Appointments Vacancies

Head of High School – Keystone Academy, Beijing

Beijing, China


Keystone Academy has set out to be unusual, to be a ‘new world school’, a school that is simultaneously national and international. Keystone brings together the best in Chinese, American and international pedagogy and practice on its campus in Shunyi District, Beijing.

Established in 2014, Keystone is moving into the next phase of its development. It now seeks a new Head of High School to succeed Diana Martelly, with effect from July 2021.

In its first six years, Keystone Academy has rapidly grown to 1,500 students from Foundation to Grade 12, and further growth to around 1,800 is anticipated. The first High School class graduated in 2018, and the High School (Grades 10-12) will continue to grow as the school reaches capacity in the mid-2020s. The High School curriculum in Grades 11 and 12 is the IB Diploma Program, which is taken alongside Keystone’s innovative ‘Chinese Thread’. 90% of the students are Chinese, although this will likely settle at a slightly lower figure as Keystone reaches capacity.

Keystone is a not-for-profit bilingual school and is fully residential in Grades 9-12, with boarding optional in Grades 7 and 8. The commitment to bringing together the distinctive traditions of eastern, western and international education is apparent throughout the school, from the design of its campus to the language immersion program and classroom practice, the structure of the curriculum and the range of co-curricular activities.

Keystone’s first six years have been highly successful. Its challenge now is to build on this success, to consolidate where appropriate, and to develop and innovate further, constantly seeking to make the concept of a new world school a reality, while also redefining the idea so that it can remain relevant to changing contexts. One challenge that defines Keystone, especially its High School, is its overt ambition to be about more than examinations grades, including selecting students not only on the grounds of academic potential and cultivating rounded young people who will be able to succeed in a variety of walks of life, while balancing this against the need and desire to be results-focused as well.

The Head of High School position offers a wonderful opportunity for a world-class educator who is fully committed to Keystone Academy’s mission and approach, who believes in the power of bilingual education, and who is attracted by the excitement and the benefits, the challenges and the tensions that come from intentionally bringing together such different cultural and pedagogical traditions.

Detailed further information is available in the candidate information brochure, available via the link to the right of this page. The brochure also gives details of how to apply, which will include completion of the application form also available via a link to the right of this page.

For a preliminary, confidential conversation with Jean Sullivan, Head of International Search, or Keith Clark, the Senior Advisor leading this assignment, please contact

To Apply

You should submit:
• A completed application form (available to download at the right of this page)
• A copy of your Curriculum Vitae/Résumé.
• A covering letter addressed to the Keystone Academy Head of School, Malcolm McKenzie. The letter should explain your reasons for applying, the relevance of your experience, and how you relate your personal educational philosophy to your understanding of the role.

Applications should be made electronically to RSAcademics. Please email your completed application form, CV and covering letter (all as PDF files please) to Jonathan Barnes at  Jonathan can also be reached by calling our Head Office on +44 (0)1858 383163.

The deadline for the receipt of applications is Monday 5 October 2020 at 10:00 (BST)/17:00 (China). Applicants based in China may well want to set themselves a deadline prior to the start of Golden Week.

Keystone Academy is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. The post is subject to appropriate safeguarding checks, satisfactory references and a medical.


About this vacancy

Key Dates

  • Deadline for applications 5 October 2020 at 10:00 (BST)/17:00 (China)
  • Preliminary Interviews: Weeks commencing 5 and 12 October
  • Longlist Interviews by video conference: Late October
  • Final Interviews: Mid-November, with arrangements and timings subject to change as restrictions on travel change.