Head of School | American Collegiate Institute

Is this position a good fit for you? American Collegiate Institute has contracted CIS to manage applications for this position. We have worked closely with the school to learn what they need and are ready to share our expertise with you. Apply for this position through CIS so we can represent you, your skills and experience to the school.

American Collegiate Institute

Izmir, Turkey
seeks a

Head of School

effective July 2020

Our School

Founded in 1878, The American Collegiate Institute / Özel İzmir Amerikan Koleji (ACI) is one of the Health and Education Foundation’s /Sağlık ve Eğitim Vakfı (SEV) schools along with its sister schools - Üsküdar American High School, Tarsus American College, SEV American College, İzmir SEV Schools, Üsküdar SEV Schools and Tarsus SEV Schools.

The school is fully accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS) and the Turkish Ministry of Education, as well as an authorized IB World School since 2005.

Today, there are more than 800 students in Grades 9-12. The languages of instruction are English and Turkish. The teaching staff includes the Turkish faculty (75% plus), many of whom speak English, and the English-speaking international faculty (20%). The international faculty currently includes teachers from the USA, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland and Norway. All our foreign educators are certified educators in their home countries.

Our Students

Students are admitted to the high school based on a highly competitive national exam for private schools taken by over 1,000,000 students. 

ACI offers a “1+4” high school program. The “1+” references the prep program for students entering an intensive English language program (beginner to advanced) to prepare them for the rigorous four-year high school program. In the prep program, class sizes are no larger than 20 to allow for a productive language learning environment.  Following the completion of the prep year students enter into the Turkish Ministry of Education system of grades 9-12.  At ACI, students have the option of entering the International Baccalaureate Programme in grade 11 or they can continue with their national curriculum. ACI is a fully authorised IB World School and is proud to be the first Turkish high school in the Aegean region to receive IBDP authorization. About 20% of the students select the full IBDP option.

ACI has a solid record of university acceptance; annually over 99% of the high school graduates are accepted into the universities in Turkey and abroad. ACI students currently attend Bogazici University, Middle Eastern Technical University, Koc University, Sabanci University, Harvard, Cornell College, Georgetown University, Columbia University, the University of California-Berkeley, McGill, Royal Holloway in London to name but a few. The typical percentage of students who elect to go to university abroad is usually around 25-35% of the graduating senior class, however, upwards of 50% choose to apply internationally.  The school employs a professional overseas university counselling department that works with the families and students during the selection and application process.

ACI is proud of its extra-curricular activities, sports programs, clubs, and strong service-learning program. ACI has a long history of service-learning and working with disadvantaged groups from Multiple-Sclerosis Society, senior-citizens, street children, the poor, and blind. Many groups and individuals benefit from the schools’ service-learning programs and the IB’s CAS requirement. The school has also supported a bookmobile club that visits the poorer environs surrounding Izmir to distribute books and promote education. ACI has a sister school in rural Eastern Turkey whom it helps.

The Opportunity

The Head of School reports to and is expected to work in collaboration with the SEV General Manager within the guidelines set by the Board of Directors, to ensure that the school is both educationally and financially sound and that the educational policies are consistent with the educational goals of the Ministry of Education, the SEV American Schools’ Mission and the SEV Board of Directors’ policy. S/he conducts the administration of the school in alignment with the policies of and in close relationship with the administrators of the Health and Education Foundation.

The position provides the opportunity for close personal attention to each student and their needs. The successful applicant will be someone who has shown evidence of high energy and initiative in moving schools forward in a progressive and responsible manner. ACI is seeking an innovative, culturally competent leader who can make a long-term commitment to continue its tradition of forward thinking in providing the best possible education for its students.

The position requires a dynamic educator, one with advanced written and verbal communications skills, a highly-developed level of interpersonal empathy and a willingness to engage at every level with the local community. The successful candidate will be able to navigate within diverse cultural mixes and demonstrate an international mind-set, with a strong focus on students’ learning, pastoral and academic achievements within a Turkish and English bilingual international programme.

Qualities Sought

A culturally competent leader, with a passion for rigorous academic excellence as well as for international education is a must, along with the understanding and energy to lead a dynamic school. The successful candidate will be required to pilot and inspire a team to build on ACI’s exemplary level of educational excellence.  Equally critical will be an ability to team effectively with the Turkish Principal and collaborate with students, faculty, parents, Board and the wider Turkish community.

Overall Responsibilities
  • Inspire and build capacity for excellent teaching and learning
  • Provide academic leadership through staff recruitment, curriculum development, maintenance of international accreditation standards and through professional development planning
  • Ensures that all secondary faculty demonstrate effective instructional and assessment strategies which measurably enhance student learning and promote the craft of teaching
  • Serve as a leader in the field of education and confident in leading professional development workshops, institutes and seminars
  • Promote a dynamic culture of care, respect, high expectations and success
  • Empower parents and families as learners in the home/school partnership
  • Shape shared futures as an intentional, strategic and entrepreneurial leader
  • Use professional judgment to balance competing priorities
  • Act as the primary representative of the school when interfacing with external agencies, and government authorities, within
  • Turkey and the region
  • Oversee financial soundness, ensuring compliance with budget parameters, audit requirements and principles of sound corporate governance
  • Demonstrate professional knowledge of the principle and practice of leading learning in a school
  • Develop and manage people according to sound theories and approaches
  • Manage and promote the school’s enrichment program, ensuring students are engaged in meaningful and purposeful clubs, sports and tutorials 
Desired Qualities and Qualifications
  • Demonstrated interpersonal diplomatic leadership, combined with a passion for Secondary School Students
  • Minimally, M.A./M.Ed./M.Sc. degree or equivalent
  • Experience as a leader and teacher, preferably in an international or independent school, Principal/Head of School experience (preferred)
  • Demonstrated track record in coaching, mentoring and holding accountable his/her faculty teams and direct reports
  • Demonstrated commitment to International Education, Global Citizenship and Service Learning and the IB Diploma programme
  • Experience with and desire to work in a multi-cultural environment
  • Current knowledge in instructional methodologies, “learner-centred” classrooms, program development and evaluation, differentiated instruction for a range of students with learning needs, student assessment, personnel evaluation, the change process 
  • Outstanding communication skills (oral and written), ability to motivate and delegate effectively, ability to inspire
  • Strong organizational and technology skills
  • An energetic, outgoing, warm and friendly person who enjoys the company of others and is socially adept among a broad range of constituencies
  • Demonstrated commitment and genuine interest to the 1 on 1 mentorship of students and pastoral care, have a sense of responsibility for the health, safety and well-being of student
  • Demonstrate an on-going love of learning, while keeping abreast of new developments in international education
Additional Information
Terms and Conditions of Appointment

Salary and benefits for this post are generous and will be commensurate with the responsibilities of the position and based upon qualifications and experience. In addition to salary, primary benefits include, retirement, health insurance, tuition for school age dependents at SEV schools, travel and relocation assistance package, annual home leave, and annual professional development.

Application Procedure

CIS is delighted to announce that American Collegiate Institute has retained our Leadership Search Services, represented by Joe Cornacchio, and the CIS Leadership Search team to lead the search for a new Head of School.

If you are interested in this position and meet the criteria, apply now via the link below. Please provide a letter of motivation along with your CV. The letter of motivation should clearly outline your interest in the school and the position you are applying for, what you would bring to the role and how you meet the requirements in the above profile.

Apply now

Should you progress to the next stage, you will be invited to continue the application process and will be required to provide the following:

  • Employment history
  • Education history
  • University degree/s (copies are sufficient)
  • Certificates/licenses confirming qualification in your field/s of expertise (copies are sufficient)
  • A copy of the biographical page of your Passport
  • Criminal background checks from all countries where you have lived or worked as an adult (copies are sufficient)
  • Global sanctions, social media checks, highest educational qualification verification conducted by a background screening agency (shortlisted candidates only)
  • Contact details for three supervisory referees
Application Deadline

15 November 2019

ACI reserves the right to make an appointment before the closing date for applications.

The review of files will begin as soon as applications are received. Finalists will be invited to Izmir for final interview to meet with the Search Committee, Board and constituent groups at ACI, with the intention of making an appointment shortly thereafter.



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