Dear SAIS Family,
We are excited to introduce you to some of our new teachers! The quality of our educational program at SAIS is very much dependent on our teachers. Lives are changed not by how beautiful the buildings are, not by the size of sports fields, and not even by having a great administration, but by the impact the educator has on those they are educating. SAIS has always tried to recruit teachers who we believe will change lives. With this in mind, we would like to introduce you to some of our new teaching staff.

There is a famous US singer called Neil Diamond. In his song Beautiful Noise he sings:
What a beautiful noise
Comin’ up from the park
It’s the song of the kids
And it plays until dark

Children love music and so we would like to introduce Andrew Slingerland as our new Music teacher. Andrew is originally from New York State and has a Bachelor’s degree in Music with an emphasis on instrumental music education, as well as a Masters degree in Music Education. His primary instrument is the saxophone but he can play and teach several instruments. Andrew has taught music in Sweden, South Korea and China, and we are looking forward to the instruments he will teach our students to play. Sweden gave the world the super group ABBA, Korea has K-pop groups, so we look forward to our own beautiful sounds and the soon to be famous SAIS-pop!

Michael Wilkinson is our new ELE1 teacher. Michael has over six years of teaching experience with a wide arrange of ages. He is originally from the Washington, D.C. area, which he left to begin his teaching career in South Korea. This began his teaching career working with students from kindergarten through high school. After five years of teaching in South Korea, focusing on middle and high school students, Michael spent the past year teaching early childhood students in Shenzhen. He is excited to join SAIS and work alongside his childhood friend Finn, and looks forward to a great year ahead!

Over the years SAIS has been blessed with excellent Kindergarten teachers. Here the foundations of our students’ fluency inspeaking, reading and writing English is established. Shelly Amizur continues in that tradition of excellence. With 12 years of experience in teaching Kindergarten, English and PE she sees the education of our young generation and its subsequent impact on their future as her mission in life. Her mission statement also acknowledges that the children’s education includes shaping not only their personal growth but how they relate to others in society. With a Bachelor’s degree in Education, Shelly is currently pursuing a Master’s in education at Glasgow University of UK, and she has experience teaching in China, having taught in Chengdu for the last 3 years.

Our new Grade 2 teacher Cristen Haynes is an experienced China teacher originally from California. She lived in Zhuji and Shanghai before coming to Shenzhen 2 years ago. She has also lived in Rabat, Morocco. Cristen has a Bachelor’s Degree in Cultural Anthropology and so is well equipped to understand the challenges of the multi-cultural environment of an international school. Cristen is an educator who guides students towards the attainment of their individualized learning goals. She takes great pride in seeing her student make academic gains, but she places an equally strong focus on social and emotional learning and emphasizes growth mindset. Ultimately, she hopes her time with students will contribute to their becoming creative, resilient, life-long learners.

In Grade 3 we would like to welcome Parker Ma. Parker has a Bachelor’s degree in Art and Graphic Design and this will be his 6th year as a teacher with experience in both Kindergarten and Primary years. He has teaching experience in China and is anxious to be an inspiring teacher to his new students. We are sure all of Parker’s students will be well behaved as he has a passion for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, originally developed from Judo and which the actor Keanu Reaves uses when training for his film roles.


Our new Grade 5 Humanities teacher will be Laura Felusiak. Laura holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and German, a Master’s degree in Germanic Studies and a Master of Business Administration. Her experience includes teaching social studies and German as well as English as a second language, AP Economics, World Geography and Sociology. Welcome Laura and we know that our grade 5 students will thrive under your tutelage.


As a school SAIS has looked to building up the Middle School and High School curriculum with specialist subject teachers. With this in mind SAIS has appointed several teachers to strengthen our support for our students in this age group.

Let us welcome Omar Makladd as our new Middle and High School Math teacher. Omar has a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematical Statistics and a Master’s degree in Applied Economics. He is a certified Mathematics (Grades 6-12) and TESOL (K-12) teacher. Omar has taught in the USA, South Korea, Japan and China and has worked with students from elementary to high school. He looks to engage students through thought-provoking lessons to connect mathematics to the students’ lives. He has a strong passion for teaching mathematics and looks forward to having students enjoy the subject as much as he does.

Sam LoveTro is our new Middle and High School Humanities and Social Studies teacher. Sam has a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a Master’s in Education. During his time in university Sam studied in Hong Kong and Chile for one semester each and this instilled in him a desire to travel and teach internationally. He moved to Shenzhen to teach and during this time met and married his wife Claire Xu. Their latest teaching experience has been at the prestigious Sheikh Zayed Private Academy in Abu Dhabi. Sports are a big part of Sam’s life and he swam and played water polo in college but now also enjoys playing volleyball and two of China’s favourite sports: badminton and table tennis.

Claire Xu is our new Middle and High School Science/STEM teacher. Claire has a Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy and a Master’s in International Education. She is certified to teach secondary science through Washington D.C. and has 5 years of international school teaching experience, including at one of the best private schools in the United Arab Emirates. During the past two years, Ms. Claire became an Apple certified teacher and integrates various technologies into teaching and learning. She looks to having students being highly engaged and excited to utilize different tools in exploring new concepts. Outside of the classroom, Claire likes traveling, paddle boarding, practising yoga and playing board games. She believes that we should always make time for new experiences.