Appointments Vacancies

Principal – Stephen Perse Foundation



The Governors of the Stephen Perse Foundation are seeking a successor to Ms Tricia Kelleher, the current Principal, who will be retiring in December 2020 after nineteen years of highly distinguished leadership.

The Governors wish to effect the transition in the role in the academic year 2020-21; the actual start date will be discussed and agreed with the successful candidate.

The Stephen Perse Foundation is a successful family of leading co-educational schools providing a world class education for pupils aged 3-18+. Founded in 1881 as the Perse School for Girls, the SPF family now includes three Pre-prep schools, situated in Cambridge, Madingley and Saffron Walden; two Junior Schools (age 5-11), in Cambridge and Saffron Walden; the Senior School in Cambridge; and a Sixth Form College (with boarding) in Cambridge. In 2020 the SPF will open nurseries in Cambridge, Saffron Walden and Madingley extending the age range to one-year olds.

All the schools share the same vision of education. The focus is on the individuality of each child and every child is encouraged to think independently, analytically, logically, creatively and imaginatively. The schools offer a high-quality, broad-based holistic educational experience that nurtures the development of confident, independent thinkers.

The Principal has responsibility for all the schools in the Foundation. He or she will work collaboratively with the Vice Principals and individual Heads to ensure that each school is well resourced, highly successful and fully integrated into the SPF family of schools with coherent leadership and direction.

This significant and important post requires first class leadership and management skills and presents an exceptional opportunity for a dynamic and experienced person with proven success at senior level in education.

The Governors are therefore seeking an outstanding leader to consolidate the SPF family of schools and continue the development of a Foundation committed to the pursuit of educational and academic excellence in a 21st century context. The successful candidate will be an inspirational professional with an excellent record of achievement as a teacher and as a school leader who can successfully motivate and manage a talented and dedicated staff. A genuine resonance with the ethos and values of the Foundation is essential.

Interested candidates are invited to contact RSAcademics to arrange a confidential discussion about the role:

Helen Flower: or call 07921 587752

Michael Spens: or call 07740 783564

To Apply:

Candidates should complete the RSAcademics application form electronically (available to download on this page). Please also submit a covering letter in support of your application form which should be addressed to Mr John Dix, Chairman of the Board of Governors.

Please email both documents as pdf files to Alison Hooper, Project Coordinator at

The closing date for applications is Wednesday 11th December 2019 at 10:00am

The Stephen Perse Foundation is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. Applicants will be required to undergo our safer recruitment checks and child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). 


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About this vacancy

Key Dates

  • Closing date for applications 11 December 2019 10:00am
  • Preliminary interviews in Central London 06 January 2020 -07 January 2020
  • Longlist interviews 13 January 2020 -14 January 2020
  • Shortlist interviews 23 January 2020 -24 January 2020