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MEET THE TEAM

Natalie Creighton | Head of Campus, Carlingford

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Natalie has fifteen years’ experience in education as both an English teacher and a wellbeing leader. Natalie sees her leadership and educational challenge at Gateway Community High as creating the right learning environment and to inspire our students to set and achieve their learning and personal goals.

 

“Facilitating positive learning experiences and education in a safe and supportive environment is crucial to students making progress and staying engaged with their education.”

 

Natalie describes herself as passionate about building educational environments that focus on the students as individuals whose success comes from recognising and nurturing their strengths and interests.

 

“Empowering young people to rise above challenges and reduce dependence on others allows them to move to a more sustainable existence where they can excel in work or study beyond school”.

 

A qualified secondary teacher who started out in communications and media Natalie retrained as an English teacher at the University of Western Sydney.  Natalie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Media and Communication and a Master of Teaching degree.

In addition to her teaching and wellbeing experience Natalie has creative talents and a
passion for live theatre. Able to act, sing and an experienced director of musicals she also
has a passion for costume design and creation for the stage

Leivur Ragnarsson | Classroom Teacher
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Leivur studied to become a teacher in Denmark after a trip to India where he taught Afghani refugees basic English and computer skills - and realised how much impact he could have as a teacher.

He has since taught in the Faroe Islands, Tanzania and Thailand. He moved to Australia 7 years ago where he has been specialising in high school Mathematics alongside a range of other subjects, including Science.

 

“I am excited to be playing my part in making this innovative approach to education a great success. I cant wait to meet the new students every year and welcome them to our new learning environment”.

Danielle Collins | Classroom Teacher
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Danielle is a qualified Primary and Secondary teacher, specialising in History and Geography. She taught in the Primary sector for 7 years, where she developed her deep understanding and knowledge of differentiation strategies to cater for students with a wide range of interests, abilities and needs. 

Danielle is passionate about delivering and teaching content in an engaging, meaningful manner. She focuses on building rapport with students and supporting their unique, individual needs.

Danielle grew up in the local area and continues to live here with her two young children.

“The beautiful thing about learning is no one can take it away from you” BB King

Alison Aitken | Classroom Teacher
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Alison has over a decade of experience in language education and spent the last 12 years as an English teacher in an independent secondary school.

Alison is passionate about bringing a creative and active learning approach into her English classrooms and is very excited to have the opportunity to foster a love of language at Gateway Community High.

Alison believes in Ken Robinson’s theory that as educators it is our job to help young people discover their “element’’ – the thing they do well, with ease, and that makes time fly by.

Alison loves to spend her spare time dancing, watching films and foraging through second-hand shops. She has a teenage son, a spoilt King Charles Cavalier and 2 black cats.

Ricardo Tovar | Classroom Teacher
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Ricardo is a qualified Science teacher who has taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics at a stage 6 level. He also has years of experience teaching Mathematics Standard 2 and Advanced in years 11 and 12. Throughout his years of experience, he has developed various teaching pedagogies which he applies in the classroom environment at Gateway Community High.

Ricardo brings a wealth of experience, after being given the responsibility as a Year 12 co-ordinator in previous roles where he was tasked with preparing students for life after school.

Ricardo is passionate about helping students understand their own potential and seeing their development throughout their school journey.

“You are not living, if you are not learning”

Emma Marshall | Learning and Student Support Teacher
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Emma has over 25 years of working in systemic and private independent schools in Sydney both single sex and co-educational as well as at alternative high schools like Gateway Community High.

Emma’s focus is on holistic support, including taking a lead on our individualised learning plans, and student wellbeing. She is experienced in classroom teaching, learning support and the wellbeing/welfare of young people, including designing wellbeing programs, camps, enrichment days and coordination of a team of wellbeing staff.

"I have always held the belief that with the right care, kindness and support every student will thrive. Young people just need to know someone is in their corner who believes in them and can uncover their potential."

Belinda Sallustio | Administration Co-ordinator
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Belinda has worked for over 9 years in the NSW Department of Education in administration and also has considerable experience and knowledge in small business management.

 

Belinda enjoys being part of a successful team who nurture and guide students to be the best they can! She enjoys working with the students, parents and teachers at Gateway Community High.

Belinda lives in the local community and is married with two gorgeous young adults. She thoroughly enjoys hiking and spending time with her family.

Pilar Betanzos Alonso | Student Learning Support Officer
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Pilar comes from Bilbao in northern Spain, where she studied teaching and history degrees as well as ballet and aerobics. She knew that teaching was 'her calling' from a young age. In Sydney, Pilar's interest in education led her to complete a Master of Special Education at Macquarie University and she has taught Spanish to children and adults in various locations and settings, including at Macquarie Community College. 

Pilar is an energetic volunteer member of her children's schools, sports clubs, and community events. She loves the outdoors, bushwalking, fitness, and spending time with her family. 'I am very excited to be part of this new high school!' 

Edmund D'Cruz | Business Manager, Gateway Community High
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Edmund was appointed in December 2021 to the role of Business Manager. Edmund brings decades of experience in training and education, particularly in the IT industry and served as the CEO of Phoenix House.

Edmund is also leading strategic projects for MCC Child and Family Services.

Theresa Collignon | Group CEO
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Theresa has been the Chief Executive Officer of the MCC Group since 2015. She is a member of the Board of MCC and the Board of MCC Child and Family Services (the Proprietor of the School) and their representative to NESA. Theresa worked with the MCC Board and a dedicated group of volunteers and staff to establish Gateway Community High and MCC Child and Family Services.

 

Theresa has decades of experience in the leadership of not-for-profit education organisations and has management and governance experience within all stages of life-long learning from early childhood learning and education programs to school, VET, postgraduate tertiary and adult community education.

Our Board of Directors

The Board of MCC Child and Family Services is the governing body for the School.

Members include:
 

Susan Westbrook (Chair), Janet Carmichael, Wendy Chan (Deputy Chair), Theresa Collignon (Group CEO), Flynn McDermott and Suzanne Pinkerton

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