Meet the team

Julie Holdsworth

As Centre Director Julie’s role has changed from the early days when the original business opened in 2009. She has taken on a greater managerial and mentoring role. With a growing team she is dedicated to developing the profile and visibility of MTA in the community.

Julie started her training and development career teaching adults in disciplines such as tax, marketing, business and customer services. She says ‘Looking back I don’t know what made me switch from my childhood dream of being a teacher, but I went into banking when I had finished my formal education. After a few years I was offered the opportunity to join training and development and of course I jumped at the chance.’ Having gained a significant number of qualifications relating to this area, coupled with extensive experience and a desire to always add value she branched out on her own and set up her own training and project management consultancy. Very quickly she was working all over the UK and abroad.

As a parent herself, Julie fully understands the difficult decisions parents have to make regarding their children’s education, particularly where there are so many choices. She says ‘We have so many parents who come to us for support when making their decision. I feel that an important part of my role is to support them to make their transition easier.’

Having moved to Mallorca with Grace then aged six, it was time to decide the best way forward for her education. It was whilst facing the dilemma for Grace’s education that gave her the seed of an idea; to build an exceptional tutoring support for her daughter and other students on the island. Her passion for change and making a difference in education has led to where MTA is today.

Julie is passionate about Mallorca Tutoring Academy and believes the relationship with students and parents is paramount to success.

She can assure you that by working together we will make a difference.


Jay Hirons, Mallorca Tutoring Academy

Jay Hirons

Jay (Juliet) Hirons is an English teacher with many varied skills and talents! Jay has taught in schools, colleges, kindergartens and is a passionate drama teacher too. She is also one of the co-founders and a director of MTA.

Jay went to university in Northampton and then trained at the Institute of Education, University College London; after which she taught in London and Southampton. Both schools had exceptional English and Drama departments where Jay played a pivotal role. In Southampton the department put on three theatre productions a year; two studio type plays and one whole school production. The studio productions were collaborations and were written by the students and teachers.

All of this wonderful education experience was interrupted by a love of travelling and Jay ran away to sea, where she met her husband. The experience of working closely with many types of people and seeing the world was one not to be missed; however, after a number of years on yachts, Jay settled down and is thoroughly enjoying tutoring to the wide variety of nationalities here in Mallorca.

Eight years have passed tutoring students of all ages. She is skilled in teaching young learners to read using the phonics system, working with older students building their language and literature skills up to A level English. Jay has also taught at a kindergarten here in Palma for five years. Working with such young minds is a very rewarding experience.

As our senior English tutor she is passionate about supporting students to achieve the highest levels. Jay believes that working with each class in the following disciplines; reading, writing, speaking and listening develops an overall, holistic improvement in English abilities.

Her other passion of course is the theatre and teaching drama; for a number of years she has been involved with the Centre Stage Drama groups. This included helping backstage, being assistant director and taking a small role in one production. The group is incredibly diverse and is an amazing experience for children of all ages. It is educational, helps build confidence and above all fun.

Learning should be an all-round experience and the combination of English and drama is an excellent match.


Caroline Maréchal, Mallorca Tutoring Academy

Caroline Maréchal

Caroline is the operations manager here at Mallorca Tutoring Academy. Her role includes overseeing the complexities of our diary management together with all other operational activities of the business. She has great inter-personal skills as she has worked and lived in many countries, which has required a great understanding of the customs within different societies. These skills are essential as diversity is certainly one of the best words to describe Mallorca Tutoring Academy, starting with its staff, the programmes it offers and the students it welcomes.

Caroline studied in an American-International school in Korea, where she lived with her family for 3 years; this has given her a first-hand experience as to what a child faces when going through a change of country, culture and language. She has taken the IB, the SATs and the TOEFL, which are all programmes that are offered at Mallorca Tutoring Academy. She understands perfectly the processes involved in studying in a different education system and its challenges and benefits.

Caroline’s experience in Korea, helped her to understand different cultures and led her to further her education at Kent University in Canterbury reading Social Anthropology with languages.

She speaks fluent English, French and Spanish. Having gained vast experience over the last 20 years in managing day to day operational activities in various roles such as director and co-owner of a hotel in Morocco, project management for the construction, design and opening of a luxury shop in Marrakesh; project manager for various companies on mainland Spain, and charitable organisations in the UK.  Moving countries and adapting to new customs has given her some very strong public relations skills.

Her responsibilities in the company have grown as the business has grown. At Mallorca Tutoring Academy we pride ourselves on our service quality and our ability to understand client needs. With Caroline on board we have an excellent addition to our team which ensures excellent customer service is achieved at all times.

 

 


Martyn Staley

Martyn or Mr Martyn as many of our Spanish clients affectionately call him, looks after our senior students.

His qualifications, background and skills are perfectly matched to this role. His graduate studies in the UK were both in science and mathematics, followed by post graduate work in management, leadership and mentoring, which included a short period at one of the prestigious colleges of Oxford University.

His passion for change and making a difference in education has led him to where he is today.

Martyn is without doubt a very creative thinker, his students have found him both challenging and rewarding to work with.

He is responsible for the tuition of maths, science, business studies at IGCSE, IB, and A level. Over the last five years he has studied intently the challenges of SAT (USA entrance exam for university) and his students have gained incredible results from the knowledge he is now able to impart. In all subjects he works closely with students helping them to understand how they can best study for exams to maximise performance. His methodology is innovative and although he carefully follows the school syllabus, the experience for the student, feels completely different to school. His results have been truly outstanding particularly when the individual has disengaged from the school system in one or more subjects.

In the last eighteen months Martyn has continued his studies in the area of learning difficulties. He is now able to offer detailed support to senior students who need that little bit extra.

Martyn has lived on the island for many years currently residing in Bendinat with his partner Susan who is an Independent Financial consultant. He has a daughter in the UK who is a teacher and his youngest will soon be studying at University in the UK to be a Journalist.

Outside of work he is a passionate rugby union supporter, having played himself for many years at amateur level. Over the last 20 years he has followed the English international side and the British and Irish Lions to all corners of the globe including the recent Lions tour of New Zealand. Do not talk to him about this subject as no lessons will ever get started!

He is a fun tutor to work with and has the ability to get the very best out of students whilst encouraging them to work independently. He embraces technology in his tutoring but above all he creates an environment where individuals can excel. His work ethic is phenomenal with his diary always open to help as many students as possible.

Mr Martyn really makes a difference to our senior students.


Rose, Learning Difficulties Expert

Learning difficulty expert - Rose is passionate about supporting children with additional learning needs and difficulties.  She has lived and worked with children for over 20 years in India, England and now Mallorca.  She has worked in special education centres and eventually set up her own charity in England to support the emotional and mental health of children with additional needs.

She has practiced and taught yoga since she was 17 and finds its relaxation benefits rewarding to share with teenagers and children.

She studied at Bristol University and then trained in Montessori education in London and specialized in learning support.

Her special area of interest is Dyslexia and she trained at the British Dyslexia Association in their pioneering Certificate in Dyslexia, Literacy, Support and Intervention.  She finds building a trusting relationship with students key to understanding and discovering where any difficulties lie and the best way to support them.  One to one or small group tuition gives these students the means to move forward and understand themselves, in a way they may never be able to in a typical classroom environment.  Once children have solid foundations and discover tools and the ways they can best learn, they can then begin to feel confident in their unique ways of learning.

Rose finds it a pleasure to be on this path with the children and infinitely rewarding to support them.

She has 2 children herself, both unique in their learning abilities, giving her the first-hand knowledge of being a parent to a child who needs support in their learning.

Rose is a fabulous addition to our service.

 

 

 


Judit Martinez, Mallorca Tutoring Academy

Judit Martinez

Judit is very multi-talented. As a native Spanish senorita in the past she played a vital role within the English Language Department. Se now leads the Official Languages and Support Department for Primary, Secondary and Adults. Judit began her journey with us and from the early days has shown her versatility many times over, tutoring students from 3 to 70 years old.

She was brought up on the island, however at the age of 19 decided to seek new horizons. She went to London with the intention of staying for a year, this experience lasted a decade. Those years were spent between the UK and Barcelona, two very cosmopolitan cities of arts, cultures and diversity.  This has widened her experiences in a multi-cultural environment. When she decided to come back to the island it was to undertake her Primary School Teaching Degree at the UIB, where she discovered her real vocation: emotional, inclusive and supportive education.

Whilst still tutoring for us she also undertook the role of operations Coordinator and Director of Education of the Shambhala Fundación, where she was in charge of the Educational Program for youths between 18 and 24 years old. Supporting them whilst they undertook their basics studies. This helped them to reach their full potential. Through this venture, Judit has had to develop an all-rounded education program. The mentoring program is in place to deliver all round life skills. This continues to give the students the right tools to prepare for the future.

In addition to her university studies she is also certified at CELTA Cambridge level, one of the most highly respected qualifications of its kind. These studies have provided her with multidisciplinary methodological tools of learning and teaching at any area. This enables her to interact across various and diverse environments. She still finds the time to give private tuition to a few students with learning difficulties!

Judit’s aim is increasingly specialize in different techniques to promote the education of those students who have learning difficulties. A year ago, she began to study Naturopathy, she knew that through natural medicine she could also help those families that do not like traditional methods, and look for other less aggressive alternatives for the physical and psychological development of their children. The combination of alternative therapeutic treatments together with psych pedagogical treatments usually gives very effective and positive results.

Judit is a creative, warm and experienced teacher who relates well to all students whatever age. She is a kind of person very involved with his work for which she feels passion.


Alvaro Bogajo

Alvaro Bogajo

Alvaro’s relationship with education began in 2003 when he started working in leisure activities with groups aged from 8 to 10. From the early days his attention to the needs of young learners became paramount. In order to develop his skills and ensure that he was properly trained to deliver excellent service for groups of young people with social problems he studied Social Education in the Balearic Islands University.

After working in a residential care centre for more than a year, his desire for professional and personal growth increased dramatically. He had the chance to work with young people from 2 to 17 years old with a wide variety of personal issues. This activity increased his knowledge and gave him more tools to deal with children with challenging behaviours.

He finished his studies at the Strathclyde University, Glasgow (Scotland), where he also worked as a mentor. Living in Scotland not only improved his English but also allowed him to become involved in different fields of education, such as community development and additional support to teenagers from diverse backgrounds with the potential to enter Further or Higher Education.

Since then he has been deeply involved in education, running courses in IT training for adults (some over 60 years old), providing private tutoring in different subjects including English as a foreign language and mathematics.

Recently he came back from Dublin (Ireland) where he worked in a kindergarten, this added to his already vast experience and provided him with the patience and empathy that working with young people requires.

Alvaro is passionate on being an excellent role model to everyone, especially to younger people, exhibiting positive behaviours at all times. He is committed to continuing, holistic development.

As well as education, his other passion is music. He has been involved in it for the last twelve years, playing and studying drums. He is amazed by how much music has to offer and how much there is to discover every day.

Alvaro is an excellent addition to our team. He ran our 2014 summer school season and many of the children will recognise him.

 


Sofia Green

Sofia is a native English teacher, born and raised in Mallorca. She has grown up with a family of five and many pets: her two lovely parents, brother and sister. Her mother and brother also share a great love of teaching English.

Her desire for helping others with their English started at a very young age when she decided to teach privately in the comfort of her own home in Peguera. Since then, she has attended many teacher training workshops and courses, one of them being the CELTA course (Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults), where her work development started to blossom.

She then started working in a language academy in Andratx as well as working with EF (Education First) in Canterbury, England over the summer holidays. After this experience she worked for two years in Girona, Catalonia, at a popular language academy, where she taught people of all different ages. She later found herself coming back to her beloved island of Mallorca, where she had the wonderful opportunity of teaching at the British Council in Palma, where they also provided teacher training sessions every month.

Her main aim is to make learning fun by using many different games, which help to improve the four necessities in a language: reading, writing, speaking and listening. Sofia strongly believes that keeping a positive learning environment helps the student gain confidence in using the language.

She has helped many people over the years to pass important English exams and certificates, such as a wide variety of official Cambridge exams: Starters, Movers, Flyers, KET, PET, FCE and CAE. Sofia also really enjoys conversation classes and finds them to be a crucial aspect of our working world.

Sofia constantly comes up with creative group projects for the children.  As she believes team work helps students to develop life-long skills that are useful in the workforce and the world in general.

The projects she uses are mainly based on arts and crafts and theatre as they are Sofia’s great passions. She was a member at the Centre Stage Productions, which was run by Mr. Conway Jones and Mr. Robert Bateman, whom many will know from Queen’s.

From the age of 6 years old, Sofia performed singing and acting roles at the Auditorium of Palma. Therefore, she loves to use singing and acting as a fun, energetic way of learning for children.


Robin Saunders

Robin started in training and development in 1994 when he was head-hunted by the European Union to project manage a pan-European project to design and produce a training simulator for the printing industry. After the successful completion of the project he was invited to Hong Kong to set up the production plant for what would become the largest newspaper ever produced in the world. His role included the installation of all plant including a ‘Wide Area Network,’ all in fibre optics, as well as peripherals and software. All staff and managers were then trained by Robin to produce a daily newspaper of magazine quality – winning best newspaper (world-wide) three years running. That newspaper - Apple Daily - is still winning awards today as a result of the processes put in place originally by Robin.

On returning to Britain he decided to update his knowledge and successfully completed courses in Network+, Windows 2000 Professional & Server and Cisco Certified Network Associate. This led to him become “Compaq’s man in Lloyds TSB”, advising on software updates, hardware and network issues.

Robin has also worked as a consultant to FTSE 100 companies and government bodies in roles as diverse as restructuring, cost cutting, change management, lean management and Six Sigma, project management, etc.

He now lives full-time in Mallorca and loves sharing his knowledge with others…

ICT is easy. After all, computers aren’t the clever ones - We are! We created them.

When not messing with computers Robin loves rugby, sailing and cooking Asian food.

We are delighted to be able to offer this extra service from April 1st.

 

 


Emily Saunders

Emily has worked as an English teacher and journalist for more than 30 years. She loves helping students improve their understanding and use of English. She believes that learning should be a fun and positive experience for everyone.

After graduating from university in Bristol with a degree in Modern Languages (French and Spanish), Emily trained as a TEFL teacher at International House in London and later gained a postgraduate diploma in journalism from the university of Falmouth. Her training as a teacher of English as a Foreign Language introduced her to the ‘communicative approach’ and over the years she has developed her own mix of teaching styles based on the best parts of communicative methods, traditional grammar rule explanation, textbook-based learning and more modern techniques such as Scott Thornbury’s ‘Dogme’ method.

Her teaching experience includes students aged from two to 80, general English, exam classes (PET, KET, FCE, CAE, TOEIC, BULATS) and business and professional English, both in classrooms and in companies.

Before arriving in Mallorca, she lived in Hong Kong. Working for Walt Disney in Asia, she set up and was editor of a weekly newspaper for children in the Asia-Pacific region. Most of the more than 8 million readers used English as a second language and the newspaper supported their language learning. She also edited Disney’s world-famous ‘Magic English’ video course for children.

Emily comes from the south-west of England and has lived in Mallorca for 15 years. She enjoys the outdoors, walking, swimming and reading thrillers.

Emily will make certificate work engaging and effective.


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