Meet the Faculty
Head of Faculty Chris Dunn After attaining my Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Biology degree, I spent four and a half years in Japan living in Fukuoka. During that time I attended a Japanese language school where I studied for three years before attaining my Level 1 in the Japanese Proficiency exam. Returning to Australia from Japan, I attended Macquarie University to complete my Graduate Diploma in Education. Since starting work at St Hilda’s School, I have been the senior Japanese teacher and was promoted to the position of Head of Languages in 2011. I have been an active member of the Modern Teachers’ Language Association of Queensland and for the past three years and Vice President of the Gold Coast branch. As a member of the association, I have created opportunities for St Hilda’s students to participate in Regional and State Speech and Writing Competitions. For three years, I was the Regional Speech Competition coordinator for the annual Griffith University competition. For the past five years, I have been the co-convener for the Gold Coast Writing competition. From 1997 to 2011, I was a panelist on the Gold Coast region panel. Since 2011, I have acted as Panel Chair for Japanese in the Gold Coast region and regularly attend Professional Development courses regarding assessment and the curriculum. I am passionate about giving students the opportunity to immerse themselves in the language that they study at St Hilda’s School and have coordinated and conducted nine trips to Japan with students.
Majda Benzenati holds a Masters in Human Resources Management and Industrial Relations from the University of Lille 1, Sciences and Technology (France), a Bachelor of Economics (Human Resources Management) from the University of Mohammed V, Economics and Law (Morocco) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Education from the University of Queensland, Secondary Education.
Majda is a knowledgeable educator with two decades’ experience, having taught within the Queensland and Western Australia Education Departments, at an international school in Taiwan and in the independent school sector. She has taught within the French Immersion programs teaching Science, Mathematics, Humanities and French before focusing on Middle-Senior French and Senior Economics.
Majda’s commitment to French and Economics curriculum delivery translate into her pedagogical innovations which she systematically assesses and shares with the wider teaching community. This has occurred through her involvement in an Australian Research Council research project, and her presentations at Languages Teachers’ forums, Queensland Economics Teachers’ Association conferences, interstate conferences and an international congress.
Majda has written many work programs for French and Economics and she is the current Gold Coast District Review Panel Chair for Economics. She is also a member of the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority Expert Writing Team for the redevelopment of the syllabus for French. Majda was also the recipient of the Athena Fellowship in 2015.
Sandrine Laimer has been teaching French in Queensland since she began her teaching career 22 years ago. She graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a Bachelor of Education degree in French and Italian.
She commenced her teaching career with a position in the state system in Far North Queensland.
Following this, Sandrine gained a position at St Mary’s College, in the Wide Bay Region where she taught for ten years. During this time, she extended her teaching area with a variety of subjects. With her philosophy of establishing a solid and warm relationship with her students, Sandrine assisted in a range of activities, including Debating and Tournament of Minds, also managed a student committee to compile the annual St Mary’s College School Magazine. Holding a strong belief in excellence in education and developing lifelong learners, she organised a number of successful school trips to New Caledonia, France and Italy, giving the participants an opportunity to develop a lifelong understanding of the French culture and tradition. Sandrine co-organised the Wide Bay French Speaking competitions, fostering a positive relationship with her colleagues at other regional educational facilities.
From 1999, she became a member of District Panel for French, monitoring and reviewing Year 11 and Year 12 Assessments and French Work programs. Sandrine Laimer joined St Hilda’s School in 2007 where she currently teaches French in both the Junior and the Senior schools.