Outstanding Educators

Visionary School Leadership

Innova Academy has an outstanding team of experienced international educators already in place completing preparations for the opening of the school in August 2019 in temporary facilities and move to its permanent campus in August 2020.

Renowned international school leaders, John McBryde (Founding Director) and Head of School Karen O’Connell (Head of School) have joined forces to establish the school. John and Karen have a long history of working together and are recognized as visionary educators and exceptional school leaders. They are not new faces to Beijing having served as Director and Deputy Director at the outstanding Western Academy of Beijing during its growth and development phase spanning 1998-2010. Karen has also served at the prestigious United World College SEA, Singapore.

They have assembled an exceptional team of teachers, most of whom they have worked with before at WAB and other schools and have been working with them over a two-year pre-operational phase to prepare for the schools opening. The team has worked hard on developing a unique curriculum designed to prepare ‘responsible learners ready for the future’. Each student will be ‘Inspired to Wonder, Challenged to Explore, Supported to Create and Empowered to Connect’.

To achieve this, they have incorporated a strong emphasis on ‘Future Ready Skills’, Technology and approaches such as interdisciplinary and project-based learning and design thinking; and a commitment to service and action, incorporating the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The curriculum has been structured around the IB programme framework and incorporates the requirements of the Chinese National Curriculum and has been benchmarked against international standards.

As well as writing curriculum and developing programs and policies, the team has been very active attending a wide range of professional learning events and involved in Community Service activities. They also enjoy keeping connected with kids by helping out classes and events at Innova Early Years Center.

Head of School – Karen O’Connell

Elementary Principal – Amanda Clarke

Middle High School Principal – Paul Sebastian

Qualified, Committed, Caring Teachers

The faculty has been carefully recruited from around the world, all with experience in high quality international schools. In addition to their skills in teaching and learning they all are committed educators who are passionate about learning and share a genuine care for children.

The Elementary School follows a co-teacher model where there are two teachers per classroom – a foreign teacher and a Chinese teacher. Both plan together with their grade level teams and as a team they teach, support and assess student learning and growth. They are supported by a classroom teaching assistant and EAL and learning support teachers and a counselor.

The co-teacher model and support teacher services are designed to provide a very personal teacher : student ratio and support individualized student centered learning.

The Elementary team is supported by specialist subject teachers in Art, Music, Physical Education, Design, Library & Media,

The Middle/High School Team works in subject and inter-disciplinary planning groups. Students are grouped in Homeroom groups for pastoral care and have 2 Home Room teachers assigned to each Homeroom group