Specialist Teaching Team

Head of Science; Physics, Science and Math Teacher


Alisher Arstanbek


Dr Alisher holds a Specialist Degree with Honours in Engineering (KRSU, Bishkek), IB MYP and DP Educator Certificates (DePaul University, Chicago), an Educator and Researcher qualification (Russian Federation), a Qualified Teaching Status (QTS England), and the first Doctor’s Degree in technical sciences of two doctoral level scientific degrees (Kyrgyz Republic). Dr Alisher enjoys teaching and helping students discover their abilities and talents and reach their full potential. In his esteemed long-term service at BIS, Dr Alisher has been teaching Science and Mathematics to all middle and high school grades and taking on the roles of secondary school Form Teacher and Head of Science Department.

Chemistry & Science Teacher


Artika Singh


Ms Artika has been working in schools for the past 17 years teaching Biology, Chemistry, and Theory of Knowledge. She has also worked as a Science Laboratory Technician. During her many years of experience, Artika has taught in the Fiji Islands, Australia, China, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Ethiopia. Being an IB educator, she focuses on strategies to encourage critical thinking in students. Ms Artika rejoined BIS in summer 2021 after a year away.

Chemistry & Science Teacher


Soumiya Srinivasan


Ms Soumiya has studied in India and Singapore and has obtained Bachelor’s Degree in Microbiology, Genetics and Chemistry and two Master’s Degrees in Biochemistry. She has research experience and has worked for several years as a technical support and marketing specialist for researchers in Singapore. Ms Soumiya joined BIS in August 2020.

Science Laboratory Technician & Science Teacher


Zhandos Bolochoev


Mr Zhandos graduated with a Masters in Food Technology from Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University, and has work experience in both Turkey and the Kyrgyz Republic, including laboratory experience with food companies. Mr Zhandos joined BIS in August 2019.

Head of Computer Science; Business Studies Teacher


Amith Ravindar


Mr Amith grew up in the United States but graduated high school in Singapore. He went on to receive a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and International Studies from the University of Miami, Florida. He is a licensed teacher in the United States and worked in software development prior to entering the teaching profession. Mr Amith has teaching experience at schools and universities in Vietnam where he taught English as a Foreign Language and Academic English courses. In his free time, he enjoys programming, learning languages, traveling, and reading about current events. Mr Amith joined BIS in August 2020.

Head of Math Department; Math & Theory of Knowledge Teacher


Toon Cavens


Mr Cavens is originally from Belgium, where he studied Mathematics and Economics. He has also studied Philosophy in Paris, and English Literature in London. He joined BIS in August 2016 to teach Mathematics and Theory of Knowledge. Mr Cavens hopes to instill in his students a life-long passion for learning, and to help them to develop their own ideas.

Math & Theory of Knowledge Teacher


Kevin Morice


Mr Kevin is Irish, and a mathematics teacher by passion. He studied in France for an undergraduate mathematics degree before specializing in applied statistics. After living in Ireland, France and Germany, Mr Kevin moved to Ulaanbaatar in late 2016 to teach Math at the ESM International School Mr Kevin joined BIS in summer 2020 and is keen to share his zeal for mathematics and problem solving with students. At the weekend he delights in horse riding and exploring the Kyrgyz Republic. 

Math Teacher


Alisher Kakenov


Mr Alisher has a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan, and has been teaching in Nur-Sultan for the past 5 years. Not only a keen mathematician, Alisher has also tutored High School and University students in their development of physics and chemistry understanding. Alisher is excited to support our Middle and High School students and to continue developing high standards and enjoyment of mathematics among our students.

Math Teacher & ELA Teacher


Luke Dinon


Mr Luke was born and raised in Alaska. He graduated from the University of Alaska Fairbanks with a Bachelor’s Degree in Russian Studies and Foreign Languages. He has two certifications in teaching English as a foreign language. He has been living and teaching in Bishkek since 2019. In addition to teaching, Luke has a passion for language acquisition.

Math & Design Teacher; Makerspace Manager


Reza Danaei


Mr Reza is originally from Iran. He graduated from the Charles Molnar University in Malaysia with a degree in Electronics Engineering at the Charles Molnar University in Malaysia, and worked in an electronics and physics lab at the APIIT University in Kuala-Lumpar after graduation. In recent years he has worked as an English language tutor in different language schools and international schools, though his passion has always been in math and applied sciences. He loves to encourage students to research, question the world around them, explore their environment, come up with ideas and solutions, and find answers of their own. Mr Reza joined BIS in August 2020.

Head of Individuals & Societies Department; Geography Teacher


Andrew Wheeler


Mr Andrew has a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies, Cross-Cultural Studies, and Peace Studies from Whitworth University, Washington State. Before joining the BIS team in August 2018, he served for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer teaching English as a Foreign Language in Naryn, Kyrgyzstan. As well as teaching Geography, Mr Andrew also leads Eco-Bishkek, Model UN and leads the annual international educational visit for students.

History Teacher


Claire Berger


Ms Claire graduated with a Master of Arts in International Affairs from Texas A&M University. She worked in the private and non-profit sectors before earning a social studies teaching license. She has previously taught in South Korea, Washington, and Texas. Ms Claire joined the BIS community in August 2020.

Economics Teacher


Azamat Kasymov


Mr Azamat has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the American University of Central Asia (AUCA), where he also taught undergraduate level mathematics. He is a part-time research assistant at AUCA and has helped to write several mathematics textbooks for primary through to university level mathematics. Mr Azamat joined BIS in summer 2014 is also currently completing his PhD in Economics.

Business Studies Teacher


Jacques Prinsloo


Mr Jacques has a PGCE in Secondary teaching from the University of South Africa, a Diploma in Investment Management from the University of South Africa, a Bachelors in Economics from the University of Pretoria, a Diploma in teaching English as an Additional Language and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Illinois. Mr Jacques taught EAL in South Korea for several years before joining BIS in August 2017. Mr Jacques is also Assistant Head of School and IGCSE Coordinator.

Individuals & Societies Teacher


Taylor Weidman


Mr Taylor Prior to teaching, worked as a photojournalist, producing stories on topics ranging from environmental issues and political upheaval to natural disasters and indigenous rights for outlets including National Geographic, BBC, The Wall Street Journal, and many others. As a teacher, he works to create an engaging and authentic Individuals and Societies classroom by applying this real-world, interdisciplinary background. Taylor has previously taught in Bangkok, Thailand and was a Fulbright Fellow in Nepal. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia (BA Economics) and Syracuse University (MA Photography).

Head of Performing Arts; Music Teacher


Grant Chamberlain


Mr Grant has a Master’s Degree in Music from the Australian National University (ANU) and Graduate Diploma of Education from the University of New England (UNE). He has been teaching music for over 20 years in Australia, the West Bank, Washington DC, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Tanzania, Vietnam and Ethiopia, including substantive experience teaching music in the Primary Years Programme and Middle Years Programme. Mr Grant joined BIS in August 2019 and since then has been developing all aspects of music performance for students from Preschool to IB Diploma.

Music & Drama Teacher


David Lien


Mr David has a BA in Music Composition from The New England Conservatory of Music and an MA in Theatre Education from Emerson College. He most recently taught Music and Theatre at a Public Middle School in Massachusetts. He has been involved in a variety of music and theatre projects in the Boston and Seattle area (where he is originally from). Mr. David joined BIS in August 2020.

Music Teacher


Munara Korpotaeva


Ms Munara graduated from Kyrgyz National Conservatory as a pianist. In 2015 she finished her postgraduate studies in the class of Professor Tsokurenko. Currently she is also working in the Conservatory at the “solo singing” department.  She is the prize winner of national competitions and the scholarship holder of the KR President’s scholarship “Altyn Shaty”. Ms Munara joined BIS in October 2019.

Head of Visual Arts; Art & Design Teacher


Anna Phillips


Dr Anna has over twenty-five years teaching experience in both international and Australian schools, and a PhD from the University of Tasmania. She is a practicing artist and has exhibited her work in Germany, South Korea, and Australia. Dr Anna believes in student centered and enquiry-based learning, and is certain that making art assists students in the problem-solving process and encourages them to gain confidence and imaginative thinking while learning new skills. Dr Anna joined BIS team in summer 2019.

Art & Host Country Studies Teacher


Anna Balduk


Ms Anna studied at the Children’s Art School and graduated from the Kyrgyz State Art School in 1991 with a degree in Teaching Art. She has over 20 years’ experience in teaching art to children of various ages and has encouraged wonderful art and built theatre stage sets as part of the BIS team since 2013.

Head of Physical Education; Athletics Director


Zeljko Jovetic


Mr Zeljko graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education and Sport from the University of Belgrade, and a Master’s degree in Physical Education from University of Novi Sad, Serbia. He has worked as PE teacher and coach in schools and sports clubs in Serbia before working in athletics and PE teaching in an international school in the United Arab Emirates. He has school teaching licenses from both the Serbian and UAE ministries of education and is also a licensed basketball and swimming coach. Mr Zeljko joined the BIS team in August 2019.

PE Teacher


Anna Smirnova


Ms Anna has both Bachelor and Master degrees from the Kyrgyz State Academy of Physical Culture and Sports as a PE teacher. She is also a basketball referee with the Federation of Basketball of the Kyrgyz Republic. Ms Anna joined the ВIS team in 2019 as a basketball coach, and as a full time PE teacher in August 2021.

PE Teacher & Learning Diversity and Inclusion Team


Faez Kanji


Mr Faez is the creator of Hockey Jam Sessions, an international ice hockey and floorball school promoting skills development and social emotional resilience in challenging circumstances. He has worked with children in North America, Europe and Central Asia through his Hockey Jam Sessions program. Mr Faez has a degree from the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. Mr Faez joined BIS in January 2020.

Dance & PE Teacher


Ainura Kubakaeva


Ms Ainura graduated with honors from Bishkek choreographic school. She worked for a year in the Kyrgyz National Order of Lenin Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre as a ballet dancer, where she participated in various international festivals. She also graduated from the Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University majoring in World Economy. Since 2018 she has been working as a choreographer at children’s educational institutions. Ms Ainura loves working with children and wants to pass on her love of dance to her students

Dance Teacher


Sergey Zelenovsky


Mr Sergey graduated from Arabaeva University, then followed his passion for dance, working as a dancer from 1997, then as a dance teacher since 1998. He has worked as both dancer and dance teacher with leading groups and studios in Bishkek and spent six years in China as a Dancer and Choreographer in multiple cities. Mr Sergey joined the BIS team in summer 2021. 

Head of English Department; English Language and Literature & Theory of Knowledge Teacher


Jan Scott


Mr Jan has a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Russian from the University of Florida and taught in both universities and language schools before joining the BIS team in August 2018. Mr Jan became Head of the English Department in summer 2021, teaching English and Theory of Knowledge in the IB Diploma Programme, and leading English teaching throughout the school.

English Language and Literature Teacher


Nina Weidman


Ms Nina is an experienced journalist, editor, and educator who spent a decade writing books and articles throughout Asia before turning to teaching. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master’s in Journalism from Syracuse University. She has taught high school in Tbilisi and Bangkok and enjoys using her knowledge of media to inspire students of English language and literature. Ms Nina joined BIS in summer 2021.

English Language and Literature Teacher


Rabia Newton


Ms Rabia graduated from Portland State University with a degree in Russian language and literature and liberal studies. After spending a year as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Vladivostok, Russia, she then went on to earn her Masters in English Education from Teachers College at Columbia University. Prior to joining the BIS team, Ms. Rabia spent most of her career teaching in New York City public schools where she focused on project and inquiry-based learning. In her spare time, Ms. Rabia enjoys traveling, studying yoga, playing with her cat, Begemot, and, of course, reading. Ms Rabia joined BIS in summer 2021.

English Language Teacher; English Language Acquisition Coordinator for Middle/High School


Tom Clifton


Mr Tom has a Bachelor of Arts in English from Queen Mary University in London, as well as a Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge. He has worked in language schools and universities in countries such as Spain and Iraq, as well as 2 years working in the Kyrgyz Republic. Outside of the classroom, Mr Tom enjoys travelling around the region and documenting Kyrgyzstan through photography. He joined BIS in August 2020. 

English Language Acquisition Teacher


Aigul Sakieva


Ms Aigul graduated from the Kyrgyz State University with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has 15 years of teaching experience in diverse educational institutions in Kyrgyzstan. Prior to embarking a teaching career, she was a part of scholarship program at Shriram Institute of Business and Information Technology School in New Delhi, 2005. Ms Aigul also studied at Indiana University, USA, under a Fulbright scholarship in 2014-15 and has CELTA and related certificates on teaching methodology for the English language. Ms Aigul joined the BIS team in summer 2021.

English Language Acquisition Teacher


Aidai Ishenbaeva


Ms Aidai has a Bachelor Degree in Linguistics from the Kyrgyz National University and has been working as a teacher since 2016 and has learnt to understand the specific needs of individual students. Ms Aidai joined the BIS team in summer 2021 and looks forward to contribute to the bright future of our students.

English Language Acquisition Teacher


Tinatin Stambekova


Ms Tinatin is an English language teacher at BIS. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Tomsk State University in 2017 and followed her passion for teaching. At university, she studied linguistics, English, and Spanish languages. Over the 5 years of teaching, she gained a solid grounding in English Teaching Methodology. She joined BIS in 2021.

English Language Acquisition Teacher & Visual Arts Support


Aigul Kubatbekova


Ms Aigul is a graduate of Columbia College, Mo, USA with a major in Management. After graduating she spent a year in China learning Mandarin then travelled the world exploring many different countries and cultures. Apart from teaching English and Visual Arts at BIS, Ms Aigul works as a weekend ski instructor for children in winter. Ms Aigul loves working with students, and strongly believes that a child’s early development is extremely important for his/her future endeavours.

English & Russian Language Acquisition Teacher


Aisuluu Bakaeva


Ms Aisuluu graduated from the International University of Kyrgyzstan with a bachelor’s degree is in linguistics and she is currently completing her Masters degree in linguistics. Ms Aisuluu has experience of teaching both English Language Acquisition and Russian Language Acquisition in different language schools in Bishkek, and she joined the BIS team in summer 2021.

ELA Teacher & Learning Diversity and Inclusion Team


Kyzjibek Tekenova


Ms Kyzjibek graduated from the Kyrgyz Russian Slavic University and has a Diploma in Theory and Practice of Translation. She taught English before joining BIS in August 2017. In August 2018, Ms Kyzjibek joined the Learning Diversity and Inclusion team based on her interest and commitment to this area of work. Ms Kyzjibek is also currently studying a Masters in Special Additional Learning Needs University of East London, UK, via remote learning. 

ELA Teacher & Learning Diversity and Inclusion Team


Aikel Tashtanbaeva


Ms Aikel has a degree in English Language and Literature from the Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University and a Master’s degree in Linguistics from the Social Sciences Institution in Kyrgyz Turkish Manas University. Ms Aikel says that “teaching is learning twice”, as she believes that children are the ones from whom adults should always learn to love and be happy. Ms Aikel joined BIS in November 2020. 

MYP Coordinator; Head of Language Acquisition in Middle/High School; German Teacher


Tim Johnson


Mr Tim has a first-class honours degree in Modern Languages from the University of Oxford, and is a qualified teacher (University of Newcastle) with a Masters in Education from the University of Leeds. His work experience covers both NGO leadership and teaching in Austria, Portugal and the UK. Tim joined BIS in August 2019, as MYP Coordinator. He is also Head of Language Acquisition in Middle/High School, German Language Teacher and Extended Essay Coordinator for the IB Diploma Programme.

German Language Teacher


Aigul Adisova


Ms Aigul graduated from the Kyrgyz Russian Slavic University and has a diploma in the Theory and Practice of Translation. She has 5 years’ experience working with school students and students. She cooperated with Goethe Institute and has interpreted the German fairytales into Kyrgyz. Ms Aigul joined BIS in October 2021.

French Language Teacher

Lailo Youssoup-Akhounova


Ms Lailo has extensive experience teaching both French and Russian languages, including at local universities, the Alliance Française and Embassies. She graduated in 1984 from the Kyrgyz National University. In addition to teaching, Ms Lailo is also a professional translator. Ms Lailo joined the BIS team in summer 2016

French Language Teacher

Nurzhamal Alymova

Nurzhamal Alymova


Ms Nurzhamal graduated from the French Department of foreign languages at the Kyrgyz National University. Since graduating with a Master’s Degree, she has worked as a French teacher at the National University, with Alliance Française and with international organizations. Ms Nurzhamal joined BIS in October 2019.

Spanish Language Teacher

Daniel Llompart

Daniel Llompart


Mr Daniel is a creative teacher who aims to support students academically and holistically too. Though Daniel has taught a variety of subjects including being a PE teacher in China, Daniel obtained his Masters in teaching Middle and High School Languages in 2019. Following teaching experiences in Finland, Spain and China, Daniel joined BIS in summer 2021. Students who don’t get to know Mr Daniel through language learning may get to know him as a football coach. 

Spanish Language Teacher


Esther Johnson


Ms Esther graduated with an Honors degree in Russian Studies with French and Spanish from the University of Leeds. She worked for four years at the University of Leeds promoting the study of languages throughout the UK, and has worked as an ELA teacher as well as advising on the reformed Russian GCSE and A-level qualifications in 2016. She trained as a languages teacher in the UK and taught Spanish and French in primary and middle school. Ms Esther joined BIS in August 2019. 

Spanish, French and Russian Language Teacher

Adele Antheunissens

Adele Antheunissens


Ms Adele has a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Saint-Louis University, Belgium and is currently completing a degree in International and Comparative Politics at the American University of Central Asia. Prior to university she attended French schools in Uzbekistan and Belgium. Ms Adele speaks six languages and joined the BIS team in August 2020 as a Spanish, French and Russian Language Acquisition Teacher. 

Mandarin and Russian Language Teacher

Saikal Alamanova

Saikal Alamanova


Ms Saikal graduated from the Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University with a bachelor degree in Public Relations. She then received a scholarship from the Confucius Institute to learn Mandarin at Beihang University in Beijing, followed by a scholarship to complete her Master’s degree in teaching Chinese for speakers of other languages from Tongji University in Shanghai. Ms Saikal joined BIS in August 2019.

Mandarin and Russian Language Teacher

Erkeayim Zhekshenalieva

Erkeayim Zhekshenalieva


Ms Erkeayim has a Bachelor’s degree from International University of Central Asia and has diverse experience working with children within the Kyrgyz Republic. She taught Mandarin and English in an orphanage in Tokmok and taught English to students of Hong Kong Polytechnic University in Ivanovka school. She also worked in a special school in Hong Kong with children who were addicted to drugs. Ms Erkeayim enjoys working with children as they are open to speaking their minds, being silly, and they make learning fun. She believes that the students she teaches now will one day be the people running the country. Ms Erkeayim joined BIS in October 2019.

Mandarin Language Teacher; ECA Coordinator; Houses Coordinator

Nazira Almasbekova

Nazira Almasbekova


Ms Nazira has a Master’s degree from Beijing International Business and Economics University and a Diploma from Beijing Language and Culture University. She has worked as a teacher and interpreter in China. She has already worked in BIS in the past and in summer 2021 rejoined the team after teaching in an international school in Uganda.

Japanese Language Teacher

Makiko Inaba

Ms Makiko has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Waseda University in Japan. Foreign languages and cultures have always been her passion and she has lived in the United States, South Korea, France, China and the Kyrgyz Republic in pursuit of that passion. She has the UK Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and has experience teaching students ranging from elementary to high school level. Ms Makiko joined BIS in summer 2014 and is a much-loved teacher with exceptional skills in education. Ms Makiko has been IB Diploma Programme Coordinator since 2017.

Russian Language and Literature Teacher

Indira Bekkoenova

Indira Bekkoenova


Ms Indira graduated from the Kyrgyz National University, where she studied Russian philology. She has extensive experience teaching Russian language and literature to school and university students. She joined the BIS team in 2013 and loves the warm and friendly environment.

Russian Language and Literature Teacher

Nazgul Kakelova

Nazgul Kakelova


Ms Nazgul has a Degree in Teaching Russian Language from the Kyrgyz State National University and over 20 years teaching experience in schools in the Kyrgyz Republic. She is an “Excellence in Education of the Kyrgyz Republic” award winner. Ms Nazgul joined BIS in August 2016 as a Russian Language Teacher.

Russian Language and Literature Teacher

Gulgaaky Kadyrkulova

Gulgaaky Kadyrkulova


Ms Gulgaaky has a philologist linguist diploma from the Bishkek Humanitarian University (BSU) and has teaching and research experience in several educational institutions. She is currently working on her PhD thesis on the Theory and Methodology of Teaching at BSU and is also working full time at BIS. She enjoys teaching and helping students discover their abilities and talents. Ms. Gulgaaky joined BIS in 2021 and teaches Russian language and reading in elementary school.

Head of Language Acquisition in the PYP; Russian and English Language Acquisition Teacher

Elvira Tonueva

Elvira Tonueva


Ms Elvira studied Linguistics and New Computer Technologies at Bishkek Humanities University. Before joining the primary team at BIS in August 2017, she studied at Kingsborough Community College in New York. Ms Elvira is currently completing her Masters in the Art of Teaching with the American University of Central Asia and Bard College, New York.

Kyrgyz Language Teacher

Nazgul Sultakeeva

Nazgul Sultakeeva


Ms Nazgul has a Postgraduate degree in Kyrgyz Philology from Arabaev Kyrgyz State University. She has over 10 years teaching experience in universities in the Kyrgyz Republic and joined BIS in August 2017 to teach Kyrgyz language.

Kyrgyz Language Acquisition and Host Country Studies Teacher

Saikal Maatkerimova

Saikal Maatkerimova


Ms Saikal has a Bachelor of Arts in Archeology and History from the Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University. In 2010 she took part in archeological expeditions and in 2015-2016 she taught ‘Central Asian History’ at the School of Russian and Asian Studies. She also has 5 years’ experience of teaching Russian and Kyrgyz as a foreign language. Ms Saikal is currently also studying Kyrgyz Philology at Bishkek Humanitarian University. Ms Saikal joined BIS in October 2017.

Kyrgyz Language Acquisition and Host Country Studies Teacher

Gulbara Akunova

Gulbara Akunova


Ms Gulbara has a Bachelor’ degree of English Language Teacher from Bishkek Humanities University. During her study she experienced two exchange programs in the USA and China. From September 2019 to August 2020 Gulbara worked as a Reference and Instruction Specialist in the American University in Central Asia Library. Currently she is completing her post graduate study in the field of Central Asian region at The Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Federation in Moscow. Ms Gulbara joined BIS in November 2020.



Irina Pak


Ms Irina has a Master’s Degree in Russian Language and Literature from Kyrgyz National University. She has 19 years’ experience in library services, first with the National Library of the Kyrgyz Republic as senior librarian in the computer technologies department, then with the American University of Central Asia (AUCA) as electronic service librarian. Ms Irina is also the Executive Director of the ‘Library and Information Consortium of the Kyrgyz Republic’ and country licensing coordinator of the project ‘Electronic Information for Libraries – elFL’. Ms Irina joined BIS in 2019.

Learning Resources Explorer & Guide

Aidana Oskonbaeva

Aidana Oskonbaeva


Ms Aidana has a Bachelor degree in German Linguistics from Kyrgyz National University. While studying she received a DAAD- scholarship and participated in language courses for foreign students at the University of Aachen in Germany. She also has two years experience of teaching English language in Bishkek. Ms Aidana joined BIS in September 2021 and works in the BIS Library. She is happy helping students to find all the resources they need to study.