Head of School

Emma Ratigan

Emma Rattigan

Principal and Founder

Emma developed her passion for Montessori education soon after leaving high school. She undertook training with MCI London and The Montessori Partnership and was inspired to take Montessori’s ideas to children around the world. She founded Edinburgh Montessori Arts School in 2006. Her colleagues describe her as a ‘big picture’ thinker and Emma enjoys using this skill to envision ways in which the school will grow and develop.

Office

Administrative Support Team

Becca Boyde

Admissions Secretary and Administrative Continuity Lead

Becca joined the admin team as EMAS Foundation Manager in 2018 and moved to the school office in 2020. With passion for all things educational and a dedicated eye for detail, she keeps the back-office administration running smoothly. Becca has a background in heritage education and youth engagement, and coordinates the Scottish Learning Group.

Steph Thornton

Office Administrator

Whatever your reason for getting in touch or popping by, Steph is your friendly first point of contact in the school office. With an extensive background in administration, management and hospitality in both corporate and care sectors Steph works alongside Becca and the Educational Coordinator team to keep all administrative functions running smoothly.

Krisztina Wighardt

Wellbeing Coach

Krisztina provides coaching and guidance to the whole staff team as well as providing parent support and regular classroom support where it is needed.

She leads whole school project development as part of the administrative team.

Krisztina trained in Montessori teaching after many years as a Mindfulness and Life Coach. She joined EMAS in 2018. She is passionate about outdoor education and the many ways Montessori principles permeate the everyday life in our school.

Angelica Warner

Health and Safety Lead and P.A. to the Principal

Angelica’s background in health and social care comes with a wealth of experience in policy & procedures and running people centered organisations. She joined the EMAS team during a key growth phase and supports Emma as part time P.A. We enjoy Angelica’s positive attitude where she says her focus is on ‘’can do; fun; and the possible”

Classroom Teams

Infant Community

Marta Ribeiro

Montessori Educator

Originally from Portugal, Marta studied Montessori education through AMS at The Montessori Institute of the Pacific Northwest in the United States. Having taught in Colorado Marta moved with her family to Edinburgh where she joined the EMAS team in the summer of 2020.

She brings her deep understanding of toddler development and passion for the creative arts to her lead role in our Infant Community.

Nuha Al'Ogaili

Montessori Trainee

Nuha has been a regular visitor to our Infant Community for a number of years as support assistant and we were thrilled to offer her a traineeship in 2020.

Originally from Iraq, Nuha completed her training in childcare and education after moving to Scotland in the early 2000’s. She has a wide range of experience in Edinburgh settings. She is a dedicated early years practitioner. Her immense patience and deep understanding of very young children make her a wonderfully loving carer in our Infant Community.

Ana Dora Tomaz

Montessori Educator

Undertaking her Birth – 6 Montessori training with The Montessori Partnership, Ana joined the Infant Community team in 2021. With a primary teaching degree from her home country of Brazil Ana sees her Montessori practise as a furtherance of her passion for childhood education.

Children’s House Downstairs

Anna Assimaki

Anna Assimaki

Montessori Educator and Early Years Coordinator

Anna completed her Montessori Diploma at Bournemouth Montessori Centre. Gentle, patient and quietly passionate about providing the best for children, Anna works hard to share her thoughtful guidance with all. She has worked in both our Infant Community and Children’s House, having joined the team in 2017. She is currently studying part time for her B.A. in Childhood Practice and will graduate in 2022.

Anna has been practising and teaching meditation for most of her life. She considers the benefits of her practise to include: her steady presence, limitless patience and effortless relationship building with children in the classroom.

Anuja Singh (Maternity Leave 22-23)

Montessori Educator

Anuja completed her AMI Montessori training in Mumbai following her Bachelor’s in New Delhi and Master’s in Sydney. She joined the EMAS team from a Children’s House classroom in California; she also has experience working in Montessori settings in Ghana.

Anuja’s calm and thoughtful approach and deep respect for the child development make this classroom a delightful space for our children to grow and learn.

Children’s House Upstairs

Kate Schofield

Montessori Educator

Kate studied Montessori education in South Africa, graduating Auburn House Training Institute in 2010. She later founded and ran her own nursery school for 6 years before emigrating to Scotland. She joined the EMAS team in 2021 and co-teaches one of our two Children’s House classrooms with Anna.

Erin Holzman

Montessori Educator

Joining us from the United States whilst we have several team members on maternity leave, Erin has a Masters in Fine Arts which she pursued following her own Montessori education. She eventually came full circle and retuned to Montessori to become a teacher herself. She has taught Children’s House, Elementary and Adolescent levels and we are delighted to have her at EMAS co-teaching with Kate in our Children’s House class this year.

Eleni Papavasileou

Eleni Papavasiliou - Maternity Leave 21-22

Montessori Educator

Eleni holds a degree in Early Years education and a Masters in Exercise and Life Quality from Greece. Since joining the EMAS team in 2013, Eleni has completed her Montessori Diploma for Birth to 3. Having lead our Infant Community for several years, Eleni has embarked on her 3-6 Montessori journey in August 2020 and teaches alongside Anna in our upstairs classroom.

We are delighted that Eleni is expecting her first baby in summer 21. She began her maternity leave in April and we look forward to welcoming her back next year.

Elementary

Kate Hanekom

Kate Hanekom

Montessori Educator and Additional Support Lead

Kate has come to Scotland from South Africa, where she completed her Montessori training and was a Senior Assistant Directress. She joined EMAS in 2016 and later completed her Elementary Diploma. In 2020 Kate took on the enhanced role of  additional needs coordinator for the Elementary age group. She firmly believes that the Montessori approach can provide the best learning platform for all children.

Sara Gill Fraca

Primary Educator and Spanish Specialist

Sara joins us for one year from Barcelona where she completed her Degree in  Education with Specialism in Additional Needs. She is currently studying for a Masters in Music alongside her teaching. Sara supports Kate in the Elementary classroom and provides small group Spanish lessons throughout each week.

Emma Boyd Madson

Artist in Residence

Emma is based in our dedicated studio space adjacent to the elementary classroom. Guiding the children’s artistic exploration she facilitates a cycle of inspiration, back and forth between artist and children.

Emma holds a BA Hons in Textile Design from Glasgow School of Art and has studied interior design and teaching English since graduating university. She also manages her own soft furnishings brand.

Corrine Spencer - Maternity Leave 21-22

Montessori Educator

Corrine completed her Montessori AMI 6-12 Diploma in Portland, Oregon following on from her Bachelors degree in Sociology. She joined EMAS in 2017 as Elementary Montessori Educator.

Corrine is on maternity leave from summer 2020. We look forward to welcoming her back with us next year.

Teens Hub

Iain Robertson Campbell

Principal Teacher and Humanities Guide

Having worked with young people in high schools and educational settings around the world, most recently based in Glasgow, Scotland, Iain joins the EMAS team with an extensive background in teaching and mentorship of teenagers. Iain is qualified and trained in the Humanities and English, Modern Studies, Media Studies and has a passion for ethics and philosophical inquiry. He is trained as Gestalt therapist and has taught effective meditation around the UK. Iain is passionate about supporting the well-being and emotional health of young people.

Neeki Armani

STEM Lead Guide

With a BA in International Business she completed her PGCE in Physics at St Mary’s University, Twickenham.

Neeki became interested in Montessori education whilst studying for her Masters in Outdoor Environmental and Sustainability Education at Edinburgh University. She joined our Teens Hub and Elementary team in the spring of 2020 and began training as a Montessori guide the same year. She leads the Science, Technologies, Engineering and Maths studies of our Teens pupils and provides specialist science input to the elementary classroom.

Specialist Educators

Romina Mazzotta

Outdoor Educator

Romina joined the EMAS team in 2021 as Outdoor Educator and Montessori Trainee. With a background in community education and Forest School Romina coordinates and oversees the work in our gardens and paddock with all age groups – developing our outdoor spaces and the learning opportunities they offer.

Hazel Angus

Dance and Drama Educator

Having worked in musical theatre and education around the world Hazel joined the EMAS team in the summer of 2019. Inspired by the patience and respect for individual learning that she witnessed in so many ASN schools and day centres, she  is able to quickly establish a safe, supportive and hilarious environment full of joy where children’s curiosity for self expression flourishes.

Rachel Treloar

Therapies Coordinator

Additionally Rachel oversees the art therapy service that EMAS providing bespoke support to students who need it.
Rachel attended Manchester School of Art and then the University of Edinburgh, graduating with an Honours degree in Fine Arts Sculpture. She also holds an MSc in Art Psychotherapy and is registered with the British Association of Art Therapists and the Health and Care Professional Council.

Lindsay Anderson

Music Educator

Lindsay Anderson holds an honours degree in music from Edinburgh Napier University and a Masters degree from Birmingham Conservatoire where she specialised in percussion performance. Lindsay has worked with children in many different settings and at EMAS since 2014. She works with our Elementary and Teens groups on a wide range of musical inspiration. Lindsay also runs our popular after-school Rhythm Club.

Graeme Armstrong

Guitar and Ukulele Teacher

Graeme is a seasoned musician who splits his time between touring with his band and teaching ukulele and guitar. Visiting the classrooms once a week; Graeme takes groups and individuals for singing, playing and musical discovery sessions.

Carly Blain

Piano and Fiddle Teacher

Scottish fiddle player Carly Blain is from Kelso in the Scottish Borders. She is a graduate from the Newcastle University Folk and Traditional Music Degree.

Carly offers private violin and piano tuition to EMAS pupils during the school day.

Support Team

Laury McKinlay

Chef

We are honoured to have Laura with us cooking up a daily feast for (and often together with) the children. Inimitably cheerful, Laura has a smile and kind word for all. The children are regular visitors at her kitchen door, checking what’s on the menu and giving feedback and ideas.

When asked for examples of important women on International Women’s Day, our nursery children nominated Laura – “because she makes yummy food for the children who don’t bring packed lunch!”

Mo Murray

Facilities Coordinator

Mo joined the support team in 2021 and assists the admin team and teachers.

Having previously worked at Teens+ (a person centred local charity) , Mo is an experienced caretaker and mother of three grown-up children. She is organised, approachable and is especially passionate about helping others.

We are delighted to have Mo with us from mid morning to end of school each day. You will no doubt enjoy getting to know her – if you can indeed find where she is – sitting down is not in her skillset, but my goodness the EMAS spaces have never been so organised!

Liam Rocks

Multitrades Specialist

Liam is a multi trades craftsman of over 30 years experience. He joins us two days a week to help keep our wee school fixed up and looking great. While he does so, he is sharing his wealth of knowledge with our elementary and teens pupils.