Meet Us

 

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Principal Wendy Roediger wendy.roediger@mris.wa.edu.au

Wendy Roediger – Principal & Year 1 Class Teacher

Wendy started teaching in 1976 in Carnarvon and is possibly the only WA teacher to have been transferred to Margaret River Primary School twice, once in 1978, then again in 1981 after a stint at Grovelands. She has travelled extensively, briefly ran a secondhand shop, has been with the school since its very early days as Nyindamurra Family School and through its more recent evolution into Margaret River Independent School.

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Wendy has an instinctive talent for teaching which, combined with her many years of experience, makes her a strong guiding force in her students’ lives. “Helping them to retain their individual character is as vital as their learning,” she says. “Emotional health is also very important”. Her favourite subjects to teach are literacy and maths and the Virtues, always with an emphasis on learning for all, and sharing her broad life experience.

Her teaching career has featured many highlights, the latest being some of her original students enrolling their own children in the school. In 2008, Wendy was presented with a Certificate of Excellence from the Australian Council for Educational Leaders (WA). She wants to see the school vibrant and effective for the next 35 years and beyond and growing stronger without its size increasing too greatly. I want to keep the passionate care for our school, the small-school experience

Little Indies Pre-Kindy Teacher Charlie Gould charlie.gould@mris.wa.edu.au

Charlie Gould – Little Indies Pre-Kindy Teacher

How long have you been teaching?

I returned to teaching in 2016 after a long break at home with my own children. Before that I spent 5 years as an early childhood teacher in the UK after spending many years as a teacher of English as an additional language to adults and children in various school settings around the world.

 

Why MRIS? 

At MRIS teachers are given a clear framework to work in but are also given the trust and freedom to do what they do best. I feel that this great combination of support and freedom is what I need to continue to develop as a teacher.

 

What are your favourite aspects of teaching?

 

I enjoy building relationships with children and families. It is only within these secure relationships that

the student can be courageous and vulnerable and try something new. Watching children take these leaps forward has to be one of the best things about teaching.

 

Do you have a favourite or specialist subject?

 

I really enjoy creating learning environments which allow children to not only explore and investigate but also build relationships and trust with each other.

 

What is one of the highlights of your teaching career to date? 

 

I have simple highlights.

I get great satisfaction when I look around a space and see all the children, engaged, happy, interacting and trying new things. You know good things are happening when you see that.

Towards the end of term 4 at Little Indies I had many moments like that. The children were so comfortable and engaged that I was able to just take a moment, stop, watch and enjoy.

 

What is your educational philosophy?

 

I believe that if children are motivated, excited and engaged, if they have persistence and courage then they can learn anything they want. If a child believes in themselves, has imagination and determination, then anything can be achieved.

My job as a teacher is to create a social and physical environment where children feel safe and secure, where they know that their attempts will be valued and where they have opportunities for learning and developing the knowledge, skills and dispositions that they will need now and in the future.

 

What is your wish for MRIS’s current development now and in the future?

 

I wish the whole MRIS community every success now and in the future. It truly is a community school that works out of a pace of integrity, love and reflection.

 

 

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Kindergarten Teacher Helen Ewing helen.ewing@mris.wa.edu.au

Helen Ewing – Kindergarten Teacher

The first day of school can be daunting and emotional for parents and children, however, at MRIS much preparation and groundwork goes into ensuring a smooth transition. Many months before Kindergarten commences, Helen and her team have put several strategies in place to put both children and parents at ease including an Orientation Day.

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“We call it a Mini Kindy Day. Families come along to see how Kindy works, and meet other parents. I can find out what the children’s interests are and what might help to make them feel included and comfortable.”

Helen has been teaching since 1981 specialising in Early childhood education. She said the most exciting aspect of her work at MRIS was spending time with the children. “I also really like the PATHS course. It is a fantastic program which promotes social and emotional competencies which then reflect in all other areas of student learning including academics.” Parental involvement is an area Helen highlights as pivotal in the kindergarten’s philosophy.

“My parents are all so helpful. They can see what their children are doing and the kids love it too because they get to know the other parents and any siblings that come in for roster .”

Pre-Primary Teacher Ann Murray ann.murray@mris.wa.edu.au

Ann Murray – Pre-Primary Teacher

MRIS Pre-primary teacher Ann Murray has been an integral part of the school for many years. She has a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Arts) from Curtin University and a Graduate Diploma of Early Childhood Education (Edith Cowan University) Her previous teaching position was at Castletown Primary School in Esperance. Ann said she enjoyed teaching because she liked spending the day with children and being a part of their world.

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“I enjoy learning about their interests and observing how they interpret the world around them. I enjoy the ‘happy noise’ of the classroom as the children play and interact with others.”

Ann believes MRIS is special because it offers a nurturing environment for children. “The involvement of families contributes to creating a positive, safe extension of home,” she said.

“The staff at MRIS are enthusiastic and passionate about the education of each child. It is a school that motivates you to be the best teacher you can be.”

Sasha Pol – Pre-Primary Teacher

Pre-Primary Teacher Sasha Pol sasha.pol@mris.wa.edu.au

How long have you been teaching?

I graduated from University in 2011 and taught at MRIS in 2012.

 

Why MRIS? 

MRIS is a lovely environment where children have the opportunity to learn and grow into well-rounded people. There is a focus on many aspects of the ‘whole’ child; social and emotional, creative, environmental awareness and appreciation, while still covering the curriculum. The support network between the staff, parents and children creates a lovely little safe community in the bush. It’s a beautiful place to work.

 

What are your favourite aspects of teaching?

Watching the children learn, grow- and having fun at the same time!!

 

Do you have a favourite or specialist subject? 

In Pre-primary we have the wonderful role of teaching all the learning areas. There is a big focus on Play- and the importance of creating activities that children learn valuable concepts (both academic and social) through play.

I love the Arts: music, fine arts and dancing. So to be able to integrate this with curriculum is a fun challenge!

 

What is your educational philosophy?

To create a space where children want to come to everyday: to learn, discover, grow, create, nurture and of course enjoy. To have such a focus on the child’s emotional well-being with themselves and others really sets them up for a positive future.

 

What is your wish for MRIS’s current development and in the future?

Being an ex-student starting at MRIS (formerly Nyindamurra Family School) in 1997 and coming back as a teacher- it really is lovely to see that the school has not changed in its philosophy and nurturing environment, it has grown. May it continue to keep upholding its appreciation for the environment too.

MRIS Pre-primary teacher Sasha Pol.

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Year 1 Teacher Skye Robertson skye.robertson@mris.wa.edu.au

Skye Robertson – Year 1 Class Teacher

Joining the school in 2012, Skye has taught Kindy to Year 10 in independent schools for the last 10 years. Brought up in the Geraldton region, Skye attended Murdoch University completing a Graduate Diploma in Education before taking up her first teaching post at Geraldton Grammar School. She has had a varied teaching career with posts in London, at Presbyterian Ladies College in Perth, and at Busselton’s GMAS.

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Skye has also taught in the specialist area of fine art and has exhibited in a number of successful art exhibitions. She said the most rewarding part of teaching was getting to know the children, developing a relationship with them and encouraging them to reach their potential ” I have no preconceptions of my students. I focus on the heart of the child, their individuality, and then work with their strengths”.  MRIS’ Virtues Program is a crucial strategy used throughout the school’s curriculum making it stand out from other schools, said Skye.

“I love the way ‘The Virtues’ underpin all MRIS teaching. Hearing kids talk about virtues and use them in their everyday life is very uplifting. They are set up for life with fundamental skills and beliefs”.
MRIS’ vibrant, caring community is another area Sky identifies as essential to the harmonious atmosphere on campus.
“The children are caring and encouraging of each other from K to 7. Because MRIS is small, the kids know each other which fosters a wonderful relationship between all ages”.

Kate Appleton – Year 2 Class Teacher

Year 2 Teacher Kate Appleton kate.appleton@mris.wa.edu.au

Year 2 Teacher Kate Appleton kate.appleton@mris.wa.edu.au

Kate Appleton has been teaching children from Kindergarten to Year 6 for 19 years , nine of those in the UK in the North of England.  She has taken several roles in that time, including Literacy coordinator, Special Needs support, Maths support and Drama teacher. Since arriving in Australia in 2007, Kate has primarily taught Year Two, before taking on the role of Mathematics Tutoring teacher at MRIS. She is now enjoying her role back in the classroom as  the Year Two teacher.

I believe that as an educator,  I am extremely privileged to work with children every day and that it is my job to create a positive, safe and fun learning environment.  I aim to encourage a sense of wonderment in the world around us and give students the confidence to be the best that they can be.

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Year 3 Teacher Ashley Williamson ashley.williamson@mris.wa.edu.au

Ashley Williamson – Year 3 Class Teacher

Ashley has been teaching for ten years, including three years spent in a remote community as sole teacher. In that role, which she credits as a career highlight, she experienced a different culture and world in the heart of Australia. Her favourite subject is writing, because she gets “to hear and read such amazing and creative stories by Australia’s youngest authors”. Ashley describes MRIS students as great fun and sees her role in the classroom being “to equip and empower students to learn”.

Having taught at MRIS for two years, she hopes the school “continues to grow as an amazing community of dynamic and involved people”.

 

 

 

 

Annika Ralston – Year 3 Class Teacher and Maths Tutor

 

Year 4 Teacher Lindsay Burke lindsay.burke@mris.wa.edu.au

Lindsay Burke – Year 4 Class Teacher

Lindsay Burke joined Margaret River Independent School in 2013 as the Year 4/5 Class Teacher. He has a Bachelor of Education Primary. He said he really liked the philosophy of Margaret River Independent School.

“MRIS students are nurtured not only intellectually but also socially and emotionally, this means they leave the school a more well-rounded human being.  My goal as a teacher is to help to positively influence the next generation.”

Laura Nicholls – Year 5/6 Class Teacher

Year 5/6 Teacher Laura Nicholls laura,nicholls@mris.wa.edu.au

How long have you been teaching?

 

Why MRIS?

 

What are your favourite aspects of teaching?

 

 

Do you have a favourite or specialist subject?

 

What is one of the highlights of your teaching career to date?

 

What is your educational philosophy?

 

What is your wish for MRIS’s current development and in the future?

 

Sports Specialist Sean Allen sean.allen@mris.wa.edu.au

Sean Allen – Sports Specialist

Pre-6

Sean has been a primary school teacher for 11 years, and brings a wealth of experience to MRIS. He has a particular interest in sport and creative writing.

He said he loved teaching and being a positive role model for his students. “I think it is really important as a teacher to connect with kids and share my experiences.

“My teaching philosophy is primarily to foster a love of education and learning, and to create an inquisitive mind that seeks to understand the world.”

Sean said MRIS was a school which strived to achieve academically whilst developing a strong and calm character in each child.

 Sara Walker – Dance & Drama Specialist and Teacher’s Assistant

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Dance & Drama Specialist Sara Walker sara.walker@mris.wa.edu.au

How long have you been teaching? 3 years

Why MRIS? It is a small school with a great community feel and the ability to extend creativity beyond classroom possibilities.

What are your favourite aspects of teaching? Exploring new ideas with the students

Do you have a favourite or specialist subject? I teach drama but love HASS.

What is one of the highlights of your teaching career to date?  Taking the students to the Eisteddfod

What is your educational philosophy? To view every student as an opportunity.

What is your wish for MRIS’s current development and in the future? To continue to maintain its family feel.

 

 

Pam Tuffin – Music, Drama and the Performing Arts/English Tutor

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Music, Drama and Performing Arts Specialist Pam Tuffin pam.tuffin@mris.wa.edu.au

Pam Tuffin has been teaching for over 13 years and relishes the opportunity to work with children individually in a flexible environment that nurtures the learning abilities of each child. The highlights of Pam’s teaching career are the long term connections made with the children.

“I also enjoy the opportunity to witness their growth and development and the innocence of their conversation. I want children to look forward to coming to school each day. I get great satisfaction when children love school and love learning.” 

 

 

Maree Norris-Mohn – Art Specialist

 

Maree has been teaching visual art for over 40 years and has a particular fondness for claywork. She said the highlight of her work was teaching the children of past students.

Her favourite aspect of teaching was providing both an opportunity for and encouraging students’ awareness and sensibility to art. She chose to teach at MRIS due to an interest in the intial concept of setting up of an independent school.

“My education philosophy is to help students to be open, perceptive and flexible in their creative endeavours and my wish for MRIS is to always encourage students and staff to perceive, imagine, explore and invent.”

Veronique Audisio – LOTE Teacher- (French)

Mike Bezant – Chaplain

 

June Cunningham – Business Manager

Raine Ladd – Teacher’s Assistant

LADD, Raine

Julie Jones – Teacher’s Assistant

Noela Garland – Teacher’s Assistant

Garland, Mrs Noela

 James Noble – IT Specialist

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Manfred Bruggler – Music Tutor and School Band

Jane Harker – Administration Officer

Melissa White – Marketing/Administration Officer

Roger Westaway – Groundsperson

© 2017 Margaret River Independent School

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