Head of School at International School of Zanzibar in Tanzania
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Head of School
International School of Zanzibar (Tanzania)

Appointed - James Pilton
Dec 1, 17
Jan 15, 18

Dear Colleagues,

The International School of Zanzibar's Search Committee is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. James W. Pilton as the new Head of School from August 2018.

James Pilton's most recent position was as Director at Quality Schools International Chengdu. Previously he worked at international schools in China, Macedonia, Thailand and Gabon. James has a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership from Lehigh University, an MA in International Relations from Boston University and a BA degree in Government from Bowdoin College.

ISZ's Board of Directors would like to thank all of the candidates who expressed interest in the Head of School position.

Kind regards,
ISZ Search Committee



Position Posted - December 1, 2017

Deadline: January 15, 2018

Effective: August 2018

Mission Statement

To provide balanced and innovative international education that enables students to achieve their individual potentials, while preparing them to be successful citizens who make positive contributions to society and the world.

The School

The School was opened in 1988 by parents who wanted a school that offered an international education. The Government of Zanzibar provided the site on which the office, nursery blocks and a playground were constructed. Then the Library block was added in 1997 and the secondary block in 2007. We have grown to nearly 200 students since then and have approximately 30 different nationalities in our school. We have Nursery through Grade 10 and have plans to expand through Grade 12. We are and IPC, IMYC and IGCSE school and have plans to offer either the IBDP or A-Levels within the next couple of years.

Governance and Educational Leadership Team

The school is a non-profit NGO school that is owned by parents who elect 7 Board Governors who are selected at the AGM. The Head of School serves as an "ex-officio" non-voting member of the Board.

The Head of School is responsible for the day-to-day administration of the school and is assisted by a Head of Primary, Head of Secondary and the Operations Manager. This group is the Educational Leadership Team. The Educational Leadership Team also includes the Learning Support Coordinator and Curriculum Coordinators.

Setting, location and Campus Facilities

The International School of Zanzibar is a small, exceptional school set in spacious grounds with views of the Indian Ocean. We offer an excellent education to the island's national and expatriate residents, from Nursery through to IGCSE level.

The school follows the IPC, IMYC and IGCSE with plans to expand to IBDP or A-Levels in the 2019-2020 academic year. We are seeking an enthusiastic, experienced and vision-driven Head of School to lead our team of outstanding and committed staff.

About life in Zanzibar

Zanzibar is exactly what you expect it to be, exotic as the name would indicate and the people are warm and kindhearted. The School is not far from Stone Town and within 45mins drive away to the famous East and North coast resorts where there is extensive kite surfing, snorkeling, diving, fishing, sailing, etc. The historic Stone Town is said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa.

However, Zanzibar offers all the challenges that any African country would. Power cuts, shortages of running water or petrol for the car are not unheard of, food stuffs are imported and can be a little expensive. The island has a handful of small "supermarkets," making life's little comforts available. Generally, life is safe, and slow-paced.

,p>This position is an opportunity to broaden your horizons and make a real difference in a growing, successful international school.

Future Directions for Our School

The school is planning to potentially develop boarding facilities to support the future IBDP or A-Level program. ISZ also plans to develop further cultural activities such as ballet, opera, local music, performances and plays, art exhibitions, dance, etc. with the completion of the multi-purpose hall. It also plans to equip all the classrooms with computers for all the students, fixed classroom projectors for all the teachers and other technical facilities as required.

Job Description

The Head of School is responsible to the Board of Governors and in accordance with the policies of the Board performs the following duties:


In consultation with the Educational Leadership Team and staff to be responsible, directly or through effective delegation, for the implementation of:

School Year Planning

  • The School's 3-year strategic plan
  • The School through any authorization, self-study and accreditation processes
  • The selection and ordering of routine school resources within the budget
  • The overall planning of the school's curriculum delivery
  • The preparation of class lists within agreed size limits
  • The annual review of admissions policy in conjunction with the Board
  • The Facilitation of weekly staff meetings
  • Assemblies and events open to parents
  • Written termly progress reports and parent/guardian - teacher interviews
  • Regular newsletters and communications to parents


  • Lead the Curriculum review with the aims of it being: broad, balanced, relevant and differentiated
  • The effective delivery of the curriculum throughout the school
  • The provision of knowledge of the curriculum and awareness of relevant changes to parents

Professional Development

  • The annual appraisal of all staff with subsequent summarized reports to the Board in Term 3.
  • The arranging of the agreed number of in-service training days for staff development.
  • The provision of continuous professional support and advice to all teachers.


In consultation with the Operations Manager, ELT and operational staff, to be responsible, directly or through effective delegation:


  • To supervise the Operations Manager, School Secretary, ICT Support and Ground Staff in their duties.
  • To ensure that the school complies with the legal and financial requirements of the Government of Zanzibar, with advice and support from members of the Board.
  • To liaise with the appropriate agencies in matters relating to tax, insurance and legalities, sharing this responsibility with the Board.
  • To ensure the school grounds, buildings and equipment are maintained and properly used.
  • To approve admissions of individual children to the school in accordance with the constitution and admission policy.
  • To implement safety and security procedures appropriate for the school.


  • To advise and report to the Board on staffing level requirements.
  • To present to the Board job descriptions for all employees and to keep them updated.
  • To supervise all staff and ensure that they work in accordance with their job descriptions.
  • To arrange for the recruitment of all staff in conjunction with Board approval.
  • To arrange for the professional appraisal of all staff in relation to their contract and job description.
  • To advise the Board on disciplinary procedures and to implement them.
  • To ensure that all staff have required work and residence permits and that renewals are made in good time.


  • To prepare the annual budget prior to the new academic year relating to the school development plan with advice from the Board Treasurer and data from the Operations Manager. To present it to the general Meeting in Term 3.
  • To present proposals to the Board to amend the overall budget if required.
  • To monitor and manage the budget according to the plan but having the flexibility to adjust expenditure under the global figure.
  • To monitor and manage an agreed accounting system with advice from the treasurer leaving responsibility for capital expenditure and reserves with the Board through the treasurer.


  • To act as representative of the school with parents/guardian and the wider community of Zanzibar.
  • To provide a professional report to the Board and General Meetings and be available for questioning.
  • To advise the Board on all relevant matters concerning the school.
  • To implement the current school development plan as agreed by the Board and to review it regularly.
  • To be aware of and adhere to Board policies on all matters
  • To be responsible for coordinating the school accreditation process.

Person Specification

Desired Qualifications and Experience

  • Significant experience in a leadership role in an international school, preferably as a Head of School or Assistant Head
  • Experience with successful implementation of strategic plans and providing educational vision
  • Experience with boarding facilities would be an advantage
  • Experience working in Africa would be an advantage
  • Open to considering a commitment beyond the initial three-year contract
  • Experience of working with the IB programmes would be advantage

Desired Personal Characteristics

  • An open minded leader who can communicate and inspire others
  • A leader who believes in inclusiveness and student-centered learning
  • Energetic, organized and a driver of initiatives
  • Appreciative of cultural diversity and demonstrates cultural sensitivity
  • Tolerance for ambiguity with a sense of humor and devotion to the highest principles of international-mindedness
  • Forward-thinking educator who is driven by innovative educational models
  • A considerate and compassionate individual

Salary and Benefits

The salary and benefits depend on the qualifications and experience of the successful candidate. We offer health insurance, payment of Zanzibari taxes, home leave, annual flights, school car, shipping and retirement contribution.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates should send an application AT THE EARLIEST POSSIBLE TIME but no later than January 15, 2018 (the review of files will begin as soon as applications are received).

Candidates should note that in the event an outstanding applicant is identified early in the search process, the school reserves the right to make an appointment before the deadline mentioned above. For this reason it is VERY IMPORTANT that interested candidates apply as soon as possible.

Candidates should send the information requested below. It must be submitted EXACTLY in the form and manner requested. Please DO NOT send any information other than that which is specifically requested:

  • A letter of application explaining your strengths as a candidate against the job description and person specification and why you are interested in this particular position
  • A current resume
  • A statement outlining your educational philosophy and leadership style
  • A list of 5 references with current phone numbers and email addresses
  • A maximum of four letters of reference which may already be in your possession (these can be submitted later)

Please note that ALL the above materials must be scanned into a SINGLE PDF ATTACHMENT (low resolution preferred). Please note that it is important to limit the size of your SINGLE PDF to 4MB. (No photographs, color, etc)


Only one e-mail containing only ONE pdf (NOT word.doc)

4MB or less

Send ONLY what is requested

Specifically, send your PDF attachment to: head_search@isz.co.tz

Key dates:

Closing date: January 15, 2018

Longlist interviews: 1-3 February 2018 (by Skype)

Shortlist interviews: 9-10 February 2018 (by Skype)

Final interviews: 26-28 February 2018 (in Zanzibar, Tanzania)

For further information about the school please visit our website: www.isz.co.tz

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.

Please note this school is not a registered member of Search Associates.

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