Korea, designated as ‘Innovation School’ where new educational & experimental programs have been implemented and he is leading it.

This year he works in the Office of Education of Gyeonggi-do (South Korean Government) as a committee member of the consulting board for International Exchange Project.

With the motto, ‘The World is My Classroom’, he has helped his students to be equipped with the good communicative competence, to raise awareness of different cultures, and to develop the global citizenship by connecting classrooms face-to-face in different manners.

He created and practising new models of the online class, which is revolutionary and work effectively, and through which his students are able to think out of the box to achieve the goals; Culture Sensitivity, Creativity, Communicative Skill, and Global Citizenship.

His class is open to any educators filled with challenging spirits. Park undertake the role as a changemaker in his classroom.

Park majored in Pedagogy and English education and he graduated from Hongik University.

Leonilo Basas Capulso
Master Teacher, Speaker and Researcher,
Philippines.

Leonilo Basas Capulso, is a multi-award winning Filipino Master Teacher, Speaker and Researcher from Pampanga, Philippines.

He is a Senior High School Master Teacher at San Matias National High School, School Division Office of Pampanga, Region 3 of the Department of Education in Philippines with over two decades of teaching experience.

Leonilo is a “Dangal Ng Bayan” Award-winning educator. The “Dangal Ng Bayan” Award from Philippines government is conferred to an individual for performance of the extraordinary act or public service and consistent demonstration of exemplary ethical behavior on the basis of adherence to the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

He is also the recipient of Asian Achiever Award (2019), Gawad Pat National Award (2019), Outstanding Research Advocate of The Philippines Award (2019) and Most Outstanding Teacher Award (2018).

As a research advocate, it has been his advocacy to promote the culture of research by developing school-based research management in the region. He has initiated research capacity building for new researchers in the government and private schools. His network with other international organization became a bridge in hosting international research conferences in the Singapore, Bangkok, Philippines and Vietnam.

His love for less fortunate moved him to conduct studies and advocacies for community development in the depressed areas and initiated literary and faith program to select children of Macabebe, Pampanga, Philippines.

As an educational leader, he has written contextualized curriculum modules for values education for Junior High School and written assessment and evaluation tool for the Senior High School in the Department of Education.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Education (BSED) major in Religious Education and Master in Religious Studies (MRS) -  Catechetics (CUM LAUDE) in Don Bosco Center of Studies, Paranaque City – an affiliate of Salesian Pontifical University, Rome, Italy.

He took a Master of Arts in Education (MAEd - bridge course) in De La Salle University- Dasmarinas.

Presently, he is finishing his Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in Educational Management in University of Perpetual Help System DALTA – Las Pinas City and University of the Assumption, San Fernando, Pampanga.

Ha Nga
Revolutionary English Educator
Globally Connected English Studio - Hanoi
Vietnam

Ha Nga is a spirited educator hailing from Vietnam who believes in the power of knowledge sharing. She lives in a village about 40 kilometres to the west of Hanoi. As an educationalist, she was constantly looking at ways to help her students think and learn. Like most countries around the world, Vietnamese students also struggle with English. However, Nga firmly believed that language should not be a barrier to true learning.

She is a popular and revolutionary English Language Teacher from Vietnam having her own English studio where she teaches students of different age group. Her students are both young learners and teenagers. She has more than four hundred students from year 2 to year 12.

Nga utilized the power of Microsoft Education Community on Facebook, that opened a new horizon to her. Using this community, she connects her classes with classes in different countries and facilitating peer to peer learning.

She graduated from University of Languages and International Studies, Vietnam National University, Hanoi.

Herwin Hamid
EdTech Specialist, Speaker and Teacher Trainer,
Innovative ICT Educator,
ICT learning multimedia developer,
Indonesia

Herwin Hamid is a science teacher in a Middle  School in Indonesia. He is active in providing training for teachers in improving their pedagogic skills, especially using and developing ICT in the learning process and to use ICT effectively in order to solve learning problems that exist in the classroom. He has given training for more than 2000 teachers directly.

He was a speaker at several national and regional seminars in which he provided motivation and inspiration to teachers and prospective teachers.

For more than a decade, he has been teaching in a school with inadequate infrastructure including the technological facilities. However, it does not prevent him from chasing his dream to be a good influencer in improving the quality of education not only in his classroom but also for other educators in Indonesia through the use of ICT in learning.

He has received many national and international awards for his dedication to education and for all his teaching and learning innovations that he has created. This led him to indirectly become a role model for other teachers of his country to do innovative initiatives.

He won many championships in Indonesia organized by Ministry of Educational and Culture of Indonesia such as National Teacher Symposium 2016, National Competition of Teacher Creativity 2014 and National Competition of Developing Mobile Learning for Education 2013. Herwin Hamid was awarded Anugerah Ki Hajar Award 2012, 2013 and 2014, 3 years in a row. He also received the National Award from the Ministry of Education and Culture of Indonesia.

In 2015, Ministry of Education and Culture of Indonesia selected him from Indonesia for the prestigious Princess Maha Chakri Award for outstanding teachers in the ASEAN region. This award was presented by HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindorn of Thailand. He was also the finalist of The Best Science Teachers Award in Southeast Asia organized by SEAMEO Qitep In Science

He was chosen among 72 Indonesians to received special recognition from President as part of “72 Indonesian icons of Achievement Festival” in 2017 and become the only teacher to receive that recognition.

He holds a bachelor's degree in Physics Education from Halu Oleo University - Kendari and a master degree in Educational Technology from Surabaya State University.

Fethy Letaief
Distinguished Senior EFL Teacher,
ISA Coordinator with the British Council,
Motivational Speaker,
Tunisia

Fethy Letaief is working as a Senior English & ICT Teacher with Pioneer Prep School of Sousse Tunisia. He has been working on implementing the global inclusive dimension in the curriculum for many years.

He involves learners and educators in developing their soft skills and succeeded to make sponsors and the community invest in education mainly school’s infrastructure in modernizing classrooms. This led to an up-to-date learning environment and help to build modern school culture.

He is coaching other educators and leading by sharing good practices namely the good use of digital tools and the network.

He was awarded twice with International school award for education and now serving as an ambassador with British Council Tunisia. He was awarded National Motivational Speaker award in 2011.

He is an experienced tour leader of “Students Linguistic Trips Abroad” organizing students trips to other countries.

His voluntary experiences include President of “Books and Libraries Lovers” association, Vice president of JCI, Chair of the committee “Communication and Media Tunisia TEFL” and also the active member in “School our Home” association.

He is an official translator and media conferences responsible contact person of a popular football team in the county Etoile du Sahel.

Fethy is also an English short stories writer. Involvement in a wide range of activities helped him to be influential and leader in “call for change” in the educational strategies in Tunisia.

Dr. Venus M. Alboruto, PhD
Master Teacher, Researcher, Innovator, Trainer

Dr. Venus is an innovative science teacher from Surigao City National High School. She finished Bachelor in Secondary Education, major in General Science, at St. Paul University Surigao as Magna cum Laude. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Science Teaching and Doctorate Degree in Educational Management from the same university. She has been teaching for 17 years and her innovative approach to teaching has been recognized by several regional, national, and international education authorities.

She has won a number of awards for her work, including DOST-SEI Most Innovative Practice in Managing Large Classes, Finalist, Ki Hajar Dewantara Award for Best Science Teacher in Southeast Asia, 2016, one of the top 50 Finalists in Varkey Foundation’s Global teacher Prize 2019, and honoree of Bato Balani’s The Many Faces of the Teacher 2019. Her work is influencing teaching across the region. She has been invited to share her materials and expertise to train other teachers in their use both in the Philippines and further afield. Alboruto also presents at conferences and provides training to equip others in her field to achieve similar success.

Mr. Ngô Thành Nam
Teacher, Technology Academy Manager, Microsoft Learning Consultant, Global Trainer,
Vietnam

Mr. Nam is a primary school teacher and manager of technology academy department in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. He has authored multiple articles and been nationally and internationally recognized for the implementation of creativity and the integration of technology into his teaching. In 2016, he was presented with the Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) Expert Award. Then, he represented Vietnam at the Microsoft Global Forum and to become a winner there. Now, he is a Skype Master Teacher, MIE Master Trainer, MIE Fellow and Microsoft Learning Consultant. Besides that, he is also the Global Math Ambassador, Lifeliqe ambassador and ClassDojo Ambassador. During his career, he obtains many national and international achievements: Winner of The ISTE Global Collaboration PLN Award (2017, 2018), selected to attend the 2017 Honeywell Educators at Space Academy (HESA) at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (USSRC) in Huntsville, Alabama (2017), Winner of Hack the classroom competition (2016), MIE Expert of the Year (2016), featured by NNSTOY (2017), the Winner of Asia Educator of the year (2017), Top 50 Global Teacher Prize (2018) etc.

Mr. Nam works passionately to develop creative approaches to delivering quality education to his students in ways that inspire them to learn. He not only equip his students with knowledge but also works to develop their life skills such as critical thinking, information technology, group work, etc.with that his students can get adapted to various cultures throughout the world. Nam is interested in applying technology to teaching since he believes that high tech helps his students’ creativity and passion for learning more. Moreover, he knows that technology bridges the gap between the classroom and real life. His vision is learning is not limited to the classroom but also to extend to the outside world. Therefore, he loves doing global collaboration much. During his teaching, he has done many of global projects, such as, We are little volunteer (Safe Traffic), I am future Environmental Science (Protect Environment), Wai Water (Protect Water), Women in history on tour, Global school play, Capturing Christmas across the Globe, Global Cooking etc., Nam makes a great change in his student's life and himself since they have been able to go outside of the boundaries of our school building to learn. Nam has taken his students to new places and allowed them to use the 4C of 21st-century learning (collaboration, communication, critical thinking, creativity) such as they have global learning. Nam loves working with his students and is inspired by them every day.

He has implemented a global project on child sexual abuse called Five Safe Fingers. The project attracted the participation of more than 100 teachers from 38 countries across the globe. Nam believes this project will bring tremendous impact not only to children in Viet Nam but also to children around the world in helping them have the skills to protect themselves against invasive problems: Child sexual abuse. He also realizes that the project is also targeting 16th goal of the UN's sustainable development goals: Peace, Good health and Well-being. Mr. Nam is one of the pioneer teachers in addressing sensitive issues of human rights and child rights. This year, he is working on the Kindness Everyday project. By using technology, he has deployed projects to 12 000 students in Vietnam and around the world.

Mr Nam also moderates an online teachers group with more than 27000 members. He has inspired the transformation of teaching and learning for both teachers in Vietnam and around the world. Today, Nam trains teachers all over Vietnam (non-profit), raising the profession as a whole. He’s constantly searching for new approaches and helps colleagues use technology to make teaching and learning more effective. He’s inspired lots of teachers in Vietnam, changed them from someone who knows nothing about technology to someone who has become interested in it and knows how to apply it effectively and suitably. At night, he spends time for poor children to teach them after they finish working.

Rania Lampou, Global Teacher Prize Finalist 2019, 15 International Awards on STEM, STEM Instructor, Greek Neuroscience Researcher, Educator, Trainer & Author

Awarded many national and international prizes, Rania Lampou is a Global Teacher Prize finalist 2019. She is the founder of four international projects that focus on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals described in the 2030 Agenda. She promotes STEM vision by introducing STEM in astronomy and physics projects and combines STEM with Language Teaching. She has a Postgraduate Degree in Language Teaching related to cognitive neurosciences. She is a passionate researcher on cognitive psychology and cognitive neurosciences. She strongly believes that brain-based learning and teaching could lead to important breakthroughs in learning because recent findings of neuroeducation provide valuable insights into how students learn and how to engage them in the classroom.

Dr. Manoj Varghese
Senior Director of Strategy & Partnerships – Connecta Education Ltd.,
Former Global Director - Technology & Risk Management - GEMS Education,
Former Regional Committee Member – Varkey Foundation,
UK, UAE & India

Dr. Manoj Varghese is a Senior Technology, Education Technology & Innovation leader with over two decades of unmatched international experience and expertise. He is an EdTech researcher with strong knowledge of BYOD, STEM Education & 21st Century Learning skills.

As Senior Director at Connecta Education Ltd, Manoj leads advisory, consulting, innovation initiatives, strategy & partnerships.

Connecta Education is a global education research and innovation company focusing on connecting anything that matters to Education (students, parents, administrators, faculty members, academic researchers, recruiters, industry professionals, organizations and all other stakeholders) through its platforms.

Connecta’s mission is to make international expertise available to schools, colleges and universities in a most affordable and non-commercial manner. Connecta facilitates Education, Education Technology & Technology advisory and consulting services through its associated organisations & consulting team. Multinational consulting team associated with Connecta Education has over 200 man-years of proven international education experience with the world’s leading organisations.

Manoj was the Global Director – Technology & Risk Management at GEMS Education (World's Largest Private International School operator) leading the Technology Strategy, Execution of Strategic Plans, Technology Budget, Technology Governance, Compliance, Security, Risk & Audit for over 250+ GEMS' Global and Partner Schools, and related businesses in 10 countries.

He was the Former Regional Committee Member of Varkey Foundation which organizes world-famous Global Teacher Prize, an annual US $1 million award.

As a Project Director at GEMS, Manoj led all aspects of Pre-Operational ICT for over 45 new International School projects in North America, UK, Europe, Africa, Middle East, India, Singapore, Malaysia & China, and two prestigious Higher Education projects for university campuses in Dubai.

He was the Project Director of GEMS’ SAP ERP project, where SAP S/4 HANA was implemented over 180 schools integrated with School Management System. He was the Architect of GEMS’ proprietary ERP, VLE & School Bus Management Systems.

Manoj is a world traveller and he loves nature photography. He had been to over 40 countries and keeps exploring more every year. Cross country drive through villages are his favourite. He also explored a wide range of K-12 and Higher Education systems during his travel.

Manoj is an IT Engineering Graduate, has completed the MBA program in Systems and has MS and PhD in E-Learning Methodology.