Principal/Head of School at Medan Independent School in Indonesia
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Principal/Head of School
Medan Independent School (Indonesia)

Appointed - Gerald Donovan
Oct 19, 2015
Jan 15, 2016

Medan Independent School (MIS)
Medan, Indonesia

Seeks a new
Principal/ Head of School

To commence with the 2016-17 academic year

School Profile

Medan Independent School, formerly Medan International School, was founded in 1969 by the American and British Consulates in Medan.  It remains a non-profit school supported by student tuition. It currently serves 76 students from Early Childhood to Grade 10 using both the PYP and MYP programs from the International Baccalaureate.  MIS is a candidate school for the IBDP with plans to offer the first IBDP courses in 2017-2018.  MIS is also accredited by WASC and a member school of EARCOS.  We are also licensed by the Indonesian government and are preparing to follow their guidelines for accreditation as they release them.

The purpose built campus was constructed in 1980 by Mobil Oil.  It has spacious grounds including an indoor gymnasium, two playgrounds, a 25 meter pool and kids pool and a full-size soccer field.  A brand new science lab was completed in August of 2015 with the goal of offering upper division science courses.  We are in the second year of a 1:1 iPad program with our MYP students.  Our PYP teachers have access to iPads for their classes as well as an iMac computer lab.

Our student population is 30% international from consulates and NGOs, 35% mixed marriages with at least one parent coming from Indonesia and 35% Indonesian.  We are increasingly promoting the school in the local community.  We currently employ 7 expat teachers (including the principal) responsible for the core educational classes (usually in two grade combination classes).  We employ Indonesian teachers for language and elective classes.  All of our Indonesian teachers have local certification and knowledge of the IB and its programs.


The school is operated by a Yayasan (non-profit organization) and must use a three tiered system of governance.  Our trustees are a self-appointing, perpetual group of community members selected for their interest in maintaining a true international education in Medan.  They consist of locals and expats as well as former parents.  They meet quarterly and hire the Head of School/Principal.  Our supervisors meet monthly to review finances and progress on school goals.  They consist of parents from the school community.  The Principal, Office Manager and Accounts Officer make up the third tier and are responsible for the daily operations of the school.


Medan is Indonesia’s third largest city and the largest city on the island of Sumatra. The local Batak population is largely Christian so it is a city with churches and mosques close together.  It is a city without much to attract tourists except for those venturing to see the orangutans in the rainforest in Bukit Lawing or the splendors of Lake Toba further inland. Pulau Weh to the north attracts divers from around the world. Modern shopping malls offer a variety of dining options and movie theaters.  A very low cost of living makes it easy to save or to splurge on a nice vacation. It offers a strategic location in Southeast Asia with easy flights to Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Singapore and Bangkok.

Job Description


The Principal of Medan Independent School is both a member of the faculty and the Chief Executive Officer, charged with the day-to-day running of the school and with responsibility and authority for overall management within the policies and directives of the Board of Directors.

During the term of this contract, the Principal will perform duties normally associated with such work and such other duties as are described in the document entitled “Board Policy Certificated Personnel”

Main Activities / Tasks:

The Principal will:

  • have a commitment to the school’s Mission Statement, Schoolwide Learning Expectations (WASC) and the philosophy of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Diploma Programme (DP) and ensure that they are realized.
  • provide administrative, budget and personnel support to ensure the continuation and enhancement of the school’s educational programs.
  • have a commitment to ongoing school development , and maintain this through the preparation of annual and long term plans and the maintenance of the school’s accreditation and IB authorization.
  • ensure that a modern, student centered curriculum is presented which is sensitive to the current and future needs of students in helping them prepare for their role in a global society.
  • provide leadership for the senior leadership team, ensuring that current and appropriate curriculum is developed and articulated in all areas, and that new curriculum developments have the support of the faculty and community, and that appropriate professional activities are provided to ensure effective implementation.
  • promote programs which reflect the multicultural nature of the school and the Indonesian setting.
  • in collaboration with the staff, and with reference to the School Strategic Plan and developing student needs, ensure the best available resources across the curriculum.
  • ensure that the school offers a broad and varied co-curricular and special events program which caters for a wide range of student interests and abilities and enhances the school program.
  • provide and promote leadership, open communication and support a collaborative approach among employees of the school.
  • lead the recruitment, appraisal and attestation process for all personnel on the basis of merit and their suitability to the school’s needs.
  • apply effective and efficient administrative and organizational structures in the management of the school.
  • supervise the maintenance of the school plant to ensure the quality of the plant and that it provides a pleasant environment and enhances delivery of the school’s programs.
  • prepare and manage the school’s budget and work closely with the school’s Accounts Officer, Board Treasurer and Auditor.
  • have a teaching load appropriate to the school’s needs.  This will involve providing release for the IB coordinators.  The Principal will demonstrate exemplary teaching practice.
  • represent the school in the community.

Candidate Profile

The major focus of the Principal for 2016 will be to oversee the addition of grades 11 and 12 as well as promote the school within the community as the only internationally accredited, IB World School in Medan.  It will be important for the Principal to work with the strategic plan as well as provide a vision for future plans. The Principal must be able to earn the trust of the local community as well as work with the international community and consulates.

We are seeking a candidate with the following required qualifications:

  • A Master’s degree in Educational Administration (required by local regulations)
  • Knowledge of the International Baccalaureate and its mission
  • Experience working with international accreditation (WASC, CIS, etc.)
  • Excellent communication skills and interpersonal skills to work with all stakeholders
  • Experience with creating and following a budget 
  • Ability to work with a leadership team (IB coordinators) and to be open and inclusive
  • Tolerance with frustration that comes with living in the developing world

In addition, we would prefer the following qualifications:

  • A history of successful classroom teaching experience
  • Experience teaching or coordinating in an IB programme (PYP, MYP or DP)
  • Familiarity with the college admissions process for international students
  • Familiarity with integrating ICT into education (iPads, Laptops, Google Apps, etc.)
  • Use of MAP tests and data to inform instruction

Salary and Benefits

The salary is competitive with other small schools in the region.  Benefits include paid housing and electricity, full comprehensive medical insurance, settling in allowance, annual round trip flight, private use of school vehicle and driver, free tuition for dependent children and annual professional development including attendance at the EARCOS administrator’s conference.

Application Process

In the interest of identifying the best candidates for this position, MIS has selected Search Associates to assist in this search process.  The deadline for applications is January 15, 2016.  Candidates should note, however, that the search committee will begin reviewing applications as soon as they are received.  In the event that an outstanding applicant is identified early in the search process, MIS reserves the right to make an appointment before the deadline.  For this reason, it is recommended that interested candidates apply as soon as possible.

Candidates should send the information requested below, in a single PDF attachment not to exceed 6MB

  • A letter of application, no longer than two pages, explaining your strengths as a candidate and why you are interested in this particular position; and discuss specific talents and skills which you can contribute.
  •  A current resume not to exceed two pages, along with a head and shoulders portrait or photo (optional).
  •  A one-page or two page statement outlining your educational beliefs and leadership ability and style
  •  A one-page list of references with phone numbers and email addresses
  •  A maximum of three letters of reference which may already be in your possession

Applications should be submitted to:
with a cc to:

For more information on Medan Independent School, please see the school website:



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