Poonam Bhojani - CEO, Innoventures Education
Poonam Bhojani is an Economics Honours Graduate with an MBA from India's premier business school, Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore. Prior to envisioning and cofounding Dubai International Academy, Poonam has had significant industry experience working on leading edge technology solutions with a range of organizations across India, Hong Kong, USA, Belgium, Sweden, The Netherlands, Oman and UAE. She is the CEO of Innoventures Education and has served as the President of the Middle East IB Association of Schools and is the Secretary of the Dubai Private Schools Group.
Timothy Roberts - Principal, Raffles World Academy
Michael Stephen - Director Finance and Administration, Innoventures Education
Michael Stephen is a Chartered Accountant and has a Diploma in Portfolio Management with over 20 years’ experience in consulting and industry. He was part of the core team of Innoventures Education that set up Dubai International Academy. Michael started his career in an accounting firm focused on audit, tax, corporate law, and business and investment advisory services. He enjoys business and financial modelling to develop new business ideas, building key relationships, and the challenge of establishing new projects. In 2005, he cofounded Eternus Foundation in Chennai which provides education and health cover to needy children. Michael is a Fellow of the Association of International Accountants, UK and has been on the faculty of a business school in Dubai.
Dr. Armeena Tabassum - Head of Primary
Dr. Armeena Tabassum comes with 22 years of teaching, leadership and management experience at primary, middle years and higher secondary level. The core 18 years of which have been with the International Baccalaureate Programme in IB authorized world schools. She holds a dual Master’s degree in education and educational psychology with a focus on inclusion and a PhD in education, where her field of research was ‘Early Childhood Education’. Armeena has taught in leading IB World schools in India, Bangladesh, Croatia and the UAE.
As a trained accreditor for the Council of International Schools (CIS) Armeena visits schools, assessing and evaluating them as part of their accreditation process. She has a passion for increasing students’ academic and holistic development, raising standards and improving teaching and learning. Armeena holds a clear vision and strategic direction that promotes continuous school improvement and inspire, motivate, challenge and empower all stakeholders to carry the vision forward. She enjoys writing academic plans and policies, organizing events, writing poetry, interior designing, cooking and travelling.
Yolanda Maccallum, Deputy Head Pastoral and Administration
As the deputy head of primary – pastoral and administration, Yolanda works with a network of staff such as the Counsellors, learning support department, and all the primary teachers to ensure RWA has a welcoming, caring, and safe environment, in which all students can flourish. Yolanda facilitates collaboration between students, teachers and parents to build strong and positive relationships in and across the primary school.
Yolanda has been working in education for 14 years, and has her Bachelors Degree in education, specializing in early childhood development and foundation phase. She has spent 6 years in RWA as a homeroom teacher, as well as 2 years as a middle leader.
Damien Marshall - Deputy Head Academics (Upper Primary) and Head of Digital Learning
As the deputy head of academics in the upper primary school, Damien is responsible for continuing to develop the quality of teaching and learning in the upper part of the primary school (Grades 3-5). As the head of digital learning, he is responsible for supporting the high-quality integration of technology into classrooms across the school, supporting students and teachers in classrooms, as well as leading the strategic planning for the school in this area. Damien also has a role across the Innoventures group of schools as the digital learning coordinator, helping to support schools with their strategical planning in regards to digital learning, as well as the implementation of this planning in the schools.
Damien has worked in the field of education in the schooling and government sector, with a passion for driving the effective use of technology to support high-quality teaching and learning. In addition to his degree in primary education, Damien also has a Masters of Educational Leadership, Graduate Diploma in Teaching English as a second language and a Diploma in community development.
Nicholas Paul Gastaldi, Deputy Head Academics (Lower Primary) and PYP Coordinator
As Dean of Studies and PYP Coordinator, Nick is responsible for ensuring a personalized and rigorous curriculum is delivered to all students. At RWA we use the Primary Years Program philosophy as the lens for all academic decisions in the school. Nick works closely with all teachers, collaboratively planning lessons and units of inquiry to produce innovative learning experiences for students.
David Andrew Willams - Head of Secondary
As the Head of Secondary, Andrew oversees all matters within the secondary school. He taught in 4 schools in the UK before deciding to take up a post in Qatar in 2010. He then moved to Al Ain, UAE in 2015 and is very much looking forward to working at RWA this academic year. As well as an experienced teacher, he is a BSME Inspector and has an MA in Education from the University of Bath, UK. He has previously held roles as Head of Sixth Form, Assistant Head for Pupil Progress and Head of School. A keen sportsman, Andrew enjoys turning his hand to all sports, but cricket is his real passion.
Sean Quigley, Deputy Head of SS - Academics
As the Deputy Head of Secondary (academic), Seán oversees all academic matters including curriculum, assessment and teaching and learning. He is also responsible for the continuing professional development of secondary staff
Stephen Pinto, MYP Coordinator
Stephen Pinto joined Raffles World Academy in 2010 as an IGCSE and IBDP biology teacher and has recently become the Middle Years Programme Coordinator. His previous roles at RWA were Cambridge IGCSE coordinator and exams officer from 2011 to 2014. In 2016 he took on the post of head of science department and continued as the IGCSE exams officer. He has a Masters in animal physiology and in education. He is an IBDP examiner, team leader and an IGCSE examiner. He has 18 years of teaching experience and has taught across various curricula such as the ICSE, IGCSE (Edexcel) AS and A-level, IGCSE (Cambridge), and IBDP. Stephen, together with his team is responsible for implementing the Middle Years Programme (MYP) Stephen is passionate about curriculum development and assessment. He will work closely with his MYP team as well as the heads of department to oversee the various subject areas, the Personal Project, the Community Project as well as the Inter Disciplinary Unit and the approaches to learning to ensure that the highest standards and practices of the Middle Years Programme are implemented at RWA.
Anissa Pereira, IBDP Coordinator
Anissa is responsible for the development and consolidation of the IB Diploma Program (DP) at RWA. She works closely with the DP team which comprises the Heads of Grade 11 and 12, the EE Coordinator, the CAS Coordinator, the TOK Coordinator and the Higher Education Advisor at RWA.
Anne-Marie Prem, Head of Inclusion
Anne-Marie is responsible for the inclusion of students of determination who experience special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), students identified as Talented and/or Gifted (TAG), and students with English as an Additional Language (EAL) who need language skill support.
Part of Anne-Marie’s role involves developing and overseeing the implementation of policies related to inclusion and provision, including matters related to inclusive practice that affects the processes of admissions, identification, intervention, assessment, and teaching and learning. She is also responsible for the continuing professional development in the field of inclusion for all teaching staff and learning support assistants. Anne-Marie’s responsibilities include enhancing relationships and partnerships with the key stakeholders involved in inclusion, such as those between parents and the school, as well as external agencies involved in providing for students with additional learning needs.
Holding sixteen years of teaching and leading experience within a variety of settings, formats and curricula, Anne-Marie works to bring inclusive practices into mainstream schools, capitalizing on her knowledge of both Special Education and English as an Additional Language. With a Master of Education with a specialization in Special and Inclusive Education, Anne-Marie is committed to the philosophy of the IB that works towards equity and inclusion in the midst of diversity that is respected, and has worked within the Primary Years Program, the Middle Years Program and the Diploma Program to ensure access, engagement and progress.