United Kingdom

Dr. Margaret Alvarez

Head of School

Doctorate in Education
Masters in Educational Administration
Graduate Diploma in Business Administration
Post Graduate Certificate in Secondary Education
Master of Arts

I have over 25 years’ experience in education. Prior to re-joining ISS International School, I served as the Associate Director of Accreditation for the Council of International Schools (CIS). In this role, I have evaluated international schools in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and was responsible for overseeing international school evaluations in Asia (including Singapore). My other responsibilities included research and development, teacher training, and government relations. I have published various papers on school improvement, the development of global citizenship skills and effective administration. I am also the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS); the Council that supports international schools in our area, and serves on the IB Asia Pacific Regional Council.

I was part of the team that designed the CIS protocol used to measure the quality of international schools and was responsible for designing the protocol CIS uses during joint evaluations with the International Baccalaureate (IB).

Before joining CIS, I served ISS International School for thirteen years in various roles including Head of World Languages, Head of High School and Head of School. During this time, I introduced the three IB programmes (IBPYP, IBMYP and IBDP) to the school. I started my career as a French and German teacher within government schools in the United Kingdom then moved to Europe where I taught English as an Additional Language, French, German and Spanish in European International Schools.

My educational philosophy places student learning and wellbeing at the heart of everything a school undertakes. The leadership model I have designed is informed by my observations, research and many years of experience as a school leader and evaluator.

I am married to Antonio and my younger daughter attends ISS International School.

United Kingdom

Derek Pinchbeck

Head of Paterson Campus, Head of Learning, Deputy Head of School

Master of Education (International Education)
Post Graduate Certificate of Education
Bachelor of Arts Theology & Religious Studies

I began my teaching career in 1990 and joined ISS International School from Nanjing International School in China where I had been the Head of Primary Years since 2008. Prior to moving into administration, I was a classroom teacher for 18 years and taught classes from Grade 2 up to Grade 5.

Singapore is the seventh country I have worked in, having previously worked in the UK, Dominican Republic, Papua New Guinea, Brunei, Milan Italy and Nanjing China. ISS International School is the third school in which I have been involved with the Primary Years Programme (PYP).

Whilst in Nanjing, I saw the school double in size and was actively involved in the school’s vertical articulation of its curriculum and successful implementation of technologies for learning. In 2013, I organised an international conference, attended by over 400 educators in Nanjing to discuss how to improve students’ thinking skills.

As well as my work in school, I am an Accreditation Visitor for both the International Baccalaureate (IB) and Council of International Schools (CIS) organisations and a consultant for the IB. I have also presented at a range international conferences.

I strongly believe that a school should be somewhere that fosters a true love of learning in all members of its community. I am excited to be working in a school in which students don’t simply learn but learn to love learning.

I am married to Vicky who teaches Grade 3 at ISS International School and have two sons who are attending ISS International School.

United Kingdom

Nicola Zulu

High School Principal

Master of Education
Bachelor of Arts
Post Graduate Certificate of Education (Secondary Education)

I have always had a passion for learning and technology has been the vehicle for providing me with opportunities to share experiences with my students from around the globe. Being an educationalist is my second career and my previous experiences support me in bringing real life scenarios to the school environment. I am originally from the UK, and worked in Africa for 17 years, before moving to Singapore.

I bring many years of experiences to ISS having served in a range of administrative positions in my previous international schools including Assistant/Acting Secondary School Principal, IGCSE Coordinator and Director of Technology.

I have a strong commitment to life-long learning, ensuring that my role as an educator is kept up-to-date and I am fully aware of the changes that are taking place in our society.  I have had opportunities to present at AISA and ISAZ conferences, and to attend the Suny Buffalo Master programme in Leadership-based Learning.  Currently I am studying an MBA in Leadership and Management.

I have always been an advocate for student well-being and promote the need for students to have a balanced life, and I support research proving that students who are engaged in regular physical activity often develop life skills such as sportsmanship, time-management, self-discipline, goal-setting, and an increased sense of self-worth.

I am married to Michael and have a son and daughter who both attend our school.

New Zealand

Rachel McCarthy

Deputy High School Principal, DP Geography, MYP Humanities

Bachelor of Arts (Geography & Education)
Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Secondary)
Master of Education (In Progress)

I have over 15 years experience working in High School education in New Zealand and the UK. I have spent the last six years in Singapore in a variety of roles at ISS International School.

I genuinely care about student’s social and emotional wellbeing. In previous roles as a Head of Grade and Head of Learning Support, I have developed a strong understanding of a variety of issues including, special education needs and conflict resolution. Through the previous six years I have developed strong relationships with students and the wider ISS community and am seen as a leading educator.

I have a deep working knowledge of curriculum developments both within the International Baccalaureate programme as a teacher of Diploma Geography and also a teacher of MYP Humanities. In 2010, I was involved in the NZ Curriculum project, and was a member of the writing panel of the NZ Geography curriculum. In recent years I have presented on teaching strategies at conferences such as EARCOS, Middle School education and also on technology to improve student learning.

I have a strong commitment to our students holistic education through involvement in Outdoor Education and Service. I have led expeditions to Mt Bromo in Indonesia, service trips to Northern Philippines in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan and field trips to Tioman in Malaysia to support our students learning in Environmental Systems and Biology.

I am married to a fellow teacher, who together have three charming young boys.


Michael Taylor

Head of Middle School

Master of Education (Educational Technology & Administration)
Bachelor of Education (PE/Health)
Certificate of International School Leadership

I have been teaching since 1986 and on the international circuit since 2006, with stints in Amsterdam, Hong Kong and now Singapore. My formative teaching years were via public education schools in Sydney, Australia.  I started out life as a Physical and Health Education teacher. When teaching these days you will find me in an MYP Technology class and/or IBDP ITGS. When not teaching in class I have held the roles of Head of Administration, Director of Sport, Director of Technology and Deputy Principal and now Head of Middle School. I even had a position as part-time school janitor – way back in the day!

As well as my work in the classroom, I have taken active roles in consulting to education departments in the UK and Australia, a committee member of the International Society of Technology Educators, board member of the Horizon Report, MYP Examiner in Design and Personal Project and written a text book for McGraw-Hill, to name a few.

Outside of the classroom I am member of the Singapore Rugby Union Referees Society and the Hong Kong Society of Rugby Union Referees, try and compete in the the occasional triathlon or ocean race, and enjoy cooking a BBQ!

Everything I do in schools relates to student learning and building students of good character, who respect each other and the world in which they live.

United States of America

Sharyn Skrtic

Head of Elementary School, PYP Coordinator

Master of Education, Curriculum & Instruction, Cleveland State University, USA
Post Graduate Certificate of Special Education, George Mason University, USA
Bachelor of Education, John Carroll University, USA
Certificate of International School Leadership, Principals' Training Center

My teaching career began in 2000 and since then I have continued to grow and deepen my understanding of inquiry-based learning. I am a facilitator of learning rather than an instructor of students and teachers. Through my work as an IB PYP Workshop Leader, both face to face and online, as well as an IB Accreditation Visitor I am committed to the philosophy of the IB.

I have presented my teaching practices at conferences around the world, including The Association of German International Schools Conference, 21st Century Learning Hong Kong Conference and IBAP Annual Conference. Professional Development (both giving and receiving) is a major part of my work ethic. I model lifelong learning by continuing to grow as an educator and furthering my educational qualifications. I participate in many professional learning platforms and collaborate with educators around the world. My professional education blog has been published in the IB Sharing PYP Website.



Urs Jungo

IBDP Coordinator, TOK Teacher

Master of Arts (International Education)
Bachelor of Education

My involvement with the IB Diploma programme dates back to 1994 and I have since had the opportunity to work in seven different countries on two continents. Apart from my current main responsibilities as IB Diploma Coordinator, Theory of Knowledge Coordinator and Extended Essay Coordinator, I also support the further growth and development of the IB Diploma Programme within the Asia-Pacific region as a Consultant, Workshop Leader and Verification Team Member. Holding a Bachelor of Education in Foreign Languages from the University of Fribourg in Switzerland and a Master’s degree in International Education from the University of Bath in the UK, I am a firm believer in the development of critical thinking skills and the benefits of blended/online learning.

Outside work, I like to escape on two wheels, be it on the motorbike or the bicycle, whilst considering that elusive future house on some tropical beach.

United Kingdom

Fang Shelly

IBMYP Coordinator, Language Teacher

Master of Arts (English Studies)
Bachelor of Arts (English Language & Literature)
Postgraduate Certificate in English Language & Literature Teaching

I joined ISS in August 2011. I have over 17 years experience in education as a curriculum developer, MYP Coordinator, Personal Project Coordinator and a language acquisition teacher. Before ISS, I worked in another IB school in South China as an MYP Coordinator and Director of Mandarin. Prior to that, I worked for the International Baccalaureate Organization both in its former Curriculum and Assessment Centre in the UK and Asia Pacific Regional Office in Singapore. This has provided me with rich opportunities to work with IB schools and teachers worldwide, and I have been heavily involved in curriculum development, visiting IB schools around the world and presenting at conferences and workshops. I was recently involved in the review and innovation of the MYP Next Chapter and participated in a number of IB meetings held in the UK and The Hague. I have taught in China, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

I am currently an IB MYP workshop leader, an IB MYP school authorisation and evaluation visiting team leader and a MYP Language Acquisition moderator. I am committed to the philosophy of the IB and believes that the ultimate goal of education is to assist young adults to achieve their full academic, physical and social potential.

I am married to Tim Shelly who teaches at ISS Middle School. I have two daughters, with the youngest attending ISS.