Who's Who at New Directions College

Andrea Wood - Principal

Lisa Potter

Fiona Hale

Andrea has been the Principal at New Directions College since August 2020. A qualified and practiced Teacher in Further Education and a member of the Society of Education and Training, Andrea has worked in further and adult education for the past 18 years, teaching learners aged 14 through to 90 for much of that time. Andrea has gained her senior leadership skills through her work in the further education sector and within roles for two large local authorities. Andrea is passionate about strong partnerships and delivering high quality education that develops people’s skills so that they can progress in any aspect of their life or career. In her spare time, Andrea is a Governor at The Henley College and enjoys plenty of walks with her young son and British Bulldog!

Lisa has been the Assistant Principal – Business Support at New Directions College since September 2019.  Lisa has been working in the Adult and Community Learning Sector for the past 11 years in Senior Business Support roles.  Lisa has experience of working both within a local authority and for an independent College both within the Adult learning sector.  Lisa is passionate about transforming the lives of adults through education and the role support services play in enabling learners to learn.  Lisa was born and raised in Reading.  Lisa is a keen gardener and when not supporting her family with caring duties spends her spare time studying on line for an RHS qualification in horticulture.

Fiona’s interest in ‘the transforming power of education’ began when she worked as a PA to senior school Principal at an international school. She then qualified as a Montessori Early Years Teacher and worked both in Montessori Early Years and Primary schools.  In 1999 Fiona started working in Adult Education, initially training Montessori teachers to understand and implement the Early Years Foundation Stage and Ofsted requirements. This led to teaching, assessing and internally verifying a wide range of courses in further education colleges. From the start of her career in education Fiona has always been interested in how the quality of teaching, learning and assessment can be improved to ensure better outcomes for learners and that is why she enjoys her current role as an Associate Principal for Quality. The journeys our learners take to reach their personal and professional goals is humbling and inspiring, it is a privilege to be a part of that.

Aliea Rashid

Ivana Tasker

Bes Baxha

Aliea has been the Quality Manager since January 2018. She job shares with Fiona Hale. Aliea has worked at New Directions since September 2007 where she started as a math’s Tutor. Aliea spent the majority of her time as the Curriculum Manager for Skills for Life before moving on to Quality Assurance. A qualified and practiced Teacher in Further Education and a member of the Society of Education and Training, Aliea has worked in further and adult education for the past 14 years. She has previously worked at Natwest Bank and O2. Aliea’s passion for education comes from her volunteering experiences and her love for math’s.  Aliea thrives on helping local people back in to education and achieving their goals.  Aliea is also a Governor at a local secondary school. In her spare time, and enjoys her time bringing up her four children.

Ivana has been the Skills for Life Curriculum Manager at New Directions College since April 2020. A qualified teacher in Further Education and a Member of the Society of Education and Training, Ivana has a wealth of experience in teaching and managing English, Maths and ESOL courses at all levels, from Pre-entry to GCSE level. Ivana has worked in Further and Adult Education for the past 17 years. She has worked as a teacher and curriculum manager at three large Further Education Colleges in London and Surrey. Ivana is passionate about supporting learners of all ages to develop new skills and progress in their work and life. In her spare time Ivana enjoys spending time with her family, travelling and cycling along the quiet country lanes.

Bes joined New Directions College in June 2020. Bes has worked in training, apprenticeships and further and adult education for the past 9 years, working for one of the largest apprenticeship providers in the country. With significant experience within the work-based education sector, Bes enjoys helping, developing and supporting people to enhance their skills to progress with their career. Outside of work, Bes enjoys traveling, outdoor activities such as walking/hiking, mountain biking and swimming.

Roseline Fernandes

Roseline is a computer software engineer with over 15 years of work experience in education and software development. She has been instrumental in organising technical conferences and has delivered talks at various events. She is an avid programmer and has a keen interest in digital technologies. She is passionate about using technology to further the cause of education.  She joined New Directions College as the Digital Skills Curriculum Manager in February 2020. She has been working on developing and revamping the IT curriculum to bridge the digital divide. Roseline is also a Foundation Governor at St Paul’s Catholic Primary School in Tilehurst. She juggles in different interests – from hosting at events to authoring children’s books to making cards out of quilling paper.