Heads of Departments
- History and Politics
- Philosophy & Religious Studies
Mr James Adams, Head of Art
Mr Adams (BA Hons) has taught for over 14 years in the UK and overseas. He received his Joint Honours Undergraduate Degree in Art and Educational Studies from Oxford Brookes University and also studied in Melbourne, Australia. He began his teaching career as Artist-in-Residence and teacher at The King’s School, Worcester. He moved to The Dominican Republic where he worked as Head of Department at a British School. Mr Adams completed another residency at La Escuela de Diseno which is affiliated with Parsons School of Design in New York, and also taught classes to their diploma students. Prior to arriving at Harrow Hong Kong, Mr Adams was a certified teacher in Vancouver, Canada, and worked with First Nations and other artists in their studios.
Ms Samantha Miller, Head of Drama
Ms Miller read Drama and Theatre Studies at Royal Holloway University, with a focus on Theatre and Culture and Directing. She worked with theatre schools in Devon to run workshops for teenagers and direct Youth Theatre productions. She gained a PGCE in Drama and Music through Devon SCITT and completed a Masters in Education with Worcester University. She was Head of Drama at Wellington School before joining Harrow Hong Kong in 2016. She has also been a moderator for Edexcel GCSE Drama for three years. Her director’s portfolio includes Bugsy Malone, Hamlet, Oliver!, The Odyssey, The Dreaming and Treasure Island. Alongside the passion for musical theatre, her main theatrical interests are in Theatre History and World Theatre.
Mrs Christina M. Tagg, Head of Economics
Mrs Tagg graduated from the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand with First Class Honours in English Literature and a conjoint Bachelor of Commerce. She holds a Diploma in Teaching and a postgraduate Diploma in Education. She has 13 years of teaching experience, having taught in New Zealand and at Queen Elizabeth’s School, Barnet, UK, before joining Harrow Hong Kong in 2014. She is a member of the Royal Economic Society.
Ms Freya Crofton, Head of English
Ms Crofton was awarded an BA (Hons) in English Language and Literature from the University of Leeds. After gaining the Graduate Diploma in Law from BPP, she returned to the University of Leeds the following year to complete her PGCE (with QTS) in Secondary English. After five years teaching English in the UK (including two years as EAP Coordinator), she spent three years as Second in English at Saltus Grammar School, Bermuda, before moving to Harrow Hong Kong in 2016. She has taught both English Language and English Literature up to A-level as well as GCSE, IGCSE, AP and preparing pupils for the SAT.
Ms Letitia Spry, Head of Geography
Ms Spry read Geography at Bristol University before completing her PGCE and MA in Geography Education at UCL.
Ms Spry has eight years of teaching experience, having begun her career as a Teacher of Geography at Beal High School in London. She was subsequently appointed Geography Key Stage Three Coordinator and Head of Year.
In 2016, she moved to Hong Kong and was appointed Head of Department in 2018. Ms Spry firmly believes that pupils should use Geography to make sense of the world in which they live. She is keen for pupils to apply their theoretical knowledge to places they visit and the current challenges facing our planet.
Ms Amy King, Head of History and Politics
Ms King read Modern History at the University of London, Queen Mary, before completing a Master of Art degree in Contemporary British History Since 1945. After working for seven years at the Imperial War Museum, London, she completed the Postgraduate Certificate of Education in History at the University of Sussex. She has 12 years of teaching experience, having taught at Tunbridge Wells Girls’ Grammar School in Kent, UK, and the British School Manila, Philippines.
Mr Graham Simms, Director of Languages
Mr. Simms has been teaching for 18 years and has always had a passion for different languages and cultures since he was young. He studied French and Russian Language and Literature at the University of Birmingham. He completed his PGCE in Secondary French at the University of Leeds in 1998 and subsequently accepted his first teaching post. In 2003, Mr. Simms became Head of Languages at Matthew Moss High School in Greater Manchester, known for its innovative approaches to teaching and learning. He moved to Hong Kong and joined the School as Director of Languages in 2014.
Mr Darren Bastyan, Head of Mathematics
Mr. Bastyan read Mathematics at the University of Warwick in the UK. He has been teaching Secondary Mathematics for ten years, much of which was at Trinity School, Croydon, in the UK. There, in addition to being a Mathematics and Further Mathematics teacher, he was the Mathematics Enrichment Manager, Gifted and Talented Coordinator and Scholars’ Mentor, led pastoral CPD and gained a Master in Teaching degree from the Institute of Education, University of London. He was appointed the Head of Mathematics at Harrow Hong Kong in August 2015.
Mr Richard Brightwell, Director of Music
After graduating from the University of York, Mr. Brightwell spent over six years working at Portland Place School, an independent secondary school in the heart of London. During this time he developed many new ensembles and opportunities for the pupils and ran a variety of UK and international music tours. Outside of the classroom, Mr. Brightwell is a keen performer who has played with many symphony orchestras, jazz bands and touring rock groups. While in London he also founded and led various adult ensembles including the Portland Place Big Band.
Mr Benjamin J. Robertson, Head of Philosophy & Religious Studies
Mr Robertson joined Harrow International School Hong Kong in 2016 and has been teaching Philosophy & Religious Studies for six years. Before joining Harrow Hong Kong, he taught at two of Manchester’s leading independent schools and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theology from the University of Leeds, focusing on the philosophy of religion in his dissertation. He received his teaching qualification from Manchester Metropolitan University and his current area of philosophical focus is the philosophy of mind, especially areas concerned with personal identity.
Ms Zara Holliday, Head of Science and Biology
Ms. Holliday read Biological Sciences with Honours in Psychology at Edinburgh University. After graduating, she worked for a Regional Inspections Service Provider, analysing school data to advise inspectors prior to carrying out school inspections. Following this, she commenced teacher training and achieved her PGCE from St Mary’s University, Twickenham, before taking up a position at The Cardinal Wiseman School, Ealing, where she taught for six years. In this role she managed BTEC Science and Intervention, and worked as a PGCE and NQT mentor. She moved to Hong Kong in August 2013 as Head of Biology at Harrow Hong Kong and took on the additional role of Head of Science the following year. Ms. Holliday has also worked on a consultancy basis for Pearson Education, reviewing textbooks.
Ms Ella Singleton, Head of Chemistry
After graduating with a Bachelors of Science degree in Natural Sciences, Miss Singleton continued her time at the University of Bath completing her PGCE qualification. She has since worked as a Chemistry teacher at Sir William Perkins's School, Chertsey, UK, where she also enjoyed supporting and inspiring pupils within numerous extra-curricular and cross-curricular areas. She took up the role as Head of Years 10-11 for two and half years before moving to Hong Kong in August 2018 to become Head of Chemistry.
Mr Matthew N. Twomey, Head of Physics
Mr Twomey read Aeronautical Engineering at Bristol University, and completed a Master of Engineering degree. He completed a PGCE at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, and began his teaching career at Robert Piggott School, Wokingham, Berkshire. Prior to joining Harrow Hong Kong in 2013, Mr. Twomey taught Physics for six years at Latymer Upper School, Hammersmith, where he was the teacher in charge of Engineering initiatives, introducing ‘F1inSchools’ and the ‘Aerospace Challenge’ run by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. At Harrow Hong Kong, he established the CAD-CAM extra-curricular activity and is the teacher in-charge of the pupil-led PET (Physics, Engineering & Technology) society, the British Physics Olympiad Experimental project and BPhO Round 1 paper preparation.
Mrs Sally Beere, Executive Director of Sport
Mrs Beere studied a four-year BSc Hons degree in Physical Education and IT with QTS at Brunel University. Mrs Beere has 20 years of teaching experience in England, prior to being appointed as Executive Director of Sport at Harrow Hong Kong. Mrs Beere has 11 years experience of being a Head of Department, previously at Surbiton High School, Tiffin School for Girls and St David's School. Outside the school environment, Mrs Beere represented her country in hockey, and played Premiership and European levels for both indoor and outdoor hockey for Slough HC. Mrs Beere is also a qualified sports massage therapist.