Meet Next Year’s New Elementary School Principal

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Dear ES Parents, 

I am extremely pleased to announce that Melanie Sylvester, current Assistant Principal in the Elementary School, has accepted our offer to become the new Elementary School Principal, starting in Fall 2022.

Chosen among more than 70 applicants, Ms. Sylvester’s combination of dedication to quality teaching and learning, commitment to intellectual and personal development for every student, and extraordinarily positive relationships with all constituents in the community stood apart.

That our new Elementary School Principal could be found here, among our own, is a testament to the investment we make in securing the highest qualified educators for your children. 

Ms. Sylvester’s deep understanding of our community and the bonds she has created over the years with our families and students as a classroom teacher and assistant principal will be an immense asset to this role and the stewardship of our growing school.

Ms. Sylvester brings a wealth of experience from international schools worldwide and has worked as an educator in Canada, Oman, Jordan, and Vietnam over her 25-year career. She holds two Masters degrees: a Master’s in Interdisciplinary Studies from the State University of New York in Buffalo and a Master’s in International School Leadership from Wilkes University in Pennsylvania, in addition to a Bachelor of Elementary Education with a focus on teaching English as a Second Language from the University of Alberta, Canada.

The feedback surveys conducted for Ms. Sylvester during the recruitment process exhibited the deep respect in which she is held in our community by parents, students, faculty, and staff.

“She knows the SSIS community, its values, and its strengths very well. Her vision is very clear and relevant to the current situation of our community. I empathize with her desire to focus on equity and kindness in the ES. Given her past experiences and willingness to engage with families, she would be an excellent candidate.” – SSIS Parent

“Extremely strong heart. Focused. Always strives for the best. Amazingly caring to everyone around her. Fantastic listening skills. Knows the school inside and out. Super organized.” – SSIS Faculty

Ms. Sylvester believes in setting students up for success in their journeys in life and academics and that developing strong foundational knowledge and life skills will enable all students to achieve success in whatever they undertake after Elementary School. She has described her vision for the Elementary School as “a collaborative culture working together in order to meet the unique needs of each individual student to help them become their “best self.”

Her ultimate professional goal is that her students, faculty, and community members feel a sense of belonging, purpose and become their best selves. In her role as educator, leader, mother, and former coach, Ms. Sylvester works actively in nurturing positive relationships, teamwork, honesty, and community engagement. 

Ms. Sylvester’s husband, Chris, is a high school physical education teacher at SSIS. They have two children, both at SSIS, Cade in grade 10 and Brooke in grade 8.

The Board and Administration would like to thank the entire SSIS community for their participation during our search. Teachers, students, parents, and administrators all gave generously of their time during the selection and interview stages, and our community’s feedback played a vital role in this process.

All good wishes, 

Dr. Catriona Moran

Head of School