Elementary School Principal at American Community School of Abu Dhabi in United Arab Emirates
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Elementary School Principal
American Community School of Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates)

Sep 6, 19
Sep 28, 19


American Community School of Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Seeks a new Elementary School Principal

Start date is August 2020


School Identity

Established in 1972, the American Community School of Abu Dhabi is a non-profit, U.S. accredited college preparatory school serving a culturally diverse student body. Our American, standards-based curriculum provides excellence in academics, the arts, athletics, and service.


We are a compassionate, student-centered community of learners that engages, prepares, and inspires.


Our community empowers all students to define and shape their futures for learning, service, and global citizenship.


Established in 1972, ACS is a private, non-profit school licensed by the U.A.E. Ministry of Education, accredited by the Middle States Association, administered by the Superintendent and governed by an eleven-person Board of Trustees. Community support for excellence in education, a strong leadership team, highly qualified faculty and staff, and outstanding students have enabled ACS to establish an excellent reputation in the Abu Dhabi community and worldwide.

ACS currently has 1200 students and will be moving to a new campus on Saadiyat Island in a few years. This new campus will be built to accommodate 1500 students and is approximately 10 minutes from our current campus.  Because of the continuing development of Abu Dhabi, we typically have more applications for admission than available seats.

Our Students

The 1200  students at ACS represent 50 different nationalities, with Americans representing the largest segment of the student body at 64%.   Enrollment is open to all English-speaking students who are likely to be able to successfully complete our challenging American, college preparatory curriculum.

Our elementary school facility was completed in 2001. The students in our KG1 through third grade enjoy learning in small classes, while our fourth and fifth-grade students enjoy a newly constructed building of their own. Our sixth through eighth-grade middle school students have their own physical space on campus with each grade level having a distinct area. Our high school students in grades nine through twelve round out a challenging academic program by competing in local and regional sports events, performing in school plays and concerts, exhibiting artwork in the community, traveling internationally in the service of others, and participating in many other life-skills and character-building activities.

Our People

An eleven-member Board of Trustees governs ACS. Trustees are non-employee members of the American Community School Association.  Eight members are elected by the Parent Teacher Association which includes parents, administrators, faculty and staff; and three members are appointed by the elected Board.

Our administration team includes a Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent, three Principals, and two assistant principals. They are supported by  Directors in Finance, Human Resource, Athletic/Activities, Technology, Government Relations, Admissions, Institutional Advancement, and Facilities.

ACS faculty members are dedicated professionals who work together in collaborative teams to develop and deliver the curriculum. ACS currently employs 136 faculty members, creating an overall student/teacher ratio of 9:2. Approximately 70% of ACS faculty members have Master's degrees or more, and roughly 70% of our teachers have at least 10 years of teaching experience. Faculty and staff are actively involved in sponsoring numerous after school activities that enhance students’ experiences at school including a variety of academic, musical, dramatic, artistic, recreational, technological, and athletic activities.

Our parents are highly supportive of the school and are deeply involved in activities such as classroom enrichment, booster club, seasonal events, and intramural sports. A thriving parent volunteer program is a trademark of the school.  The school encourages students to be involved in after-school programs and community support makes this possible. Our students contribute more than 6500 hours of service annually.

Our Curriculum

Our curriculum is a college preparatory program that is comparable to high-quality private schools in the United States. Based on U.S. standards, it is an integrated K-12 curriculum that is reviewed annually and updated on a four-year cycle. The development of a well-aligned and relevant curriculum and the implementation of sound instructional practices contribute to the academic success of ACS students. Our Director for the Office of Learning is supported by two curriculum coaches and a data specialist.

In addition to traditional core courses provided in an American school, ACS offers the International Baccalaureate Diploma as well as a variety of Advanced Placement (AP) classes, an integrated technology curriculum, a wide selection of elective courses in the middle school and high school, various fine arts options, and service opportunities for students. ACS graduates have an impressive record for college acceptances and standardized test scores.

Our Location

The United Arab Emirates is a federation of seven emirates established in 1972. The population of the UAE is approximately five million inhabitants of which an estimated 80% are expatriates.  Wise government leadership has enabled the UAE to remain a stable and prosperous country where people of many nationalities live and work together in peace and harmony. While the official state religion is Islam, the practice of all religious beliefs is allowed.  For additional information on the UAE, please visit the following links: https://www.ecouncil.ae/en/ADEmirate/Pages/default.aspx

Abu Dhabi, the largest of the seven emirates, occupies 87% of UAE's area. The Abu Dhabi government has been successful in gradually expanding the economy to reduce dependence on oil and attract a diverse professional population through the implementation of the “Plan Abu Dhabi 2030.”

The island city of Abu Dhabi, within the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, is the country’s capital. Abu Dhabi is a clean, safe, and modern city with many recreational opportunities available for residents. It is a cosmopolitan city with excellent roads and infrastructure, numerous parks, modern high-rise buildings, shopping malls, and beaches. The multinational expatriate community enjoys a pleasant environment including many western shops, restaurants, services, and cultural events.

Our Facilities

Our current facilities are located on a four-acre campus and include 88 classrooms, media centers, science laboratories, art and music rooms, a cafeteria, an auditorium, two gymnasiums, fitness and dance centers, a 25-meter swimming pool; synthetic grass athletic fields; and a nurse's clinic. The school is committed to educational technology with more than 800 computers currently networked and linked to the internet for student and faculty use.

The Position

The Elementary School Principal is the academic and administrative leader of the Elementary School.  The principal will ensure that all programs and practices of faculty and staff support the school’s mission and philosophy, and that all students are provided with an excellent educational program.  The principal is expected to provide leadership, management, supervisory, and administrative skills, while nurturing the spirit of community at ACS.


The Elementary School Principal will:

  • Develop and execute a strategic plan to enable innovation at ACS. This includes a vision, discrete pedagogical practice, an active learning community, and a robust learning environment.
  • Manage the performance of educational innovation by regularly and collaboratively reviewing community and student-level data to drive continuous improvement.
  • Encourage and support the use of technology in the teaching/learning process, helping teachers pilot such efforts when appropriate.
  • Develop the leadership capabilities of teachers so that instructional leadership becomes a shared responsibility.
  • Assist in the development, revision, and evaluation of the curriculum.
  • Gather validating information that helps determine whether curriculum and instructional goals and student performance outcomes are being met.
  • Create an efficient, productive, and caring atmosphere where all students and faculty have an opportunity to be recognized for their best efforts.
  • Assume responsibility for sound financial management including accurate program budget planning and fiscal accountability.
  • Proactively seek constant professional learning and growth as a committed life-long learner.
  • Be an active participant and supporter of after school student activity programs and parent events.
  • Serve as a contributing member to the school’s senior management team.
  • Provide a healthy, safe, and secure environment for the school community.

Requirements and Qualifications

  • Possess appropriate degrees (minimum Masters level or equivalent), plus current certification in the area of school administration.
  • Previous successful administrative experience in an American curriculum school, with demonstrated successful leadership, organizational, and managerial skills.
  • Experience building a common vision for student achievement through innovation.
  • Demonstrated ability to use data to support student learning
  • Willingness to work collaboratively, to compromise, and to find positive solutions.
  • A leadership style that values strong communication and interpersonal skills with teamwork, and the proven ability to create and sustain a positive and supportive school environment.
  • Experience with co-curricular activities, sports, and service-learning.
  • Experience formulating and implementing accreditation and strategic plans for school improvement.
  • Experience working in a digital environment and comfort using multiple forms of social media.
  • Knowledge and experience with curriculum development, financial management, and community relations.
  • Demonstrated success with the recruitment, development, and retention of excellent faculty and staff.

Salary and Benefits

The salary and benefits are highly competitive and will be representative of the qualifications and experience of the successful candidate.  Benefits include annual incentive bonus, housing and utilities, international health insurance, long term disability insurance, annual home leave including airfare for dependents, shipping allowance, settling-in allowance, retirement supplement, end of service payment, tuition benefits for dependent children, and ongoing professional development opportunities.

Application Procedure

Applicants who wish to learn more about the American Community School should visit  www.acs.sch.ae, or visit our Facebook page @ACSAbuDhabi

The deadline for applications is September 28, 2019. 

Tentative onsite interviews are scheduled for October 20, 21 and 22, 2019.

In the event that an outstanding applicant is identified early in the search process, ACS reserves the right to make an appointment before the deadline.

Qualified and interested candidates should send the following information as a single PDF attachment to:

Marise Jayendran

Director, Human Resources


Subject: Elementary School Principal Position

  • Cover letter of application, not to exceed two pages, stating your strengths as a candidate and why you are interested in this position.
  • Resume, not to exceed two pages.
  • A list of references (at least three) including their names, positions, current email addresses, and the current superintendent of your present school.
  • Up to three open letters of reference may be submitted.

Attention: If you apply for this position, please inform the school and us (Admin@searchassociates.com) that you saw the notice on the Search Associates website.

Did You Know…?

Senior Associate Harry Deelman was at various times headmaster of schools in a fascinating foursome of global cities: Buenos Aires, Rome, Dubai, and Bangkok.