Kimberley Independent School

Administration Staff

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Ms. Kari, Principal

I am proud to be the principal of the Kimberley Independent School.  This is my  25th year in the education field.  These years have been very formative in my growth as an educator as it provided a solid foundation of quality leadership in both elementary curriculum and decision making.  In 2018 I was honored with the opportunity to become the principal of KIS which is a school that aligns with all my educational beliefs and passions. I enjoy my role as principal and  helping KIS grow as a whole.  The students and families of our school community are very important and I continue to enjoy getting each and every one better. When not at the school you will find me spending quality time with my family.


Ms. Ash, Operations Manager

I immigrated to Canada in 2005 from Scotland, where I worked as an Electrical Engineering Draughtsman and GIS Mapping Services Manager for Scottish Hydro Electric for 14 years. Once here, I built, owned and operated a licensed restaurant for 5 years. In the fall of 2013 I moved south to Kimberley for a lifestyle change and I've never looked back! This is my 8th year as Manager at KIS. I'm enthusiastic for the future, as I know that this town and school is growing and moving in the right direction.

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Ms. Sue Dobler

Bio to follow


Childcare Staff

Ms. Summer E.C.E.A.

Bio coming soon.

Ms. Donna, E.C.E.

I am an educator and mother of two children. I have been working in the ECE field on and off since 2000 in Alberta and in BC.  I believe children and people in general grow and learn best through play. Play can happen anywhere, however, I feel when play happens out in nature we grow and learn the most. I also believe children will only play when they feel secure and safe. I will provide that safe and secure environment for your children through kindness and respect.
I am looking forward to growing and learning with your children through safe, secure and respectful play, especially in the Kimberley great out door.

Ms. Mackenzie, E.C.E.

Hello! My name is Mackenzie, and I am excited to join the Kimberly Independent school family. I am a licensed early childhood educator, Special Needs Educator and Infant Toddler Educator. I am excited to explore and experience new discoveries with the children inside and outside of the classroom!

I have always believed that children deserve a fun, educational and hands on learning environment. My philosophy includes child lead activities, and supporting their individual strengths in the learning space. Being a young child can be stressful when major changes are going on in life, and communication towards other on what you need may be difficult. I have always had a strong pull to supporting a child’s social and emotional needs.

When I am not in the child care setting I enjoy spending time in the outdoors going on hikes, exploring lakes, hunting, trapping, and enjoying board games. I have recently moved to Cranbrook this summer from the Invermere area.

I look forward to meeting all of you!

Mr. Greg, E.C.E.

Hi my name is Greg, I’m originally from Australia but have spent the last 20 years living in Canada, including the past 2 and a half years here in BC. My background includes studying Social Work, community organizing, and freelance writing, and I have recently completed a Diploma of Early Childhood Education. I’m passionate about inclusion, play-based

learning, outdoor education, and finding creative ways to support holistic child development.

I’m an avid reader, loves getting crafty and creative, and likes to get outside any chance I get. My hobbies also include hiking, camping, snowshoeing, cooking, and collecting rocks

Ms. Kayla,

Bio coming soon.

Jodi Eskelin, E.C.E.A.

For over 15 years, I have worked with children and youth in a variety of capacities. I joined the KIS team 6 years ago and have appreciated the ample opportunities to share rich educational experiences with children. My passion for learning and love of the outdoors is shared with the students here at KIS, where curiosity begins when we step out our back door.  That love of being active in nature carries on in time spent with family and friends hiking, skiing, forest walks and river adventures! 

Ms. Heather E.C.E.A.

Heather is excited to join the KIS staff and to continue her love of lifelong learning. Heather and her husband moved from High River six years ago to be closer to nature.  Their daughters are in their mid-twenties, living in Alberta and exploring their own careers. Heather believes in living a passionate creative life and has shared that for over 30 years in her work as an educational assistant, camp counsellor, recreation leader, arts and dance instructor. Books are Heathers best friend with creative writing and potlucks in hot pursuit. Heather is looking forward to this new adventure!

Ms. Charity E.C.E. Extended Care

Bio Coming Soon.


Teaching Staff

The KIS Board


As a not-for profit charitable society, The Kimberley Independent School has a Board of Directors that oversees the governance of the school organization.  This group of volunteers is an essential part of the KIS team and is responsible for overseeing the school vision and ensuring the future of the school through solid strategic planning for the KIS community. 


Chair - Monica Baranski

Vice Chair -

Secretary - Lindsay Cuff

Treasurer - Bonnie Magbanua

Members at Large

Lisa Stemo

Lenka Broda

Leigh Anne Isaac


Ms. Katie, Kindergarten

Hi, my name is Katie and I have been living in the East Kootenay area since 2004. I finished my specialized elementary teaching degree in 2016 from UBCO in Kelowna and have been teaching in this area ever since.  I enjoy the outdoors, from mountain biking in the summer to backcountry touring in the winter, out in nature is defiantly my happy place. This passion spills over into my teaching, and has guided the way we learn and create in our class. I believe that there is no better teacher than mother nature herself, and I love watching my student's imagination, curiosity, and compassion flourish when learning outside.

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Ms. Martha, Grade 1/2

Hi, my name is Martha but you might know me as Ms Dippo.  I’m a Lakehead graduate who studied fine arts and education.  I lived on Vancouver Island as a child and spent my summers tree planting while I attended university.  My career started while I was living and working as a teacher in two British Columbia First Nations communities, Lelawagila in Kingcome Inlet and Nlakapamux in Lytton. These experiences taught me to focus on cultural values, connections with the land and traditional knowledge keepers. I believe that through the arts students can experience a sense of empowerment that can give voice and meaning to their lives. I am committed to fostering a caring atmosphere that supports students in their creativity, and promotes students in becoming innovative thinkers.


Mr. Charlie, Grade 2/3

I became a qualified teacher in the UK and have moved around teaching in Australia, Japan, Germany and Canada. I was an assistant principal in Australia for 5 years before taking up a position as a Senior Coach in Brunei, Borneo, developing teachers' pedagogy for nearly 3 years whilst working for the ministry of education. 

I have loved the opportunities that teaching has provided me and how it has broadened my life experiences and instilled a passion for lifelong learning. I wholeheartedly support the ethos at KIS and believe that children learn best when they are connected to their real world. We certainly try to fulfil this at KIS and it is truly satisfying to see children learning to engage with their community and natural surroundings, making it a better place. 

My family and I moved to Kimberley in 2019 after working overseas for a number of years. My wife and I wanted to provide our children with a place to call home and also a place that ticked the boxes for us. I am English and my wife is Australian and now we call this beautiful mountain town home; who wouldn't want to ski and bike and take advantage of everything that we have on our doorstep here?!


Ms. Brooke, Grade 4/5

Coming Soon

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Ms. Ronalea, Grade 6/7

I am currently entering my eleventh year of teaching.  I have had a variety of experiences in my career, Literacy Specialist Teacher, Prekindergarten Teacher, Program Director/Special Ed. Teacher, and now an Elementary/Middle school Teacher at KIS. I am passionate about exploring the outdoors, this is what sparked my move from Saskatchewan to Kimberley in August 2018. In my spare time, I am involved in performance arts and Search and Rescue and I enjoy any activity that can get me outside, specifically snowboarding, hiking and paddling on the beautiful lakes in the area.  I look forward to enhancing my knowledge of inquiry-based learning and applying it throughout the entire curriculum, and I am at the right school and community for that!

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Mme. Lorenza, French Teacher

I am the French teacher at KIS. I have a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Language with a minor in Italian Literature and Language; a Bachelor of Education in English and Italian from the University of Windsor, Ontario, and another Bachelor of Education (Continuing Education) from the York University in Toronto. I have been teaching for over 35 years in Ontario, B.C., and overseas in Turkey, Jordan, Scotland, and Saudi Arabia. I enjoy walking, hiking, snowshoeing, swimming, doing crafts, travelling, and reading lots of good books.

Education Assistants

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Ms. Allie, Education Assistant

I have been supporting elementary aged children in a variety of capacities over the past 6 years. I have training in therapeutic modalities and behaviour intervention and am passionate about my work as an EA. In my spare time you can find me on the ski hill or enjoying a hike nearby! 


Ms. Maya, Education Assistant

I graduated in 2019 from Selkirk secondary school with no idea In mind of what I would like to do after graduation. I decided to take the following year off which led me to make the decision that I would like to work with children. As of the 2020/2021 year I have started at COTR working towards getting my EA certificate. This is my first year working as an EA at KIS and I am so fortunate to be apart of such an amazing team


Ms. Aundrea, Education Assistant

Growing up in Kimberley I graduated from Selkirk, and moved to Seattle, Portland, Big Sky, San Diego and finally came back to Kimberley with my son.  

I enjoy living near the mountains where we can go camping, and explore the outdoors.

The benefits of working with children, allow me to watch them grow with more curiosity about their world.  Through my Education Assistant certification, I learned to guide children with learning difficulties by exploring different strategies that are available in the classroom and beyond.  Children posses great abilities that give us inspiration, honesty and humour to use in our everyday lives.  I chose KIS for the outdoor spirit of learning, while allowing your children to connect and grow with our community.


“Children inspire in me two sentiments — tenderness for who they are and respect for what they might become.” -Author Unknown 

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Ms. Lisa, Education Assistant

This is my second year at KIS and I bring with me 7 years experience in the education field. I believe all children have the right to succeed and I hope with my help they can better express themselves and be heard. I enjoy finding each child’s strengths and building them up. I love the outdoors and wish to share my knowledge and experiences with your children.


Ms. Lisa D., Education Assistant

After graduating in 2018 from Selkirk Secondary, I spent two years studying engineering at Carleton University in Ottawa before coming back to my hometown of Kimberley. I work as an EA with the school aged students as well as with the childcare children, and I am loving it! Working with these students and children has helped develop my passion for teaching and I hope to further my education in this field in the coming years.


Board of Directors

As a not-for profit charitable society, The Kimberley Independent School has a Board of Directors that oversees the governance of the school organization.  This group of volunteers is an essential part of the KIS team and is responsible for overseeing the school vision and ensuring the future of the school through solid strategic planning for the KIS community. 


Chair - Monica Baranski

Vice Chair - Matt Parker

Secretary - Kelly Bellingham

Treasurer - Bonnie Magbanua

Members at Large

Mark Slater

Erin Edison

Sophie Larsen

Kristin Marshall