About us

The Wellington Mathematics Association aims to support the teaching and learning of Mathematics in education.

We aim to support both educators and students to achieve their full potential.

The WMA Office Holders


President Misbah Sadat (Onslow College)


Secretary Liesl van der Schyff


Treasurer Bruce Welsh

The WMA Executive Committee

Misbah Sadat

Misbah Sadat was previously the Head of Faculty Mathematics at Horowhenua College, and is currently the Deputy Principal at Onslow College. Misbah has been active in encouraging the de-streaming of mathematics classrooms. Misbah is the president of the WMA.

Liesl van der Schyff

Liesl van der Schyff has taught across mainstream primary and intermediate schools in New Zealand for a number of years and has held mathematics curriculum responsibilities. She has also taught technology. Liesl qualified in law before starting a family, and then retrained as a teacher, discovering a love for mathematics education along the way. Liesl is the secretary of the WMA.

Bruce Walsh

Bruce Welsh thinks maths is fun. Maths is something he uses everyday as an architect. He has also been involved in Mathswell training and events and has written a book on problem solving based around Mathswell questions. Bruce is the treasurer of the WMA.

Shimmy Unnikrishnan

Shimmy Unnikrishnan is the learning area leader of Mathematics and Statistics at Onslow College, Wellington. She has been teaching Mathematics for the past 13 years. Shimmy has a degree in Civil Engineering but chose to teach Mathematics because of her passion for the subject. Other than Mathematics and Statistics, Shimmy is a trained Bharatanatyam dancer who enjoys teaching the art form to people in the community during weekends.

Derek Smith

Derek Smith is currently on contract to the University of Otago as a Mathematics and Statistics Facilitator and Victoria University of Wellington as a Teaching Fellow. Derek was also responsible for coordinating the Network of Expertise for NZAMT from 2018 - 2021. He has taught mathematics and statistics at secondary schools in the Wellington and Wairarapa regions for 33 years holding HOD positions and a position as senior lecturer at VUWCE lecturing in Mathematics Education.

Ian Clark

Ian Clark is the Head of Mathematics and Statistics at Hutt International Boys School, as well as previously being the Head of Mathematics at Wellington College. He has been teaching Mathematics for the past 20 years, and has a real passion for enabling all learners to value, enjoy and succeed in Mathematics.

Steven Archer

Steven Archer is a teaching professional at Victoria University, working with the mathematics group in the school of Mathematics and Statistics, within the faculty of Engineering.

Pam Breek

Pam Breek worked at Wellington Girls 2011-2021, having previously worked at colleges in the Hutt Valley. Pam was the Head of Maths at Wellington Girls, before resigning at the end of 2021. She has spent the first part of 2022 at Onslow College.

Bex Lawton

Bex Lawton is the Assistant Head of Mathematics at Porirua College, and holds a WSL Kāhui Ako role focusing on the DMIC pedagogy and numeracy. She is passionate about providing a classroom environment that allows students to enjoy mathematics, and challenge themselves.

Shelley Vaile

Shelley Vaile is a primary teacher who has taught from New Entrant to Year 8, most recently at Karori West Normal School, where she had curriculum responsibility for mathematics and statistics. She has also worked for the Ministry of Education and Victoria University in a variety of roles focussed on mathematics and statistics education.

Sophia Shinn

Sophia Shinn's expertise includes calculus, biology and chemistry. She studied Bachelor’s Medical Laboratory Science. She began teaching in the Wellington region in 2006. Currently Sophia is teaching Mathematics at Onslow College. During her service in teaching, she had successes with students gaining the numeracy credits to further their studies as well as in Year 12 and 13 Mathematics. Her interests are reading, craft and golf.


  • Membership is offered to schools and individuals and needs to be renewed (by payment) each year

  • A school membership means any staff member from that school is a member

  • Schools are invoiced annually

For 2022 the membership fee has been waived


  • WMA has grants available through the Network of Expertise funding for professional development for teachers

  • The policy can be found here

Life Members

2014 Mike Camden

2015 Linda Van Milligan

2018 Derek Smith