Derek Laidlaw 200121 143844
Derek Laidlaw
Executive Principal
Derek Laidlaw 200121 143844

Derek Laidlaw

Executive Principal

I was born in Glasgow and grew up in the West of Scotland. I studied Music and Teaching in Dundee and gained my National Professional Qualification for Headship through the National College for School Leadership. I have an MA in Educational Leadership from Oxford Brookes University.

My teaching career has taken me from Scotland to Qatar to Spain and back to Qatar. My main interests are music, theatre, sports and nature conservation. It is my aim to provide the families of Qatar Airways with a supportive focus point in the community, strong professional development for our staff and an outstanding educational experience for our students. Together we are building a 5-star school of which we can all be proud and which will remain an integral part of the Qatar Airways group and a leading beacon school in Qatar and beyond.

Nick pinks
Nick Pinks
Head of Operations
Nick pinks

Nick Pinks

Head of Operations

I am originally from London and we moved to Nottingham when I was 10 years old with my father's job relocation. I spent the next 10 years in Nottingham where I completed my A-levels and went on for a brief period to study Maths & Economics at Loughborough University. After a year I transferred to Nottingham Trent University to study Accountancy and went on to become a qualified accountant completing my professional exams a few years later.

I have worked in corporate finance for most of my career for some large multi-national companies such as Chubb and Canon and also within local government. The early part of my working life was in Finance in the advertising industry and the latter part of my career has been in education, for the last five years at a British curriculum International School. My whole career has revolved around finance but always with my eye on the bigger picture of the day-to-day running of an organisation.

I have three young children and a supportive wife who works for an NGO tackling the subject of climate change. My interests include music, movies, travel and golf when I get a chance.

My door is always open and I look forward to contributing to the continued success of this incredible school.

Ken Haggarty
Ken Haggarty
Vice Principal - Secondary
Ken Haggarty

Ken Haggarty

Vice Principal - Secondary

I am from a town called West Lothian in Scotland. I studied Music and qualified as a teacher in Glasgow and Dundee. I subsequently completed an MBA in Education from the University of Keele.

With the exception of two years in Arbroath and Montrose, Scotland, my whole career has been in international education. My first overseas post, in Kuwait, lasted 10 years and included the invasion and Gulf War, and five years as a Deputy Principal. I subsequently taught in Bahrain, Hong Kong and Thailand. This will be my 20th year in the Gulf.

My wife, Bernadette, and I have four children. the oldest qualified with MEng (Hons) and is presently working for an aerospace consultancy in the UK; the second is also in the UK and is currently undertaking a Law degree at Bristol University; our third son has just started university and our daughter is completing her A-Levels.

I am a very keen traveler. Football is my main sporting interest, as a spectator these days. I love teaching and feel lucky to have a career that I enjoy and which offers so many opportunities to work with enthusiastic and motivated people.

My aim at Oryx is to continue to establish a culture of achievement in Secondary School and to enhance the good work already undertaken. I see Oryx International School as being at a unique and positive moment of its development and I am honoured to have the opportunity to shape the culture of the school and establish its trajectory.

Andrea Smith 191210 072318
Andrea Smith
Vice Principal - Primary
Andrea Smith 191210 072318

Andrea Smith

Vice Principal - Primary

I have been in education for 25 years and a Headteacher for 16 of those. Having graduated from Exeter University with a Degree in History & Geography, I undertook a Post Graduate Certificate in Primary Education. I gained my National Professional Qualification for Headship through the National College for School Leadership.

I have worked in different schools across the years and have been the Headteacher of three very different primary schools. So far, all of my teaching and leadership career has been in Plymouth, a beautiful coastal city in South-West England.

My sons are students at Oryx, we enjoy spending family time together, as well as making the most of all the opportunities that come with living in Doha and being part of an international school. The family, along with our two black labradors also enjoy walking on the beach on the weekends.

It is my continued aim to support and develop the whole staff team, pupils and community at Oryx.

Staff Profile Denise Mc Manus 200121 143912
Denise McManus
Head of Marketing and Admissions
Staff Profile Denise Mc Manus 200121 143912

Denise McManus

Head of Marketing and Admissions

I am from South Africa and moved to Doha in 2008 with my family for four years returning again towards the end of 2013. I graduated with a degree in Communication and Psychology and have continued my studies throughout my life in areas such as graphic design, multimedia, marketing, project management and a variety of development programmes.

I have worked in a variety of fields from graphic design to project managing interactive and enhanced digital television channels, including shows such as Big Brother, Idols, The Block, BBC Food and many other exciting programmes. I have worked in website marketing and on our second move to Doha worked as a Marketing Manager in one of the international schools before joining Oryx.

In my spare time, I like to keep fit by swimming, cycling and going to the gym. I love reading, travelling and finding exciting outdoor adventures to participate in.

Christopher Cundall19
Christopher Cundall
Assistant Principal - Safeguarding & Sixth Form
Christopher Cundall19

Christopher Cundall

Assistant Principal - Safeguarding & Sixth Form

I come from the UK and graduated from Loughborough University with a BA (Hons) degree in Industrial Design and Technology with Education. I then undertook my PGCE and Masters, both in Design and Technology Education.

After six years of teaching in the UK, our family decided that we would venture from our home in the UK and look for teaching positions abroad. We first moved to Beijing, China, where I became the Head of Design and Technology and later the Assistant IB Coordinator. We spent four years in China before deciding it was time for a new adventure and moved to Thailand. My roles there included Head of Design and Technology, Houseparent, STEAM and AG&T Coordinators.

Moving to Qatar in 2019, I am joined by my wife and our four children. As a family we enjoy travelling, exploring new cities and visiting different countries. My passion is my teaching subject and I enjoy making furniture and experimenting with electronics and robotics in my own time.

My ambition in teaching has always been to stretch and develop students’ abilities and skills in a stimulating environment. As the Head of Sixth Form, I aim to inspire and prepare students for life beyond the classroom, further study, and future employment.

Imran Sidat 200121 144103
Imran Sidat
Assistant Principal - Assessment
Imran Sidat 200121 144103

Imran Sidat

Assistant Principal - Assessment

I am originally from Manchester where I studied a BSc in Computer Science. I then furthered my education by completing my PGCE in ICT at the University of Bradford.

I started teaching in Manchester where I carried out duties as Subject Co-ordinator of Computer Science. I then moved to Burnley where I was Head of Computing and Leader of STEM.

I have a keen interest in sports, travelling and socialising. I am a regular participant in sports such as football and table tennis. I also like to participate in and organise various charity events.

I am married with one child, my wife works as a care worker.

I continue to aim to excel in student achievement and progress while providing an engaging, challenging and creative curriculum for Computer Science with real-life links to STEM. I also like to help build independent learners that show resilience at all times and make learning fun.

Aodhan Mc Keown19
Aodhan McKeown
Assistant Principal - Teaching & Learning Secondary
Aodhan Mc Keown19

Aodhan McKeown

Assistant Principal - Teaching & Learning Secondary

I was born in Dublin City, Ireland, and grew up in County Meath, which is close to Dublin.

I studied History and Geography as an undergraduate at Maynooth University and completed my Masters in Military History and Strategic Studies in Maynooth. From there, I completed my Higher Diploma in Education at UCD Dublin.

I started my teaching career in Spain, which was a stepping stone for me to come live and teach in Qatar, where I have spent the last five years.

I am very close to my two brothers, sister, and my mother.

My main interests are Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, keeping fit, eating healthily and having as little negative impact on the environment as possible.

My aim at Oryx is to continue to bring my very best teaching to each and every one of my students and to ignite their love for history and inspire them to flourish and reach their potential, not only as History students but as mature, responsible citizens.

Jane Rimmer 200121 143916
Jane Rimmer
Assistant Principal - Development & Wellbeing
Jane Rimmer 200121 143916

Jane Rimmer

Assistant Principal - Development & Wellbeing

My teaching career started many years ago in a small village in the North of England following the completion of my Bachelor of Education Honours Degree. Since then I have worked in a number of primary schools, held a variety of managerial positions and worked across the whole of the Primary age range. I moved to Qatar, my first international school setting in 2013 with my husband and two daughters.

My interests are wide-ranging but I love to explore the world around me and seek out interesting places to visit. I also enjoy cycling, canoeing, dancing and running.

To me providing a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment is essential as I am aware of how creating such an environment for children enhances their learning immensely. This philosophy I believe is one that is mirrored in Oryx International School, which is why I am so excited to be here.

Liam Mernagh
Liam Mernagh
Assistant Principal - Teaching & Learning Primary
Liam Mernagh

Liam Mernagh

Assistant Principal - Teaching & Learning Primary

I graduated with a PGCE from the University of East London in 2011. Prior to this, I studied at the National University of Maynooth in Ireland where I graduated with an Arts Degree in English and Sociology.

I worked in a school in East London for four years, where I taught Year 2 for two years, Reception for two years and led the Foundation Stage. Other leadership responsibilities have included Physical Education (PE) and Phonics. I am in my sixth year at Oryx International School, where I started as a Year 1 class teacher and progressed from leading KS1 and KS2 to Assistant Principal.

When I am not working, I enjoy many different sports including Gaelic football and golf. I love to read and enjoy travelling.

Grace Kelly
Grace Kelly
Assistant Principal - Curriculum
Grace Kelly

Grace Kelly

Assistant Principal - Curriculum

I am originally from a small town in the North of Ireland, County Derry, called Draperstown. I then moved to Liverpool for university, where I completed my degree in Primary Teaching with Sports and Physical Education. I started my teaching career in a fantastic school in Liverpool, with a Year 6 class. After five years in Liverpool, I decided I was ready for a new challenge and made the move to Doha. I have been teaching in Doha for three years and have loved every minute of it.

Outside of school, I have a passion for travel, sports and food. I have been very fortunate since living in Doha to have had the opportunity to visit many beautiful countries and experience many different cultures, and hope to visit many more beautiful countries in the future.

I am now in my fourth year of teaching and have taught across all Key Stages as well as having had the opportunity to be part of the middle management team for the last three years. I aim to continue to promote a love for learning as well as learning that is child-centered, to ensure that every child reaches their full potential, in a progressive and nurturing environment.