Meet the Team

Renato Marques


I have been the College Principal at Phoenix College since September 2021 and I could not be happier with the progress and outcomes that our students have achieved so far. I have worked in educational settings for the last 25 years, with experience in primary, secondary, post-16 and adult settings. For the last 9 years I have led independent specialist colleges in London, preparing young people with SEN for adulthood by developing skills for independence and accessing the world of work. One of my passions is to offer more Enrichment opportunities to our students and I am very excited with the success of our Stay Up Late programme, especially our termly evenings at Genesis Cinema. I have worked with mainstream and SEN students in the UK, Brazil, Switzerland and Belgium and I hold a Bsc in Education and a Masters Degree in Inclusion and Special Education with commendation at Kingston University.

Natasha Wood

Assistant Principal – Safeguarding Lead

I have been working in supported employment for 8 years – Throughout this time, I have moved from the charity sector to education and have seen real growth in supported employment in our society. I am passionate about inclusion and representation, especially autistic representation, in our work force. This is reflected in our goal for all Phoenix students is to leave College with a paid supported employment placement that suits their unique skills and ambitions. I hold a BSc in Psychology and try to bring this training to my role of Assistant Principal for Careers and Safeguarding Lead at Phoenix. I try to approach my professional responsibilities in student-centred way, by listening to autistic voices and with empathy in mind. In my spare time I enjoy watching documentaries, cooking and spending time with loved ones.

Rick Nunn

Assistant Principal – Quality of Education

I have over 15 years of SEN experience, focusing on curriculum development and educational leadership. I am committed to ensuring each student receives a h

igh-quality, holistic education that prepares them for the future. I also serve as one of the deputy designated safeguarding leads and the Prevent lead at the College. Currently, I am studying for a National Professional Qualification in Headship at UCL. Outside of work, I play as a multi-instrumentalist and singer in a soul/jazz band.

Admin Team

Marianne Albuquerque Ramalho

College administrator

Tahmina Begum

College Receptionist

Ambreen Shafiq

Senior Administrator

Instructors and Teachers

Sarah Spiro


I have been working in education for 10 years, in mainstream classrooms and a specialist Autism provision, and I am incredibly excited to have the opportunity to work with the students and staff at Phoenix College. My Bachelor’s degree is in Drama & Education and I always strive to bring that energy and theatricality into my classroom to bring all learning alive. In my free time I can often be found at the theatre (smaller, local theatres are my preferred kind) or cooking up big feasts for my friends and family.

Helen Gillan


I am very excited to have joined the Phoenix College team and look forward to sharing my ideas. I have been working in education for many years in a variety of provisions having initially trained as an art teacher. My passion is bringing creativity into the classroom and the importance of using art as a tool for students to express themselves and communicate their ideas and emotions. I strongly believe in student centered learning and generating new and exciting experiences for students in the classroom and the wider community. In my own time I am enjoying a children’s book illustration course and love exploring art galleries and second hand markets!

Elena Vata

Self-Care Instructor

I’ve been working at the college since 2018. I am ambitious and driven. I thrive on challenge and constantly set goals for myself, so I have something to strive towards. I am very passionate about giving each and every student an adult fulfilling life. The Hair and Beauty course will be training and delivering quality sessions on hair washing, styling, manicure, pedicure and massages.
The students will also learn how to improve their personal care and hygiene by participating in a range of different activities.
They will work as part of a team through group activities and look
at different job roles within the Hair and Beauty industry. I love dancing and fashion, keeping up with the current trends.

Darren Serrano-Griffiths

Fitness Instructor

During your young person’s time at College, students will learn how to improve their general fitness by participating in a range of different sporting activities. They will also learn how to work as part of a team through group activities and about different job roles within the fitness industry. I studied abroad in America to gain a degree in Business & Sports Management and my other qualifications within sport include First Diploma (Sport and Leisure) Level 3, NVQ in Sports Coaching and Leadership Level 2, and I am currently enrolled on a Sports Therapy QLS Level 3 Course. I also run fitness sessions for staff after college.
I love sport, watching and participating, especially football. Sport has given me the appreciation of the importance of ensuring that others can rely on me as a team member. I enjoy listening to music, reading, socializing with friends and travelling.

Ferenc Kasa (Frank)

eLearning Instructor

I was always keen about computers, however originally I studied Theatre Science at University of Pannonia. During my studies I was involved in many theatre plays and Drama in Education projects. I feel very lucky that here at Phoenix College I have the opportunity to combine my drama teaching experience with my passion for technology.
In the vast, ever-changing digital world it is crucial for our students to have a good understanding on how different interactive devices work and how to use them confidently and safely.

In my free time I love going to the cinema, taking photos, writing stories and reading, especially modern science-fiction books.

Mohammed Ahmed (Mo)

Cooking Instructor

I have been working at Phoenix School for many years. I am proud to be one of the key members given the opportunity to help set up and be part of this amazing college provision, since 2015 when it all started at Tower Hamlets College.
I am the Catering Instructor, delivering catering and DIY sessions. Outside work I am a director/owner of 2 successful fast food outlets
in Tower Hamlets. I hold a Level 3 qualification in catering and supervision in food and hospitality. As a catering instructor I will deliver independent skills and knowledge that will support and help students develop hospitality and independent life skills.

Allpona Begum

Enterprise Lead

Rezuana Khan

Horticulture Lead

Job Coaches

Speech and Language Therapy

Honor Wengler

Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

Honor joined Phoenix College in January 2023 and has worked at Phoenix School since 2021. Honor gained an MSc in Speech and Language Therapy from the University of Reading in 2020 and has a BA in English Language from Cardiff University. During her Masters Honor has researched the uses of technology during interventions for children with Autism. Honor has experience working with children and adolescents with Autism and Language Disorders across mainstream and SEND schools. Honor is trained in a variety of communication systems such as PECS, Core Boards, BSL, Signalong and Makaton, and has experience working with a range of intervention approaches such as Attention Autism, Intensive Interaction, Zones of Regulation and LEGO Therapy. Honor is passionate about helping children and young people develop their communication and self-advocacy skills to encourage independence and support them in the wider community.

Orit Addous

Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

(maternity leave)

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