Marian Catholic School

(07) 856 7515 30 Beale Street, Hamilton East

Learning Community 5 (LC 5)

Years 7 & 8

Vania McKeown

Room 17 Teacher


General Information

I have taught for a number of years, combining both secondary and primary experience. I started teaching at Marian Catholic School in 2017, in Term 2. I love teaching at Marian as it is a school that provides the students with a myriad of experiences, both inside and outside the classroom. I join in with the other amazing staff members who personally strive to make this school caring, inclusive and meaningful.

I have a passion for being creative with the curriculum and want to engage students and help them achieve their best in every subject using what is relevant to them now. All students in my mind have huge potential and the most favourite part of my job is to untap that potential and help them grow. I also like to ensure that all students have a wide variety of learning and with my added interests and skills in Physical Education and Dance, I allow my students opportunities to thrive with all round education. I do love teaching reading and writing in addition to PE and dance as the written word is powerful and believe students can benefit hugely from harnessing its qualities. I readily get inspired from quotes and this is one of my favourites: “With God all things are possible”, Matthew 19v26 . Being positive is one attribute I hold onto to and help the students aim do the same.

Outside of school I enjoy reading, baking, dance exercise classes and spending time with my family and friends.

Emma Scarle

Room 18 Teacher


General Information

Kia ora

I have taught at various schools both here in Hamilton and in the UK where I was an English teacher at an inner city secondary school. Prior to becoming a teacher I worked in the Banking industry for over a decade. I'd always wanted to be a teacher so when my family and I migrated to Aotearoa in 2008 it seemed the perfect opportunity for a change in career.

My belief is that positive relationships underpin all learner success and that we collectively contribute to the growth of a child. One of my favourite whakatauki is that ma te iwi anoo te tamaiti e whakatupu - it takes a village to raise a child. I am passionate about ensuring that my teaching is underpinned by the Catholic Church's values and key competencies. I encourage my students to develop an understanding of how they can make a difference as local, national and global citizens in our 21st Century world.

Outside the classroom I love spending time with my husband, teenage children and our friends. My hobbies are gardening, reading, watching Rugby and driving our 1974 Mustang.

I feel honoured to be given the opportunity to teach at Marian Catholic School and look forward to meeting and working with you and your child to support them in reaching their potential.

Nicole Higby

Room 20 Teacher


General Information

I love teaching at Marian for many reasons. I love learning, and have a great team of teachers around me that I really enjoy working with. I have many interests which involve sport, (i lead the Team 4 sports programme) and art. I also enjoy developing students’ self expression skills through writing, and completed my master’s degree on motivating boys’ in writing. In maths I really enjoy extending children’s thinking around the ‘why’. There’s nothing like a challenge! I have lead ALIM programmes and promote Messy Math sessions across the school.

I believe that my strengths and passions in the classroom involve creating meaningful hands on learning experiences. I thrive on variety and difference, and believe every child has something to offer to our classroom and our changing world. I find that learning in a catholic school inspires children to develop their spirituality and hauora like no other environment can.

My four adult children still keep me busy and time outside work is spent with my family, in the garden, hiking, traveling or running my large black labrador. Oh yes, besides children, I love animals and nature.

Judi Clark

Room 20 Release Teacher


General Information

I am leading the Year 4-6 Concert Choir which I love! I have a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English Literature & Education, a Post Graduate Diploma in Teaching and a TEFL Certificate in teaching English as a foreign language.

I have a keen interest in the French language and culture after living in France for 12 months in 2014 with my husband and 3 children.

I began teaching in 1998 where I taught Year 7 & 8 at South New Brighton School in Christchurch. A wonderful start for me. When moving to Matakana in 2006, I began teaching Year 5 at Matakana Primary School. During this time I produced several School Productions and Performing Arts festivals, lead the Concert Choir as well as our annual “Matakana’s Got Talent” Gala day show. In 2012 I started teaching Music, Drama and Te Reo at the Mahurangi Montessori Unit and enjoyed this experience very much
Over the past 20 years I have taught full and part-time while raising 3 children and running a boutique wine import business with my husband. A nice complimentary addition to teaching!

I am a keen singer/ dancer and have always found a way to bring these two elements into the classroom whenever I can. I love gardening, theatre, watching movies and matching good food with beautiful wine.
I love the special character of Marian Catholic School. Our youngest son has had 3 very happy years here. I enjoy working with such a dedicated, hardworking team. I enjoy the moments we take to reflect and be thankful for what we have. Also to pray for family and friends in need.

Ryan Jordan

Room 21 Teacher


General Information

Kia ora koutou!

I am from Hamilton East. I grew up across the road from Marian and attended during my Primary and Intermediate years. My family have a strong connection to the school so I feel privileged to continue it as a new teacher in 2018.

I still live in Hamilton East with my wife Emma and our three young children. We enjoy venturing to local parks and gardens. We also spend a lot of time in Raglan and the Coromandel where I try to surf some sneaky waves around exploring with the family.

I have been a teacher for 5 years. I have also taught at Te Totara Primary and Bankwood Primary in Hamilton. Before teaching, I was a builder working for Urban Homes constructing residential houses.

I have a passion for language and believe developing it is essential for enhancing our lives. I have also learnt some spanish while living in Chile, which motivated me to learn te reo upon returning. One of my jobs is to help encourage and grow te reo Māori me ngā tikanga at Marian.

Nō reira, kōrero mai! Whakanuia te reo!

Feel free to come and chat to me anytime!

Katarina Dale

Room 22 Teacher & LC 5 Leader of Learning


General Information

After over 20 years of teaching at a range of levels and positions, I still love my job - at the ‘chalkface’!!
Since having my third son, I opted to work part time to ensure I was giving my very best to my students, my school and my family. I love my work-life balance which leaves me energised and refreshed so I can be a positive motivator of learning and a good mum.
I enjoy all subjects and levels but have a particular passion for teaching Year 7’s and 8’s.
I completed my Masters in Educational Leadership during my periods of maternity leave and this sparked a special interest in developing student leadership and building the capacity of those around me. I facilitate the Student Council who develop wonderful leadership skills each year and who have made many effective changes in response to student voice over the years. I really enjoy seeing students reap the rewards of their hard efforts as well as the joy on their faces when they have been inspired to do something new and it worked!
I enjoy tramping, gardening and have played a range of sports over the years. My weekends are spent following my boys’ cricket, football and futsal. Futsal is a new found interest of mine, it’s a great sport to watch and maybe one day I might find my very own team to play in!!