SWIS Teachers

Dan Miller

Email: dan.miller@swis.school.nz

Tēnā Koutou Katoa,
Cycling from Britain to Rome to Marrakech, was my last big adventure before settling in Wellington to raise my family with my wife Gemma. On the weekends you will find me swimming, walking, hanging from the playground, biking, reading a book, or watching a movie with my daughters Briar and Jette.
One of my many interests is sports. Whether it’s cheering from the sideline, coaching a team, or actively participating in recreational activities.
I understand the importance of teamwork, discipline, and perseverance. These are valuable life lessons I weave into the classroom everyday.

In the ever-evolving world of technology, I am an advocate for integrating digital technology into the learning process. I recognize that today’s students are digital natives and strive to harness the power of technology to enhance the educational experience, making learning engaging and relevant.

While I have a strong passion for sports and technology, my primary dedication is to provide genuine learning experiences. I am committed to fostering a nurturing, inclusive, and supportive learning environment that empowers students to explore their potential, develop critical thinking skills, and become lifelong learners.

I am excited about being part of the SWIS team this coming year.
Ngā mihi,

Daniel Miller

Greg Kyle

Email: Greg.Kyle@swis.school.nz

Kia ora koutou katoa, ko Greg tōku ingoa.

I’m really excited to be starting at SWIS in 2024. I’m a Wellingtonian born and bred, however, for the last four years have been living in Te Puru in the Coromandel.

I’m an experienced teacher and have a passion for the arts which I love to weave into my teaching and learning wherever possible.

My wife, Miriam and I have 3 children aged 12, 10 and 7 as well as 2 cats and a cute Labrador pup!  In my spare time I love playing music, dance, astronomy and golf. See you in 2024!

Wendy Collis

Email: Wendy.Collis@swis.school.nz

My name is Wendy Collis and I am the Room 3 teacher at SWIS. I also teach Science and have a passion for Literature.  I am a Kiwi who has lived in Australia, working in both Universities and the Media, mainly Radio.  Prior to starting at SWIS I spent nearly two years teaching in the Manawatu-Waikato region.  I love the diversity of both students and staff at SWIS.  In my spare time I enjoy podcasts, bush-walking, cooking, gardening and spending time with family.

Nadia Abdul Syafieq
Nadia Abdul Syafieq

Email: nadia.abdulsyafieq@swis.school.nz

I grew up in windy Wellington, enjoying all the beautiful city has to offer, before heading to Dunedin to complete my Bachelor of Science majoring in Zoology. I have been teaching full-time at SWIS since 2018. My semi-specialist subject is P.E. Outside of the classroom, I enjoy Malay dancing, going for long drives and spending quality time with family and friends.

Stephen Moli

Email: stephen.moli@swis.school.nz

Talofa lava.

My name is Stephen Moli and I am the teacher in Room 5 at South Wellington Intermediate School.  I am of Samoan descent, but I grew up in Tauranga and have been living in Wellington for the past 7 years. I’m teaching Physical Education for SemiSpec and helping out with sports and Pasifika. In my spare time, I enjoy playing sports, listening to and playing music, eating and spending time with family and friends.

Xiaoyu Zhai

Email: Xiaoyu.Zhai@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa! My name is Xiaoyu Zhai and I joined South Wellington Intermediate School in term three of 2023. I am originally from China, I completed a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Applied Statistics, a Master of Science in Applied Statistics, and a Graduate Diploma in Teaching at Victoria University of Wellington. In my spare time, I enjoy playing with my little boy, jigsaw puzzles and handcrafts.

Josh Hinman

Email: Josh.Hinman@swis.school.nz

Tēnā Koutou Katoa. I am excited to be the homeroom teacher for Room 7 and part of the Science team, taking advantage of my undergrad major in Anatomy. I’m a Cantabrian, born and raised in Christchurch, but spent time overseas, living in China until covid trapped me in NZ, leading me to start my teaching career in earnest at home. Outside of school I’ve taken up a bit of game design as a hobby, and enjoy relaxing with a video game, movie or TV series, accompanied by the occasional bit of exercise.

Francis Gorman
Francis Gorman

Email: francis.gorman@swis.school.nz

I have been teaching full-time at SWIS since 2018. I am in Room 8 alongside Josh in an ILE (Innovative Learning Environment). This year I will be taking P.E. as a specialist subject. This is my favourite age group to teach, and I really like both the students and staff here at SWIS. In my spare time, I like to spend time with friends and family, eat Malaysian and Thai food, try and keep fit, watch scary movies, read, and enjoy the outdoors when we get good weather.

Kelly Bush

Email: Kelly.Bush@swis.school.nz

Kia ora koutou. Ko Kelly Bush tōku ingoa.

I’ve recently finished my Graduate Diploma of Teaching at Victoria University, following the completion of my Masters of Educational Psychology in 2021. I’m excited to be joining the team at SWIS. I’m a Wellingtonian born and raised in the eastern suburbs, so I know this area really well – it is close to my heart!

I am passionate about ensuring an inclusive and welcoming environment for all students and look forward to supporting the akongā in their learning journeys.

Aaron Kling

Email: Aaron.Kling@swis.school.nz

Kia ora e te whānau! My name is Aaron and I’m looking forward to joining the teaching team at South Wellington Intermediate School in 2024! I am currently visiting family in sunny Queensland after completing my Bachelor of Teaching (Primary). I have been a resident of the Island Bay community for the past four years and I enjoy living in this beautiful part of Aotearoa New Zealand. During my time here I have been actively involved with Playcentre and Island Bay School whilst completing my qualification (so I already know quite a few SWIS students). I am passionate about bicultural education, literacy, health, travel, music, basketball and the outdoors. In my spare time I enjoy reading, hiking and playing stringed instruments (guitar, banjo and ukulele). You’ll often spot me walking with my tamariki along the beach at Taputeranga. I wish you all a safe holiday break and a fun an exciting journey at SWIS in 2024!

Rebecca Amos

Email: rebecca.amos@swis.school.nz

Kia ora koutou katoa, ko Rebecca tōku ingoa!

I am excited to be Room 11’s homeroom teacher and I’m teaching te reo Māori across the school. Born and raised in Welly, I stuck around here to study Statistics, Education, a Masters of Teaching at Victoria University. Outside of the classroom I am always keeping busy. I do fencing, sing in my band, work with Scouts New Zealand, and am a huge jigsaw puzzle and board game nerd.
Alida Middlebrook

Email: alida.middlebrook@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa!

I am delighted to be classroom teacher in Room 12, and continuing teaching Science, a subject I find fascinating. I loved working within this multicultural school as a release teacher in 2021 and the wonderful people within this kura. I have lived here in Wellington the past four years, originating from West Auckland, and living in Christchurch where I studied English and Psychology. My passions include: Mountain biking, swimming, music, painting and getting lost in a good movie or book.
Roshni Parbhu

Email: roshni.parbhu@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa! I am really excited to be the homeroom teacher for Room 13. I grew up in Wellington and love this windy and beautiful city. I completed a BA in Psychology and Criminology before starting to work at SWIS as a TA in 2019. Being a TA was a great experience, I was able to learn a lot from everyone here at SWIS, which has made returning that much better. Outside the classroom I enjoy cooking and baking, Indian dancing, playing hockey and spending time with friends and family.

Cameron Clarke
Cameron Clarke

Email: cameron.clarke@swis.school.nz

I have been working at SWIS since 2007, where I have been involved in many different areas of teaching. I am the history teacher at SWIS where we explore NZ history with our students. I also teach Japanese in our language sessions. In my spare time I am  heavily involved in Judo.

Neale Willis

Email: Neale.Willis@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa!
I am very excited to be joining the wonderful team of amazing educators at SWIS this year! I am a proud Canadian, though I have lived up and down the North Island since 2014 when I began (and later completed) my Bachelor of Arts in Music and Education. During my Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Primary), I completed my placement at SWIS where I strongly connected with its warm and welcoming community. I am honoured to continue
my journey here among our incredible teachers and a wonderful group of students, whom I love to teach. My passions include music, reading, spending time outdoors, and being surrounded by my loved ones.

Liesl van der Schyff

Email: Liesl.vanderSchyff@swis.school.nz

Ko Liesl van der Schyff toku ingoa. I am so very excited to be joining the team at SWIS in 2024!

I love teaching Year 7 and 8 students and my particular teaching interests lie in technology, mathematics, literacy and art.

These reflect my own personal interests (although I also love the outdoors, going on hikes and gardening).

At the moment, cake baking and decorating is what I enjoy as a hobby, much to the delight of family and friends. I can’t wait to meet the staff, students and wider SWIS community!

Ngā mihi nui, Liesl

Christine Sangster
TEACHER | Textiles & Release

Email: Christine.Sangster@swis.school.nz

Kia ora koutou

You know you’ve been working at SWIS for a long time when (a) new students inform you that “You taught my mum/dad/aunty/uncle”, and (b) you are asked outside of school if you are still teaching there! I am trying a new focus this year, still teaching textiles, French and stitching techniques for Enrichment, but this year I am releasing teachers, rather than having my own home class. I am still coordinating our Gifted and Talented programmes which this year include Kids’ Lit Quiz, Tournament of Minds, Future Problem Solving, World Scholars’ Cup, and ShowQuest Toi. In my spare time you will find me singing with Faultline Chorus, reading, knitting, or making quilts.

Cathie Gasson
Cathie Gasson
Food Tech TEACHER |

Email: Cathie.gasson@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa. I’ve taught a variety of levels, from new entrants to high school, but I  particularly like working with the intermediate age group.  I teach food technology at SWIS and I have high expectations of what our students are capable of – from the very first lesson we make real food from scratch. Though my degree is in maths and economics, I draw on my own experiences from a previous life when I owned and ran my own café, making up many of my recipes. With the skills and knowledge that our students will acquire at SWIS, they will have the foundations to adapt and work around recipes to suit themselves. In my out of school life, I enjoy reading, mountain biking and exploring wild places.

Karen Shuker
Karen Shuker

Email: karen.shuker@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa!
I have been a teacher for over 25 years working in Aotearoa and the UK in both primary and secondary schools.  I am your child’s visual art teacher.  They will be attending my class every week for an entire term during years 7 and 8.
Here at SWIS students enjoy a beautiful, sunny art room where they explore their creative capacities through a variety of mediums.
These include: painting, chalk and oil pastels, charcoal and clay. We are extremely fortunate to have a functioning kiln which we use to bisque fire then for glazing.
Parents are welcome – email me if you are interested in helping out: you don’t need to have any expertise in the field, you’ll have a great time!
Nicola Clissold
Learning Support

Email: nicola.clissold@swis.school.nz

Tēnā koutou katoa, Ko Nicola ahau
I have discovered I’m the fourth and final person in our immediate family to attend SWIS – ranging from 50 – 8 years ago! I have taught across years 1 – 8 both in NZ and the UK, worked for the MOE, run an education website and for the past five years (and continuing) written teacher support material for the MOE Literacy Series. At SWIS, I will work part-time providing support for literacy and numeracy across the school as well as some kaiako release. I have a particular love for literacy and have been told I’ve inspired many tamariki to become writers too. When I get spare time, I love designing and sewing clothes for family, friends and myself.

Nō reira tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

Louise Gusterson
Philosophy for Children

Email: Louise.Gusterson@swis.school.nz

Tena Koutou

I joined SWIS at the start of 2024. I will be teaching your child philosophy for two terms this year.