Primary Principal

The Inter-Community School (ICS) is one of the preeminent international schools in Switzerland located in a purpose-built campus in beautiful Zumikon, a residential area on the outskirts of Zurich. ICS is an independent, co-educational day school and operates as a non-profit Foundation governed by a Board of Trustees. As the only School in Zurich fully authorized by the International Baccalaureate to offer the International Baccalaureate Primary Years, Middle Years and IB Diploma Programmes, ICS currently has an enrolment of 800 students, age 3-19, representing 48 countries. Instruction is conducted in English and students also learn German, the official language of the host country/Canton. As well as offering the full IB Diploma to all students, ICS champions excellence in Sports and Arts and offers students a broad range of exciting extra–curricular opportunities alongside the academic IB programme.

With a reputation for delivering academic excellence in a diverse, supportive and welcoming atmosphere, ICS is in the enviable position of needing to expand in order to meet the demands of the continuously growing international business community in Zurich.

The School is committed to an open admissions policy, and approximately 50% of the students have a mother-tongue other than English.  There is a strong culture of acceptance of difference, and extensive support for the individual needs of students.  The School has a very well-qualified and stable staff, including 60 Primary teachers and 25 teaching assistants, and there is a strong commitment to investing in the professional development of teachers.

ICS is accredited by CIS and NEASC.  Some sample quotations from the Visiting Team Report may give a flavour of the ethos of the school:

  • ‘The ICS Board and staff are deeply committed to the success of the school.’
  • ‘ICS is a caring institution committed to the learning of its students and personnel.’
  • ‘An ambience of respect exists between and among adults and students in the school community.’
  • ‘[ICS is] a genuine community of learners [and] a teaching and learning environment that truly realises the School’s Mission and Educational Philosophy.’

ICS seeks an experienced educator who will act as the instructional leader of the Primary School, and who will gain the respect and confidence of a highly motivated staff, an outstanding student body and highly supportive parents.  It is essential for the new Principal to have a thorough understanding of the Primary Years Programme of the International Baccalaureate. The Primary Principal is a member of the School’s Senior Administrative Team, and considerable operational autonomy is given within the context of the policies established by this Team.  The Primary and Secondary Principals both attend Board meetings in a non-voting capacity.


Acting as the instructional leader of the Primary School, and providing visionary educational leadership matching student needs as they embrace the challenges of 21st century life-long learning, the Principal’s duties comprise:

Student welfare: oversight of student admissions and placement; maintenance of student records; pastoral care, safety and student welfare; organisation of regular assemblies and other activities; oversight of a comprehensive programme of activities; interest in/experience with a diverse student population, including support for English language learners and students with divergent learning needs.

Staff leadership: identification of staffing needs; teacher recruitment and orientation; scheduling and chairing regular staff meetings; supervision, appraisal and professional development of staff.

Curriculum: implementation and evaluation of the curriculum; awareness of current curriculum developments; encouragement of curriculum innovation; monitoring of assessment and reporting.

School Community: maintenance of good relationships with the Board of Trustees; the Parents’ Association; facilitating appropriate contact between staff and parents; participation at school events and activities.

Administration: preparation of the Primary School’s master timetable; compilation of the calendar of events for the whole school; supervision and enforcement of safety regulations; identification of resource needs, participation in budget formation, oversight of the Primary School budget.

Communications: maintenance of effective communications within the Primary School and with parents; liaison with the Secondary Principal to ensure a carefully articulated programme between the Primary and Secondary divisions.

Technology: identification of technology needs, support of technology integration across the curriculum, adept user of technology in an educational setting.

Facilities: Possess a vision for optimal utilization of the current campus along with planned facilities expansion.

  • Excellent leadership, interpersonal, motivational and communication skills.
  • A strong background in curriculum leadership, particularly within an IB PYP context.
  • Prior experience as a primary administrator, preferably as a Principal in an international setting.
  • An advanced degree in education/pedagogy (e.g. educational leadership, curriculum and instruction, instructional technology).
  • A certificate from an accredited Principal Training Programme is highly desired.
  • Proficiency in German is not required, but a desire and willingness to become immersed in the local culture is important.

Terms and conditions

The initial contract is for two years and is renewable. The generous salary and range of benefits will be commensurate with the qualifications and experience of the successful candidate, with the overall package reflecting the importance of the position.

Next steps

Interested candidates should email a full letter of application, a statement of personal educational philosophy, a detailed resume/curriculum vitae, and names and addresses of people who may be contacted for references. The Head of School reserves the right to apply directly to the writers of open testimonials for confidential statements. Applications should be received by 30th September 2016 and short-listed candidates will be invited for interview in October 2016 or November 2016. The School reserves the right to extend an offer to the right candidate at any stage after the close of the applications deadline as well as to extend the search by another year with an interim Principal in case the right candidate has not been found.

Applications should be adressed to:

Ms Mary-Lyn Campbell,
Head of School

We are looking forward to receive your online application.