XCL Education has a new Superintendent – TAMMY MURPHY – for XCL Schools, XCL World Academy (XWA) and XCL American Academy (XAA). We asked Tammy about the move to Singapore and what excites her about the new role.
Where are you from, and where were you before your move to Singapore?
I was raised in Philadelphia but much of my youth and early career was spent across the river in New Jersey.
Before coming to Singapore, my family and I spent six years in Dubai. We just loved the vibrant international community and the diversity of cultures there, and we’re looking forward to an equally wonderful time here in Singapore.
What made you decide to relocate to Singapore?
Last September, our son Cole started his studies in marine biology at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada, and we became empty-nesters.
It was then that my husband Ron and I decided to explore another country to establish our new home. Ron had previously lived in Barcelona for more than a decade before we lived together in cities like New York, Philadelphia, Tiburon and Santa Barbara. Having lived in world-class cities, we set our sights on a similar location where we would enjoy living and experiencing a new culture.
The moment we set foot in Singapore in April this year, we knew we had found our ideal place. The warm weather, the seaside location, the genuinely kind people, the hustle and bustle – everything about it was exactly what we were looking for.
How is your family adapting to life here?
The most challenging part is not having Cole here with us but it brings us comfort knowing that he is adjusting well to university life and living on his own.
He will be coming to Singapore during the summer break and we’re sure he’s going to love it here. We can’t wait to walk through the Botanic Gardens with him, show him some famous tourist attractions and explore some hidden local gems together.
Ron’s a retired language educator and is absolutely loving our new life in this beautiful country. While he has been primarily occupied with organising and settling into our new home, he takes pleasure in exploring various neighbourhoods during our weekend strolls – we love discovering new restaurants, shops and attractions together.
What compelled you to take on your role at XCL Education?
Singapore itself was certainly a significant factor in my decision-making process, but the overriding reason was the exceptional people driving this organisation.
The first time I spoke with Brian Rogove, Vice Chairman of XCL Education, I was impressed by his knowledge and compassion. We share a firm commitment to fostering excellence and continual improvement for schools so that children can come out equipped with the skills and mindset to face an ever-changing social and economic landscape.
At my last school, I spearheaded the creation of a world-class centre for artificial intelligence and robotics equipped with a self-driving car and the latest in VR and robotic equipment. When I learned of the new Innovation Hub being built at XWA, I knew this was the place for me.
Then, when I had the opportunity to visit the school and see the dedicated, warm-hearted teachers interact with the beautiful bright children, that was the clincher.
What’s your favourite aspect of working in a school environment?
Hands down, it’s my time with the students. They are the reason I began my career in education nearly 40 years ago and they remain the focus of everything I do every day.
I love starting my day by welcoming students to the school as they arrive in the morning. It’s a joy getting to know them better as individuals while watching them interact with their parents, teachers and peers.
Cultivating a strong sense of community is of utmost importance to me, so I eagerly anticipate meeting all our parents and students in person to establish a supportive and inclusive environment.
What changes can students and the school community expect?
I aim to drive further progress and build upon our exceptional school community’s unwavering commitment and hard work.
The most significant and immediate transformation will be the launch of the XWA Innovation Hub in 2023. It will be equipped with advanced technology and modern learning spaces and will feature an eSports Arena.
The launch of the Innovation Hub will mark a significant milestone in XWA’s mission to shape the future of education. As we immerse our students and teachers in AI, coding, robotics, virtual and augmented reality, and other emerging technologies, we will simultaneously develop a culture of critical, ethical and resilient thinking.
It’s essential for us to create a culture that reinforces a growth mindset, props one another up in our successes and failures, and thereby models these critical skills for children as they navigate their lives in this ever-changing environment.
In addition, we can’t wait to see the completion of the new XAA campus this year!
With almost 40 years of experience in the education sector, Tammy has served as the Superintendent of several highly acclaimed schools including the Dubai American Academy, the Montecito Union School District, the Ross School District, and the Assistant Superintendent in the Cherry Hill School District.
She has received numerous state and national awards for her impact as an educator and leader in the US, and has extensive experience with the International Baccalaureate Organisation overseeing the development of several IB Programmes at primary and secondary levels. Tammy has a proven reputation for inspiring a culture of improvement and collaboration among faculty and students.