Our team is composed of world-class professionals from a variety of backgrounds, including education, private sector, civil service, and NGOs. We are a community of learners devoted to LEAF’s cause of providing the best education possible to individuals of character, regardless of their economic background. Apart from teaching their own subject, tutors take upon themselves the role of dorm-parents, mentors, advisors, sport trainers, and organizers of co-curricular activities.
Hana Kuc#wellbeing team
Hana is a psychologist with 15 years of experience in the social service field. Before returning to Bratislava, she lived in New York City for 23 years, where she earned her master’s degree in mental health counseling and worked in various public and private social service agencies. Before joining our team, Hana managed outpatient substance dependency clinics, provided mental health therapy to teens and adults, and taught classes for counselors. In her free time, she enjoys hiking and traveling.
Marcela Gatciová#wellbeing team
Before joining the LEAF Academy team Marcela worked in various areas including education and media. As a former teacher, she was glad to come back to classrooms as a volunteer at UNICEF where she spent several years as a Junior Ambassador. It was during that time she realized she wanted to enhance her competence and become a psychologist specialized in educational counseling. Later she completed her studies at Comenius University and began working at a primary school in Bratislava. She has already concluded her training in Art Therapy and is currently in the final phase of her psychotherapeutic training in Individual Psychology. Besides she is passionate about languages, dancing, traveling, and spending time with others.
Roman Kluvanec#teacher #STEM #IT
Roman Kluvanec is a LEAF SPAP alumni that comes from the world of IT and Security, with 5 years of experience in companies such as Exponea and ESET. Before graduating from The University of Edinburgh, he has been volunteering for NGOs focused on students with a talent for maths, informatics, and physics. Later, this affinity for education helped him to transition to his side role as a Computer Science teacher at LA in 2020, too. Within LEAF, he also leads the IT agenda with the aim of creating a digital environment that empowers others to fulfill the mission of LEAF more efficiently.
Daniela Pellerová#teacher #STEM #CD #advisor #residential
Dada is a graduate from Comenius University where she studied economics and financial mathematics. During her high school, she spent a lot of time organizing and taking part of different camps connected to both mathematics and experiential learning.
Simona Müllerová#teacher #EL #STEM #CD #advisor
Simona studied Biotechnology and Industrial management at the Slovak University of Technology. During university studies, she volunteered in the NGO sector in marketing and project management while managing teams as well. Before coming to LEAF Academy, she taught English as a lecturer in a language school. She is passionate about graphic design, traveling, and nature. At LEAF Academy, she teaches Entrepreneurial Leadership, lower school Science, Character Seminar, and is responsible for marketing.
Peter Reťkovský#teacher #EL #STEM #advisor #residential
Jaromír Sedlár#teacher #EL #CES #CD #advisor
‘Mr. Jaro’ is a man on a mission to help our students and staffulty to ‘make it happen,’ to work together to imagine and create things that make sense and are designed with users in mind. He is an expert in the field of leadership.
Jaromír studied at Masaryk University, Fort Hays State University, and the University of Texas at Austin. As a student, he was active in student government and various academic organizations. He spent a year at the African Leadership Academy as a LEAF Fellow.
When not at work, Jaromír enjoys spending time with his family and friends, whether it is watching good movies and documentaries, or traveling and exploring.
Lenka Filkaszová#teacher #CES #advisor #safeguarding
At LEAF Academy she teaches Writing and Rhetoric as well as AP English Literature and Composition. English became Lenka’s passion upon having lived in London for almost five years. She went on to study English Language and Literature at Comenius University and later combined it with a business perspective, earning her MBA at the City University of Seattle. Lenka has spent her whole working career helping others become better and feel better about themselves whether by speaking English more fluently or finding out a little more about their own dreams in other subjects that she has taught at universities in Slovakia and abroad (Professional Business Communication, Environmental Science, Sustainable Development, Critical Thinking). She has lectured in Finland, Lithuania and taught Chinese students how to think critically at a university in Prague. She loves organizing outdoor events with an environmental twist. She believes in forming a bond with students way beyond the classroom as this transforms the education process into a lifelong experience. Her unconventional teaching methods and assignments have earned her different awards, but her best award is knowing her former students found her lessons meaningful for their future and helped them develop as a person.
Matej Sapák#teacher #CES
Matej’s twin passions for exploration and stories have guided him for most of his life. A boy scout since the age of ten, Matej learned to love the outdoors and treasure friendships formed on a long hike or around a campfire. His curiosity and desire to understand how things work, and to learn new stories, also attracted him to try his hand at debating. Eventually, he would use his debating experience to take two Slovak teams to the finals of international debate tournaments, and one of them to victory. That same curiosity led him to a boarding school in England, an International Baccalaureate school in Bratislava, to study Math at Harvard College and finally Law at Harvard Law school. Through it all, Matej became more and more interested in the stories of the people he studied and worked with, and he came to believe that the future of his country lies in the stories of its talented people. Seeking to give other young people the same opportunities he has had, after working with McKinsey & Company, he spent two years in public service helping to write a national strategy for knowledge economy, and then joined LEAF, a Slovak non-profit dedicated to helping talented young people live inspiring stories of leadership.
Matej greatly enjoys getting to know many more talented young Central Europeans and help them kindle their own curiosity and develop their own stories.
Zuzana Podracká#teacher #CES
Zuzana is a contemporary (Czecho)Slovak historian, who is teaching History and Central European Studies at LEAF Academy. She lived, studied, and taught in a little Welsh town called Aberystwyth for 8 years, where she gained a BScEcons in International Politics and International History, MA in Modern European History, and Ph.D. focusing on secondary school education and society in transition in (Czecho)Slovakia during the late normalization and early post-1989 period. After 10 years in the UK, she returned to Slovakia in 2017. Before joining LA, she has worked for GLOBSEC for over 2 years, running the GLOBSEC Young Leaders Forum, and covering all things UK-related as well as various EU topics first as a conference agenda lead and later as a research fellow at the GLOBSEC Policy Institute.
Her passions include spending time with her family and friends, dancing, debating, writing, traveling, and listening to music of (almost) any kind. She always sees and tries to bring out the best in people and firmly believes that being kind and compassionate, standing up for yourself and others, and trying your best are the most important things in life. Her day can always be made better by a good cup of tea, a good book, and some chocolate.
Brett came to LEAF Academy after 20 years in boarding schools, having served as a teacher of history, English, Psychology, and math, a Director of Residential Life, and a Dean of Students. He's coming to Slovakia mostly to meet Peter Sagan, but is also interested in the mission of LEAF Academy. He first lived in Europe about ten years ago, when he taught for 2 years at the American College of Sofia with his wife. Since then, they've developed a love for this part of the world and are now sharing it with their kids: ages 11 and 7.
Tina is a devoted rescuer. She studied at the Slovak Medical University in Bratislava. During her studies she took part in many competitions, conferences and further education. Besides rescuing lives in the streets of Bratislava, Tina is a volunteer at Slovak Red Cross where she is a First Aid Instructor and educates the younger generation. At LEAF Academy, Tina and her husband are taking care of the health and wellbeing of our students.
Jana Klagová#academics #HR #teacher #CES
Accompanying students on their path to develop their potential is what enriches Jana and motivates her. Jana has more than 20 years of experience in education. She is co-founder of the CS Lewis Bilingual High School, where she worked as a teacher, Department Head, Principal, and College-Counselor. She has always loved languages and literature and studied English and Slovak at Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia. Jana also travelled and studied education in the United States, where she had opportunities to visit various high schools and universities which broadened her understanding of the university admission process. Learning new things is an integral part of Jana’s life, so she completed an online course on Formative Assessment at the University of Oregon. She enjoys cooking and baking non-traditional meals and sharing them with others
Her main focus is academics (learning as such, assessment, curriculum etc.) She also supports teaching staffulty in their professional learning, addresses HR questions whenever needed, and is a member of the LEAF Academy Leadership Team.