Grade 6 Homeroom Teacher English & Social Studies Teacher
Grade 7 Homeroom Teacher Math & Science Teacher
Grade 8 Homeroom Teacher Social Studies & EAL Teacher
English & EAL Teacher
Visual Arts Teacher
Learning Support Teacher
Physical Education (PE) Teacher
Physical Education (PE) Teacher
EAL Department Head
Chinese Studies Department Head
Chinese Studies Teacher
Chinese Studies Teacher
Chinese Studies Teacher
Chinese Studies Teacher
KG Educational Assistant
KG Educational Assistant
Grade 1 Educational Assistant
Grade 1 Educational Assistant
Grade 1 Educational Assistant
Grade 2 Educational Assistant
Grade 2 Educational Assistant
Learning Support Educational Assistant
EAL Educational Assistant
Music/Art Educational Assistant
Chinese Educational Assistant
Samantha Pelstring - KG Homeroom Teacher
Samantha is from the state of Virginia in the United States. She completed her undergraduate degree from Christopher Newport University and a graduate degree at The University of Northern Iowa. Samantha is in her 10th year as a teacher and has experience with Pre-Reception (KG2), Reception (KG2), and Grade 1 in Ukraine, Egypt, and Dubai. Samantha loves the color green, chocolate, The Muppets, and her favorite book is Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel!
Michelle Murdock - Grade 1 Homeroom Teacher
Michelle Murdock joined ASHK after working for 4 years in China, most recently at Buena Vista Concordia International School in Shenzhen where she taught Grade 1. Michelle was born in Michigan and moved from the USA to China in 2012 after graduating from Michigan State University. When Michelle is not teaching, she enjoys reading, hiking, and writing short stories.
Corinn Randolph - Grade 2 Homeroom Teacher
Corinn is excited to be returning to ASHK this year as a Grade 2 teacher. This will be Corinn’s 2nd year in Hong Kong and her 12th year of teaching. Corinn has taught many different grade levels including Reception (KG2), Grade 3, and Grade 4. She has worked in the USA, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt, most recently at American International School in Egypt, which is an Esol Education school. Corinn obtained her Bachelor’s Degree from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania and her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Northern Iowa. In her spare time she enjoys reading, cooking, and traveling. She is looking forward to all of the wonderful opportunities that are in store for her this year at ASHK with a fantastic group of students, parents, and school community!
Thomas Murdock - Grade 4 Homeroom Teacher
Thomas is married to Michelle and is also a graduate of Michigan State University. He has been teaching primary school since 2012, specifically Grades 2 and 4. Tommy worked previously at Yaohua School in Suzhou and at Buena Vista International School in Shenzhen. Other than education, Tommy’s interests include ice hockey (Go Wings!), travelling, and hiking. He is very excited to explore the trails of Hong Kong.
Lakisha James - Grade 5 Homeroom Teacher
Lakisha was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. She completed both her undergraduate and teaching degrees at the University of Nevada. She is in her fifth year of teaching. Lakisha’s first two years were spent teaching Grade 2 in Las Vegas. For the next two years, she was the Elementary STEM specialist at Somerset Academy Losee. As a STEM specialist, Lakisha taught the full range of primary school-aged students from Reception (KG2) through Grade 5. When not in the classroom, you will find Lakisha hiking, reading, traveling, enjoying the arts, or spending time with friends and family. She is excited to begin her journey with ASHK and is looking forward to learning Cantonese.
Tristane Nicholas - Grade 6 Homeroom Teacher
Tristane been teaching internationally for 5 years and reports that it has been a “wonderful opportunity and experience.” Most recently, Tristane worked in an international school in Shanghai teaching Grade 2 and 3. She was born in Phoenix, Arizona and lived there her entire life before moving to Asia. Tristane completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Arizona and her Post Baccalaureate in Elementary Education from Rio Salado College. She has also completed her Master of Education from Northcentral University. Since coming to Asia, she loves to travel, meet new people, see new things, and try out the different foods and cuisines available!
Daniel Dean- PE Teacher
Dan was born and raised in London, and attended Loughborough University for his undergraduate degree. He went on to gain his teaching qualification at University College London, and has taught PE to all grades at leading international schools in China, Malaysia and Qatar. He is starting his eighth year in teaching, and believes that fostering social, behavioral and emotional growth in PE is just as important as physical and athletic ability. He is excited for his new adventure in Hong Kong, and cannot wait to be a part of the ASHK community. Outside of school, Dan loves to play basketball, learn languages and travel as much as possible.
Breck grew up in Wisconsin, USA, and earned a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education and School Health Education from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Throughout Breck’s time in college, he created an activity-based program to teach community members how to live a healthy and active lifestyle. Breck has taught Physical Education at each grade level at Hamilton Early Learning Center in Wisconsin, La Crescent High School in Minnesota, and Edgar School District in Wisconsin. When not active with his students, Breck enjoys being outdoors, hiking, trying new foods, visiting new places, and playing all types of sports, especially volleyball and basketball.
David Jalsevac- Middle School English EAL
David grew up in Toronto but moved to Hong Kong in the latter part of his high school years. He has a BA in English Literature from McGill University and a BEd from the University of British Columbia. David previously worked for four years with grade 7-12 students at CDNIS and most recently taught English Language Arts at St. John's Academy in Vancouver. He has been involved with the ASHK Lightning sports community, having coached the ECA soccer team in 2017. David enjoys reading, hiking, and playing with his one-year-old daughter, Alicia.
Emily Wong- Learning Support
Emily was born and raised in Tennessee. She has an undergraduate degree from Union University and a Masters degree from Johns Hopkins. Emily has 10 years of teaching experience and is passionate about ensuring that all learners are included and valued in their school community. Most recently she held a position as the Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Specialist at a school in Baltimore, Maryland. Emily is most at home outdoors and loves exploring Hong Kong's beaches and hiking trails.
Joanne Jalsevac - Visual Arts Teacher
Joanne Jalsevac was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and has been a teacher for 35 years. Joanne is a graduate from the University of Toronto and has specialist qualifications in Visual Arts and Library Science. Prior to coming to Hong Kong in 2004, Joanne taught at Senator O'Connor College School in Toronto as a Visual Arts Teacher and Department Head and a Teacher Librarian. She also taught Visual Arts in France at the Lycee Canadien en France. Most recently, Joanne was Head of the Library at the Canadian International School of Hong Kong. She has experience with students of all ages. Her interests include reading, drawing and painting. Joanne is married to our School Director, John Jalsevac.
Flora Hui - Chinese Studies Department Head
Flora is originally from GuangZhou, China. She moved with her family to Hong Kong when she was 10 years old. Flora also lived in and attended school in Canada for a few years. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Wales and her teaching degrees at the University of Hong Kong.
Recently Flora has completed the Master of Education (Chinese Language and Literature) from University of Hong Kong.
Before joining ASHK, Flora worked at York International Reception (KG2), Island Christian Academy and Canadian International School of Hong Kong. Flora reports that she “thoroughly enjoy the wonders brought to me by each child who never stop amazing me with their passion and curiosity.” Flora has many hobbies including hiking, yoga, ballet, Chinese painting, piano, guzeng and of course traveling!
Christine Chen - Chinese Studies Teacher
Christine was born and raised in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China. She is a fluent speaker of Mandarin, English and Cantonese. She completed her undergraduate degree at Beihua University and her teaching degree at Hong Kong Institute of Education. Prior to joining ASHK, Christine was a PYP Chinese teacher and a Year 1 Co-Teacher at Zhuhai International School. Outside the classroom, Christine enjoys arts and crafts, reading, decoration and going to the theatre and cinema. She is also a risk taker and wants to explore and see more of the great opportunities available in Hong Kong!
Penelope Hou - Chinese Studies Teacher
Penelope has been an educator for 6 years. Prior to joining ASHK, Penelope was employed at Chinese International School in Hong Kong (CIS) in the Primary Division. She completed her professional internships at two renowned secondary schools in Shenzhen and Xi’an respectively. Penelope obtained both her Master’s Degree and teaching degree from the University of Hong Kong. Born in Xi’an, a city with a time-honored history and culture, Penelope speaks fluent Chinese and English. She loves life, art and literature!
Joanne Mallary- Assistant Principal
Joanne is an experienced educator who has served school communities as a Teacher, Assistant Principal, Assessment Coordinator, University Supervisor, Curriculum Coordinator, Principal and Head of School in the United States, Germany, South Korea, Italy and Ukraine. Born and raised in the United Kingdom and educated in universities in the United States, Joanne has a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems, Masters of Education in Educational Leadership, and an Education Specialist Degree in Curriculum and Instruction. Joanne is certified in Elementary Education and Educational Leadership from the state of Florida (USA). As a mother herself, Joanne welcomes and appreciates parental involvement to support and celebrate learning. Joanne understands the unique nuances of different educational systems and the importance of adjusting the instruction to meet the learning needs of all students. Joanne is very excited to join the ASHK family to build upon the amazing first year that has just been completed!
Jennifer is originally from the state of Missouri in the United States and has been a classroom teacher for 20 years. Jennifer completed her undergraduate degree from Missouri State University and her graduate degrees from Southwest Baptist University and University of Missouri-Kansas City. Prior to moving to Hong Kong, Jennifer taught in Missouri, Colorado, Egypt, and Thailand with experiences in Reception (KG2) through fifth grade. Jennifer has coached volleyball, basketball, and swimming at a variety of levels. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling and exploring new places, playing volleyball, hiking, and reading. Jennifer is excited to join the ASHK team and begin a new adventure in Hong Kong.
Michael Mallary- EAL Teacher
Using technology as one of the key tools to engage learners, Michael has taught Math, Science, PSHE, World History, American History, Human Geography and EAL. He has worked in international schools around the world including the United States, South Korea, Italy, and Ukraine. Michael is a proud graduate of the Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. Michael also enjoys working with children outside of the classroom - coaching soccer and rugby, leading boy scout groups, and in after school clubs.When not at school, Michael enjoys spending time with his wife, Joanne, exploring, travelling, and relaxing. Michael enjoys playing soccer, rugby, sailing, hiking, and biking as well as cooking.
Lauren O’Brien- Grade 1A Teacher
Lauren was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Missouri and her education degree from the University of West Florida. She discovered her love for education while teaching ESL in South Korea for 2 years. She most recently returned to St. Louis to teach grade 1 at KIPP Wisdom Academy, an inner city, college preparatory school. From these experiences, she has witnessed the power education can have on all aspects of a community. Lauren loves to travel and be immersed in new cultures and experiences. She is excited to discover new adventures in Hong Kong.
Art Wong- EAL Teacher
Art was raised in Hong Kong and is a graduate of Hong Kong International School. After receiving a bachelor's degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Union University, he spent 10 years teaching ESL in Maryland public schools to students at all levels from Reception (KG2) to 12th grade. He has a Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction from National University and achieved National Board Certification in the area of English as a New Language. Though he is passionate about teaching, he also enjoys making music, running, and exploring new places with his wife and 3 children. He is excited to join the ASHK staff and return to Hong Kong with his family after many years overseas in the United States.
Ken Chinn- Art Teacher
Ken grew up in Toronto, Canada, and graduated with a diploma in Illustration from Sheridan College and a Bachelor of Graphic Design (Hons) from the University of Huddersfield. Before completing his PGCE at the University of Sunderland to become a certified educator, he worked as an Art and Creative Director in the design industry. For the past 6 years, Ken has worked with different age groups of students at international school settings, and has previously taught IB PYP Visual Arts and IB MYP Design in Hong Kong. In his spare time, Ken enjoys playing basketball, tennis, hiking, travelling and playing with his dog and cat.
Stephanie Lai- Grade 1C Teacher
Stephanie was raised in Vancouver, Canada where she completed her Bachelor of Science at the University of British Columbia and later completed her Bachelor of Education at the University of Toronto. After getting her degree in Education, Stephanie decided to teach in Hong Kong and has been working at Victoria Shanghai Academy for 5 years, teaching students from grades 1 to 4. This year, her goal is to continue with her studies and attain her Masters of Education from the University of Hong Kong. In her free time, Stephanie enjoys wake-boarding and hiking. She's definitely a foodie and loves trying new restaurants around Hong Kong!
Kristine Schill- KG2C Teacher
Kristine was raised in Wisconsin and moved to Hong Kong in 2016 after graduating from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. She completed her undergraduate degree in School Health Education and later completed her certification in Elementary Education. She spent the last year teaching at a Reception (KG2) in Hong Kong where she had the opportunity to teach enthusiastic 3, 4, and 5 year olds. When Kristine is out of the classroom, she enjoys traveling, hiking, being with friends, and exploring Hong Kong. Kristine is eager to begin her new journey at ASHK!
Eva Qin- Chinese Studies Teacher
Eva was born in Wenzhou and grew up in Shenzhen, China. She completed her master’s degree in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She also studied at Daejeon University in South Korea for one year and can speak fluent Korean. Eva has 5 years of teaching experience and has taught many different grade levels. Before joining ASHK, she was a Chinese teacher and class teacher at Rosaryhill School. In her spare time she enjoys learning new languages, reading and traveling. This year, her goal is to speak Spanish fluently!
Laura Li- Chinese Studies Teacher
Originally from China, Laura received her Bachelor Degree from Beijing Normal University and a Master’s Degree from Hong Kong University (Teaching Chinese as a Second Language). After graduating from HKU, Laura worked at Canadian International School of Hong Kong (CDNIS) and Island Christian Academy. Being with children is where her heart is. She loves watching them grow, learn and play. Laura also enjoys travelling, playing badminton, watching movies and playing different instruments including guitar, Chinese flute, yangqin and hulusi(Chinese instruments).
Lainey Morgan- Grade 1 Teacher
Lainey grew up in both North America and Asia. She completed her undergraduate and Master's degrees in Florida and Virginia. After teaching ESL in China, which confirmed her passion to teach, Lainey decided to complete her state certification in Elementary Education. She has taught kindergarten in both America and in China, and Grade 1 and 2 in IB World Schools in China before relocating to Hong Kong. Lainey is excited to use her IB experience of inquiry-based learning and concept-based instruction to complement ASHK's STEAM program. Lainey's husband Ryan joins her at ASHK as one of the grade 2 teachers and, along with their two children, are looking forward to being part of the ASHK school community. As Lainey has been exploring new cities her entire life, she is eager to learn about her family's new home in Hong Kong.
Tara Store- Middle School Math & Science
Tara was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. She received an undergraduate degree in science from the University of Toronto and later completed a Master’s degree in forensic science in the United Kingdom. Tara worked for a laboratory before discovering her love of teaching while in South Korea. She then continued her studies by completing a degree in education. She also holds additional qualifications in special education and guidance counselling. Tara is in her 9th year of teaching and has taught in South Korea, China, Egypt, and now Hong Kong. When she’s not teaching, she enjoys travelling, scuba diving, and yoga. Tara is very excited to join the ASHK community and looks forward to exploring more of this vibrant city!
Ryan Morgan- Grade 2 Teacher
Ryan Morgan grew up in America and realized his desire for teaching children while he was in college. After Ryan received his undergraduate and master's degrees, he married and moved to China in 2008. He has taught primary education (mostly in IB World Schools) in Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Xi’an. Ryan sees great benefit in the concept and inquiry-based teaching and learning model that is part of the learning framework at an IB school and also at ASHK. Ryan is excited to continue to implement this model within his classes at ASHK. When Ryan is not teaching, he loves traveling, exploring new places, being outdoors, coaching, and making new memories with his family.
Mandy Hollingshead- Music Teacher
Mandy Hollingshead is an experienced, highly skilled and tech-savvy international school music teacher. She has taught all age levels from 18 months through to 18 years during her career, which has so far spanned the countries of Canada, Hong Kong and Qatar. Mandy has two Bachelor degrees from McGill University and a Master’s of Music Education from Boston University. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator, Google Certified Innovator, and a Google Educator Trainer. She has led workshops throughout Asia, North America and the Middle East. She has also led several school and community theatrical productions and is looking forward to continuing that at ASHK. Outside of teaching, technology and the theatrical world, Mandy is a yoga, hiking and travel enthusiast, and she is thrilled to be joining the ASHK team.
Morgan Davies- Teacher Librarian
Morgan Davies was raised in Colorado where she explored the Rocky Mountains on horseback. After a trip overseas when she was 12 as a People to People Student Ambassador, she was hooked on international travel. During her undergraduate studies at The Ohio State University in Journalism with a focus on Photojournalism, she studied abroad in Zimbabwe and South Africa. Her first career was as a photojournalist at a daily newspaper. She began working with children after two mission trips to Moldova and Romania and received her Master's degree in Secondary Education from the University of Phoenix. She has taught English Language Arts to 8th grade students in North Carolina and discovered her true passion as a children's librarian while working with underprivileged students in South Carolina. Reading transforms lives! She joins us in her 7th year of teaching most recently from Berlin, Germany with her son and husband who all enjoy biking, hiking, beach volleyball, and reading day and night.
American School Hong Kong (ASHK) is a non-profit, non-denominational college preparatory school offering a holistic American education taught by North American teachers. The school is operated by Esol Education, a leading education organization with 40 years of experience in establishing and operating K-12 international schools, currently educating 11,000 pupils in nine schools across three continents. ASHK will deliver a rigorous curriculum, focused on developing well-rounded, motivated, and thoughtful global citizens. It will equip students with the academic, social, and entrepreneurial skills required for success in the 21st century. ASHK is incorporated as Universal American School Hong Kong Limited.