Secondary School Principal at International School of Dakar in Senegal
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Secondary School Principal
International School of Dakar (Senegal)

Aug 13, 21
Sep 15, 21



International School of Dakar                            

ISD CORE Values: Creativity, Open-Mindedness, Responsibility, and Excellence

We are looking for a Secondary School Principal who will work with incoming School Director,

Sandy McKenzie, and a talented leadership team and faculty, to develop and implement a new strategic path take ISD to the next level.



The School

The International School of Dakar (ISD) is an independent, English-medium international school (approximately 720 students) which offers a rigorous, international Pre-K3 to Grade 12 curriculum. Our students represent over 60 nationalities. Indeed, the diversity and educational experience inspire students to become lifelong learners and responsible global citizens in a rapidly-changing world.


ISD, founded in 1983, is an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School, offering the Diploma, Middle Years, and Primary Years programs. IB World Schools share a common philosophy – a commitment to high-quality, challenging, international education that ISD believes is important for our students. ISD is fully accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS) and Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools (MSA).


The International School of Dakar is situated on six acres overlooking the Atlantic Ocean in the Mermoz neighborhood of Dakar. The Secondary School building has 33 rooms, including two state-of-the-art science labs, three art rooms, a film lab, and a music room with practice space. There is a Teaching Learning Center for secondary students. The Elementary and Secondary Schools share a library and an innovation center.


The ISD community is celebrating the inauguration of a new Performing Arts Center this year with a 340-seat theater, scene shop, “black box”, and art gallery, as well as an Athletic Complex, which houses a double gym, fitness room, dance studio, PE offices, classroom, changing rooms, and meeting spaces, all with stunning ocean views. The campus serves as a school-community center, with a wide variety of activities offered both after school and on weekends.


Click here for a full color School and position PDF



Challenge | Create | Change


Who We Are

ISD is a diverse community of learners that fosters creativity, open-mindedness, responsibility and excellence. As an IB World School, ISD promotes student achievement and global citizenship.


What We Believe

  • A well-rounded and rigorous program of academics, arts, and athletics builds a foundation for life-long learning and fulfillment.
  • A collaborative culture enhances individual development and effective communication.
  • Inspired teaching leads to personal accomplishment and growth.
  • A successful learner has the courage to tackle complex problems and be of service to others.
  • Creative opportunities encourage students to become responsible leaders and discover their talents and passions.

Strategic Areas

International School of Dakar students should…

  • Be well-rounded in all aspects of education: academic, artistic, sports, and service.
  • Discover their talents and passions.
  • Be responsible leaders in a complex and ever-changing world.

The School and Curriculum

The Secondary School has a distinct middle school (170 students) and high school (200 students). The program at ISD is articulated, aligned, and a reflection of the mission and values of the School. The commitment to the International Baccalaureate Program is in full swing, and the School has done an excellent job in meeting the requirements for IB authorization. The Primary Years Program has been implemented over the past two years, and the Middle Years Program received authorization in the Spring of 2021. The Diploma Program has been in place for eight years. This past May, 84% percent of grade 12 students were full IB Diploma students and we had a 94% pass rate. The adoption of the rigorous standards of the IB Program represents a clear commitment to an international mindset, critical thinking, and academic excellence.

Middle School:

High School:

The School is accredited by the Council of International School, Middle States Association, and the International Baccalaureate Organization.

ISD has become an exemplar in embracing the social justice imperatives of high-functioning schools in today’s world. Among the leaders of this work internationally, the School has established a Diversity and Inclusion Task Force to examine the School’s curriculum, to support the creation of a Social Justice Council, and to create and implement a bias reporting tool for the community. The School’s next Secondary Principal must support this transformational visionary and curricular goal for the Secondary School.

We enjoy a truly diverse student body with students from over 60 different nationalities. They come to us from a wide range of countries, backgrounds, and abilities. ISD offers a sheltered immersion program for English Language Learners. Students who are struggling with grade academic expectations may be recommended to join ISD’s pullout or push-in Learning Support program. In 2020, a program for students with Moderate Specialized Learning Needs was started.


The Position

The Principal is the educational leader and administrative head of the secondary school. As such, they have primary responsibility for overseeing the school’s programs to maximize student achievement in keeping with ISD’s Guiding Statements, school board policies, approved curriculum, and directives. They report to and are evaluated annually on objectives established jointly with the Director.


The Secondary School Principal’s responsibilities include the curriculum development and professional development programs implemented in collaboration with the Director of Innovation and the Elementary School Principal. They provide leadership in the monitoring and evaluation of the secondary school program’s strengths and programmatic needs; provide direction to ensure academic achievement and social growth for all students, and effectively communicate the school's program to students, staff, parents, and the local community.


A Secondary School Assistant Principal, two Dean of Students, an IB Diploma Coordinator, an IB Middle Years Program Coordinator, two High School Counselors, a Middle School Counselor, and all school Mental Health Counselors support the Secondary School Principal.


Specific Responsibilities


  • Work closely with the Director to establish clear guidelines and expectations for admitting new students and apply the guidelines in admitting students to ISD.
  • Ensure a safe and positive atmosphere.
  • Ensure that disciplinary guidelines are fairly and consistently applied.
  • Oversee preparation of the schedule for students and teachers.
  • Attend and actively participate in Student Support meetings.
  • Create an efficient, productive and caring building atmosphere where all students and faculty have the opportunity to be recognized for their best efforts.
  • Maintain and oversee student records including progress reports, report cards, student admission/withdrawal files, and cumulative files.

Teachers and Support Staff:

  • Provide for evaluation of faculty and staff in accordance with prescribed procedures.
  • Provide for the most effective utilization of the instructional staff through appropriate assignments to specific positions, grades and/or subjects.
  • Serve as a mentor and instructional leader to faculty members regarding school matters and encourage their professional growth and career advancement.
  • Develop the leadership capabilities of teachers so that instructional leadership becomes a shared responsibility.



  • Provide leadership in the development of the school’s curriculum and assessment practices in conjunction with the faculty.
  • Gather validating information that helps determine whether curriculum and instructional goals and student performance outcomes are being met.
  • Communicate school programs and other school activities effectively with students, faculty, parents, colleagues, and in the community (e.g. verbal, nonverbal and written communication).
  • Be a willing and active participant on the school’s leadership team and in committee work.

General Responsibilities:

  • Keep the Director informed of significant school affairs.
  • Serve as an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors.
  • Write a report for monthly Board Meetings and attend meetings as well as events associated with the Board of Directors (e.g. Board Retreat).
  • Develop and monitor the instructional budget.
  • Seek constant professional learning and professional growth and be a life-long learner.

Experience, Skills and Abilities

  • Prior administrative experience in a similar position
  • Minimum of three years experience in school administration; five years experience preferred
  • Previous teaching experience at the middle and/or high school level; recognized as a master teacher
  • Successful experience in a multicultural school community
  • Experience with the IB Diploma Program required
  • Experience with the IB Middle Years Program preferred
  • Proven experience in mentoring teachers to improve their professional practice
  • Skill in building effective partnerships with parents
  • Ability to continue to improve student culture and effectively manage student discipline
  • Highly effective management skills and experience, demonstrated team-building skills, and ability to inspire confidence and earn the trust of faculty and staff
  • Proven experience in curriculum implementation
  • Excellent interpersonal communications with key school stakeholders – students, staff, faculty, parents, Board of Trustees, and the larger community


  • Experience as a principal or assistant principal
  • Master’s Degree in educational leadership, administration, curriculum and instruction or related field
  • Teaching certification required
  • Principal certification preferred

Compensation and Benefits

ISD offers an initial contract term of three years (renewable). The salary for the Secondary School Principal is commensurate with the responsibilities of the position and is competitive. Other benefits for the position include international medical insurance for the principal and authorized dependents, retirement contribution, professional development allowance, longevity bonus, flights home annually for principal and family, comfortably furnished housing subject to family size, and allowance for utilities.


Application Procedures

The deadline for applications is September 15, 2021. Candidates are requested to submit a letter of interest and the requested materials listed below as early as possible, as the Search Committee reserves the right to close the selection process at any time if the right candidate is found. The director will conduct initial interviews as applications are received.  A committee of teachers, parents, and students in early October will interview semi-finalists via Zoom. The new Secondary School Principal will be selected after two days of virtual interviews with the community and reference checks. The new principal will start in August of 2022.


The International School of Dakar will only accept applications from candidates who have confidential recommendations through a recognized recruiting service.


Candidates should send the information listed below to as a single pdf file <4MB attached to an email.

  •  A letter of application, explaining your strengths as a candidate and why you are interested in the Secondary Principal position at ISD. The letter should indicate the agency which has your confidential references.
  • A statement describing your management and educational philosophy, not to exceed two pages.
  • A current résumé, not to exceed two pages.

Contact Alan Knobloch, ISD Director, with questions at


Did You Know…?

Senior Associate Bill Turner’s international teaching career has taken him to Sudan, Italy, Qatar and the UAE as well as his home country of England. His very first teaching position was in rural Sudan.