Meet the Leadership Team

The school employs close to 90 staff with a variety of national backgrounds, most of whom are full-time and have previous experience in national and/or international schools. ISHR has a Director and a Managing Director in charge of business operations, who are appointed by the GmbH. The administration includes a Head of Section each for the Lower Primary (Early Years-1st Grade), Upper Primary, and Secondary levels, a Site Manager and administrative staff. In the belief that the quality of the school is directly related to the quality of the faculty, ISHR strives to engage and nurture energetic and professional growth orientated teachers who are caring and compassionate.

john barker leadership

John Barker



Masters of Science in Educational Leadership, University of Leicester, UK; Postgraduate Certificate in Education, Durham University, UK; Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) in English and History, University of Northumbria, UK.


John has had the privilege of teaching and leading in international education for over 20 years. In that time, he has worked in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Denmark, Germany and China. John joined ISHR from Harrow International School Beijing where he was Deputy Head of a 1600 strong two campus 3-18 school. He also brings valuable and pertinent experience from his previous position as Secondary Principal and Deputy Director of Bavarian International School in Munich. John is proud and privileged to be the Director of ISHR.

John and his wife, Carole, have two daughters (born in Hong Kong and Taiwan) and thus can attest to the joys and benefits of international education – both as a School Director and as a parent.

John is a keen musician and enjoys playing a variety of instruments (with varying degrees of proficiency) including guitar, drums, piano, banjo and ukulele. Although his marathon running days may be behind him, John still enjoys running and he is also a keen cyclist. He also tries to practice what he preaches by maintaining a healthy and varied reading habit.

stephan handwerker

Stephan Handwerker

Managing Director


Diplom-Betriebswirt in European Finance and Accounting at University of Applied Sciences Bremen, Germany; Bachelor (Hons) at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK


Stephan Handwerker started to work as Managing Director for ISHR in August 2012. Before joining ISHR he was MD of the German Branch of Hurtigruten, the Norwegian Cruise Ship Company. In previous employments he gathered experience in leading positions at companies in the water damage restoration and the automotive supplier business.

paul becker hounslow

Paul Becker-Hounslow

Head of Upper School


PGCE, University of Leeds, UK; National Professional Qualification for Headship, National College of School Leadership, UK; BA Hons., Sheffield Metropolitan University, UK


Paul joined ISHR in 2009 from Beacon Community College (Science and Sport Specialist College) in the UK where he worked as Deputy Principal with direct responsibility for Science and the 6th Form Centre. There, he established the Sixth Form Centre for up to 500 students on a separate school site. Prior to working at Beacon Community College, Paul was Deputy Head of Costessey High School, Norwich, UK.

In his years of being a teacher and school leader Paul has acquired a wide range of school management experience at senior level. He has also been involved in setting up an Independent Kindergarten and School in Norfolk, UK. Throughout his career Paul has been known for his holistic approach to teaching, his focus is always on student welfare and achievement.

Away from school Paul’s interests range from running, hiking, travelling with his vintage VW camper van, growing his own organic vegetables, and collecting fossils on England’s beaches.

Carole Nickle Head of Middle School

Carole Nickle

Head of Middle School


Doctor of Education, University of Bath – UK; Master of Education, Endicott College Leysin – Switzerland; Bachelor of Education, Acadia University, Nova Scotia – Canada


Carole joins the ISHR community as the Head of Middle School. Originally an English teacher she has lived and worked in Japan, Taiwan, China, Vietnam and Turkey. She has worked as a middle school leader in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Japan. Her experience of working in several very different countries means that she has a high level of the intercultural competency and emotional intelligence

A passionate life-long learner, Carole holds a BA in English Literature and Sociology, a BEd in Secondary Education, an MA in International Educational Leadership and is currently pursuing her doctorate. When not reading educational research, Carole enjoys traveling, photography and attending Shakespearean theatre.

Duncan FitzGerald Head of Upper Primary School

Duncan FitzGerald

Head of Upper Primary School


Master in Educational Leadership, Southern Cross University, Australia; Bachelor in Primary Education, Griffith University, Australia


Duncan joined ISHR in 2019 from the American School of Guangzhou (ASG) where he served as the Elementary School Assistant Principal. ASG’s primary school has its own campus with over 500 students in the primary school alone. Before that, he was the Assistant Principal at Lindisfarne College in New South Wales, a school of 1,100 students. Duncan is an exhibited and award winning photographer and enjoys outdoor pursuits, particularly surfing, rugby, cricket, swimming, and cross-country.

Annette Bauer Head of Lower Primary School

Annette Bauer

Head of Lower Primary School


Master in Early Childhood and Elementary Education, Bank Street College, New York, USA


Annette was recently the Head of School of Alt School Dogpatch in San Francisco, and was formerly Head of School at the Berlin Bilingual School. A New York native who is fluent in English, German, and French, Annette has taught, led and travelled all over the world. Annette has extensive experience with the Reggio Emilia approach to Early Childhood education. She also ran a small business for women’s development in Bangkok and founded an art program in Uzbekistan.

Jacob Lowe Deputy Head of Upper School

Jacob Lowe

Deputy Head of Upper School


Master in English Literature, Open University, UK; PGCE English, Birmingham University, UK; Bachelor in English Language and Literature, Lancaster University, UK


Jake Lowe began teaching at ISHR in 2006 after having taught for four years at a secondary school in the West Midlands (UK). After working for 6 years as co-Head of English A, Jake took up the post of Deputy Head of Secondary in 2012. He previously taught English A1 and A2 and currently teaches both English Literature and English Language and Literature in the Diploma Programme and supports self-taught Literature students. Jake has been a Diploma Tutor for the past nine years and is one of the coaches for the Varsity Boys football team.

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