This year beijingkids will be hosting a panel at the Beijing International School Expo about the importance of and dynamic nature of parent-teacher relationships. Each panelist comes with his or her own unique perspective and experience, with a combined total of more than 70 years expertise in the field of education. The panelists come from all over the world and each will represent one of six schools in Beijing, including the British School of Beijing, Shunyi, the Canadian International School Beijing, Huijia Private School, Beijing International Bilingual Academy, Hyde Academy, and Innova Academy (click on school names here to visit their 2017 School Choice Guide listing, click on their names below to visit their website).
For a panel teaser, check out what each of the panelists had to say concerning the parent teacher relationship.
The moderator, Ms. Vanessa Jencks, is the current managing editor of beijingkids magazine.
As a mother of two, a journalist, an educator, and a former school administrator, Jencks comes with her own unique perspective on education. Jencks hand-selected each panelist from a body of applicants based on how each panelist practically handles parent-teacher relationships.
Mr. Yew Yi is currently the primary school Principal of Beijing Huijia Private School.
Yew Yi graduated from Singapore Institute of Management University majoring in English and Economics. He received his teacher training in Nanyang Technological University’s National Institute of Education. Prior to his current position in Beijing Huijia Private School, Yew Yi was also the Principal of a Cambridge International School in Jakarta, Indonesia for four years. He is a proud father of two school-aged daughters. As a school leader, he is passionate about providing a more holistic education for his pupils and believes every child is uniquely gifted and deserves an education that provides opportunities for his or her talents to flourish.
Mr. Daniel Smith is currently the Primary Assistant Head and Year 5 teacher at British School of Beijing, Shunyi (BSB, Shunyi).
Smith moved to Beijing in 2015, after having taught in Dubai and the UK. He has held various roles in the educational field such as Head of Maths, Head of Science and Head of Year. In his role as Assistant Head, he strives to help enable all pupils to meet their full potential.
Smith holds a degree in Primary Education and Science from The University of Surrey and has completed several Masters level modules with the Institute of Education, University of London.
Before deciding to teach abroad, Smith was a teacher for 7 years in London. Smith has experience with ‘creative curriculum’ and he is a firm believer in a ‘skills-based’ education, which empowers children with abilities that will benefit them in later life.
Ms. Meghan Dickie is a Grade 5 teacher at the Canadian International School of Beijing (CISB)
Dickie is from New Brunswick, Canada. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Mount Allison University and her Bachelor of Education from Crandall University. Meghan completed her Education internship at CISB in 2011 and is currently working on her Master’s of Education in Leadership and Administration from the University of New Brunswick.
Mr. Brad Nitschneider is currently the Elementary Program Coordinator and Sixth Grade Homeroom Teacher at Hyde Academy, Beijing.
Nitschnedier is an accomplished teacher and writer with a passion for education, having worked in the field since 1989. He received his B.A. in Behavioral Science, his Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, and his M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, California. Brad is currently enrolled in an Educational Leadership and Management doctoral program with St. Thomas University in Miami, Florida. The topic of his doctoral dissertation is the effectiveness of the Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) model being used at Hyde Academy in Beijing.
In addition to more than three decades of tutoring experience in the U.S. and China, Brad spent 10 years working as an elementary school teacher and mentor teacher in the Palo Alto Unified School District. During his time teaching in Palo Alto, Brad wrote and had published five mathematics books for students in grades 1 through 4.
Ms. Lara Ronalds is currently the Curriculum Coordinator for Innova Academy.
Lara Ronalds has been working as a teacher and curriculum coordinator across elementary school subject areas for 22 years. She is passionate about pursuing an ever-improving understanding of what it is that inspires children to learn, driving her to further renew the ways she and her colleagues recognize potential within each individual student. She understands and values the way that children can learn simply through their own curiosities and sees it as the educator’s role to help children make connections between what it is that they are curious about and what it is they need to learn.
Lara is an IB Workshop Leader, IB School Visiting Team Member, and completed her Masters of Education in 2015. This is her 6th year of working in Beijing and brings with her a unique set of perspectives, having lived in Hong Kong, California, and her home country of Australia.
Ms. Evelyn Lucero is currently the K-12 Curriculum Coordinator at Beijing International Bilingual Academy.
Lucero has a Masters of Arts from California State University of Northridge in Education Administration and is a National Board Certified Teacher. She started her career teaching 17 years ago in Los Angeles, California. Her experience in teaching Grades 1 and 3-5. Coaching teachers has helped her develop strong communications skills with parents, teachers, and students.
As a mother of three teenage boys and a teacher of 17 years, Lucero has had a wide variety of parent-teacher-student conversations. Though her Masters in Education Administration provided her with tips and strategies for developing positive relationships between parents and teachers, she has improved her skills mostly through trial and error. “I found that once I spent more time listening and less time trying to be heard, I was better able to be more productive in my conversations with others,” Evelyn shared at a recent professional development presentation for parents at BIBA, “When we take a moment to find out what others are thinking, we can figure out how our thoughts and values match up and then we can form a plan of action together.”
For more information or to register for the BISE, click here.
Photos: Courtesy of Huijia, CISB, BSB, Shunyi, BIBA, Hyde, Innova