Meet The Team

Quintessentially Team

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Jess Harris

Head of Education, Global  – As the Head of Education, Jess is predominantly responsible for the development of our successful consultancy programs and the expansion of our continually growing global network. She is an enthusiastic educationalist, who’s passion for excellence is apparent in every aspect of her working life. Under Jess, Quintessentially Education has successfully guided and placed hundreds of students from all around the world into prestigious educational institutions, helping children from nursery age, right up to university. Jess’ own consultancy specialism lies within the spheres of higher education, and her personal educational background saw her graduate with a First Class Honours degree. Jess has ingrained a student centred approach throughout the business, and she is passionate about helping each and every individual to reach their full potential, no matter what challenges they may face. Her energetic and confident style of leadership, combined with her unrivalled knowledge of the UK & US educational systems, means that Jess is ideally positioned to lead the forward-thinking team at Quintessentially Education.

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Amelia Buckworth

Senior Educational Coordinator, UK – As the Senior Education Coordinator for Quintessentially Education, Amelia plays a significant role in both the tuition and consultancy sides of the business and is regularly the key point of contact for many of the families we work with. One of Amelia’s key specialisms is the management of private tuition placements, with her extensive experience in this area enabling her to ensure we are selecting tutors of the highest quality and that they are correctly matched to the specific needs of our clients. Within the consultancy arm, Amelia supports families with both school and university placements, in which her own personal education experience (Amelia attended Oundle School, and holds an upper second class degree from a Russell Group university) has shaped her insightful understanding of the UK education system. Amelia’s strong interpersonal and organisational skills ideally position her to offer personal support to families and students across the board, and in line with Quintessentially Education’s child-centred approach she ensures families achieve the highest level of service.

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Charlotte Hansford 

Education Coordinator, UK – Charlotte is the most recent member to join the team here at Quintessentially and is involved with coordinating both our school and university advisory services for both international and UK clients. She helps support across the team with all other educational matters including both consulting and tuition.  Charlotte’s own educational background (including holding an upper second class honours in History from University of Nottingham), along with her strong administrative and organisational skills, allows her to guide clients who are less familiar with the UK educational system through offering her invaluable support and assistance.

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Josephine Law

Education Coordinator, Hong Kong Josephine studied at Cardiff Metropolitan University and graduated with an upper second class degree in Psychology (BSc). She is the first port of call for all education enquiries in Hong Kong, and manages client liaisons and coordination of student programmes. Having grown up living in five different countries across the world, Josephine developed strong problem solving and organizational skills, as well as a comprehensive understanding of global education systems.

Charles Milne

Senior Education Consultant, UK

Charles has worked in education for nearly 40 years. Born in Australia, he was at school and university in Sydney before moving to Oxford for postgraduate studies in 1977. After three years as a Research Lecturer at Christ Church, Oxford, and brief stints teaching at Dean Close School and Stowe, he went on to spend most of his career teaching French and English at Eton, where he was also a house master and Tutor for Admissions.

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Dee Francken

Senior Education Consultant, UK

Dee has extensive experience in junior and senior school education in both the state and independent sectors. She is one of Quintessentially Education’s top consultants and can provide a unique insight when it comes to the admissions process. Dee was previously Senior Teacher at the North London Collegiate School (NLCS), one of the UK’s leading schools and the only school twice named Sunday Times Independent School of the Year. She then became the Headmistress of NLCS Junior School, giving her invaluable experience of selection and education provision across the age ranges from 4 to 18.

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Charlotte Faber

Schools Consultant, UK

Charlotte was Headmistress of the prestigious Garden House School in London since 2013, where she worked since 2006. During her time as Head, her priority was helping each and every student on their journey towards reaching their potential, achieving excellent academic results to top day and UK boarding schools. Charlotte is familiar with the all stages of formal education, and she is especially well positioned to advise on the important first years at school. In addition to her current role as a consultant, Charlotte has been a Governor at Heathfield School, Ascot, a girl’s 11-18 boarding and day school and remains closely affiliated with IAPS through their mentoring for new heads scheme. She is a true industry expert and can offer valuable insight into on everything from the application process to the entry examinations. She prides herself on finding and placing each and every student in the right school.

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David Smith

Schools Consultant, UK

Dr David Smith is a highly qualified and experienced educationalist. Over a 30 year career in education, David has taught History, been a Head of Department, Housemaster, Registrar, Head of International Recruitment and Deputy Headmaster in leading UK independent schools including Sevenoaks, Stowe and Sherborne. With experience of teaching IGCSE, A Level and IB, leading Oxbridge preparation and interviewing, David has a detailed understanding of the UK education sector. He is ideally positioned to help with selecting and applying for the most suitable schools for each student. With four children of his own (who have all been to independent schools and universities in the UK), David can advise both professionally and as a parent having faced the same questions that you are asking with informed and impartial advice about the best options available.

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Rose De Pass

Early Years Consultant, UK

Rose is an Early Years specialist, holding a First Class honours degree in Early Years Education. Rose consolidated her studies by working in the prestigious Miss Daisy’s nursery in Belgravia, and has developed a strong relationship with this school and many others. It is these personal relationships with the heads of many top schools that sets Rose apart from other consultants. She continues to refine her understanding of the processes by which young children learn, and her knowledge allows her to find schools that will best suit each child. With over 10 years’ experience in private education, Rose strives to be a practical and grounding support, to help shed light on the process, and to ensure parents are making considered and informed decisions about their children’s future (especially those who are unfamiliar with the English school system). Her extensive knowledge of the early years sector has resulted in many successful applications for Quintessentially Education’s clients.

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Alexandra Bradley

Early Years Consultant, UK

Alexandra is an early years specialist with a distinguished record of delivering first-class education. Having taught in some of London’s most prestigious schools and nurseries, Alexandra’s first-hand experience is an invaluable asset to her engagement with families planning for the earliest stages of education. Alexandra was previously the inaugural Headmistress of the esteemed Miss Daisy’s Nursery, Knightsbridge, where she became well known for her supportive mentoring to parents – giving honest feedback on their child’s development, frank advice when required, and carefully considered recommendations on next educational steps. Alexandra has also previously taught as a class teacher at Pembridge Hall School, and as a teaching assistant at Faulkner House for Girls. Her own educational background includes holding a BA at the University of Durham and an IPGCE in Primary Education from the University of Buckingham. Alexandra is passionate about the importance children’s individual learning journeys; she is fully dedicated to helping parents make the right choices for their child’s developmental needs, forged in a decade of experience in early years and primary education in some of London’s top private schools.

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Sarah Alakija

Education Consultant, UK

Educated at Cambridge, where she read Law, Sarah has worked in independent schools for just over twenty years. During this time Sarah held a variety of roles, including Vice Principle and Head of Careers. She is now a fulltime academic consultant and she also works part-time with a leading London independent girls’ day school, heading up an award winning Careers department. She has extensive experience in guiding students through applications for a variety of subjects, with special expertise in social sciences. Experienced with applications to Oxford and Cambridge, Sarah has authored four editions of the Trotman guide “Getting into Oxford and Cambridge.” Latterly she has helped to design the curriculum for an online course for international students wishing to make British university applications. She also presents engaging workshops to students and parents, helping them to prepare the best application to university, as well as helping teachers, both in the UK and abroad, to construct references for their students. Sarah is a highly experienced consultant, and she will able to support you through all steps of the application process.

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Alexander Style

Education Consultant, UK

After obtaining a First Class degree in Chinese studies from Oxford University, Alex spent six years working for Swire Pacific in the Coca Cola system across a variety of roles in China and Hong Kong. He left the Swire Group in 2018 to found his own company in Shanghai manufacturing electric motorcycles, but he continues to indulge his passion for mentoring and coaching. Alex speaks fluent Mandarin and has worked across different continents, cultures and in different languages. He has extensive experience and success in preparing clients for interviews, be they corporate, University or Sixth Form entry. On a personal level, Alex is energetic, engaging & very approachable. Having worked across the world and managing a global team, he is well placed to offer constructive advice and guidance no matter what your career aims may be.

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Dr John Woolf

University Consultant, UK

Graduating as a twice-awarded BA History Scholar from Cambridge University, Dr Woolf was subsequently awarded a fully-funded PhD scholarship at the University of London. During his doctoral research, Dr Woolf taught at the University of London while assisting students with Oxbridge applications. He also worked on a number of BBC historical documentaries, as a Researcher and Assistant Producer, before writing with the much-loved public intellectual, Stephen Fry, on an Audible book entitled, ‘Stephen Fry?s Victorian Secrets’. This has won acclaim from The Times, The Guardian, BBC Radio 4, and Graham Norton, while topping the Audible charts in America and England. Dr Woolf is also working on a nineteenth-century book to be published internationally in May 2019 entitled ‘The Wonders’. Represented by a top literary agent and publisher, Dr Woolf continues to focus on education and educational consultancy. He has published with CAPA: The Global Education Network and worked with numerous agencies, including Quintessentially Education, Blue Tutors, UK Study Centre and Grosvenor Tutors, working with students applying to Oxbridge and tutoring BA, MA and PhD students at different UK Universities. He also teaches regularly at a top private school in London, Latymer Upper, where he prepares GCSE and A-Level students for their exams and University applications. Dr Woolf is also an elected representative, a Councillor in the London Borough of Islington.

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Christopher Roma

US Education Specialist

Christopher Roma attended Harvard University and graduated with an honours degree in Sociology. He went on to work in the New York City Department of Education, coordinating and running the Gifted & Talented Program, and is now an expert in SAT & ACT preparation, college applications, Harvard interviews and the competitive landscape of US college admissions. Christopher is currently Managing Director – Greater China at A-List Education, a leading global consultancy firm specialising in test prep and college advisory.

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Alan Lo

Senior Education Consultant, Hong Kong

Alan has spent the last decade working as a teacher in Hong Kong, with the last five as the Head of Department for Science at the American International School. Prior to that he was Head of Department for Science and Mathematics at the International College Hong Kong and Singapore International Hong Kong. Throughout these years, Alan has gained extensive experience in teaching a broad range of international curriculums, including IB Diploma (SL/HL), UK National Curriculum and IGCSE, Singapore Curriculum and the US Common Core and AP college. Hence Alan is able to provide valuable insight into both the different schools and academic pathways available in the APAC region. Previous to his time in Hong Kong, Alan gained experience teaching at a large inner city suburban school in Perth, Western Australia, where he also worked as a consultant for designing the curriculum of chemistry courses and as a Physics examination marker for State University Entrance Examinations. Alan has found his time as a teacher to be particularly rewarding, and feels passionate in continuing to guide, advise and support both students and parents in helping them on their journey to reach their full academic potential.

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Sarah de Louwere

Education Consultant, China

Sarah graduated from Cambridge with a Masters degree in Education and has taught all ages from 3 to 14 in London, Tokyo, Hong Kong and now Shanghai. With a specialism in Special Educational Needs she has tutored children with individual requirements. For the past 10 years, Sarah has been the Head of Lower School at a top London Prep School, whilst supporting the set up and running of successful private nurseries in the city. Sarah has supported families relocating to and from Asia and the UK, and now that she is living in China and working for an International School in Shanghai, Sarah is well placed to advise from Asia.

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Juliet Fairclough

Education Consultant, China

Juliet holds a Masters degree in Psychology from the University of Edinburgh and a Primary PGDE from Hong Kong University, where she also spent two years studying to achieve HSK Level 4 Mandarin. Juliet has extensive experience teaching in both IB PYP and National Curriculum schools in Hong Kong, but her main focus has been preparing children for entry into highly competitive Hong Kong Schools and to the UK at 7/8+, 11+ and 13+ entry points. Juliet writes school reviews for The Good Schools Guide and is able to offer families practical relocation advice (going both in and out of Hong Kong) as well as assessments, interview practice and parent consultations. As a parent of three bilingual children, who were brought up in Hong Kong but are now boarding in West Sussex, Juliet has first-hand experience of the challenges Hong Kong and expatriate parents face and is on hand to support and advise them.

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Caroline Drewett

HK Schools Consultant 

Caroline is a British education expert based in HK. She is the founder and CEO of the Coast to Coast Group, whose educational arm specialises in running summer camps and British experimental learning experiences around the world. With a BA and an MSc from the University of Nottingham and King’s College London respectively, Caroline is an education contributor for the SCMP, as well as Tatler Asia. She sits on the board of the Royal Geographical Society of HK, aiding their Schools Outreach Programme, and has recently taken up honorary roles at CUHK to further scholarships and at HKBU as an adviser. Caroline’s specialities include British education, boarding, and excellence in pastoral care, and she lives at Harrow International School HK with her husband Mike, who is a Housemaster of a Prep Boarding House there.

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Caroline Cohen

Consultant Educational Psychologist 

Caroline has been a Consultant Educational Psychologist across both independent and Local Authority services since 1998, allowing the development of a clear understanding of different systems of schooling and learning approaches. She has worked solely as an independent practitioner since 2016. Caroline is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and is both an Associate Fellow and Chartered Educational Psychologist with the British Psychological Society (BPS). She has had opportunities to work with children and adults from the ages of 2 to 26 years of age, often within very multi-cultural environments. She has a proven ability to work in a multi-professional capacity and to work successfully and efficiently with children, young adults and parents alike in order to enhance learning experiences and allow pupils to demonstrate their true potential. She offers the full range of specialist psychological assessments and has a strong interest in the identification and support of students with specific learning difficulties. Caroline aims to bring immediate value and strengths whilst constantly striving to develop her current skills further.

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Dr Susanna Pinkus

SEN Consultant 

As a highly qualified and experienced specialist, consultant and author, Susi Pinkus’s expertise is in special educational needs. Principally, she is absolutely committed to ensuring the best provision for all young people but particularly those who have special needs and requirements. To achieve this, she works closely with parents and where appropriate, with the child themselves, as well as schools and allied professionals to facilitate a bespoke package of support. Susi’s support is sought from parents, located both in the UK and beyond, when needing guidance in areas such as selecting an initial school placement, enabling a successful transition between primary and secondary school phases and applying for an Education Health Care Plan. Each case is carefully assessed and support can be provided on a short term or longer term basis, depending on the needs of the child. Support can often be provided by Skype and telephone conversations as well as face to face meetings. Susi also works directly with schools wishing to audit their special education provision and creatively build capacity to best meet the needs of their students and school community.