Staff

Who We Are

Our students, staff and faculty work together to make our
school a safe, engaging, rigorous, learning environment.

Full Staff Directory
Only the BEst

We Know How to Make Learning Fun For Kids

The mission of SAIS is to provide a progressive American style learning environment where all students develop and apply the knowledge, skills and habits of mind necessary for academic, workplace and personal success anywhere in the world.

Our small school serves as a community nucleus that invites strong support from parents and community members as well as closer working relationships among the school staff.

SAIS Staff

Nathan Abbott

Nathan Abbott

Principal

nabbott@szsais.org

About Nathan

Nathan (Nate) Abbott is a proud husband, a father of 5, and an educator.  He has over a decade of experience in the classroom and over 6 years of administrative experience.  He has enjoyed teaching students from kindergarten to university.  He has a BA in Asian Studies, and an MA in Secondary Education.

Throughout his educational career he has had the opportunity to present and give trainings all over the United States and also had the opportunity to work with and give trainings for the Confucius Institute in Beijing, China.  The topics included Project Based Learning, language acquisition, student engagement, classroom management, and staying in the target language.  He is a deep believer in children and their ability to learn and absolutely loves his job.

All of his children are learning Chinese and he has loved exposing them to the wonders of China.  He is passionate about education and connecting teachers, parents, and students as a community.

 

Lucy Zeng

Lucy Zeng

Vice Principal

lzeng@szsais.org

About Lucy

Lucy Zeng received a master degree in educational management, who has worked in international education for over a decade. She is the administrative backbone of Shenzhen American International School and has been part of the core team that has built the first Project Based Learning school in Shenzhen. She has a deep understanding of what administrative needs are required to create a thriving makerspace in an educational setting, as well as administrative support that is required to produce student platforms.

 Lucy is a strong advocate of PBL, Maker culture, and Design Thinking as she believes these methodologies bring about meaningful learning to students.

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Faculty

Mabel Choi

Mabel Choi

ELE1 Teacher

mchoi@szsais.org

About Mabel

Mabel Choi grew up in New York City.  She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Nyack College and has a TESOL certificate from American TESOL Institute.  After college she was a Mental Health Worker at New York Presbyterian hospital working at a psychiatric unit for five years.  She wanted to pursue her other passion, which is teaching and decided to move to Korea. She taught English in korea for five years and worked with elementary students most of the time. After that her family decided to make a life in Shenzhen, China.

Mabel missed teaching and felt she is ready to teach again, now that her daughter is six years old.  Being a teacher and a mother helped her understand the importance of child development.  She cares deeply about how kids develop and grow.  She uses her experience and her understanding of psychology in her classroom.  She believes the first five years of a child life is so crucial.  To her a teacher is a role model and must help students develop and learn in a safe and happy environment.

Her hobbies are reading, scrapbooking, and spending time outdoors with her family and friends.

Michael Wilkinson

Michael Wilkinson

ELE2 Teacher

mwilkinson@szsais.org

About Michael

Michael has over 6 years teaching experience with a wide array of age groups taught. I left the Washington, DC area to move to South Korea to teach which turned into over 6 years of experience teaching and educating kids aged from Kindergarten up to high school. I have spent 5 years teaching in South Korea, focusing on middle and high school students with the past year spent teaching in Shenzhen, China. I look forward to a great year ahead!

Finnbarr O'Callaghan

Finnbarr O'Callaghan

Kindergarten Teacher

focallaghan@szsais.org

About Finn

Mr. Finn grew up near Washington D.C. in the United States. His passion for science led him to become a certified science and social studies teacher. He has been teaching in America, Korea, and China since 2014. Mr. Finn aims to promote a love for science while challenging his students’ ability to understand the mysteries of the world around them. Mr. Finn is an outdoorsy guy who spent much of his childhood catching various animals at the local creek. Along with this, he is an avid golfer and fisherman.

Edwin Nieves

Edwin Nieves

Grade 1 Teacher

enieves@szsais.org

About Edwin

Edwin is originally from New York City, has been working in the field of education since 2005 and really enjoy teaching young minds. He has been teaching at S.A.I.S. since 2018 and continues to be extremely excited to be part of this great institution. Prior to moving to Shenzhen, he taught in South Korea for almost 7 years and in New York for 2 years.  He received his Bachelor’s degree from Nyack College and has a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Moreland University.  He is bilingual, speaking English and Spanish both at native levels. In addition, he can also speak Korean and Chinese.  During his time off he enjoys sight-seeing, learning about other cultures, Latin dancing, and listening to music.

Zainab Tabasso

Zainab Tabasso

Grade 2 Teacher

ztabasso@szsais.org

About Zee

Zainab (Zee) is from Johannesburg, South Africa. She has worked in corporate South Africa for more than 17 years where she held numerous executive management positions. She has vast experience in leadership, project management, management consulting, mentoring, coaching, and facilitating training at both junior and senior levels. Zainab has a TEFL certificate from the TEFL Academy (UK) including a BA(Hons) Management degree from the Anglia Ruskin University in the UK as well as a Post Graduate Diploma in Educational Management and Leadership. She is in the process of completing her MBA in Educational Leadership. She has experience teaching kindergarten, primary/middle school and is extremely passionate about being a catalyst in fulfilling her student’s highest potential. Zainab (Zee) believes that a solid foundation for young learners is key to the future of society. She strongly endeavours in leading by example, has an extremely high work ethic, and considers herself a lifelong learner. Zainab (Zee) arrived in China (Shenzhen) on 1 April 2018 and loves living in the vibrant expat community of Shekou. She loves colouring abstract designs, is ardent about reading, and enjoys travelling across the globe. Free the child’s potential, and you will transform him into the world.”– Maria Montessori

Parker May

Parker May

Grade 3 Teacher

pmay@szsais.org

About Parker

Parker May is a professional teacher with half a decade of experience in the classroom. He has inspired students from Kindergarten to Primary school. Parker left his hometown in New Jersey to study art and design in Philadelphia receiving his BS in Art and Graphic Design. Besides inspiring students and teaching in the classroom Parker enjoys training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Ellen Abbott

Ellen Abbott

Grade 4 Teacher

eabbott@szsais.org

About Ellie

Ellie Abbott loves learning and exploring along with her students, so SAIS’s focus on project based learning provides a great environment for Ellie to bring real world experiences into her classroom. She received degrees in cultural anthropology and nursing, before becoming a teacher. She has six years of teaching experience including 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grades. She loves teaching 4th grade because the students are starting to figure out who they are and what they like. She strives to motivate them to be scholars. She strongly believes that positive energy and feedback can help lift her students to achieve more. Prior to teaching Ellie was a health instructor and registered nurse. These experiences have increased Ellie’s ability to meet the needs of the whole student, from academic to social and emotional. When Ellie is not teaching she loves to hike, bike, and be outside with her five children and husband.

Ronney Price

Ronney Price

Grade 5 Teacher

rprice@szsais.org

About Ron

True education occurs when there is that divine dance between the teacher and the student.  True education is caught in that instant that becomes a moment, which turns into a path of perfection as for the case of both the teacher and student.  It is when the teacher touches the spirit of the student and opens up the passion for knowledge and inspires the student to love learning.  I am because we are, and we are therefore I am.

Dr. Ronnvey Price was born and raised in Saginaw & Lansing, Michigan where he graduated from East Lansing High School.  He received his undergraduate degree in 2001 from Michigan State University in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Education.  During his tenure at Michigan State University, he was active in wrestling, student organizations and Boys to Men mentoring program in several local schools within the district as a partnership with the University.  He received his Master of Education degree with a specialization in Special Education from Concordia University Chicago in 2013 and his doctorate in Educational Leadership with a specialization in curriculum design and development in 2020.

Ron served for six years as an elementary, middle, high, and instructional coach for various schools and organization throughout Shenzhen.  Dr. Prices indelible mark as a leader from his infectious laugh and jovial spirit to his warm demander approach to developing high expectations and equitable experiences for all children, staff, and families remains in every school, community, or educational entity he has touched.  He always leaves a place better than he found it; and he remains committed to dismantling anti-intellectualism in international education and improving educational experiences for all children.

Samantha Fung

Samantha Fung

Library Teacher

sfung@szsais.org

Mark Moran

Mark Moran

English Language Art Teacher

mmoran@szsais.org

About Mark

Mark grew up in Maryland, USA before teaching in African-American and Latino communities in Chicago. Along with degrees in international studies and education, Mark has an MA in English from the University of Nottingham, UK and has taught English across a variety of levels in Thailand and Cambodia helping to establish an IGCSE program at a top bilingual school in Bangkok and recently teaching A Level English in Phnom Penh. He also has acted in the theater and has sung in classical choirs and operas. An avid cyclist, Mark looks forward to exploring Shenzhen and beyond on his bike.

Katleho Dawn Meje

Katleho Dawn Meje

PE Teacher

kmeje@szsais.org

About Kay

Katleho Dawn Meje is proudly South African. She graduated from the North-West University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications, with minors in French and Linguistics.

Katleho has done multiple courses for play-based learning for younger children, and she is currently completing her PGCE in English, social studies and physical education.

Before teaching, Katleho worked within the marketing department of a corporate company, but her love for education pushed her to change her career path.  She packed her bags a few months later and has been teaching in Shenzhen for over three years. She is known to her students as Miss Kay.

Her appreciation for sports stems from her upbringing- she was raised in an athletic household. She has participated in numerous sports and competed in regional and provincial levels in sports such as hockey, netball, soccer, athletics as well as cheerleading and dance. Currently, she practices two Mixed Martial Arts disciplines: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Muay Thai.

The philosophy that “every champion was once a contender” is what she lives by, and she encourages her students to always try their best, no matter how challenging the work may be.

When Miss Kay is not teaching or at the gym, she enjoys hiking, travelling, reading and artwork.

Laura Felusiak

Laura Felusiak

Humanities Teacher

lfelusiak@szsais.org

About Laura

Degrees: Dual Bachelor Degree  in Economics and German Language/Culture from Uniwersytet Szczecinski in Poland and Fachhochschule Dortmund in Germany; Masters of Germanic Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, USA and Masters of Business Administration from Prairie View University Northwest Houston, Texas, USA. 3 Previous work experience: Humanities Teacher  at Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District  in Texas, USA, AP Economics Teacher at BASIS Parklane Harbor in Guangdong, China. Philosophy: guide students holistically, as their academic success is as much important  as their social and emotional well-being and development. Professionally and leisurely, she aims to remain a life long learner. Laura is grateful that her students help her enrich that goal. She strives to encourage and motivate SAIS students in their educational journey and enjoys celebrating their daily progress. Interests: music concerts, travel,  and spending time with family, preferably while cooking together, going on a road trip, or for a bike ride. 

Nicholas Barber

Nicholas Barber

Humanities Teacher

nbarber@szsais.org

About Nic

Mr. Barber is from Texas, U.S.A. He attended Texas A&M University in College Station where he received a Bachelor of Science in Geography. After university, he acquired his teaching license in social science education and English for speakers of other languages from The University of West Florida.

He has six years of teaching experience, having taught ESL for four years at Shixia Middle School in Shenzhen and Social Studies for two years at NCIC-The Bay Academy. He strongly believes that students are more likely to succeed when they feel an authentic, personal connection with a subject and have a well-equipped teacher to help them make that connection.

Mr. Barber has a diverse background ranging from water-quality data collection to creative video and podcast production. His true joy, however, is derived from helping students understand the world and its past. He loves to read, write, and tell stories using maps and timelines. His goal here at SAIS is to help students develop the tools necessary to tell compelling stories about the world on their own. When Mr. Barber is not teaching, he is training martial arts, playing sports, or learning Chinese.

Jason Tippetts

Jason Tippetts

Athletic Director, PE Teacher, Social Studies Teacher

jtippetts@szsais.org

About Jason

Jason Tippetts grew up in Idaho State, a sparsely populated state in western United States of America, where he enjoyed being active outdoors. After living in Taiwan for 2 years, he returned to Las Vegas where he completed a degree in Political Science, with a minor in Asian studies, at the University of Las Vegas, Nevada. He also has Washington D.C. issued teaching licenses for PE and Social Studies.

After teaching a few years in the U.S., Jason and his family moved to China where he and his wife have been teaching for the last 5 years. As an athletic director and league executive he has been very involved in international school competitive sports here in Shenzhen. Jason also has several years of experience coaching basketball and volleyball teams.

Jason challenges his students to improve and loves to see their satisfaction when they achieve hard things. He encourages students to think for themselves and provides opportunities for students to develop leadership skills.

When he’s not teaching, Jason loves to spend time with his family, play basketball, or go for a run. He also enjoys cycling, hiking, playing video games, watching movies, and he always has a book, an audiobook, and a podcast that he is working on getting through.

Amanda Tippetts

Amanda Tippetts

Math Teacher

atippetts@szsais.org

About Amanda

Amanda Tippetts grew up in Washington State and received a bachelors degree in Math Education from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.  She taught in the United States for 12 years before moving to China in 2017.  In the last 5 years, Mrs. Tippetts has specialized in college-level math classes, creating courses for advanced students to continue to study beyond AP level.  She believes that every student can learn high-level math and her goal every year is to help each student reach their potential.  

Mrs. Tippetts loves to read all kinds of books, hike and play sports.  She has loved living in China and learning more about Chinese culture and history.

Platon Kerau

Platon Kerau

Art Teacher

pkerau@szsais.org

About Platon

Platon Kerau graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw / sculpture faculty. Before that he completed his Master degree in Art Education at the University of Natural Sciences and Humanities in Poland.

Before teaching in China he lived in 5 European countries and taught Art in Poland, Austria and Portugal, participated in various art events / completed different artistic commissions like sculpture, spray-art on canvas, murals and another street art projects. Created and provided spray-art events for teenagers based on summer camp format.

In free time he enjoys skateboarding, surfing; has advanced experience in rock climbing, mountaineering, parachute jumping/ has a holder for an snowboard instructor international certificate. Also passionate about Chinese traditional culture/ history/ Qigong/ tea ceremony. Develops his skills in photography.

Ariel Perez

Ariel Perez

Music Teacher

aperez@szsais.org

Joanna Palle

Joanna Palle

Science Teacher

jpalle@szsais.org

About Joanna

Ms. Joanna Palle is from India. She has done her Masters  in Psychology, Bachelor of Education in Mathematics and Physical Sciences and Bachelor of Science in Math, Physics and Chemistry from Acharya Nagarjuna University, Guntur, India. She has been teaching high school Math and Science for the past 19 years and this is going to be her fifth year teaching in China. Her vast experience of teaching  has not only  helped her discover how best she can facilitate students learn and grow but also make learning easy and simple. She believes that each student in her classroom is a precious individual with his/her own abilities, talents, beliefs, ideas, and feelings. Her Passion for teaching inspires her to improvise her teaching methods constantly and make the students as critical thinkers. Ms.Joanna is a mother of two kids who are studying at SAIS. Gardening, cooking and playing badminton are her hobbies.

Rachel Guo

Rachel Guo

Maker Teacher

rguo@szsais.org

Jessica Li

Jessica Li

Maker Teacher

Ming Hong

Ming Hong

ESL Specialist

Yvonne Yang

Yvonne Yang

Chinese Teacher

Cindy Shi

Cindy Shi

Chinese Teacher

cshi@szsais.org

Dawn Yu

Dawn Yu

Chinese Teacher

dyu@szsais.org

About Dawn

Dawn graduated from Beijing Normal University with a master degree in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language. She is an excellent Putonghua speaker, holding a Certificate of Results of Putonghua Proficiency Test, A Level. She had taught Chinese in several local schools in UK. After she came back to China, she has worked in several international schools. Dawn has a wealth of experience both in Chinese and Western education. Based on the experience, she compared and analysed the two different education systems. At SAIS, she combined with PBL teaching philosophy to develop a bunch of Chinese courses which are applicable for international schools.

Joy Jiang

Joy Jiang

Teaching Assistant

jjiang@szsais.org

Becky Chen

Becky Chen

ESL

bchen@szsais.org

 

Crystal Chen

Crystal Chen

Teaching Assistant

Serin Huang

Serin Huang

Teaching Assistant

Ying Zhang

Ying Zhang

Teaching Assistant

 yzhang@szsais.org

 

Lyshing Li

Lyshing Li

ESL

lli@szsais.org

Lucia Wang

Lucia Wang

Teaching Assistant

Jewel Guo

Jewel Guo

Teaching Assistant

Grace Zhong

Grace Zhong

Teaching Assistant

gzhong@szsais.org

Bella Zhang

Bella Zhang

Teaching Assistant

bzhang@szsais.org

Support Staff

Yilia Zhong

Yilia Zhong

Administrative Specialist

yzhong@szsais.org

Rabia Zeng

Rabia Zeng

School Nurse

Yoyo Yao

Yoyo Yao

Finance

yyao@szsais.org

Yaya Liu

Yaya Liu

Finance

finance@szsais.org

Josef  Chen

Josef Chen

Logistics Supervisor

Jerry Chen

Jerry Chen

Security

Zhang Xiaoyuan

Zhang Xiaoyuan

Security

Ding Jun

Ding Jun

Security

Ou Qinglan

Ou Qinglan

Cleaner

Xiang Yan

Xiang Yan

Cleaner