Picking A New Headmaster (Mistress… whatever)

Jane and Alexander’s school is in the process of selecting a new head of school. It’s more difficult and emotional than it would seem. Many independent private schools have a faculty that includes a least a few parents. The kids’ school seems to have a good number of parents and alumni parents on staff.

The school is at the phase where the finalists are being interviewed. It’s really scary to ask questions of staff who take care of your children day in and out.

I have three questions for each of the candidates that I’d like to see answered:

1. What is your academic vision for the school?
2. Who is the client first, the kids or the parents?
3. How would you go about hiring new teachers?

Apparently these are questions no one else is asking. I don’t know if I’m too direct for my own good, or if I just see the world a little differently.

We’ve made a lot of sacrafices to send our kids to the school they attend. We’ve made them joyfully, as it’s a wonderful place for them to be. Right now, I’m just a little nervous. The school will change, we just don’t know if the changes will be positive or negative. Perhaps they will just be changes, neither positive nor negative.

What questions would you have for a prospective head of school?

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