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Dr Zeynep Yaseen


Dr Zeynep Yaseen graduated from Bogazici University, Istanbul with an honour degree. She completed her Master’s degree in the same University about the primary and secondary school textbooks and visuals. Dr Yaseen has worked as an academic staff at Bogazici University during her Master’s degree. In 2012, she received two high prestigious scholarship from University of Technology Sydney (UTS) for her Doctorate in Education. UTS awards allowed her to make a valuable contribution to create an effective learning environment for students. She worked as a postdoc fellow in the Teacher Education Program STEMed Research Centre at UTS in 2017.


Dr Yaseen specialises in student-centred learning environment in STEM education and has a background in mathematics and science teaching, in both primary and high schools. She focuses on student-generated animations in the teaching and learning of science.  Dr Yaseen supports academic and professional staff for the application of an appropriate pedagogic and technical design, and provides expert advice to develop and deliver with new technological learning sources.


Dr Yaseen has published scores of journal articles, book chapters on student learning and education, with a special focus on Science education. She is currently involved in several international research projects and evaluations for a variety of agencies and government departments. Dr Yaseen has lectured in science and technology education, curriculum design, teaching methods, educational psychology at UTS in Australia and Bogazici University in Turkey. 

Mrs Reyhan Caliskan Er

Head of Curriculum

Mrs Reyhan is a dedicated professional educator, mentor and leader with a solid commitment to the social and academic growth and development of every student. 


Mrs Reyhan graduated with a Bachelor of Teaching and a Bachelor of Education - Primary degree from University of Western Sydney and a Master of Education degree from Charles Sturt University. She began her teaching career over 20 years ago. Mrs Reyhan has experience in Class teaching, specialist ESL and Support teaching as well as Turkish language teaching, educating primary and secondary students in a variety of school settings. 

The breadth of experience has led Mrs Reyhan to develop a strong belief that every student is gifted in their own way and has something special they can bring to their own education, something to contribute to our world as long as they are in an environment where all learning styles are embraced and growth and development is facilitated. She is drawn to the notion that an effective educator can inspire learners by igniting imagination and instil a love of lifelong learning.

As Head of Curriculum here at Maarif, her aim is to motivate her students, colleagues and parents by fostering quality relationships through dynamic and collaborative leadership to achieve the whole school curriculum plan.

Mrs Ulku Turkmen

Kindergarten Teacher


Mrs Ulku Turkmen entered the Early Childhood industry in the year 2000 whilst studying Diploma of Early Childhood. After finishing the course, she wanted to endeavour the sector further so decided to do Bachelor of Early Childhood. Once completed she started working as a Primary School teacher for 3 years and then took a break to take care of her children. Whilst caring for them, Mrs Turkmen was involved with working in long day care centers as an Early Childhood Teacher.


Mrs Turkmen also worked as an Education Leader at a family day care office. Then became a trainer and assessor at an Adult college teaching Certificate III and Diploma in ECEC.

When hearing about Maarif International School, Mrs Turkmen made the decision to continue as a Primary School teacher and stated that she is very grateful to be given the position as a Year 1 teacher. She hopes and aims to serve the school with all her knowledge and expertise and make a positive difference in the community.

Mrs Maryam Faisal  

Kindergarten Teacher


Mrs Faisal graduated with a Bachelor of Education Primary and a Bachelor of Arts at Macquarie University. She has previously worked at Chalkwall, a tutoring company first established in 1990 and grounded upon the philosophy that seeks to empower youth academically by creating highly interactive and engaging learning environments. Her deep passion and love for teaching continued to flourish through her interactions with students and teachers from all across New South Wales. 


She believes that as a facilitator of student learning, it is imperative that students are equipped with the appropriate tools and resources to reach their full learning potential. A wide range of research-based pedagogical approaches are implemented into her classroom to cater to the individual needs of each student.  


Mrs Faisal is trilingual; she speaks English and Arabic in addition to her native Turkish language which is advantageous when in communication with the wider community and particularly with kindergarten students who may require language support and help with that new transition into school. 

Miss Rooba El-Sayed

Year 1 Teacher

Miss Rooba El-Sayed graduated with a Bachelor of Business and Commerce majoring in Human Resource Management and Industrial relations. Prior to entering the teaching industry she  worked in the Vocational Education Sector as a Student Support Team Leader, focusing on assisting adults achieve their lifelong learning goals. Miss El-Sayed was inspired to follow her passion for teaching and completed her Master of Teaching.


Miss El-Sayed’s teaching philosophy is based upon inclusive education. She strongly believes that every student is a unique individual who deserves to learn in a creative, supportive, and stimulating atmosphere. Her teaching pedagogical decisions are based upon inclusive education which values diversity, schooling experiences and opportunities for all students.


Miss El-Sayed implements an inquiry-based learning pedagogical approach allowing students to test and develop their ideas in a collaborative environment. Students become an active participant in the learning process, therefore increasing their problem-solving skills and abstract thinking.


Miss El-Sayed has also completed a Certificate lll in Fitness, she worked as a fitness coach and is determined to help students and adults alike to make healthy choices.


Students will be the center of all of Miss El-Sayed’s pedagogical decisions ensuring that she is providing valuable learning experiences in a safe, inclusive and student-centered environments.

Mrs Ayse Yildiz

Year 2 Teacher

Mrs Yildiz has worked in Early Childhood Education for five years. During this time, she grew an appreciation for helping and guiding children in becoming the best versions of themselves, for this reason she then pursued her studies in education. Mrs Yildiz graduated with a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood and Primary) from the Australian Catholic University.


Mrs Yildiz’s philosophy centres around assisting children to grow and develop authentically, becoming the best version of themselves, academically, emotionally, and socially.

Ms Amel Mehana

Year 3 Teacher

Ms Mehana graduated her Bachelor of Arts, with a major in History and Political Thought, and sub-major in Islamic Studies. After growing a love and appreciation for education, she continued her studies, graduating with a Master of Teaching degree.


Ms Mehana’s passion for teaching stems from an eagerness to provide students with the tools and knowledge they need to accomplish their goals; whether that is academic, artistic or athletic based.


Ms Mehana’s teaching philosophy is centred upon celebrating student individuality. She strongly believes that as a teacher, you must understand that all students are different, and in order to ensure optimum learning, you must cater to these differences. This simple yet significant idea begins with ensuring that the classroom is a safe and fun environment which promotes, accepts and celebrates the differences of each child. With this foundation, Ms Mehana strives to provide students with opportunities to explore the endless possibilities of learning.

Ms Samira Asad

Year 4 Teacher

Mrs Asad completed her Masters of Education in Primary through Swinburne University of Technology. She has been working in private schools and public schools as a classroom teacher since 2016. 


Mrs Asads philosophy of teaching is based on a belief that learning needs to be student centred and that students need to be equal partners in the learning process. Her role involves using her expertise to put the necessary resources in the hands of the students or more likely to be sure that her students are well equipped to find and evaluate the resources they need to answer their questions.


She believe that all children are unique and must have a stimulating educational environment where they can grow physically, mentally, emotionally and socially. It is her desire to create this type of atmosphere where students meet their full potential.


Mrs Asad is passionate about the use of writing to teach students to be more aware of their thinking and setting goals for themselves. This equips them with certain goals to achieve and set a path for them.

Mrs Olivia Peach

Year 5 Teacher

Miss Asli Arici

Year 6 Teacher

Miss Asli Arici graduated from the University of Sydney with a double degree in Education and Arts, specialising in teaching English and Modern History. Miss Arici has experience teaching in public and independent sectors of education and has completed most of her placements in both primary and secondary schools. Miss Arici has always enjoyed teaching younger students, hence her declaration “teaching at Maarif was the best decision for me”.

Miss Arici’s educational philosophy revolves mostly around the community and the way in which teaching, and education allows for us as individuals to give back to the community. She believes that teaching is the most rewarding career, and every student should have equal access to education. Miss Arici signifies, “as teachers it is our duty to raise intelligent students through not just a transfer of curricular knowledge but also personal skills”.

Miss Arici’s intention is to create an educational based learning environment that also focuses on becoming the best version of ourselves whilst attaining a strong moral and ethical outlook. She believes that in this way, students will not only be able to engage and serve the greater community in a positive way, but also apply curricular knowledge at a greater level allowing kids to be competent and tolerant individuals.  

Mrs Aysegul Seyma Akdemir​

Turkish Language Teacher

Mrs Aysegul Seyma Akdemir has a Bachelor of Teaching Foreign Language with honours at Anadolu University Turkey in 2007. Mrs Akdemir has extensive experience in teaching a foreign language to a diverse array of students of varying ages and abilities since her graduation both in Turkey and Australia.

Mrs Akdemir believes the importance of active student participation, involvement and team work in teaching to have a successful learning environment. She aims to incorporate cultural and historical components of the target language into the curriculum to expand learning materials. Mrs Akdemir has been Maarif International Schools Turkish teacher since 2019.

Miss Esra Pamuk

Turkish Language Teacher

Esra Pamuk graduated from Hacettepe University, Turkish Language and Literature- Turkish Folklore Department with an honour degree. She completed Teach Turkish as a Foreign Language and Pedagogical Formation Certificate Programs at the same university. Ms. Pamuk also studied in Hungary Debrecen University as a researcher and exchange student.


She worked in one of the biggest projects in the world as a trainer between 2015 and 2019. She has extensive experience in teaching language, folklore and folk dance. She continues to deliver online language teaching programs and engages in volunteer work.


Ms Pamuk believes that young children are uniquely suited to learning a new language. Each child has great potential for creativity, engaging in modern techniques while having fun in doing so.

Miss Gulcan Aksu

Religious Education Teacher

Miss Gulcan Aksu is a passionate Quran and Islamic studies teacher who has been teaching children for the last 10 years. Her valuable experience of teaching Quran and Islamic scripture was gained through teaching at both primary schools within the Western Sydney region and Mosques. Gulcan's impressive academic achievement shows her successful completion of the Shariah course at Daar Aisha College. The Shariah course includes teachings in Aqidah, Fiqh, Seerah, Tarbeyah and Tajweed. In addition to this, Ms Aksu has a Certificate 3 in Early Childhood Education completed through H&H Accredited Training Australasia and has also completed her certificate on 'Education of Morals and Values' to school-aged children, with Sakarya University, Turkey.

She enjoys teaching children their Religion in a fun and enjoyable way and gives high importance to respect and moral values within their Religious Education. Miss Aksu has been working with Maarif International School since 2019.

Ms Bushra Mohammed Saeed

Religious Education and Quran Teacher

Ms Bushra Mohammed Saeed is a fully qualified and NESA accredited teacher. Bushra has extensive experience teaching in New South Wales and she has been teaching students for over 18 years. She is recognised as someone who is very passionate about mentoring and guiding the minds of young students.


Bushra has a particular interest in teaching the Arabic language and studies of religion (Quran) and she has received many accolades for doing so. Bushra is a valuable member of the Maarif teaching staff.

Mr Muhammed Ordukaya

Religious Education and Quran Teacher

Mr Muhammed Ordukaya is a dedicated Qur’an and Islamic Studies teacher with 3 years’ experience in developing and implementing diverse curriculums. Mr Muhammed completed his Shariah Studies and graduated from the UMA Sydney Islamic College. This included intense lessons and teachings of Aqidah, Fiqh, Tafseer, Hadith, Seerah, Tajweed, Adab & Ahlaq, Seerah. Mr Muhammed thoroughly enjoys teaching students in a way that is both enjoyable and pleasant.

Mr Muhammed specialises in Seerah and showcases this through delivering weekly lessons and lectures both in English and in Turkish outside of school hours to the community for many years.

Ms Emma Morgan

Creative and Performing Arts Teacher

Emma Morgan graduated from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music with an honours degree in trombone performance in 2010, where she studied under the tutelage of Scott Kinmont, Associate Principal Trombone of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. After working as the Instrumental Convenor in a secondary school, she saw the impact that quality teachers have on student outcomes and experiences in music education, and she went onto study at the University of New England, completing a Graduate Diploma in Humanities in 2013 and a Master of Teaching (Secondary) in 2015.


Emma has been teaching for 6 years and has experience in both high schools and primary schools teaching music and humanities. Her educational philosophy is underpinned by the student-centred Orff Schulwerk and Kodaly approaches to music education, and ensures her learning experiences are accessible to all students, regardless of their level of experience in formal music training. Emma is also passionate about incorporating new technologies into the 21st-century music classroom and learning new techniques herself.


Emma loves the inclusive nature of music education and enjoys seeing students reap the benefits of a strong music education in other areas of their lives.

Ms Tulay Tatli


Ms Tulay Tatli has over 25 years of experience in Customer Service and Administration. She has previously worked in Telecommunications and Aviation, both locally and abroad (Turkey).


Ms Tatli is passionate about helping people and committed to supporting students in their educational journey. Having raised two children of her own, both successful university graduates, she understands the needs of parents as well as students.

Ms Tatli is looking forward to seeing all our students flourish and graduate from the school until the day she retires from International Maarif Schools of Australia.

Miss Gizem Gunes


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