Joanne Grimmer holds a Bachelor of Education (Hons) from Glasgow University and a TESOL Certificate from the British Council, Kuwait.
Joanne has always been passionate about discovering the world and so began her career in Kuwait, at the Gulf English School, as a primary classroom teacher in Years 2 and 4. After 4 years in Kuwait, she accepted a Year 1 teaching position at Al-Rabeeh School, Abu Dhabi. The following year she was appointed Head of Year 5. In 2000, Joanne returned to Glasgow for 8 months, where she taught a variety of age groups as a relief teacher. Keen to travel again, she embarked on a 12-month journey, exploring Australia from the West Coast to the East, teaching English to Foreign Language Students in Cairns and Sydney along the way.
Joanne returned to Glasgow briefly and then moved to Woking, Surrey where she taught Year 4 and Year 6 at Greenfield School. In 2005, Joanne and her husband made the decision to move to Australia permanently. In 2006, she was appointed Year 6 teacher at A.B Paterson College and then accepted a teaching position at St Hilda’s School in 2008. During her first 4 years at St Hilda’s School, Joanne was a classroom teacher in Year 6 and Year 5. She became an active member of Acacia House, wearing the blue shirt with pride.
In 2012, Joanne was able to combine her enthusiasm and love of children’s’ literature with her teaching experiences and was appointed to the position of Junior School Teacher/Librarian. She has always strived to promote a culture of reading across the Junior School and provides a welcoming and happy Library space within which students are able to embrace their love of reading and literature.
Joanne was appointed Head of House-Acacia in 2014. With the support of Head of Junior School, Acacia staff and House Captains, Joanne ‘Strives with Might’ to build and nurture a culture of acceptance that allows students to give of their best and for them to give back to their community and contribute positively for the benefit of others.
Leigh Thomas holds a Bachelor of Business in Sport and Event management and a Graduate Diploma in Education P-10. She also holds a Certificate III and IV in Personal Training. Leigh has a strong background in playing competitive netball but now thrives during the challenge that Triathlon and Ultra Running events provide.
In 2012, Leigh commenced her position as a Junior P.E. Teacher at St Hilda’s School. She enjoys motivating and sharing her enthusiasm with the students. Leigh is a coach for numerous Andrews Cup sports including cross country, athletics and netball. She teaches P.E. across all of the year levels of the Junior School and strives to be a positive role model for the girls through her own actions and achievements.
Stacey Curtin graduated from Auckland College of Education in 1989 with a Diploma of Teaching and an Advanced Certificate in Teaching.
She began her teaching career in New Zealand reaching the position of Senior Teacher and specialising in early years education. Stacey was also a Tutor Teacher, mentoring first and second year teachers, and an Associate Teacher involved in the assessment of trainee teachers from Auckland University.
Whilst teaching in Auckland Stacey was appointed the lead teacher in art, coordinating the school art programme, staff professional development and community exhibitions, and also established and ran the school netball programme.
In 2006 Stacey and her family relocated to Australia and in 2010 she was appointed Year 1 classroom teacher, and specialist art teacher, at St Hilda’s School. She now teaches in the Prep department and provides a welcoming and nurturing environment for our youngest students.
During her time at St Hilda’s Stacey has been an Associate Teacher for Griffith University trainee teachers and participated in the Accomplished Teacher Programme. Stacey has also attended and facilitated the Mt Isa ‘Sport for Bush Kids’ programme, supporting regional Queensland and St Hilda’s boarding.
Stacey was appointed Head of House – Grevillea in 2017 and enthusiastically supports the House motto “From Strength to Strength’, encouraging an attitude of resilience and team work.
Marina Jacovou-Johnson holds a Bachelor of Education, Bachelor of Arts (Early Childhood) and a Diploma of Children’s Services. Marina brings a range of diverse skills to St Hilda’s having lived overseas as a child and for much of the 1990’s where she indulged in her love of travel. In this early part of her work life she was employed as a paralegal working on medical negligence cases both in Australia and in London.
When Marina returned to Australia in 1999 she moved to Sydney, got married and made the decision to change her career. She obtained her Diploma in Children’s Services in 1992 and this ignited a passion for excellence in education in the early years, which remains today. Marina then went on to study for her Bachelor of Arts (Early Childhood) during which time she freelanced as a script outliner for Playhouse Disney and worked casually as a pre-school teacher. She took a break from study to spend time with her son and in 2006 the family relocated to the Gold Coast. Once she completed her Bachelor of Arts, Marina went straight on to study for her Bachelor of Education.
While completing her final degree, she worked as a private tutor and part-time as a teacher aide at St Stephens College and Trinity Lutheran College. In 2013 she worked as a Pre-Prep Teacher during the first year of operation of the Trinity Lutheran College Early Childhood centre.
Marina started her career at St Hilda’s as a relief teacher in 2014, working across many year levels. She became a full time employee in 2015 and has worked as a Prep teacher since then. For the past two years Marina has run workshops for younger students at the Schools’ STEMFEST event and this year she is undertaking the role of Costume Manager for the Junior School musical. Marina has recently undertaken study to attain Mastery and Lead Level in THRASS teaching and is able to mentor colleagues in the teaching of THRASS. Marina was appointed Head of Tristania House in 2017 and is delighted to be able to be a positive role model for the girls by modelling resilience, perseverance and strength and encouraging them to ‘Reach for the Stars’ in all that they do.