The bubbly Mount Albert Grammar School (MAGS) physical education and health teacher is a firm believer that those in the education sector should be constantly challenged so they continue to evolve, and that when opportunities arise they should be grasped with two hands. 

So when the opportunity to teach at the International School of Kuala Lumpur (ISKL) presented itself to Lasenby, the 29-year-old went for it. 

She is leaving for Malaysia at the end of June to start at the International School of Kuala Lumpur (ISKL), one of the leading schools in Asia and the first fully accredited international school in Malaysia, at the end of July. 

“I will be teaching Health, PE and adding another string to my bow – dance – as I don’t think netball is high on their agenda like MAGS,” Lasenby quips. 

Everything in life is about timing, and Lasenby says the opportunity to teach abroad came at the right time. 

“They say the best time to move jobs is when you are happy and on top. 

“This is me and I can honestly say I have absolutely loved every minute of MAGS, from the senior management, PE department, other staff and administration team, the school environment and of course the students – they have been my extended family and life. 

“However, I do think it’s really important as a teacher to constantly challenge yourself and step outside your comfort zones. 

“For me international schools have always interested me, so when the opportunity presented itself, I took the chance. Watch this space.” 

It will not be Lasenby’s first experience teaching abroad. 

Lasenby completed her Bachelor of Physical Education at The University of Auckland and started teaching PE and health at MAGS. 

After four years, she was fortunate enough to receive two years leave when she headed to the United Kingdom to teach PE at the private Lady Eleanor School for Girls, in Hampton just out of London.

“But after an enjoyable two years in the UK, the thought of another English winter was daunting so I returned home to my role at MAGS in 2014.” 

By the end of 2014, Lasenby’s itchy feet had gotten the better of her, and she decided to find work overseas once more.  

Lasenby joined Search Associates which places teachers in international schools worldwide. 

“The Australasian branch of this organisation has been extremely supportive and I cannot talk highly enough of them, they have made the whole process easy,” she says. 

“Three Skype interviews later, I was offered a position and I accepted.”
The whole process has gone smoothly, she adds, with ISKL organising things such as taking care of Visa's, shipping personal belongings to Malaysia and having constant open communication, helping her to feel at ease. 

A huge drawcard is that ISKL will assist Lasenby with doing her Masters, so she can grow professionally, she adds. 

“I will gain more leadership opportunities and expand on my cultural understanding - the idea of working with a range of teachers from all around the world excites me.”  
The well-travelled Lasenby has mixed emotions about leaving New Zealand again for her new adventure.  

“The idea of moving to another country alone, away from a strong family network and lots of good friends can be daunting but also I am excited as I am ready for the next challenge in my teaching career,” she explains. 

“The department is a lot smaller with only four other team members, a lot different to my current department of 17.”

Undoubtedly she will be welcomed warmly to her new school, where her teaching skills will be put to good use, as well as her experience of organising the PE department Friday Morning Tea Baking Roster. 

Ultimately, Lasenby’s goal in education is to never lose the passion for her profession.  

“As soon as I no longer love to teach, I will stop being a teacher,” she says. 

“First year teachers come in with great energy and passion and I find it sad if you can see this slowly disintegrating. 

“I want all my students to enjoy my lessons and feel the enthusiasm I have for teaching - having fun and laughter along the way is the secret and very important.” 

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