Head – Sunninghill Preparatory School


The Governors of Sunninghill Prep School are seeking an engaging, dynamic and inspiring leader for the position of Head.

Sunninghill Prep School is an independent preparatory day school for boys and girls aged from 2 years 9 months to 13 years old located in the heart of Dorset’s County town, Dorchester, just minutes away from the World Heritage Jurassic Coast. The striking school buildings are set within an enclosed and attractive green campus with playing fields, lawned grounds and mature trees.

Sunninghill aims to provide a first-class independent education whilst safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, both through strong academic tuition and pastoral care, and, through its distinctive extended curriculum, developing wider sporting, artistic and social skills in all its pupils. It is a family school with strong partnerships with parents and where everyone feels valued and all pupils are inspired to achieve to the best of their ability.

Sunninghill Prep School is a registered charity, governed by a Board of Governors. The Governors are now seeking an inspiring and highly skilled educationalist to build on existing success and to develop the school further.  You will be able to demonstrate a strategic approach to policy and planning, management skills and business insight and should bring experience of successful senior leadership in prep school education.

An engaging and enthusiastic individual and passionate about education, you will embrace and be fully committed to the aims, ethos, and values and work hard to ensure that all members of the school community feel supported and valued. You will be keen to promote academic rigour within a safe and transparent culture supported by excellent pastoral care and to ensure that children have access to a wide range of enrichment opportunities. A visible and dynamic leader, you will be instinctively collaborative and be able to inspire confidence across the school community and to communicate openly with parents and other stakeholders. A confident networker, you will be able to promote and market the School effectively to recruit, retain and grow pupil numbers.

Potential candidates wishing to discuss this post are invited to arrange a confidential discussion with one of the consultants handling this appointment:

Louisa Barham – louisabarham@rsacademics.com or +44(0)7770 928537
Peter Bodkin – peterbodkin@rsacademics.com  or +44(0)7821 737092

The closing date for applications is 10.00am on Friday 21st January 2022

To apply, candidates should complete an application form electronically and submit it to RSAcademics, together with a letter of application. Please click the “Apply Now” link on the right side of this page. You will be taken to our online portal where you will be able to download an application form. Please follow the instructions provided to complete your application.

Letters of application are to be maximum of two pages and should outline the attraction of this position and why candidates feel their experience, skills and personal qualities qualify them for the role. Please address your letter to Chair of Governors, Jean Walker.

Should you have any queries relating to submitting your application, please contact Julia Coffey, Project Coordinator, at applications@rsacademics.com. Julia can also be reached by calling 01858 383163.

Sunninghill School is an equal opportunities employer committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service.

This post is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and the amendments to the Exceptions Order 1975, 2013 and 2020

The safeguarding responsibilities of this post are detailed in the candidate information brochure.

RSAcademics is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion in schools.

Key Dates

Deadline for applications

21/01/2022 10.00am (UK)

Preliminary Interviews will take place online with RSAcademics on 26 and 27 January 2022

Longlist interviews will take place at Sunninghill School on 3 and 4 February 2022.

The shortlist programme will take place at Sunninghill School on 15 and 16 February 2022. Candidates will be required to attend both days.