Victory Heights Primary School
Victory Heights Primary School
Victory Heights Primary School

Leadership Team

Meet the schools senior leadership team:


Sasha Crabb - Principal

Sasha has been a literacy advisor in Wales, a Deputy Head Teacher in London and a Head Teacher in Cairo, Egypt. For the past 20 years she has enjoyed working with a diverse mix of educators who are passionate about teaching and learning. Sasha graduated from Chester with a BEd Honours degree and she gained her NPQH status in 2006. She continues to think outside the box with school initiatives and her autobiography will be called Method to the Madness. She is passionate about ‘CPD’ for teachers and enjoys bringing out the best in all children in a school. She was awarded Principal of the Year by Educational Journal Magazine in 2017. Sasha is currently undertaking a MSC in Human Resource Management. She is committed to reducing teacher workload and that purposeful projects give children a depth of learning . Sasha is enjoying lecturing at University of Birmingham with undergraduate students and currently working on expanding opportunities for children with determination in Sports City and beyond.

Laura Dowlman - Headteacher

Laura is in her sixth year at VHPS and in September 2018 was appointed as Headteacher. She has been instrumental in its development and growth. She has over 20 years experience in teaching and management, both internationally and in the UK. She has worked in the Alice Smith School in Kuala Lumpur and at MES in Cairo. Prior to her time in Dubai she was most recently Assistant Head in a large primary school in Bristol, UK.

Matt Hawley - Deputy Headteacher

Matt holds a Master's degree in Education Management from King’s College, London, alongside both his PGCE qualification and a BA in English. Before joining the team at VHPS, Matt functioned as both an Assistant Headteacher and a Head of English in schools across London. He has been fortunate enough to teach a wide variety of students, from those with complex learning and behavioural difficulties, to exceptionally gifted and talented students aspiring to extend and enrich their learning. He is particularly passionate about developing 'Growth Mindset' approaches to learning, and has aided the development of key strategies in this area across the London borough of Camden. Matt is a keen sportsman, who particularly enjoys football and swimming.

Ben Rothwell - Head of Technology and Innovation

Ben Rothwell graduated Canterbury Christ Church University with a BSc in Business Information Management, and then undertook a GTP leading to QTS status. He is passionate about the integration of technology throughout schools and how it can lead to transformational learning experiences. Before moving to Dubai, Ben worked at Kent College, Canterbury, a leading private school, as Head of ICT & Computing. Ben's professional experience also includes working in an all-boys grammar school and a large secondary modern. Ben is currently studying for his National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH).

Magda Abdulraheem - Head of Arabic & Islamic Studies

Magda graduated from Cairo University and has an Educational Diploma in Arabic. She has also undergone a proficiency test in Arabic in Al Ain university in 2011. Magda is a qualified Arabic teacher. She has 26 years of experience as an AA and AB teacher. Having worked in the region for 12 years, Magda has managed to earn the "Good" rating for her department by the KHDA multiple times, which she is extremely proud of. Magda spent 8 years working in Taaleem schools. She aspires to improve the level of Arabic in Victory Heights amongst both native speakers and non native speakers through innovative methods in teaching. In her spare time, Magda enjoys filming authentic recipes and spending time with her 3 children.

Hannah Hepworth - Foundation Stage Coordinator

Hannah HepworthHannah Hepworth graduated from De Montfort University with a B.Ed. in Primary Education. She taught in two schools in the UK for 9 years in which most of her experiences were based in the Early Years. She then moved to Abu Dhabi to work at Brighton College where she become head of year for FS2. Last year, Hannah decided to make a move to Victory Heights to become the Early Years Coordinator for both the school and nursery. Hannah has a passion self-initiated learning through play but also ensuring all children individual needs are met, ‘no lids on learning’.

Hayley Martin - Head of Year 1 / KS1 Coach

Hayley Martin graduated from Oxford University with a BEd in Education. She is passionate about the ‘creative classroom’ and incorporating the arts into all areas of the curriculum. Before moving to Dubai, Hayley taught in several schools in Oxfordshire. She then moved abroad, where she taught for seven years in Cairo at the Modern English School, leading the FS2 team. Outside of school, Hayley is a voracious reader and is currently teaching herself to sew.

Paul Dowlman - Head of Year 2 / KS2 Coach

Paul DowlmanPaul Dowlman graduated from the University of Plymouth with a BEd in History. During his 20 years in Primary Education, he has been fortunate enough to work in a variety of UK and international contexts. He has been responsible for coordinating Physical Education and PSHE in an inner city London school, coordinated Science in Cairo and held the position of Year Leader for years 2 – 6. Paul is passionate about how children and adults learn and has set up the ‘Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory (ELLI)’ here at Victory Heights. In addition to this, Paul is a great believer in children having a voice within school and is developing an effective School Council in KS1 and 2. He is currently a teacher in Year 6 with the responsibility of Science.

Michelle Choytooa - SEN Coordinator

Michelle Choytooa graduated from the University of Lancaster with a BSc(Honors) in Occupational Therapy. Michelle has worked as an Occupational Therapist for 10 years in the National Health Service and in a Private clinic in Dubai, specialising in children with a variety of developmental and educational needs. During her time as an Occupational Therapist she has advocated and advised schools on how to best facilitate learning and development for children. She is about developing an inclusive practice within schools. Michelle joined the Victory Heights Team last year and is excited for her second year in the team. Outside of school Michelle loves to travel the world and read Harry Potter!