Our Team

Administration and Office Staff

Kateřina Bečková

Executive Director, Director of Czech Program

Kateřina is the founder and executive director of the International Montessori School of Prague and a community coordinator. While searching for a school with an alternative educational approach for her three children, she discovered the famous Montessori method. She immediately fell in love and since 2002, when she founded the IMSP, she’s been a keen advocate of Montessori education.

Kateřina holds Master's degrees in Economics and Special Education, and has attended Montessori Administration trainings and workshops led by Tim Seldin and Peter Davidson. She is a team player and using her strong leadership skills she boosts and maintains a positive morale among the staff and encourages teamwork. She lays great stress on achieving superior quality both in her personal and professional life. When not working at the school, Kateřina enjoys travelling, reading, sports, spending time with her family and relaxing in nature.

Pherooz Karani

Head of School

Originally from Boston, Pherooz came to IMSP from Florida.  She attended a Montessori school herself and credits the educational model with developing in her the skills and passions that guide her work today. She has been in education for over twenty years, teaching in Infant, Toddler and Primary classrooms before moving into administration. It is her greatest joy to pass on the legacy of Montessori education to new generations of children.

Pherooz attended Northeastern University and received her BA in Theatre and a Minor in Elementary Education; she also earned a Master in Education with a focus on Montessori Integrative Learning from Endicott College in Massachusetts. She holds Montessori teaching credentials for every age group served at IMSP: she received her AMI Assistants to Infancy Diploma (ages 0-3), from the Maria Montessori Training Organization in London, her AMI Primary (ages 3-6) Diploma from the Ohio Montessori Training Institute in Cleveland, Ohio, and recently has her AMI Elementary (ages 6-12) training here in Prague. Pherooz has also completed a Montessori Administration degree with CMTE in New York. In her free time, Pherooz enjoys traveling, reading, going to concerts and attending theatre performances.

Eliška Hladká

Office Manager

After graduating from high school, Eliska began pursuing a degree at the Czech University of Agriculture.  After almost two years of studies, Eliska realized that she wasn’t passionate about the subject and decided to enter the workforce full time.  Eliksa spent time as an Event Manager before moving into the corporate work as a receptionist and office assistant.  She is happy to be working in the education sector now.  In her free time, Eliska enjoys spending time with her family and partner, playing with her, visiting her cottage and watching movies. 

Lucie Zachařová

Business Administrator

Lucie graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from the University Hradec Králové. She spent half of her professional career serving long-term, mentally ill people, first directly with clients and then as a head of a non-profit organization.  Even though she left social work, she is still interested in psychotherapy and related fields.  Following that, she worked as a head of a study center within a private college. For the past eight year, Lucie worked in a small software company.  In her free time, Lucie likes running, inline skating, cross-country skiing and canoeing. You’re most likely to find her in nature during her travels here or abroad.  She likes to work with both people and numbers so was happy to join the IMSP team as the Business Administrator where she could combine both aspects.  

Žaneta Badlíková

Marketing and Communication Director

Žaneta graduated with a master’s degree in Marketing Communication and a bachelor’s degree in Economy. She spent most of her professional career running her own business in Czechia as well as other international markets. For the past three years, her family lived in Vancouver, Canada.
A big fan of Maria Montessori’s educational method, Žaneta applied many of the ideas at home with her daughters. In 2014, her family joined our school and since then both her daughters have been Montessori educated, at IMSP as well as in Canada.  Because of her passion for Montessori, Žaneta pursued her AMI Montessori Teacher Assistant Diploma. In her free time, she enjoys figure skating, horseback riding, downhill skiing, and hiking. She also likes traveling and exploring foreign countries and cultures. 

Martina Ettelová

Marketing Specialist

Martina graduated with a bachelor degree in Social Work and Politics from UJEP in Ústí nad Labem and then a Master's degree program at the Faculty of Education in Hradec Králové. During her studies she gained experience working at Škoda Auto as well as an external evaluator in Assesment Centers for selecting new employees. After graduation, she spent a year studying English and working in London. After her return, she worked mostly in international companies as an HR specialist and recruiter. For the past few years, she has worked as a HR Marketing Manager at Monster Worldwide, one of the largest job portals in the world. In her spare time she devotes herself to his family, two sons and a partner. When time permits, she enjoys skiing, visiting foreign countries, loves Scandinavian design, attends ceramics classes, paints on porcelain, and spends time with her friends over a good glass of wine.  

Marie Dernovšková

Marketing Specialist

Marie has a master’s degree in Architecture and Civil Engineering from Czech Technical University and also spent a few years studying at the University of Economics Prague. During those studies, she started to work full time in marketing – first, as a Marketing Manager for CZ and SK for gaming brands like Nintendo,  following that, as a marketing specialist for phones, tablets and notebooks with ASUS Computers. She joined our team in June 2016 as an external Montessori specialist.  She immediately felt in love with the Montessori system of education and therefore greatly enjoys her role in promoting this educational method.. During her free time, she prefers being active - 

from a variety of sports such as dancing, acrobatics, fire spinning, and running to the sport she is most passionate about, kitesurfing. And that’s why she also likes to travel and learn foreign languages.

Toddler Team

Ivana Šket

Toddler Coordinator, Toddler 1 Lead Teacher

Ivana has been with IMSP since 2005, first serving as a substitute and assistant teacher in the Toddler and Primary classes. Originally from Croatia, Ivana attended the Academy of Fine Arts at the Zagreb University and is also a certified yoga instructor, lending her varied skills to our students through many projects and classes.

Like many others, Ivana was drawn to Montessori as a means to encourage independence and love of learning in her own children, and is excited to grow alongside her students, viewing education as a form of service to her community. She holds an AMI Assistants to Infancy (ages 0-3) diploma from the Montessori Institute here in Prague.

Michaela Tučková

Toddler 2 Lead Teacher

Misha has taught in our Toddler classrooms since 2014, after previously serving at IMSP as the Primary and Toddler substitute, Childcare teacher and Administrative Assistant. Although she had originally pursued a degree in Physics, she developed an interest in Montessori education when volunteering in Montessori schools in the United States, and now considers education her defining passion. Misha loves her work with children but also takes great pleasure in leading workshops on Montessori education and child development as she believes working with the parents is equally important.  She holds an AMI Assistants to Infancy (ages 0-3) from the Montessori Institute Prague and a Bachelor’s degree in Special Pedagogy. 

Like many others at IMSP, Misha loves to travel and explore other countries and cultures. When at home, she spends her free time reading, cooking, and with various arts and crafts.

Lindsey Taylor

Toddler 2 Assistant Teacher

Lindsey is originally from Texas, where she completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Women’s Studies at Southwestern University. She completed her TEFL certification and discovered her passion for working with children while teaching English as a Second Language in Costa Rica. She has spent the past three years working as an assistant in a Montessori school in the US, which further fueled her passion for education and love of the Montessori Method.

Lindsey enjoys practicing yoga, cooking and doing creative projects in her spare time. She loves to travel and learn new languages!

Geraldine Coiro

Toddler 1 Assistant Teacher

Originally from Scotland, Gerry initially pursued a degree in Zoology at the University of Glasgow. Through her love for travel she discovered her passion towards working with young children whilst working at an International school in Denmark. Before her arrival at IMSP, Gerry had spent 8 years teaching internationally, fulfilling her joy of working with children in both Denmark and the Seychelles before arriving in Prague. 

Her love for Montessori’s philosophy and educational principles transpired from her work in an International Montessori school in the Seychelles and is her rationale for currently working towards attaining a Diploma in Montessori Pedagogy: Early Years Educator through the London Metropolitan University today. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, a wide variety of music, dancing salsa Cubana and seeking adventure through travel.  

Barbora Gábor

Toddler Support and Childcare Teacher

Bara is originally from Prague where she completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Management at the Czech Life Science University. While in Sydney, where she lived for the past three years, she discovered her passion for working with children, especially for toddlers, while taking care of children ages 2 to 4 years old. She discovered and fell in love with Montessori philosophy and now is working on attaining an AMI 0-3 Assistant Certificate. Bara is passionate about music and singing and in her spare time she also enjoys climbing, practising yoga, cooking, traveling and exploring new cultures.

Primary Team

Veronika Newkirk

Primary 2 Lead Teacher and Primary Coordinator

Originally from Jablonec, Veronika first pursued a law career, gaining a Master of Arts in Legal Studies from Charles University.  After having her first child, Veronika discovered Montessori and fell in love.  She volunteered with IMSP for a year before pursuing her American Montessori Society (AMS) Primary training in the US.  After teaching at a Czech Montessori school, Veronika opened her own Montessori school in Prague, teaching and directing the program for five years before moving back to the US.  Since 2013, Veronika has been teaching in 3-6 Montessori classrooms in the US.  Veronika is excited to be moving back to Prague for this opportunity.  In her free time, Veronika enjoys reading history and popular science as well as travel, sightseeing and nature walks.

Aimee Lewis

Primary Curriculum Coordinator, Primary 1 Lead Teacher

Hailing from upstate New York, Aimee holds a dual Bachelor’s degree in French and Education. After moving to Prague she started working at a Montessori preschool, where she worked for three years and undertook the AMS Montessori Primary training. She also has further experience teaching in international schools and as an Au Pair.

In her free time, Aimee loves traveling, cooking, reading, and learning.

Helen Fell

Primary 2 Teacher

​Originally from the South of England, Helen went to university at Leeds College of Art and Design and graduated with a BA in Interior Design. Helen’s creativity and art background are well used in the classroom, where she shares them with the children through art projects, crafts, and the environment. She joined IMSP in 2011 and completed her AMS Early Childhood (ages 3-6) training with the Princeton Montessori Training Center in New Jersey.
Outside of school Helen spends most of her time either developing the interior of the A Maze in Tchaiovna, the teahouse she helped set up with her husband, enjoying time with her son, or helping to organise music festivals and events.

Lisa De Silva

Primary 2 Assistant Teacher

Originally from Western Australia, Lisa has a Certificate IV in Education Support which qualifies her to work as an Education Assistant for mainstream and disabled children as well as an AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) Assistant Certification. In addition, she holds the TEFL Certificate. Her recent teaching experience includes being a classroom teacher in Australia and teaching English to young learners in a Czech language school. Lisa was thrilled to join the AMS Primary (3-6) training this summer. In her free time, Lisa enjoys photography and art as well as dancing and traveling.

Caryn Khoo

Primary 1 Assistant Teacher

Originally from Malaysia, Caryn graduated with a BA, with a double major in Writing and Communication. Following this Caryn spent three years teaching both children and adults, furthering her desire to work in early education. She completed her TEFL Certification as a means to do so. Caryn is currently completing her AMS Montessori Training for Primary age children. During her free time, Caryn enjoys cooking, good food, and traveling. 

David Kraml

Primary 1 Assistant Teacher

David enjoys exploring life from many different angles! After successfully completing a degree in Physiotherapy from the Faculty of Medicine of Charles University, he decided to change fields and pursue social work, focusing on prevention of drug addiction.  During this time, he worked with children collectives at primary and secondary schools and in orphanages and underwent training in group psychotherapy, art therapy, music therapy and crisis intervention.  For the past four years, he has worked in a Prague kindergarten, teaching children ages 3-7.  David is also involved in handicrafts, especially woodworking, which he has been professionally involved with for several years.  David particularly enjoys developing teaching aids and games designed to refine fine motor skills, spatial perception and creativity while learning something new in a playful way. 

Lenka Míkovcová

Primary 2 Assistant Teacher

Lenka joined the IMSP team during the 2017-18 school year.  She holds a Master’s Degree in Economics and Public Administration at the University of Economics in Prague, and studied in an international diploma program at UC Berkeley Ext in California. Prior to becoming a mother,  Lenka worked with the Vice Prime Minister of Economic Affairs of the Czech Republic, focused on public funding in science and education.  Lenka also worked for the Sue Ryder Foundation. A writer, Lenka has published various parenting bulletins with practical tips for parents as well as a story called “Baboo the Baby Elephant and the Sharing Puzzle,” which later also become a play.  In her free time, Lenka enjoys spending time with her family, writing her next story, and traveling. 

Emma Payne

Primary Support and Childcare

Originally from South Africa, Emma holds a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages and Linguistics from the University of South Africa.  She has also completed her TEFL certification.  She developed a passion for teaching when working in Thailand with secondary school students. Emma has enjoyed teaching English, music, gym and after-school programs in Thailand, South Africa, Taiwan and Vietnam over the past eight years.  In her free time, Emma enjoys travel, reading and swimming; she is engaged to IMSP team member, Wesley Vinay.

Elementary Team

Amy Tobias

Elementary Coordinator Lower Elementary Teacher

Amy joined the IMSP team in 2009 and has since taught in both the Primary and Lower Elementary classrooms. She holds AMS Certifications for the Primary (ages 3-6), Lower Elementary (6-9) and Upper Elementary (9-12) levels, as well as a B.A. in Psychology.

Amy has been working with children in Montessori schools since 1992. Aside from leading classrooms, her experience includes developing and integrating curriculum, creating character education programs and setting up new classrooms and schools. Originally from the Chicago area, Amy has appreciated living in different areas of the United States as well as England. She enjoys traveling, cultural exchanges, long walks and all things canine.

Joyce McCusker

Lower Elementary Lead Teacher

Joyce has been a Lower Elementary teacher for 17 years. Born in Poughkeepsie, NY, she grew up near Pittsburgh, PA. She earned a degree in history and political science from Duke University in Durham, NC, after spending her junior year abroad in Hong Kong.

Having homeschooled her two daughters using Montessori methods and materials, Joyce trained to be a Montessori Elementary teacher at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies, earning an Elementary 6-12 credential. In 2002, she began teaching in the Lower Elementary at Sunset Hills Montessori School in Reston, VA, where her children attended through sixth and seventh grades, respectively. Joyce attributes her daughters’ academic success to the foundation they received and the love of learning they developed during their Montessori years. She strives to inspire all her students to become their best selves. When not in the classroom, Joyce enjoys hiking, biking, swimming, reading, visiting museums, and traveling.

Ruth Švandová

Lower Elementary Teacher

Ruth has spent her entire life in Prague, and has been a Montessori advocate and enthusiast for six years now. She is currently studying Primary and Elementary education at the J. A. Komensky University in Karviná, and is completing an AMS Elementary (6-12) Montessori training. Previously, she has taught in an Elementary classroom at the Modřany Montessori school, and as an assistant teacher in our Primary 2 classroom and as our Upper Elementary Czech teacher. In her free time, Ruth enjoys Latin American dance, sport and music.

Greg McCracken

Upper Elementary Lead Teacher

Greg has been involved in the Montessori world since the oldest of his three children started first grade in 1987. Originally from western Pennsylvania, he studied theatre and acting in New York City in his early twenties, and then moved to the Los Angeles area where for 15 years he cared for his three children as an at-home dad. While in L.A., he completed a degree in English and Comparative Literary Studies. He also occasionally worked as a carpenter in L.A.

In 1997, Greg and his family relocated to a small town near Washington, D.C. Inspired by his children’s Montessori experience, he pursued a credential for Elementary I and II at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies in Silver Spring, Maryland. He has taught in both Lower and Upper Elementary Montessori classrooms since 1998. He loves teaching, but when not in the classroom, he also loves taking photographs, playing music, reading, hiking, traveling, visiting museums and bookstores, and learning about and discovering new things.

Irena Andělová

Upper Elementary Teacher

Ms. Irena comes from the beautiful spa town of Františkovy Lázně. It has been her dream to become an educator since being inspired by her own elementary teacher. She graduated from the Pedagogical High School in Karlovy Vary and holds a Master’s degree in Elementary Education and English Language from the Purkyne University in Ústí nad Labem. During her university studies, she moved to Prague and began teaching at the Gate of Languages Elementary School.

Irena’s life was changed by a move to New Zealand two years ago. During her travels, she experienced different cultures and environments and emerged with a new understanding and approach which eventually led her to IMSP. She was excited to join the AMS Elementary (6-12) training this summer. Irena  spends her free time travelling, practicing yoga, hiking, or with her fiancée, friends and her dog Vicky.

Wesley Vinay

Elementary Support & Childcare Teacher

Hailing from South Africa, Wes earned his Bachelor of Arts in Cinematography from AFDA, The School for the Creative Economy.  Following that, he also completed his TEFL certification. For the past three years, Wes has been teaching English in Taiwan and Vietnam.  He became interested in Montessori when he was introduced to the Reggio Emilia approach and began researching alternative educational models.  In his free time, Wes enjoys travel, exploring new cultures and films.  

Childcare and Specialists

Alena Bělohubá

Czech Program Specialist

Alena holds a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from Charles University and has also studied psychology at the Gestalt Institute. Alena has been teaching Czech and English for more than 10 years now. In addition to the traditional and Montessori teaching approach, she has experience in different alternative schools. She joined IMSP in 2009 and was inspired to pursue her Montessori training in Prague as a result.

Alena likes to travel and has spent time in England, Austria and Australia. Besides traveling she is interested in cycling, skiing, languages and psychology. Originally from the countryside, Alena loves gardening and is eager to help our students expand our garden.

Kathleen Renehan

Expressive Arts Specialist

Miss Kathleen has joined IMSP as a teacher in 2007. She received her Montessori Teacher's certification for both Primary (3-6) and Lower Elementary (6-9) at the Princeton Montessori Center for Teacher Training. She graduated from Stonehill College in Massachusetts majoring in Early Childhood, as well as receiving minors in Psychology and Fine Arts.

Kathleen is originally from New York, where she taught Art to people with learning and developmental disabilities prior to joining IMSP. Her interests include art, hiking, biking, horseback riding and traveling.

Iva Rozkošná

Office Support Elementary Czech Support

Mgr. Iva Rozkošná joined IMSP from English College Prague, where she has been a Czech teacher and admissions Registrar since 1998.  Prior to ECP, she taught Elementary age children Czech and Art and also served as a tutor. Iva holds a Master’s Degree in Education with a focus on Czech Language, Literature and Fine Art by the Masaryk University in Brno. In her free time, Iva enjoys working with ceramics and jewelry as well as Drama.

Klára Marušincová

School Psychologist

Klára joined our IMSP team as the school psychologist in 2017. She has been working as a psychologist and counselor since 2010. She holds a Masters of Psychology with a specialization in children clinical psychology and developmental psychology from the Charles University in Prague. Her passion is the Person Centered Approach (PCA), a psychotherapy and education method that trusts the actualizing tendency of each person; it follows very closely the values of the Montessori Method. 

Klára has been working as an independent psychologist and has also worked with several online programs supporting children and adults. She continues her professional development with a long-term training in play-therapy for children. In her free time, Klára enjoys spending time with her family and dog as well as hiking. 

Dominika Kiene

Speech and Language Therapist

Dominika has a degree in special education from Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic and is fully qualified in the Czech Republic as a speech therapist. In a hospital setting, she has dealt with problems of stuttering, aphasia, cleft palate and hearing and articulation problems. She has experience teaching both Czech and English as a foreign language to adults, and educated speech-impaired adults as well as children. She established and opened the Prague branch of Logo Private Clinic.

Alena Netolická

Speech and Language Therapist

Alena Netolická, BSc. (Hons.), M.H.Sc. holds a Masters of Health Science degree from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine program in Speech-Language Pathology. She also holds an honours degree in Psychology from University of Toronto. She is trained in assessment and treatment of wide range of communication disorders in children and adults. She has a formal training in providing speech and language services to clients in English. She gained her practical experience in Speech-Language Pathology through working in schools, hospitals and private clinics in Canada.

Alena spent over 10 years of working and studying in multicultural Toronto, where she developed a great interest in providing support to multilingual population. She delivers lectures in Speech and Language Pathology at University of Hradec Kralove.

Wesley Vinay

Elementary Support & Childcare Teacher

Hailing from South Africa, Wes earned his Bachelor of Arts in Cinematography from AFDA, The School for the Creative Economy.  Following that, he also completed his TEFL certification. For the past three years, Wes has been teaching English in Taiwan and Vietnam.  He became interested in Montessori when he was introduced to the Reggio Emilia approach and began researching alternative educational models.  In his free time, Wes enjoys travel, exploring new cultures and films.  

Emma Payne

Primary Support and Childcare

Originally from South Africa, Emma holds a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages and Linguistics from the University of South Africa.  She has also completed her TEFL certification.  She developed a passion for teaching when working in Thailand with secondary school students. Emma has enjoyed teaching English, music, gym and after-school programs in Thailand, South Africa, Taiwan and Vietnam over the past eight years.  In her free time, Emma enjoys travel, reading and swimming; she is engaged to IMSP team member, Wesley Vinay.

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