Head of School at International School of Uganda in Uganda
Uganda < Back to Leadership Vacancies

Head of School
International School of Uganda (Uganda)

Appointed - Caroline Jacoby
Dec 13, 13
Mar 10, 14





July 2015



The School



The International School of Uganda’s (ISU) mission statement declares ISU’s ambition to be a leader in providing world-class, holistic education in a multi-cultural setting, inspiring and equipping students to be life-long learners, to reach their full potential and to be responsible global citizens active in shaping the future”.


ISU is a non-profit, co-educational day school, established in 1967, offering an international education program for students 2 ½ to 19 years old. Enrolment is approaching 600 students representing over 60 different nations, creating a culturally dynamic and cohesive student body with many languages and customs.


ISU is authorized by the International Baccalaureate to offer the Primary Years, Middle Years and Diploma Programs. ISU is also accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools in the United States and the Council of International Schools, two prestigious international accreditation organizations.  ISU was last accredited in 2011 for a five year period.

The Position

ISU is seeking a new Head of School beginning in July 2015. The Head of School will be responsible for all aspects of ISU’s operations management and academics, ensuring that standards of excellence are set and maintained in every area.


The scope of responsibility for the Head of School includes, but is not limited to the following:

  • Ensure excellence in both the educational program and the administration of the school.
  • Provide leadership to staff, students, parents and other stakeholders.


  • Work with the Board of Directors to provide policies and procedures that represent best practices and ensure implementation and monitoring of the strategic plan.
  • Ensure a supportive and well-disciplined learning environment.
  • Lead the development of additional school facilities to meet increasing demand in line with the campus master plan and the strategic plan.
  • Maintain ISU as the international school of choice amid growing competition.


  • Maintain financial discipline and fiscal accountability.



The Curriculum
ISU teachers use the best research-based teaching methods, centered on a dynamic international curriculum, that meets all global standards of the widely acclaimed and highly respected International Baccalaureate (IB) Programs.


In the Junior School, Early Childhood to grade five, the curriculum is based on the IB Primary Years Program. Whilst providing a strong foundation in all subject areas, the program focuses on the social, physical, emotional and cultural development of the child. It provides structured inquiry as a vehicle for learning which is carried forward in the other two IB programs.


In the Senior School the IB Middle Years Program forms the core of ISU's educational focus for students in grades six to ten.


The inter-disciplinary approach to learning develops students' critical thinking abilities and communication skills, while offering an academically challenging and stimulating program of study.

In grades 11 and 12 students follow the academically rigorous IB Diploma Program. Considered the leading edge of international secondary education today and the "gold standard" of high school diplomas, this program of study allows students to expand their horizons and challenge their abilities while continuing to study a varied mix of subjects.


ISU also has a specialist center for teaching English for Speakers of Other Languages and an Optimal Learning Centre for those students who require learning support. Both centers serve students of all ages.

Through our Sports and After School Activities Program students can develop sporting and other interests, build self-esteem, become motivated learners, improve time management and self-organizational skills, form many friendships and gain a greater identity with our school.

Administration and Staff

The Head of School is supported by Secondary and Primary Principals, a Business Manager, a Human Resources Manager and Coordinators for each IB program, as well as other administrative staff.

ISU has 56 full-time, highly experienced teachers, most of who are certified in the United Kingdom, the United States or Canada.  Others have teaching qualifications from Australia, Ireland, Italy, Belgium, Germany, New Zealand and Uganda. Almost half of the teachers hold Master’s or other postgraduate degrees.  There are six IB Diploma examiners, three IB Middle Years moderators, one IB Diploma senior moderator, four IB Diploma workshop leaders, and one IB Primary Years trainer on the teaching staff.


ISU is governed by a nine-member Board of Directors. Eight board members are elected for a two-year term from amongst parents of students at the school, who are members of the ISU Association.  The ninth member is appointed on an annual basis by the US Ambassador.



  • Continuing high standards of instruction across the curriculum.
  • Ensuring that ISU grows as planned despite the growing number of international schools in Kampala and the impact traffic has on people’s choice of school.
  • Ensuring campus development matches enrollment increases.
  • Leading the decision process as to whether ISU moves to be fully three-streamed in all grades.
  • Ensuring contingency reserves.
  • Starting Self Study through to CIS 5 year accreditation and IB Full Programme Evaluation visit in Nov 2015
  • Coping with potential security challenges including the run-up to the presidential election in early 2016.


The Campus

The lush, purpose-built 33-acre ISU campus is situated on the outskirts of the capital city of Kampala in a secluded suburb.  Its grounds feature many indigenous plants and bird-life.   An adjacent 12 acres of land owned by the school has us well positioned for future expansion and development.


Key features of our facilities include:

  • Four fully-equipped science laboratories (a new science and technology facility is scheduled for completion in 2014);
  • Three computer laboratories with Internet access and campus-wide wireless connectivity;
  • Library of over 16,000 volumes;
  • Extensive sports facilities including:
    • 3 sports fields
    • Multi-purpose sports hall complete with climbing wall
    • 400m running track
    • 2 swimming pools
    • 4 tennis courts


Recent Progress

The school is currently moving into year two of a five-year strategic plan.

The plan was created with extensive involvement of all ISU’s stakeholders and is guiding our evolution in the areas of academic instruction, technology, extra-curricular activities, marketing, finance and campus expansion.


ISU’s enrollment figures have more than doubled over the last five years, during which time additional construction has taken place in order to maintain the necessary level of facilities to cater for a growing school population.


A recent notable addition is the Early Childhood Centre which was constructed to stimulate enrollment of our two-and-a-half to four year old students.


A new dining/multi-purpose hall was completed in 2009. It features both indoor and outdoor seating with a beautiful view overlooking the suburb of Lubowa, Lake Victoria and the main sports field.  This wonderful facility has been specially designed to serve as a venue for school Music and Drama productions until the planned Visual and Performing Arts Centre is built.


The strategic plan calls for the construction of three new facilities:

  • A science and technology center (scheduled for completion in 2014)
  • Performing arts facility
  • Multi-media/library center


About Uganda

A former British protectorate, Uganda gained independence in 1962. Recent census data (Uganda Bureau of Statistics, 2012) gives a population of 34.1 million with about 3 million living in the capital, Kampala.

Shops, restaurants and recreational facilities support a very comfortable lifestyle for the large expatriate population in the country. Winston Churchill famously referred to Uganda as the “Pearl of Africa”, a description which remains true today.

With an enviable climate at an altitude of 1,200 m, snow-capped mountains, numerous lakes and stunning scenery, Uganda certainly packs a lot into its small land area, ensuring that this is a very enjoyable country in which to live.


The lush green Ugandan landscape includes many fascinating visitor experiences including white water rafting on the River Nile, tracking gorillas, viewing wildlife in its world-class national parks or just relaxing in one of the beautiful lodges.


With the discovery of oil Uganda’s economy has grown in recent years and begun to diversify from its traditional reliance on fish, coffee and other agricultural produce as its principal exports. Tourism has emerged as the greatest foreign exchange earner for the country, overtaking foreign remittances by Ugandans in the diaspora.


The suburb of Lubowa, where ISU is situated, is a welcoming and friendly community in a largely residential area with a few learning and other institutions nearby. Many ISU faculty members are housed locally on quiet roads, some within walking distance of the school. Modern shopping facilities are available near to the school.

Qualities and Qualifications

The Board of Directors seeks a Head of School with the vision, experience and drive to successfully lead ISU in achieving its stated mission and strategic plan. 


The ideal candidate will be able to comprehensively demonstrate:

  • Relevant educational experience in an international school setting abroad, specifically with the IB curriculum at all levels (PYP, MYP, Diploma).
  • Leadership to inspire all ISU stakeholders towards the school’s goal and drive continual improvements in academics, athletics, arts and community engagement.
  • Strong organizational and people-management skills.
  • An open-mind with the ability to adapt and be flexible.
  • A high level of skill as a listener and a communicator
  • Integrity and effectiveness in all dealings with the stakeholders of an international school.
  • Extensive experience as a respected educator with a passionate commitment to student development.
  • Effective approaches to the challenges of successfully managing a large institution in developing countries.
  • A result-oriented leadership style that inspires others towards team building and success.
  • Successful experience of diversified resource mobilization and management.
  • Thorough understanding of short and long-term budget planning, implementation and reporting along with ensuring effective financial accountability.


The new Head of School should have the following qualifications at a minimum:

  • An advanced degree in education or a related field.
  • Successful track record in a senior management role at an international or independent IB school abroad.
  • Prior teaching experience in at least one of the IB programs.
  • Previous educational leadership experience should be commensurate with the level of complexity, knowledge, skill and effort required to lead a school the size of  ISU
  • Previous HOS experience is desirable


Salary and Benefits

ISU will provide a contract for a minimum of three years, with salary and benefits that are competitive for international schools.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates should send an application AT THE EARLIEST POSSIBLE TIME but no later than 10 March 2014.


Candidates should note that review of files will begin as soon as applications are received and in the event an outstanding applicant is identified early in the search process, ISU reserves the right to make an appointment before the deadline mentioned above and to bring the search to a close.


To apply, please send the following materials:

1. A letter of application, no longer than two pages, explaining your strengths as a candidate (with particular reference to the challenges outlined above) and why you are interested in this particular position.

2. A current résumé not to exceed two pages.

3. A one-page statement outlining educational beliefs and leadership style.

4. The names, current email addresses and telephone numbers and positions of at least four confidential referees. These referees must be current and recent supervisors; they should not be colleagues or peers. For a candidate who is a current head of school, this would normally include the Board Chair, Treasurer, and other Board members. By submitting this information you agree that we may contact these referees directly.

At this time, please do not send any materials other than those specifically requested above. Please combine all of the above materials into a single pdf attachment.  Please send this single pdf attachment to Search Associates at both of the e-mail addresses listed below:



Also, please note that it is important to limit the size of your single pdf attachment to 5MB.  (Please no photographs, color, etc.)

Thank you for your interest in the International School of Uganda. We look forward to receiving your application

Did You Know…?

Senior Associate Diana Kerry was an international educator and administrator for 25 years in various countries, including Iran, France, Thailand, and Indonesia.