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ISBerne AG Board of Directors

A unique combination of members on the ISBerne AG Governing Board gives perspective and balance to the business decisions involved in operating a thriving school. Four of the board members are representatives of our parent company, Pansophic Learning UK, and three are elected from the ISBerne parent community.

Maria Szalay
Cofounder and Chief Operating Officer, Pansophic Learning UK

Maria Szalay serves as the ISBerne AG Chairman of the Board and brings more than 20 years of strategy, operations, and development capability to ISBerne. Currently, she is the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Pansophic Learning UK. Previously part of K12 where she was instrumental in growing the company from a pre-revenue startup to a $900 million public company. In this time, Ms Szalay served in a variety of roles including product management, product development, operations, strategy, and corporate development.

Before joining K12, she was practice director at Operon Partners, an e-business consulting firm where she led consulting teams assisting clients with business strategy, product management, and business transformation consulting services. She worked directly in client organisations developing business plans to obtain funding and assisted with the implementation of online initiatives, with specialized expertise in integrating these solutions with their bricks-and-mortar business.

Ron Packard, CEO and Founder of Pansophic Learning UK

Ron Packard is CEO and founder of Pansophic Learning, the global technology-based education company that owns ISBerne, Ron Packard is highly regarded in his field. He is well known as an educator, entrepreneur, and visionary and is the author of ‘Education Transformation’ – a book that demonstrates why technology is critical to the future of education.

Mr Packard was the long-time CEO and founder of K12 Inc and in that role oversaw the growth of K12 from an idea to a billion-dollar business. It is now one of the world’s leading education companies. Before K12, Mr Packard was vice-president of Knowledge Universe and CEO of Knowledge Schools, one of the USA’s largest early-childhood education companies.

He was instrumental in the successful investments in Learn Now, Children’s School USA, Leapfrog, TEC, and Children’s Discovery Center. He has also received the Education Industry Association’s James P. Boyle Entrepreneurial Leadership Award.

Martha Burnige
Executive Vice President, Pansophic Learning UK

Martha Burnige is a senior education executive with more than 10 years’ experience of working with schools and education institutions. After seven years as a lawyer in London with two leading education law firms, Stone King and Veale Wasbrough Vizards, she became the in-house lawyer for Prospects Services, a large UK education and training group with a turnover of more than £80m.

In 2013 she was recruited by a former client, Mosaica Education, an international education company operating charter schools in the US and private schools overseas, where she worked on international business development focused on the Middle East. In July 2015 Mosaica was taken over by Pansophic Learning. As Executive Vice President, Martha Burnige is responsible for all UK operations and is a trustee and a member of the executive team of Aurora Academies Trust, a group of five UK schools sponsored by Pansophic Learning.

As well as being a governing board member of ISBerne, she is also a board member of iCademy Middle East.

Steve Goetzinger, Senior Vice President, Finance & Accounting, Pansophic Learning UK

Steve Goetzinger has a broad experience in all aspects of accounting and financial management. Steve is a hands-on manager with expertise in small to mid-size high-growth companies. He has vast experience in education, software technology, service and manufacturing industries.

Steve’s specialities are Financial and SEC reporting, GAAP accounting, IPO, mergers and acquisitions, financial analysis, technical research, accounting software implementation, taxation, risk management and equity administration.

Annelies Buysse, ISBerne PSA Board Member

Annelies Buysse Recently joined ISBerne from Belgium. Annelies has a Master in Applied Economics from University of Leuven, Belgium and a Master in Economics from the University of Montpellier, France. She has work experience in European accounting and controls as a Senior Financial Auditor, Regional CFO and Plant Controller at the multinational corporations; FedEx, Deloitte and Crown Cork. She also worked as an independent consultant supporting multinationals in financial management, reporting, controlling and budgeting.

“I appreciate this opportunity to give back to this welcoming community and contribute my skills and experience in finance for the benefit of the school. For me, the PSA is a structured approach that enables regular, open and honest but respectful communication between school management, staff and parents. It’s a partnership in which all stakeholders work for the same goal: to have a school environment where our children can flourish and become the best possible version of themselves.”

Margaret Griffiths, ISBerne PSA Board Member

Margaret Griffiths has a Postgraduate Diploma from the University of Gdansk in European Union Law, an MA in International Relations from Warsaw University and is currently studying the role of the government in the world economy and the effects of tax cuts on budget deficit through Columbia University. She has held various positions in the Polish Ministry of Finance, starting from Assistant of the Head of the Legal Department to Counsellor to the Undersecretary of State, Head of Polish Customs. Main duties included advising the Undersecretary of State on all matters related to customs, conducting research, collecting, analysing and evaluation of data, etc. After moving to the UK in 2004 she became an Independent Consultant researching for McKenzie Security Consultancy UK and various polish-based companies.

“I believe that today’s students need “twenty-first-century skills,” like critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, and digital literacy but also, they need a robust educational system where the teachers are professionally trained, motivated and well supported.”

Sonmi Park, ISBerne PSA Board Member

Sonmi Park is a medical doctor and works in the pharmaceutical industry in drug development and medical information. She recently joined a small company which is currently setting up teams in Switzerland and in other European countries.

“I have learnt that this community appreciates every minute and every hand we offer and that each contribution adds up to a great idea, project, or event, which is the foundation of this community and ensures the long-term success of the school and our children. I am honoured to represent this great ISBerne community as a PSA Board Member ”


My kids love going to school – That’s what matters!

It is the teachers at ISBerne that make the school. They are fantastic.

My child is really enjoying the school. I think the Middle Years’ Program brings students out of the “child stage” and into the “teenager stage” quite well.

The teachers have quite a challenging task to balance so many different learning needs on a daily basis, and they seem to do it with ease.

From the bottom of my heart; thank you. Our stay in Switzerland has been fantastic thanks to ISBerne!

The teachers at ISBerne are amazing. My children have been very lucky to have experienced so many teachers over the last four years.

Having joined less than a year ago, my child is happy to go to school every day and is making great progress academically, showing greater confidence and skills development.

The International Baccalaureate teachers give above and beyond the level of excellent support for IB students with help during breaks and may extra hours to seek support and help. My child’s teachers have worked hard to help my child succeed.

My son loves learning about the countries and cultures of his classmates; this is priceless.

The people who work in the cafeteria are amazing. They make the cafeteria such a welcoming environment. Always a smile on their faces.

The teachers are very easily reached at break times and via email to provide feedback on assignments. They have been an incredible support system!

ISBerne is vibrant, multi-cultural and open.

The teachers are passionate about their subjects and really focus on the children’s individual learning.

Our child enjoys ISBerne very much and feels comfortable at the school.

My child loves the cafeteria food and he has already tried so many new flavours.

ISBerne is perfect; everything thing works well!

The true multi-cultural community of ISBerne is a huge strength of the school. Students learn to debate each other and learn new points of view respectfully. A globally-minded child is very valuable.

We are very pleased with the teachers in our son’s Diploma Program. The teachers are very committed to improving our son’s academic progress.

We appreciate ISBerne’s location in a safe and centrally located country that ensures diverse learning and sporting opportunities.

The school gives a warm welcome to international children, focusing on social development and open-minded education.

I love our new cafeteria! There is always a variety of delicious food and the staff are incredibly friendly!

We appreciate ISBerne’s unique qualities – such as its small size, the interaction between classes and year groups, the attention to a holistic inquisitive approach to learning.

The ‘After School Activities’ have been outstanding this year – thank you, we really appreciate it.

ISBerne encourages children to think and challenge and not just accept.

My children truly enjoy learning about their classmates’ cultures and experiences. I hope they continue to be open-minded and tolerant when we return to the US.

ISBerne is truly international and yet homey.

I love the community feel at ISBerne.

My daughter loves school, and I have not once heard her complain about school and the environment. She has NEVER encountered bullying or disruptive behavior in class.

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