Head of School | Haut-Lac International Bilingual School

Is this position a good fit for you? Haut-Lac International Bilingual School 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.

Haut-Lac International Bilingual School

St-Légier, Switzerland
seeks a

Head of School

Effective August 2020

A welcome from the Directors of Haut-Lac International Bilingual School

25 years ago, we were just two families with a dream. We wanted to create a learning space where children from all over the world could live and thrive in two languages. Today, our dream is a reality. 600 students from over 40 countries play, learn, and grow together at Haut-Lac, an International bilingual school in a stunningly beautiful part of Switzerland.

We are humbled by the trust put in us by their parents and honoured to be a part of their journey. We now have another dream – to employ an exceptional leader to run the school as we move to a governance focused role. If you would like to lead a much-adored school, a well-cared for community, have the operational and educational experience in leading international schools, and the aptitude and attitude to work with us in becoming a world leading international school, we encourage you to learn about us and apply.

The Position

We are seeking the following in our new leader:

Personal Qualities: 

  • demonstrates deep emotional intelligence, defined by self-awareness, self-regulation, empathy, and finely-honed interpersonal skills 
  • listens actively and has the ability to reflect and respond effectively to issues of concern when they arise
  • demonstrates integrity and fair leadership practices at all times
  • possesses both a sense of humour and optimism for the future of the school
  • is passionate, energetic, dynamic and approachable, and visible throughout the school both in and out of classrooms
  • places learning and student well-being at the very centre of every school experience
  • is a confident and articulate communicator who can command the attention, interest and imagination of audiences across cultures and languages.

Strategic Direction: 

  • takes action that impacts student learning and follows-through on commitments, building community confidence
  • builds on the school’s rich heritage, current strengths and its strategic priorities and influences future advancement with confidence, subtlety and distinction
  • strives to conserve the unique family feel that has become Haut-Lac’s trademark over the years
  • combines strategic and intuitive thinking with excellent implementation skills.

Academic Excellence: 

  • instills a culture of academic excellence where data, research and best practices, together with community input, inform curriculum and teaching
  • uses data and feedback to inform student progress
  • has the experience and expertise to know what is currently “best in class” in IB World Schools
  • has in-depth knowledge of contemporary thinking about effective education and the current integration of new technology into education.

Leading Learning: 

  • prioritises learning across all stakeholder groups including a reliable curriculum, effective teaching and assessment practices, aligned professional development, and ongoing parent education
  • has the confidence and determination to drive and ensure high-quality instruction
  • builds and leads a learning community of educators and support staff.
  • Valuing & Promoting Holistic Development: 
  • promotes and leads by example, community-wide involvement in the extra-curricular life of the school in support of its holistic philosophy 
  • ensures that a focus on student wellbeing remains at the heart of the school’s work by maintaining the appropriate balance between striving for academic excellence and holistic development.

Future-Ready Students: 

  • builds deep understanding and unifies the community of stakeholders about the future of teaching and learning
  • recognises staff talents and taps into expertise to ensure a future-ready school 
  • aims to inspire and prepare highly adaptable students for a meaningful life, always seeking to improve the students’ experience
  • has an appreciation of the power of education in its widest sense to contribute to the creation of a better future.


  • leads with pragmatism, transparency, expertise and clear priorities, investing in people across the community in key school improvement initiatives
  • inspires and motivates the Senior Leadership Team, building connections across all school constituencies, including the parents
  • facilitates collaborative teams
  • is a dedicated and visible ambassador of the school’s core values
  • encourages the appointment and development of representative students to positions of responsibility throughout the school
  • maintains the warm and positive community spirit in which all members experience and articulate their equal voice.

Organizational Coherence: 

  • coordinates systems, processes, and resources to ensure a collective focus on the school’s mission and values
  • connects people to the ideals of collaboration and teamwork
  • is an outstanding communicator in English and French (oral and written), and has the ability to motivate and delegate effectively.

Change Leadership: 

  • uses change leadership techniques – communication, understanding, and involvement of stakeholders – to achieve ownership and maximum benefit
  • is a proactive ambassador: anticipates and responds to the changing and competitive educational landscape
  • researches and addresses school admissions, enrollment yield, and retention strategies
  • nurtures the school and contributes to the already dynamic community
  • is a flexible thinker who takes time to appraise the school and its practices before introducing change
  • ensures that the physical learning environments support academic excellence.


  • has appropriate teaching and leadership qualities & qualifications, including IB experience
  • is experienced and committed to a bilingual/ dual language programme
  • fuses the best of local and international educational principles and practices
  • understands the journey toward university or other post-secondary options for students
  • is aligned in approach to the existing organisational structure, understanding the direction of the hugely supportive proprietors who wish to be highly collaborative in the development of impactful and innovative programmes
  • is eager to work alongside the school’s existing Senior Leadership Team and its Managing/Founding Directors as together they jointly explore future strategic plans and ensure the continued success of the school.

The School

Haut-Lac International Bilingual School, located in the commune of St-Légier-La Chiésaz above the north-eastern shores of Lake Geneva, has been successfully educating both local and expatriate children since it was established with just 13 primary students in 1993.  Having grown into one of the biggest private schools on the Riviera with an enrollment of around 600 boys and girls aged 3-18 years, representing more than 40 different nationalities, it continues to maintain the family atmosphere encouraged by its founders. 

The promotion of intercultural understanding and bilingualism, and the preparation of well-informed, compassionate and responsible young adults are at the forefront of the holistic educational philosophy practiced by the founders and their dedicated staff.  The students’ academic progress is shaped by the International Baccalaureate Learner Profile – Haut-Lac has been authorised to offer the Middle Years and Diploma programmes since 2002 and 2004 respectively. IB results have been consistently high, leading to interesting and varied university and career choices.  

In the infant and primary school, classes are taught in English and French on alternate days, in the secondary school most subjects can be studied in either language.  An experienced team of teaching staff with backgrounds in both the Anglophone (UK, USA) and French-speaking (Belgium, Canada, France and Switzerland) educational systems ensures that the aim of promoting multilingualism can be fulfilled.

Application Procedure

CIS is delighted to announce that Haut-Lac International Bilingual School has retained CIS Leadership Search Services to lead the search for their next Head of School.

If you are interested in this position and meet the criteria outlined, apply now via the link below. Please provide a letter of motivation and 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 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 copies of the following:

  • University degree/s
  • Certificates/licences confirming qualification in your field/s of expertise
  • A copy of the biographical page of your Passport
  • Criminal background checks from all countries where you have lived or worked as an adult
  • Contact details for three supervisory referees.

This information must be complete when you enter the final stages of an application process. Finalists will be invited on-site for interview with the intention of making a final selection shortly thereafter.

If you have any questions about the position, the application process, or require any assistance, please contact the team: leadershipsearches@cois.org.

Application Deadline

15 August 2019



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