Our Team


The Origins Education team is strong and trusted, with decades of experience in school management on five continents. Drawing upon its solid core structure and extensive professional network, Origins is able to not only solve the myriad, dynamic issues involved in school establishment, but also to implement leading edge solutions from schools around the world. Hence, each key Origins team member works closely with experts across departments, bringing distinct and extensive experience, and thus supporting each school’s development with professionalism and expediency.

Stretching back to 1998, members of the Origins team have been at the forefront of innovation in school design, bilingual education, technology and service learning, having developed leading international schools in Beijing and around the world. Currently, we are working on developing schools in Beijing, Chengdu and Wuhan, with the first scheduled to open in Beijing in September 2017. In our time as educators and administrators, we have witnessed the life journeys of thousands of children. We have nurtured students’ development from as young as three years old, supported growth and development through entrance to the world’s leading universities and watched young adults graduate and embark on successful careers.

Leadership Team

Ms. Daisy Zhang - Director

Ms. Daisy Zhang has more than ten years of experience in international school administrative management, having previously worked with Harrow International School Beijing and Beanstalk International Bilingual School as Director of Administration. Her experience in school operations and management includes support for school licensing (start to finish), government relations, admissions, service to and management of both foreign and Chinese staff, team building, logistics management and facilities overview.

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Mr. John McBryde - Director

Mr. John McBryde is an educator with over 25 years of experience as Director/Head of School in five international schools in Asia, including 9 years as Director of the Western Academy of Beijing during its growth and development phase during 1998-2007. John is co-founder of ACAMIS and served on both the ACAMIS and EARCOS Boards. He has extensive experience in IB Programs and school accreditation, has served as an education consultant for the Chinese Ministry of Education, developing NCCT accreditation for international schools and is deeply engaged in Learning Technologies, Community Service and the Arts.

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Deidre Fischer - Associate Director

Deidre Fischer is an experienced head of international schools in a range of countries who is now owner of her own company, DF Education (www.deidrefischer.com.au). Her current work with schools and teachers includes supporting the quality of teaching and learning, and ranges from helping schools vertically articulate their curriculum, conducting organizational audits/reviews, leadership training and Board governance training. She has presented at numerous IBO/TAISI/EARCOS Conferences which have focused on fostering diversity and inclusive practices within schools and leadership/management skills. Deidre’s work is guided by the philosophy that: “Great Leaders find ways to connect with people and help them fulfil their potential”.


Audrey Pan 潘泠羽 - Associate Director

Audrey (Lingyu) Pan has 9 years of experience in financial estate development, working on primary development and commercial operations for financial estate projects for a well-known Beijing financial center. For ORIGINS< Audrey is a key member of school project planning and development, as well as government relations development and maintenance. In the past development projects, she has cooperated with different investment banking teams, including Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase & Co (JPM), Development Bank of Singapore (DBS), Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (HSBC), working on the primary development of financial real estate projects. She has also been involved in the development of many landmark buildings developing in Beijing, Hangzhou and Xiamen. audreypan@originsedu.cn

Mr. Caleb Archer - Associate Director

Mr. Caleb Archer comes from New Zealand, where he completed his university education and spent the first stages of his teaching career. Since then, he has been employed in management positions internationally, while completing his Masters Degree in Educational Leadership with First Class Honors. Caleb has been in Senior Academic Leadership for over 8 years with extended experience in China and Asia.


Fee Linng EE - Business Manager

Fee Linng EE’s role as Business Director / CFO for ORIGINS Education draws upon rich experience in finance & accounting, human resources, and business administration. Before joining the ORIGINS team, Fee worked for third largest German bank in Singapore as a financial analyst, and for the Australian Trade Commission’s Beijing office as Head of Business Administration. From 2000-2005, Fee served as Head of Finance & Accounting at the Western Academy of Beijing (WAB) and later founded a successful food and beverage company with three locations in Beijing.


Mr. Muhammad Azeem - IT Director

Mr. Muhammad Azeem has been in the educational technology field for more than twelve years, following a successful career in business. His work in education includes project management of school IT infrastructures in London, England and at The British School of Beijing. The UK project was highlighted in UK's education industry as a beacon for educational technology implementation. In 2010, Muhammad joined The Western Academy of Beijing as an IT consultant and quickly transitioned to the school’s Leadership Team. Muhammad speaks five languages and his appreciation of cultural diversity, along with leadership skills from both business and schools, brings multiple levels of strength to the leadership team.

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Mr. Johnnie Whang - Facilities Director

Johnnie Whang has over 35 years in the Building and Facility Management Industry. Before joining ORIGINS Education, Johnnie worked for a prestigious Beijing-based IB international school for 11 years as their Head of Facilities and Services. Johnnie’s vast experience covers indoor and outdoor education facilities, but also includes specialty experience in construction and maintenance of articial turf sports elds, air support structures (domes) and indoor air quality measures.

Johnnie is a member of key school management teams and is a valuable voice in developing a complete educational experience for all school community stakeholders.

Johnnie also sits on the board of the Beijing Chapter of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and the Shanghai Chapter of the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA ).


Mr. Andrew Walton - Communications Director

Mr. Andrew Walton is an experienced communications manager and creative team lead with experience at top-tier, established and growing schools alike. Andrew comes from a background of education and is a licensed teacher with experience as both a homeroom and English as an additional language teacher, having taught in Canada, Korea and China. He speaks English, French and Chinese and has lived in Asia for over seven years.

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Education Team

Mr. Tony Moniz - Elementary Principal

Tony Moniz began his career in education 29 years ago in Canada, serving as an elementary and middle school teacher for 12 years before making the move to international administration. Over the past 15 years, Tony’s passion for education and culture has taken him to 5 different IB and American schools in the Middle East and Asia, where he has led schools to successful IB, CIS and WASC re-accreditations and served as a member of the ACAMIS Board in China.

Tony is dedicated to building positive and engaging school communities that are child- centered and learning focused, and his extensive experience as an educational leader, coach and musician offers him limitless opportunities to connect across cultures.


Casey Bucheler - Head of Early Years

Casey has been working in Early Years Education for over 30 years as teacher, mentor, Early Years Senior Lecturer, Principal and Coordinator. She began her career in New Zealand but her passion in Early Years International education led her overseas, eventually allowing her to pass on her knowledge as an IB Workshop Leader and Visiting School Team Member.

Casey is passionate about young children’s education and about working with parents as partners in their child’s learning journey, fostering a sense of wonder along the way. In her practice, Casey works to engage, energize and empower learning through guided inquiry which involves exploring, playing, designing and constructing.


Ms. Grace Yang - Curriculum Coordinator

Ms. Grace Yang has Masters degrees from the University of Toronto (Canada) in Education Administration and Northeast Normal University (China) in American Young Adult Literature. She is a licensed High Education teacher in China, and has taught in public schools, private schools and the college level in China and in education institutes in Canada from 2004-2010. From 2011-2015,Ms. Yang served as the Assistant Director of the Yuecheng Education Research Institute assisting and facilitated the teacher development program and government related education projects. In 2016 Ms. Yang was invited to participate in the revision of the NCCT Accreditation Standards (version 2.0) and to join an NCCT School Accreditation visit.

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Ms. Lara Ronalds - Curriculum Coordinator

Lara Ronalds has been working as a teacher and curriculum coordinator across elementary school subject areas for 22 years. She is passionate about pursuing an ever-improving understanding of what it is that inspires children to learn, driving her to further refine the ways she and her colleagues recognize potential within each individual student. She understands and values the learning a child can make through their own curiosities and sees it as the educator’s role to help children make connections between what it is that they are curious about and what it is they need to learn.

Lara is an IB Workshop Leader, IB school Visiting Team Member, and completed her Masters of Education in 2015. This is her 6th year of working in Beijing and brings with her a unique set of perspectives, having lived in Hong Kong, California and her home country Australia.


Deanna Moniz - Elementary EAL, Teacher Librarian

Deanna Moniz has been an educator of children, adolescents and adults for more than 30 years, beginning her career in Canada in public education. She transitioned to international education 15 years ago, and has since served in a variety of teaching capacities including co-teacher, English Language Learning department head, and teacher-librarian.

Deanna is particularly passionate about collaboration, co-teaching and literacy and has presented these topics in workshops to parents and teachers both at the school level and at peer conferences. With a goal of strengthening literacy skills across disciplines and grade levels, Deanna works diligently to bring together parents, teachers and students whenever possible.


Ms. QiongQiong Wu - Elementary Teacher

Qiong Qiong Wu is an experienced elementary school educator who started her teaching career as a special needs teacher after graduating from university in 2006. From 2007- 2016, she worked at a well-known Beijing International school as a librarian, ESL Assistant Teacher, and finally as a Chinese Language Teacher for 7 years across both the PYP and MYP. She believes deeply in the value of inquiry-based learning and hands-on class experience, and hence structures her class time to maximize these benefcial aspects of a complete educational experience. Qiong Qiong find both teaching and learning fun and engaging, and believes children should be able to enjoy learning in a friendly and interactive learning environment.


Fish Yang - Elementary Teacher

Fish Yang was born and raised in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, and received a degree in Early Years Education from South China Normal University. As a young teacher, Fish applied her enthusiasm for Early Childhood Education as a playgroup instructor and running her own Early Learning Centre. Fish worked as an Early Years and Chinese teacher in Zhuhai International School (ZIS).

Fish is passionate about storytelling and since 2010 has been a volunteer at the NGO Dreamkid Land, promoting reading in the home. This work has encouraged Fish to give storytelling workshops in both local and international settings. Fish also highly values play-based learning and believes that, since children are born inquirers, play provides the most natural and meaningful process though which children construct knowledge and practice skills.


Nikos Kritsantonis, Elementary Teacher

Nikos Kritsantonis has been working in international education for the past 10 years. His experience has been enriched, both professionally and culturally, by working in diverse school environments in Europe and Asia as a homeroom teacher, theater manager and drama coordinator.

As a facilitator, Nikos is passionate about implementing technology and design thinking to his practice, and his educational philosophy aligns with the inquiry-driven educational movement.

He believes that the teacher's role is to create learning environments where kids will find the space to uncover their individual, unique talents.


Administration Team

Mr. Chen Yang - Services Manager

Chen Yang is a certified CETTIC properties manager, with a strong reputation for operations and management in international schools over 16 years. He has led operations and management works in many schools, included at the Western Academy of Beijing as Project Manager from June 2000 to July 2016. During this period he also directed and managed services at CIS, Dulwich, BCIS, Huijia and BIBS.

Chen Yang started his career in China Youth Travel Service (CYTS) in June 1995, working as a deputy engineering and safety manager at the Beijing Dongjiao Minxiang Hotel, and deputy manager at Aimike Plaza. He became a deputy general manager at CYTS Property Management Company in March 2009, focusing on international project development, progressing to general manager in September 2011.


Ms. Jun Khong - Human Resources Manager

Jun began working in international education as a center manager for CS Montessori in Singapore, and in the process developed a passion for teaching and learning. In 2010, she went on to expand her career in education, devoting 3 years teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) in Japan to students ranging from 2 to 70 years old. Bilingual in English and Chinese, and with a deep interest in international education, she transitioned to an administrative role in a well-known international school in Beijing in 2013, where she worked in marketing before undertaking the role of the human resources manager.

Jun oversees the full spectrum of human resource needs of our foreign and Chinese staff and is a key member of our larger administrative team. Jun is highly motivated to match the best people with individual roles within our organization and is devoted to support each member of our community.


Ms. April Tang - Administrative Manager

Ms. April Tang has a Master's in Human Resource Management from James Cook University in Singapore, with a focus on employee performance analysis. Following her studies she continued on with the university, serving in the student services and student placement center, with responsibility for overseas student visa applications, enrolment and career search support. Following her studies and work abroad, Ms. Tang returned to China where she worked at one of Beijing’s better-known international bilingual schools before joining the Origins team.


Ms. Christie Huang - Design Manager

Ms. Christie Huang is a licensed Chinese public school teacher, with a background in Fine Arts. Before joining the Origins team, Ms. Huang worked for an American charitable foundation, and a well-known international school in Beijing. She has also freelanced as a designer and illustrator for many plays and is holding her first illustration exhibition in Beijing this year. Ms. Huang draws design inspiration from her regular travel abroad and from her involvement in local and international art and design communities.