Degrees and Certifications:
July 2021-August 2021: VCLA Reading & Writing Test March 2021-July 2021: Professional Studies Coursework January 2020: High School Praxis Mathematics September 2014- October 2016: The UCL Institute of Education NPQSL Closing the gap & Succeeding in leadership September 2009 – July 2012: Middlesex University MA (Leadership and Management) 2.1 MA degree - Work based MA degree June 2008 – June 2008: International Baccalaureate Certificate in Math Studies November 1995 – November 1999: University of Nairobi Bachelor of Education (Arts) degree Math and Economics Upper second class, honors degree January 1990 – December 1993: Alliance Girls High School KCSE Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education B Plus
Mrs. Catherine Kenda
I was born and raised in Kenya, East Africa. I achieved a Bachelor of Education (Arts) degree in Economics and Math in 1999, at the University of Nairobi, Kenya. I also achieved a work-based MA degree in Education (leadership and management) in 2012 from a London university.
In 2000, I started my teaching career at a Kenyan high school. In early 2001, I was invited to Australia by family friends. While I was there, I applied for a math substitute teaching job that was in London. In August of that year, I left my motherland and moved to the UK. While I was in the UK, my teaching career started off with me being a long-term math substitute teacher in an extremely challenging high school in North West London. In 2002, I accepted a similar position at Dormers Wells High School, based in west London. After a few months, I was appointed as a permanent math teacher. I took on other roles within the school, such as being a Numeracy Coordinator, a Deputy Year Leader and not long after that, I became the Head of Department for Math, a School Staff Governor, a Pedagogy Leader and a Subject Network Leader for the borough of Ealing. As a HOD, I had the opportunity to travel to Athens and Beijing as part of international teacher professional development. In 2016, having ensured that students had high aspirations in their education and life, and that the math department could stand on its own, I left London to go and work as a Math HOD in an underperforming school in Norfolk, East Anglia. I was at the forefront of raising levels of aspirations and standards of behavior and achievement at this school.
June 2019 brought yet another huge change in my life; leaving the UK to live in Leesburg, Virginia with my husband and children. I became a substitute teacher for Loudoun County in September 2019 and took on assignments that were challenging but at the same time rewarding. I also deliberately took on high school math assignments because this is where my passion lies.
In January 2020, I sat my high school Praxis certification exam and passed. In mid-January, I attended a job fair interview in Loudoun County and was successfully interviewed and offered a teaching job at Lightridge High School.
In my free time, I enjoy jogging/running, and watching movies. I am also a Christian who enjoys reading and studying the Bible. I am sort of an introvert; in the company of my peers, I prefer to observe, learn, and then join in at the appropriate time.
The educational philosophy that I closely identify with is Behaviorism. From experience, learning takes place effectively when there are clear expectations for all, there is respect, consistent reinforcement, and reward for good behavior. As a practitioner, I have experienced both positive and warm learning environments when clear expectations of behavior and learning have been communicated and reiterated to students; students respond positively when they see that their teacher has high expectations of behavior and, at the same time, the teacher loves them. Without positive behavior which involves consistently loving and nurturing, of students, it is difficult for teaching and learning to take place. I am a strong believer that hard work and discipline pays off; I have had to work hard in all my teaching positions to make the achievements I have made such as improving behavior, achievement, and progress in math for students who are in my care. In return, I have had the experience of seeing students change their attitude to learning by working hard and exhibiting self-discipline and this has led to a marked improvement in their behavior and achievement.
I am now in my fourth year of teaching at Lightridge High School. I had the pleasure of acting as the math department chair for 8 weeks from mid-February till toward the end of April of 2023. I learnt a lot as a leader. I will continue to teach Algebra I and Precalculus this year. I am thoroughly enjoying being a teacher at Lightridge and I cannot wait to see what this year brings!