The value we place on our teaching team is directly proportional to our commitment towards our children and their families.

Redbridge School’s educational team is made of teachers who are:

Lifelong learners,
Fun and enthusiastic,
Positive thinkers,
Respectful and caring.

All teachers and assistants share a strong interest in languages ​​and innovative pedagogies and work together to achieve a common goal: to inspire creativity, a love of learning and international mindedness through a challenging and playful multilingual learning environment, where children feel happy, valued and secure.

The relationships between adults and children within our school are founded on communication, understanding and mutual respect.

In addition to organising and monitoring activities within their classes, the teaching team is involved in all day-to-day activities including educational outings, naps, mealtimes and transitional periods between activities.

We believe that learning occurs at anytime and anywhere, particularly outside the classroom when skills may be practised and knowledge applied in a meaningful, real-life context.

The members of our administrative team share a common interest in education and multicultural environments. They are motivated by the desire to provide crucial support to the educational team and are inspired by the mission, values and pedagogical project of the school.

Working With Others

Hélène Dubourdieu
Head of School

Hélène was born and raised in Burgundy and has twelve years of experience in financial services advisory, specialized in organisation and performance management for international companies.

Since moving to Lisbon with her husband and their three children in September 2012, she has been working with Elizabeth on founding Redbridge, deeply convinced that school needs to be reimagined and more focused on developing children’s intrinsic motivation while nurturing their innate creativity.

Elizabeth Mathieu

Elizabeth was born and raised in Paris and has fourteen years of experience in real estate investment and management. Elizabeth and her husband fell in love with Portugal in 2004 and moved to Lisbon in 2005 where their three children were born.

Elizabeth and Hélène took the decision to create Redbridge, believing in a school which does not limit itself to academic results but which helps children to develop the key attitudes and competencies which will ensure they are happy and fulfilled people throughout their lives.

Swan Sallmard
Legal Advisor

Swan was born and raised in Paris, she spent time living in New York and settled in Lisbon in 2013 with her husband and two daughters. Swan has over ten years experience in international business law in both US and Portuguese law firms. She has been working in real estate management and investment since 2016.

Alumni of an international and innovative school and convinced by the benefits of such an education, Swan was thrilled by Elizabeth and Hélène’s project and has enthusiastically supported it, specifically with respect to the legal challenges involved in opening a new school.

Dina Lamb
Co Founder
Pedagogical Coordinator

Dina was born and raised in Johannesburg and completed her teaching qualifications in England. She specialised in mathematics and has a further qualification in special educational needs.

She considers herself an advocate for a more holistic, creative and constructivist approach to education where the needs and pace of each child are respected and where interests, strengths and talents are nurtured and celebrated.

Dina’s mother tongue is English and she speaks Portuguese and French.


Brett Neilson

Brett is an experienced school leader and teacher, with a range of skills and a progressive philosophy of education which fits perfectly with our own mission and vision. He has an MBA in Educational Leadership from the highly acclaimed Institute of Education in London and has taught and led schools in South Africa, the UK, Belgium and Kuwait in a variety of social and cultural contexts. Brett has moved to Lisbon in 2019 with his wife Marlene from Kuwait, where he was Executive Principal of a successful school group. Brett and Marlene are parents to two grown up daughters and they have a granddaughter called McKenzie.

Brett is a native English speaker, fluent in Afrikaans, has a good command of German and Dutch and he is learning Portuguese and French.

Amélie de Tilly
Founder Teacher
French Section Coordinator

Amélie was born and raised in Paris, completed her teaching qualifications in France and has more than ten years of experience in teaching early and primary years in private schools in France. Amélie believes in an individualized approach to the children to help them to find their area of mastery and to develop self-confidence. Amelie likes new exciting projects and was hosting, when living in France, a radio show promoting discussions between elderly people and children on matters such as relationships between grandparents and grandchildren. She moved to Lisbon in 2016 and has 4 children.

Amélie is a native French, speaks English and is learning Portuguese.

Claudia Figueira
Early Years Coordinator

Claudia was born and raised in Portugal. She is an early childhood teacher with more than ten years of experience in private and community schools, including three years in a Montessori school in Ireland. She firmly believes that children can be independent learners if the adults provide the appropriate environment and experiences. Her most important belief is that children need to be children: they need to spend time outdoors no matter what, they need to feel that playing is an important part of their development and that they have time to grow.

Claudia is a native Portuguese, speaks English and some French.

Sofia Chaves
Portuguese Section Coordinator

Sofia was born in Oporto where she studied Education to become an Elementary School Teacher. She started working in Lisbon 15 years ago, where she developed her skills in Active Learning. She worked in a HighScope school for 14 years and received training in this educational approach (conflict resolution, child-adult interaction, active learning…). She also has an Executive Masters Degree in Positive Psychology. Sofia is passionate about emotional and social development and believes that learning comes from the interaction between happy children and the world that surrounds them. She also believes that helping develop wellbeing and happiness from a young age is crucial to help the future adults to effectively answer the challenges of their society.

Sofia is native Portuguese, speaks English, French and Spanish.

Sarah Sainty
Inclusion Coordinator

Sarah was born and brought up in London, but has spent most of her adult life living in other parts of the world. She has worked with children with special educational needs for over 20 years – in the UK, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, India and Pakistan. As a speech and language therapist, she is very committed to helping children develop the skills they need to become confident and independent communicators. She is also a strong believer in the cognitive and linguistic benefits of bilingualism and very interested in the processes through which children acquire additional languages. Sarah is also a specialist teacher and assessor of children with specific learning difficulties (dyslexia), with a great interest in the inter-relationship between spoken language and literacy and in techniques for helping children overcome reluctance or difficulties in these areas.

Sarah speaks English and has studied the language of each country she has lived in – generally speaking with more enthusiasm than skill.

“Do not train children to learning by force and harshness,
but direct them to it by what amuses their minds,
so that you may be better able to discover
with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.”


“Do not train children to learning by force and harshness, but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.”