Kindergarten students at The Magellan International School are supported by highly qualified lead and assistant teachers in the classroom with exceptional fluency in Spanish. Most faculty members at MIS are native Spanish speakers. Student learning is also guided by specialty Kinder Teachers in English, Library, Art, Music, Digital Literacy, Design/Innovation and Physical Education. Social & Emotional learning is supported by both classroom teachers as well as a Counselor.
Head of Primary School
Sagrario is a passionate professional with more than 20 years of experience in a wide variety of educational settings. She is a lifelong learner that believes that students learn best when they are empowered and feel ownership of their learning. Sagrario has a BA in Education from the Pedagogical University in Mexico and has taken different undergraduate courses from Stanford and Harvard University. She is bilingual in Spanish and English and has a deep understanding of the International Baccalaureate (IB) program.
Sagrario was born and raised in México City. During her journey in education she worked in different schools in México such as Alexander Bain and the American School Foundation, where she held different teacher and administrative roles such as, lower school teacher, Primary Years Programme (PYP) coordinator and dean of students. She began her career in the United States in 2008 at Escuela Bilingüe Internacional in Oakland, California where she came to implement the Primary Years Programme (PYP). She held the roles of Assistant Head, PYP Coordinator and Director of Curriculum and Learning for Pre-kinder to 8th grade and oversaw the Middle Years Programme (MYP) implementation.
Her passion for education has also allowed her to do significant work for the IB as a workshop leader, consultant, school evaluation and accreditation leader and IB field representative in charge of the quality of the workshops given in The Americas. Sagrario has also been instrumental in the implementation of new IB services for schools at a global level, to develop a quality curriculum in schools.
Sagrario has sought to share best practices wherever she has taught, presenting at educational conferences such as the IB Regional Conference and the California Association of Independent School Conference.
Sagrario describes herself as an inquirer and is a true believer that as educators we need to nurture each child’s love of learning by cultivating academic excellence, emotional intelligence, and social engagement.
Cristina Moreno was born in Bogotá, Colombia. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Childhood Education with an emphasis on Basic Primary from Francisco José de Caldas University. She specializes in early literacy skills and children’s reading. Cristina grew up surrounded by writers, artists, journalists, and other people who influenced her vocation to become an innovative and creative teacher, as well as a critical thinker. She loves to work with children and is excited to see the personal development and potential in all of her students.
Prior to joining The Magellan International School community, Cristina has worked with the Department of Education in the Mayor’s Office of Bogotá. She served as a teacher and a librarian in different public schools where she implemented a transdisciplinary literacy program for young children. Cristina has also designed learning material for new readers. In 2013, she founded a literacy club for middle school readers. Cristina is interested in learning about children’s experiences and needs in order to enrich learning content. She considers today’s children to be curious, honest, playful, and outgoing by nature. She believes children show enormous potential if they are offered an education focused on making them autonomous individuals, as well as active members of their communities.
Malena Chavez was born in Lima, Peru. She has been married to her husband, Paolo since 1994. She has two children, Fernando, who is currently studying at Texas State University, and Andrea, who is currently a student at New York University. She moved to Texas in 2007, and before that she lived in Florida for 14 years.
She has always enjoyed working with children. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Peru at the “Universidad Nacional de San Marcos”. She got her National CDA degree in Early Childhood Education from Palm Beach Community College. She has completed the Director Credential Classes along with additional courses in education every year. She has been working in Early Childhood Education field since 1994 and before that she was working as a teacher in her country.
Norma graduated from Pan-America University in Mexico City with a Bachelor degree in Bilingual Education and a Master’s degree in Family Counseling from the University of the Americas. She taught the first half of her career at the American School Foundation as a bilingual preschool teacher assistant for 4 years and lead teacher for over ten years. Then she accepted positions in China where she taught the IB PYP/MYP programs in Beijing International School (BISS) and Xiamen International School as a second grade, middle school Social Studies/ESOL teacher and as a guidance counselor. Returning to Mexico, she worked at a variety of schools as a high school/ preschool teacher and administrator.
In 2014 she moved to Georgetown, Texas with her husband and twin daughters who attend East View High School. For seven years, she was also a head counselor and instructor at the Culver Woodcraft Summer Leadership Schools and Camps. In her free time, she enjoys cooking and baking Mexican food, painting, meditating, photography, travelling, tending an herb garden, and visiting the beach with her family.
Lead Teacher & Kinder Grade Level Leader
Mave Martinez was born in Caracas, Venezuela. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in
Early Childhood Education from the Jose Maria Vargas University in Caracas and her
Master’s Degree in Exceptional Students Education from Nova University in Florida. She has
also attended ARC Broward Learning Institute, where she completed coursework specialized
in behavioral analysis. Mave has been in education for the past 22 years. She has
experience teaching preschool and kindergarten. She started working as a teacher assistant
at the same school from which she graduated.
She then moved into a lead teacher role and later became the preschool curriculum
coordinator. Her experience as a preschool coordinator prompted her to create a team
project to encourage values in children including tolerance, collaboration and respect. This
was achieved through the use of books and puppets. Mave’s preschool work in Florida
involved implementing Visible Thinking Routines (Projects by Howard Garner and David
Perkins) from Harvard University. In this project, the students were exposed to different
thinking routines that help them increase their cognitive capacities. She worked in the
Cambridge School at Weston where she was a lead teacher in a bilingual classroom.
Through these experiences, she gained an understanding of the cognitive development
benefits of interdisciplinary education and the second language acquisition process. She also
has experience as a lead teacher for special needs students (Autism, Down Syndrome,
ADHD and cerebral palsy). Recently, she has worked as a teacher shadow in a Montessori
school. Mave’s hobbies include going to the gym, spending time with her family and friends
and getting to know different cultures and people. She is a professional, enthusiastic and
caring teacher who has a huge passion for teaching and learning.
Patty Guerroro was born in Brownsville, Texas, but was raised and received her early education in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico. Leaving her hometown for college, Patty earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Ciencias de la Educación from the Universidad de Monterrey, a Catholic university in Nuevo Leon, Mexico. After completing her degree, Patty returned to Matamoros where she taught Social Sciences at the secondary level. She also taught courses in Child Development and Learning Differences at the Centro Universitario del Noreste.
Patty came to Austin and participated in grant funded research which led to a full scholarship for a Master’s Degree in Education at the University of Texas at Austin. By enrolling in additional coursework, she also obtained certification in Bilingual Special Education. Patty has been a pre-school teacher at many different non-profit organizations in Austin and has worked most recently as a substitute teacher at AISD before joining MIS. Patty is the proud mother of three daughters.
Kindergarten Assistant Teacher
David was born and raised in Los Angeles. He has worked in education for six years in many roles including acting as a language tutor for students of all backgrounds at the university and K-12 levels. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in English Studies from California State University, Chico, and is also Teacher of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) certified.
After moving to Austin in 2021, he found Magellan International School and started working in the After School Care program. Soon after he was subbing all over the campus, and became familiar with the staff, students, and school community. He enjoyed the experience and atmosphere so much that he applied to take on a larger role at the school.
Preschool Teaching Assistant
Deysy Velandia was born and raised in Colombia. She graduated from Universidad Francisco de Paula Santander as Licensed Accountant with an emphasis in Continuing Education to Cooperative Organizations. Prior to moving to Texas, Deysy worked as an accountant for large commercial projects and as an Administrative Assistant for a foundation in Colombia that uses music to aid the development and improvement of the quality of life of children, adolescents and youth people in vulnerable areas. She has also collaborated and partnered with media companies, governments and private companies to contribute with feeding, continuing education and recreation of displaced children.
Deysy has been a fantastic substitute teacher at Magellan since the start of the 2020-2021 school year which has allowed her to become familiar with the IB program and school community and values. She is married and loves to enjoy her spare time with her husband, kids and friends; traveling around Texas, appreciating nature by hiking trails, swimming rivers, and exploring the Austin atmosphere.
Art Teacher, PP3 - 2nd Grade
Dan Kaplan received his BFA from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. After working for several years as a visual artist, he returned to school and obtained his K-12 art teacher certification at Carlow University. He has spent his professional life working as an educator, artist, and musician.
Dan believes that art is a great way for students to express and nourish their ideas. Every student, from the most literal-minded to the most abstract thinker, can find their place in the art room. The elementary years are a great time to explore these possibilities. For the past several years, Dan has been working in Austin as a visual artist and musician, and enjoys being a teacher at Magellan International School.
Drama & Spanish Language Acquisition Teacher, Teaching Assistant
Luis “Lucho” Aya graduated from the Higer Arts Academy Asab Bogota in 1996. As a theater director, he has staged over 25 productions successfully in the most prestigious theaters of Colombia. Luis has repeatedly been invited to represent his country at the Iberoamerican Theater Festival (considered the most important theater festival in the world today). He has taught theater and art at the University ASAB and at Francisco José de Caldas in Bogotá and the University of Valle del Cauca, Colombia.
Luis has also worked as a middle and high school theater teacher at The Gimnasio Fontana in Bogotá, where he worked for five years. He served as a professor of a theater arts workshop for children and youth for over seven years at National Theatre Foundation. Luis has specialized in children’s theater primary to enrich the lives of children and their families through this art form. Luis is dedicated to the inspiration of this new generation of theater lovers.
Music Teacher, Preschool and Lower Primary School
Rolando Ibañez has a degree in Music from the National Pedagogical University of Colombia. The emphasis on which he focused his career are drums. Thanks to his profession and his career he has ventured into other instruments such as guitar, bass and piano, the latter being one of his favorites.
His experience as a music teacher is 14 years. He has worked in different schools in Bogotá, Colombia, such as: Colegio Liceo Edad de Oro, Colegio Americano de Bogotá and Fontán Capital School, developing different musical projects, Choirs, Tunas, musical groups of different genres, festivals, concerts, etc.
In 2010, he started working at Colegio Gimnasio del Norte, which is certified by the international baccalaureate in the PYP, MYP and DP programs. There he held the position of head of the music department, PYP and MYP teacher, director of the school’s symphony orchestra, conformed by more than 120 students. He has participated in short films as a support to students who are in the film program of the Diploma acting and writing music scores. At Gimnasio del Norte he got passionate about the International Baccalaureate and decided to do a post-graduate in the university Camilo José Cela of Spain with the title of “Expert in International Education”, acquiring his certificate of teaching and learning in the IB. He currently has 8 years of experience within the international Baccalaureate programs and is in initial training of IBEN to be a workshop and visiting member of the International Baccalaureate.
Rolando is passionate about music education as a fundamental part of the integral development of every human being and that is why he has dedicated himself for more than 14 years to this profession. Now, together with his wife, who is also a graduate in Basic Primary with an emphasis on Spanish Language and their two children, undertakes this beautiful experience in “The Magellan International School”
Lower Primary School Physical Education Teacher
Rubi achieved a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from the University Of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. She has twelve years of experience working with children. Rubi previously worked at Hudson Bend Middle School in the Special Education Department for the Lake Travis district.
Prior to working at Lake Travis, Rubi was the Physical Education Specialist at the International School of Texas. Rubi was a founding member of the International School of Texas. Early on in Rubi’s career she was an Education Assistant at Pflugerville High School.
Rubi grew up in Sinton, Texas which is north of Corpus Christi. She has two brothers and three sisters. In her free time Rubi enjoys working out and spending time outdoors.
Alessia Bulsara grew up in a multicultural family, living in her father’s native India for five years before residing in Houston, Texas with her mother’s Catalan family. She received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology from the University of Houston, later returning to obtain her Masters of Education in Counseling. Alessia is currently a Licensed Professional Counselor, as well as a certified teacher, in the state of Texas and is also working towards becoming credentialed as a Registered Play Therapist.
Alessia’s passion for counseling children and families only grew as she completed her practicum hours for her master’s degree, and later stayed on to continue working as a counseling intern, at a child psychologist’s private practice in Houston. There, Alessia was able to attain experience and clinical skills providing individual, group, and dyad counseling services, both in office and in the school setting. Following this, she worked as a Professional Educator at the Monarch School and Institute for two years before moving into the role of a Therapeutic Coach, providing students with neurological differences individualized social, emotional and self-regulation/management support. Alessia simultaneously worked with children and families in a play therapy private practice in Houston, providing individual counseling services, parent support and online resources.
Alessia primarily utilizes a child centered therapeutic approach when working with children, meeting the child where they are at. She truly believes in the importance of a strong foundational relationship in order to provide support to the child and their family, and works as partners with parents, teachers and other supports in the child’s life to create a tailored, consistent and unique plan which focuses on the whole child.
In her spare time, Alessia enjoys travelling and exploring new places, yoga, and photography. She is very excited to be a part of the Magellan team.
Primary Innovation & Design Teacher
Sophia has more than 20 years of experience in education in both public and private schools. She graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in Elementary Education and holds certifications in Special Education and ESL. Her passion is to help students become creative problem solvers and independent thinkers.
Marion Rocco earned a Bachelor of Arts in Education & Child Study from Smith College in Northampton, MA. Her first job after college was working for the acclaimed author and illustrator Eric Carle. It was through this work in his studio that she discovered the magic and power of picture books. Marion returned to school and completed the Master of Science in Information Studies from The University of Texas at Austin. Since graduating, she has worked in school and public libraries and as an Austin ISD Program Specialist focusing on teacher and librarian professional development. She is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor at The University of Texas at Austin where she teaches an undergraduate course in Children’s Literature.
Marion’s interest in global and international literature keeps her active in professional organizations including the American Library Association and the United States Board on Books for Young People (USBBY). She served on the Batchelder Award Committee for best international children’s book in 2014 and co-chaired the USBBY conference that took place in Austin in 2019. Marion has presented on international and bilingual books at the International Board on Books for Young People, International Literacy Association, and Texas Library Association conferences. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Learning Technologies from the University of North Texas.
Nurse, Anderson Lane
Deepa was raised in Toronto, Canada where she successfully completed her Bachelors
of Science in Nursing degree. She has been a nurse for the last 18 years, 16 of which
were spent in the Emergency department at the University Health Network (UHN), one
of Canada’s top research and teaching hospitals. During her time at UHN, Deepa also
served as the Nurse Educator for the emergency department and has completed a
couple of research fellowship projects to improve patient safety. She pursued her
passion for teaching by becoming a clinical course director for undergrads and
international nursing students at York University.
Deepa enjoys practicing hot yoga, hiking, cooking, baking and travelling. She currently
has a first grader at Magellan and is looking forward to expanding her role
professionally at Magellan International School.
Primary Instructional Coach & Assistant PYP Coordinator
Paola Samaniego is from Quito-Ecuador, and this is her fifteenth year teaching. She has has experience working with children between the ages of two months and eight years old. This is her tenth year teaching Spanish. Paola received a BS in Early Childhood Education and Developmental Psychology from Keene State College in New Hampshire. Paola later earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Jaen’s University in Spain. Paola loves the PYP program and implementing it in the classroom. In the last year she has been learning more about sensory integration and self regulation. She is a firm believer in differentiation in the classroom, every child learns differently and as a teacher she wants to be able to provide many opportunities in order to acquire the skills needed to become lifelong learners!
She believes the inquiry based program works for children of all ages, but especially with young children who have that natural curiosity and desire to learn how the world around them works. She welcomes all your input and support throughout the school year!
Learning Specialist - K-3
Allison is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana. Most recently she served in administration at Langston Hughes Academy Charter School in New Orleans as the Response to Intervention Coordinator. She has taught K-5 English at the International School of Denver, the Harriet Tubman Montessori Charter School, and the International School of Louisiana. Allison taught English at Magellan from from 2018-2019 and colleagues are delighted at her return.
Allison enjoys working in a multi-cultural environment, building meaningful relationships with students, families, and colleagues. She is passionate about advocating for and supporting students with learning differences and strives to instill this enthusiasm in her students through identifying unique learning styles, interests, and talents.
Allison holds a Bachelor of Science degree in History and English from Mississippi College and a Master of Arts in Teaching Degree from the University of New Orleans. She holds a dual certification in elementary education and special education.
Allison enjoys reading and cooking in her free time.
Patty joins Magellan by way of San Antonio, but has lived in many states and overseas as part of a military family. She has 31 years of teaching experience and is certified in early childhood, early childhood special education, and elementary education.
She has a true passion for working with the youngest learners and supporting their progress in the classroom. Helping each child grow in all areas of their development is a challenge she is honored to accept. She strives to nurture a community of learners who thrive in a safe, positive, and fun environment.
Patty and her husband are proud parents of two accomplished sons. Her elder son is a master’s student at Yale University in Choral Conducting and her younger son is also pursuing a graduate degree in music at the University of Notre Dame. She enjoys traveling, cuisine, camping, hiking, and playing Pokemon Go with her family, reading, music and spending time with family and friends.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Accounting from the University of Texas at San Antonio and a master’s degree in Educational Administration from Texas A&M, Kingsville.