Upper Elementary School Principal at American School of Doha in Qatar
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Upper Elementary School Principal
American School of Doha (Qatar)

Appointed - Mr. Brian Donaldson
Sep 22, 2022
Oct 21, 2022

Dear Search Associates Colleagues,

On behalf of the Search Committee and the Administration of the American School of Doha in Doha, Qatar, we are pleased to announce that Mr. Brian Donaldson has been appointed to assume the role of Upper Elementary School Principal in August 2023.

Mr. Donaldson is currently the Elementary School Principal at the American International School of Vienna, a position he has held since 2017.  Additionally, Mr. Donaldson has held leadership positions as Elementary School Principal at the International School Nido de Aguilas, Chile (2015-2017), Upper Elementary School Principal at the American School of Doha (2010-2015) and Elementary Principal at the American School of Asuncion, Asuncion, Paraguay (2005-2010).  

Mr. Donaldson earned a B.A. in History from the University of Pennsylvania,  a Master of Education in Cross-Cultural Education from National University and a Master of Education in Educational Leadership from The College of New Jersey.  

The Search Committee, Administration of the American School of Doha and Search Associates would like to thank all candidates who expressed interest in the Upper Elementary School Principal position and to everyone who assisted and supported the successful search process.


Norma Hudson and Brent Mutsch  










The American School of Doha Upper Elementary School Principal position

To begin in August 2023



The American School of Doha (ASD) is an English-language day school offering an American curriculum, pre-kindergarten to grade 12, for expatriate families and Qatari nationals who seek a comprehensive, caring, American standards-based curriculum program in an international setting. ASD is an independent, non-profit, coeducational day school operating under the policies and by-laws of a twelve- member Board of Directors and a nine-member Board of Trustees, which is chaired by the U.S. Ambassador. The American School of Doha was founded in 1988 and opened in a villa to serve a small number of expatriate families. With increasing demand for high quality education in Qatar, a new campus was opened to house six hundred students in 1998-99, and with the explosive growth of Qatar in 2005, a new expansion project was undertaken that resulted in a new middle and high school on adjoining land and a complete renovation and expansion of the old campus for the elementary school. From 2013-2017, ASD underwent a $35M Campus Improvement Project to increase capacity and improve facilities across the entire school. This Campus Improvement Project has maximized the school footprint to allow for enrollment of up to 2250 students from pre-K to grade 12.

The surge of growth in ASD has resulted in the creation of a progressive school with an impressive and varied program that serves students from over 75 countries, including approximately 50% from North America and 12% from the host country of Qatar. The academic program has been a forerunner in professional learning and curriculum development, and the school enjoys a worldwide reputation for excellence. Elementary and Middle School students follow a U. S. standards-based curriculum in a comprehensive school setting. High school students have the opportunity to choose from the Advanced Placement program and the IB Diploma program as part of their American high school diploma. ASD is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and a certified IB Diploma School.

Mission, Vision, and Core Values

 The ASD community is constantly renewing and challenging itself through an active strategic planning process, which establishes the vision, mission, and core values of the school. This is a community-wide process and involves parents, students, teachers, administrators, and board members.



ASD Mission

ASD nurtures Learner’s unique identities through intentional experiences of Collaboration, Critical Thinking, Creativity, Citizenship, Communication, and Character.


ASD Vision

Empowering Learners to discover their passions, develop their talents,

and positively impact our world.


ASD Values

The core values of ASD set the guidelines for how we live and work together to create an ethos at ASD where everyone is valued. All of our disciplinary procedures are based on learning and helping students understand the importance of our core values in the life of the school. These values are:


  Honesty Respect Responsibility Kindness

School Overview

The American School of Doha is characterized by a shared vision of learning that is supported by a strong practice of collaboration and a genuine commitment to professional growth and learning. This shared vision for student learning is supported by three key elements:

  1. Instructional strategies that are developed through research, collaboration, and evidence of student success

  2. Skills in analysis of evidence of learning to ensure that we are achieving our learning targets and implementing differentiation where needed

  3. Strong emphasis on developing positive, active global citizens through community service and learning social and environmental responsibility

Our Students

Although over fifty percent of our students are North Americans (43% U.S. citizens & 11% Canadians), diversity is viewed as a strength of the school and is one of the experiences that our students refer to most when reflecting on their education at ASD.

The majority of our students attend colleges and universities in North America, and many of our Qatari students are opting to attend one of six prestigious American universities at Education City in Doha. Ninety-eight percent of our students continue their education after high school in North America, Qatar and in more than 20 countries around the globe.

The Community

 Qatar is a leading center for the development and production of LNG (liquefied natural gas). The expatriate community has grown rapidly over the past several years as a result of the many projects associated with the gas and oil industry in Qatar. However, other initiatives by the Qatar government, especially in the areas of education, sports, and health services have widened the array of expatriates moving to Qatar. This, along with ancillary services in banking and construction, has made Qatar one of the great stories of the early part of the 21st century.

In recent years, Qatar has taken on a multitude of impressive construction projects, including a new skyline in the city as large-scale buildings are erected. The Pei-designed Museum of Islamic Art on the Corniche, a new airport, and the sporting facilities erected for international competition are some of the best in the world. In November this year, Qatar will host the FIFA World Cup. Doha continues to invest heavily in infrastructure and cultural development to ensure its place on the world stage. Safe and modern, Doha is both an exciting and an easy place to live and work.

The Faculty

The ASD faculty consists of 215 teachers who are primarily from North America. In recent years, the staff has become more diverse, with the addition of teachers from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and the region. Approximately sixty percent of the faculty has advanced degrees. The upper elementary school is led by the principal, who, along with a full-time associate principal, two counselors and one librarian, provide great experiences and guidance for our more than 500 upper elementary school students.

The faculty is housed in a state-of-the-art, purpose-built family compound with resort-like facilities, including pool, tennis courts, sauna, fitness center, restaurant and all the amenities needed to live comfortably. The school provides busing to and from the compound for staff (and children of staff) as part of the compensation package.

The School Facility

The American School of Doha, with its contemporary glass design and geometric canopies, is a work of art in itself. The lush campus of twenty acres is one of the greenest and most enjoyable in all of Doha. The campus currently provides state-of-the art facilities, including a new elementary library with a new “maker space”, a new learner’s pool, an enclosed early childhood play courtyard, a greenhouse, two 25m swimming pools (one  outdoor  and  one  indoor),  a  full-sized  soccer  pitch,  a  smaller  soccer  field  for elementary, the only baseball diamond in Qatar, a 400 meter track, an indoor climbing wall, a theater for 630 people, four elementary music rooms, seven purpose-built art rooms, three computer labs, two cafeterias, a middle/high school library, three presentation rooms,  ten  science  labs,  a  central office complex, a drama room, two tennis courts, three covered playgrounds, and an extensive fitness center.


Position Overview

The Upper Elementary School Principal is the learning leader in the upper elementary school and a member of the school’s Leadership Team, reporting directly to the School Director, Mr. Steve Razidlo. Collaborating with the Upper Elementary School Principal and Director on the leadership team are the Director of Finance and Operations, divisional Principals and Associate Principals, a Director of Student Support Services, an IT Director, a Director of Teaching and Learning, a Director of Human Resources, a Director of Activities and Athletics, a Director of Facilities and Security, and a Director of Admissions.

The Upper Elementary School Principal is charged with managing the daily operations of the Upper Elementary School Division, providing leadership in assessment, and development of the instructional program. The Upper Elementary School Principal is responsible for developing a collaborative, innovative, and nurturing environment for staff and students; promoting respect among staff, students and parents; assigning, scheduling, supervising, and evaluating more than 50 Upper Elementary School faculty and staff; and representing the school positively within the broader school community. The successful candidate must be energetic, well versed in educational pedagogy, experienced with and supportive of standards-based curricular programs, able to inspire confidence in his or her faculty, and fulfilled by working closely with students in their activities and day-to-day life at ASD.


Duties and Responsibilities

1. Leadership for Learning

  • Champions the implementation of the strategic plan and upper elementary school initiatives
  • Directs the upper elementary school curricular objectives and professional learning goals
  • Establishes and assesses yearly upper elementary school goals
  • Represents the upper elementary school on the Leadership Team along with an associate principal
  • Understands and knows standard based curricula and is able to assist in the implementation of the curriculum in collaboration with the Director of Teaching and Learning
  •  Manages change and encourages innovation, communication and healthy risk-taking 

2. Staff Development

  • Collaborates with teachers on individual goals and provides timely and thorough analysis of teacher performance through implementation of the school’s performance evaluation system
  • Recruits, hires, evaluates and develops high quality, committed faculty and staff
  • Establishes upper elementary school professional development needs within the strategic plan and upper elementary school goals

3. Communication

  • Communicates effectively with the divisional staff to ensure alignment and collaborative decision making
  • Liaises between Board of Directors, Director, Leadership Team, parents, staff and students
  • Maintains regular written communication with faculty, parents, and students
  • Articulates the upper elementary school program and initiatives through open houses, Parent Advisory Forum, parent conferences and other venues as needed
  • Understands and effectively articulates the school’s values, strategic plan, board policy, and established procedures
  • Oversees procedures for reporting student progress to students and parents on a regular basis

4. Management

  • Plans and implements a master schedule which ensures that each student receives the full benefit of the program (both curricular and co-curricular)
  • Plans, organizes, and oversees the development and implementation of upper elementary school emergency procedures in coordination with the other divisions and Director of Safety and Security
  • At leadership team level collaborates on the development and implementation of community wide equity, diversity and social justice (EDIJ) strategy whilst at divisional level assumes mantle as EDIJ lead

Skills and Attributes Desired

  1.  A collaborative, dynamic, and self-motivated individual with a passion for providing the best possible educational experience to upper elementary school students
  2. Proven commitment to child protection programs that safeguard the welfare of students in multicultural settings and sensitivity in meeting the needs of a diverse student body
  3. Collegial, open, forward looking and proactive, and an advocate for upper elementary school students, faculty, staff, and families
  4. An individual who enjoys interacting with students and playing a vital part in their lives
  5. Communicates effectively in written and oral formats
  6. Well versed in technology and its use within the classroom for effective student learning
  7. Models a collaborative and supportive approach to problem solving
  8. Innovative and creative, models the values and direction of the school
  9. Demonstrates success in people development, team building and leadership
  10. Unquestionable personal integrity and professional ethics
  11. Commitment to the leadership of equity, diversity, inclusion and social justice strategy and practice

Required Qualifications

  • Minimum of MA or MED or equivalent in Educational Administration/Policy, Educational Leadership, or similar field, with principal certification
  • Successful experience as Principal or Associate Principal in an elementary school setting
  • Demonstrated excellence in leading people, managing processes, and improving learning
  • Exceptional knowledge of best practices in curriculum, assessment, pedagogy, and data driven decision-making
  • Five or more years of successful teaching at the elementary school level
  • Experience in an international and/or multi-cultural environment

ASD offers a highly competitive compensation package for this position in a country with no income tax. This position will begin August, 2023.

Aligned with the recommendation of the International Task Force on Child Protection, the successful applicant will complete a global background check as part of the hiring process.

ASD actively seeks to employ a diverse workforce. We are committed to the recruitment of leadership which better balances equity, diversity, inclusion and social justice across our school.


ASD has retained the services of Search Associates as their partner in conducting the search for the Upper Elementary School Principal.  The deadline for making application is Friday, October 21.  However, ASD retains the right to accelerate the search process if the candidate pool enables the schedule to be moved forward.  Therefore, candidates are encouraged to submit their application in a timely manner. 


If interested in making an application, please provide the following in a single PDF document to both Dr. Norma Hudson and Dr. Brent Mutsch.

  • Letter of interest in the position (no more than one page)
  • Curriculum Vitae (no more than two pages)
  • Statement of educational philosophy (no more than one page)
  • List of three to five recent supervisory contacts for reference to include their telephone numbers and e-mail contact information.

Send the PDF application to: nhudson@searchassociates.com and bmutsch@searchassociates.com

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.