Principal Interviews

Mr. Wray, who joined SIS over 8 years ago, dropped a bombshell earlier this academic year when he announced his decision to leave SIS at the end of the year. Although students weren’t informed until September, the school has known for a while and had already begun advertising for a new school principal.
As with most deputy principal and head of section selection, one component of the selection process is student interviews. I’ve been asked to sit on the panel of students. However, it is ultimately a decision that’s going to affect everyone. In an unprecedented move, I’m asking students for their suggestions and opinions on the questions to be posed.


Fist, here is an outline of the 4 candidates identified by an unknown, school chosen selection committee as put in the schools newsletter.

1. Alison Hampshire
Alison has been a Vice Principal at South Island School since 2004 and instrumental in many of the innovations in recent years. Prior to this, she was an Assistant Principal in the United Kingdom. As a teacher, Alison has had significant experience of teaching English and Drama in both the UK and in an international school in Malawi. Alison gained experience in leading a unit working with students who have specific learning difficulties. She was awarded her honours degree by Sussex University, United Kingdom and has since gained additional professional qualifications including gaining recognition by the UK government as an Advanced Skills Teacher. Alison focuses her leadership on ensuring that students of all abilities are supported and challenged to achieve in all areas of school life.

2. Ed Lawless
Ed currently works for the IB Asia Pacific Regional office as their Regional Head of Professional Development. He joined the “IBO” in 2005. Prior to that, he served as the Head of Senior School in Queensland, Australia. As a teacher, he is very experienced in teaching English and Theory of Knowledge in the IB Diploma. Ed was awarded his first honours degree by LeMoyne College followed by a Masters Degree from the University of Rochester. Ed sees this as an opportunity to return to the challenge that first attracted him to the profession and one he finds most rewarding – school leadership. In all roles, Ed has managed change, guiding teams through critical review and implementation.

3. Graham Silverthorne
Graham currently works as the Headteacher of Gordano School in the United Kingdom. He joined Gordano in 2003, following 4 years as the Headteacher of a
large school in Cambridge. Graham has been recognized by the National College of School Leadership as a ‘Local Leader in Education’ and acts as a mentor/coach for other headteachers in Bristol. His school has a partnership with a school in Rwanda, a partnership which he sees as a ‘humbling experience’ and a mutual benefit to both schools. He was awarded his degree in History by Cambridge University followed by a Masters Degree. Graham enjoys school leadership, regards schools as a community and adapts a collegiate and inclusive approach to leadership.

4. David Watson
David Watson is currently serving as the interim Principal of an international school in Boston, USA. Prior to this, he spent nine years as the Principal of an international school in Houston, Texas, a large French/English dual language school. He has also worked as a Principal of an international school in Malaysia and taught most of his career in international schools. David has a number of degrees in English Literature (France), French and Politics (Bristol, U.K.) and a Doctorate degree (Croatia). He is also a council member of the Council of International Schools. His leadership is based upon the principles of community, respect and challenge.


Here’s the current schedule and process of selection :

30th Nov- PTA committee and School Council
1st Dec – Meet small group of parents
2nd Dec – Presentation in Hall 5:00 – 7:00

There is no date yet for student interviews which should occur in a similar time frame next week.


For our student interviews, we are compiling a selection of questions to ask potential candidates. They largely fall into the following categories :

1. General Openers
2. Academic/ Curriculum
3. Relations with Students
4. Student Voice/ School Spirit
5. Technology/ Creativity
6. Closers

Do you have any suggestions for questions to ask? What do you want to know about the candidates?
Tell me in the comments and I’ll try to incorporate them into the interviews.

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