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 9th 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. Linsey, Office Assistant

Bio to follow


Childcare Staff

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Ms. Summer E.C.E.A.

Bio coming soon.

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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.

My name is Greg and this will be my second year working as an Early Childhood Educator, as well as my second year here in the Bears Den at KIS.


Born in Australia, I have lived in Canada now for over 20 years, including the past 3+ years in Invermere. I have completed a Diploma of Early Childhood Education and started my Bachelor of Early Childhood Care and Education this Fall.

I believe that children are immensely capable and that each one learns in their own unique way; therefore, I see a big part of my job as being to pay close attention to their skills, knowledge, and theories and to find creative ways to support their growth and development. I am a fan of play-based learning, outdoor education, and open-ended materials, and I believe in the importance of creating a culture of collaboration and respect, both inside and outside the classroom. I believe that building strong and positive relationships with parents and families is essential, as well as finding ways to engage with the wider community. See you around the Platzl!



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Ms. Lindsay, E.C.E.

Bio coming soon.

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Ms. Chris, E.C.E.A.

Hi, my name is Chris.  I am really happy to be apart of the KIS  community.  I have recently moved to the East Kootenays with my family.  I am grateful to be immersed in nature and surrounded by the mountainous beauty.  My journey to KIS actually began fat biking in the nature park where I met a fellow teacher.   Besides appreciating being in the great outdoors, I love art and the creative process.  My background is in both the visual arts and early childhood education.  I have been working with children for over 30 years. The best part about working with preschoolers I feel, are their imaginations, authenticity, and curiosity.  It is a wonderful time of playfulness.   It’s inspiring being in their presence and learning from them.   I look forward to discovering their perspectives of this big world of ours.  It’s going to be a fun adventure.

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Ms. Shannon, E.C.E.

My name is Shannon.  I am happy to be joining the team of fantastic educators here at KIS. I am a licensed early childhood educator and have worked in early years programs for over 10 years.   I was raised in the West Kootenays and lived in Ucluelet for 18 years before coming back to play in the mountains. 


I have opened and run a non profit daycare, facilitated a StrongStart program for many years, and have worked in Kindergartens as an EA.  I am also a Mom to two pretty great teenagers.


I feel that connecting with the natural world is important for all of us through all stages of our development, and I am happiest facilitating play outside.  

I believe my position with young children is to promote and support curiosity, to encourage questions, to ask questions, and to listen to answers.  

I help children challenge themselves while I offer support for wherever they stand. I am here to foster and fertilize kindness, and to have fun!

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Ms. Mya, E.C.E.A

Hello my name is Mya, and I am so excited to be apart of the Kis family again for the second year! This year I am pleased to say I am working as a certified ECEA with the childcare team here at KIS. As well as working as an ECEA I am a second year student through COTR working towards becoming a certified EA. 


For the past 9 years I have bounced around between Kimberley, Cranbrook, and Wasa and I absolutely love it ! When I am not working with all these amazing little kiddos I am often out dirt biking, quading, swimming, or adventuring with my dogs! 


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?!

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Mr. Steve, Grade 4/5/6

Hi, my name is Stephen, and this is my first year at KIS.  I am originally from Thunder Bay, where I graduated from Lakehead University with Bachelor of Arts degrees in History and Education.  After completing my education, I moved to South Korea where I taught ESL for 15 years.  During that time, I taught students ranging in age from Kindergarten to University.  Through that experience, I gained valuable classroom familiarity and skills and feel quite comfortable in the classroom with students of any age.  I was also very lucky to travel to many countries during my time in S.E. Asia.  Living and traveling with my family throughout the region gave us the opportunity to meet people from diverse backgrounds, experience a wide variety of cultures, and learn about their values and how they connect with each of their unique environments.  I believe that these experiences will help me as I join with the amazing team of educators at KIS in providing our students with a fun, exciting and diverse learning experience. 

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Coming soon

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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. Kerrieann, Education Assistant

Coming soon

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Ms. Robin, Education Assistant

Coming soon


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. , Education Assistant

Coming soon

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Ms. , Education Assistant

Coming soon


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 - TBD

Treasurer - Bonnie Magbanua

Members at Large

Mark Slater

Sophie Larsen