Esther Awovi Dzakpasu
Founder & Executive Director
Esther has global experience in the fields of Education, Law and International development. With exposure to the world class education enjoyed by many communities in the United States and the United Kingdom irrespective of parents’ level of income, Esther has always wanted to figure out a way to make this a reality for the majority of Ghana’s parents as well and within short distances of their homes. This passion was nurtured at Colorado State University where she was encouraged to pursue this and was helped to refine the Pioneers business model for easy expansion and replication in areas of need.
Esther has extensive experience, a well-trained professional of Education. She worked as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the International School of Uganda (Lincoln International, Uganda) where she led the Board and leadership team to implement strategies for the school which educates over 500 students from 57 different countries. Esther was also the Africa Regional Director for Human Resources for FINCA International a global microfinance organization with a presence in 24 countries and the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of FINCA Microfinance Bank, Nigeria. Esther has taught students in primary education, university students in Law and business, and senior business executives in areas of business, human resources, leadership, and entrepreneurship.
At Pioneers Esther leads the team in implementing and expanding the vision and ensuring that Ghana’s children are prepared for the world. Esther also teachers at the primary school.
She holds a Bachelor’s degree in law (LLB, Ghana), a Master’s Degree in International Business (LLM, England) and an MBA in Global Social and Sustainable Enterprise development (USA). She is a member of the Ghana Bar Association, a certified Global Professional in Human Resources and a member of Highscope Educational Research Foundation
David De la Haye
Curriculum Development Director
David is a highly experienced Training and Education Specialist and Engineer in the United Kingdom and East Africa. A key aspect of David’s expertise lies in designing, planning and delivering efficient workplace-based learning and transformational programs which achieve measurable business and educational benefits. He specializes in programs that transform the performance of teachers, employers and employees alike, through participative and active training. He was a pioneer of a new style of workplace-based qualifications in the Aerospace industry in the United Kingdom.
David is the founder and Managing Director of the African Learning Development Institute Ltd (ALDI), training, research, and consultancy organization incorporated in Uganda, and Training Uganda, a UK-based charitable organization that focuses on training and capacity building within Uganda and beyond.
Leading a team of education consultants for a consortium of UK and Uganda based educational NGOs with funding from UKAid, David designed and delivered a unique program of development for 20 Trainers and 440 teachers in mainstream primary schools in Uganda. This included the development and delivery of a contextually appropriate and sustainable learner-centered teaching methodology for Ugandan teachers and their trainers. The program impacted over 2000 primary school students over its first 2 years alone.
At Pioneers, David leads the team in developing, reviewing and implementing the school’s curriculum. He also leads the team in incorporating Pioneers specific programs in leadership, innovation, and community development, ensuring that our curriculum develops our graduates to be enquirers, life-long learners, and achievers.
Having originally trained as an Architect at the University of Bristol, and later as a Professional Trainer with what is now the University of West London; David is currently completing his Doctoral studies at University of Middlesex, UK.
Education Project Associate
Jennifer is a science enthusiast who longs to bring engaging and experiential STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) learning to the younger generation. She hopes to foster creativity and critical-thinking skills in students with the belief that all children, regardless of their future career paths, will benefit from a strong foundation in STEM education.
During her undergraduate program, Jennifer worked as a resident assistant where she counseled students regarding their personal and academic concerns. She also worked as a math tutor where she developed engaging activities that reinforce mathematics concepts. This fuelled her passion to continue educating others and to create a comfortable and engaging learning environment for students to innovate.
At Pioneers, Jennifer develops and oversees programs that nurture the students’ curiosity in areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math through various innovative ways and also oversees the extra-curricular activities that ensure that our students are well-rounded. She is also a lead teacher for the primary school.
Jennifer is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park with a degree in Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics. She’s also a Project Coordinator at African Research Academies-Ghana, an organization with a mission to encourage and inspire STEM education among African women.
Ben is the lead teacher for the Reception/kindergarten class. He is also in charge of the sporting activities for the students. He comes to Pioneers with 8 years teaching experience at the American International School (AISB) of Bamako, Mali. At AISB, Ben assisted in teaching classes from Kindergarten through Grade 5. He is passionate about helping children develop their curiosity and creativity and integrates Arts, Music and Video lessons in his teaching methodology to engage his students. During the coup d’état in Mali in 2012, Mr. Ben was one of the teachers who was selected at the American International School in Mali to conduct a virtual school for the students. He also, as part of the extracurricular activities of the school, helped in developing 3 comic books and was a member of the school’s disciplinary committee. He holds a diploma in Business Administration and a Computer Instructor & Technician training in computer software, hardware, and networking. He is fluent in French and English.
Isaac Korletey Sogbodjor
Mr. Isaac has 15 years’ experience in teaching and over 5 years in school administration and management. His experience spans teaching at Datus Preparatory School, Ghana, Head of school at Grace International School, Ghana and, Head of Upper Primary at Peculiar International School, Ghana. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education (Psychology and Foundations of Education) and a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) science option in education from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. Mr. Isaac is passionate about the sciences and child Psychology. It is his belief that every child has an innate ability and it is the job of educators to act as facilitators to bring these abilities out using appropriate and required techniques. At Pioneers, Mr. Isaac is part of the management team and ensures the school’s curriculum meet the Cambridge International standards of learning. He also works with the team to ensure the school’s Differently Gifted and Special Needs Learners have their educational and developmental needs addressed.
Ms. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Education) in Social Science from the University for Development Studies, Ghana. She was also a teaching assistant in the Department of Social and Business Studies during her time at the university and for a year thereafter. Ms. Ellen’s teaching experience including being a homeroom teacher at Emmanuel Foundation Senior High School, Chiraa in the Brong Ahafo region of Ghana, at teacher at Victory College and as an Assistant Head Teacher for the Nursery section of Tender Sprouts International School, Accra Ghana.
At Pioneers Ms. Ellen leads the team in the Preschool, Neptune and Jupiter classes (Daycare through Preschool) and ensures that the team adequately prepare each child for readiness for Reception/kindergarten. Ms. Ellen is excited about the opportunities to develop the Pioneers young learners and loves being able to do it at Pioneers an environment that nurtures challenging creativity, innovation, professionalism and personal development. When Ms. Ellen is exhausted after a hard day’s work with the very young learners she watches movies to cool off and plan for the next day.
Ms. Alice is a Teacher at the Early Childhood centre. In the last year, Ms. Alice has been the Assistant Teacher at Preschool assisting in developing and implementing lesson plans as well as nurturing the well-being of the young learners. Ms. Alice is also a volunteer Sunday school teacher at Action Chapel where she assists in teaching children below ages of 5 in their Christian curriculum. and She holds a diploma in Sign Language from Kyambogo University Uganda.