More Information about Aldenham Prep School Muscat
The Aldenham Foundation – The Vision that Maintains Excellence
The Aldenham Foundation provides a holistic vision of education in all its schools for which the following are essential features:
- Attentive and committed learning and teaching
- Wide opportunities for participation and experience beyond the academic curriculum
- The highest standards of pastoral care
- The development of every individual child to realise and exceed their potential
- The development of personal qualities in its pupils which will enable them to be widely admired beyond the school itself
- A sense of community in which pupils, staff, parents and governors can take pride and be valued.
In establishing new Aldenham schools we look for high quality leaders and teachers who share this vision and who will be able to work with us to see it applied for families around the globe.
In the UK, The Aldenham Foundation consists of three schools across two sites in Hertfordshire just 15 miles from Central London.
Aldenham School (founded in 1597) was a boys’ only full boarding school for around 380 years until the 1980s, but it is now a mixed school for boys and girls, boarders and day pupils and educates children throughout their years of secondary education from 11 to 18. Around one third of the pupils currently board on either a full time basis or as “flexi boarders” for up to five nights each week. The remainder of pupils are day pupils. (www.aldenham.com)
Aldenham Prep School is a one form entry coeducational junior school on the Aldenham site. It provides an ideal foundation for those who wish to transfer to Aldenham School at 11+, although it also sees pupils transfer to other leading schools in the independent and state sectors at the age of 11. (www.aldenhamprep.com)
St Hilda’s School was founded as a girls’ school in Bushey (some four miles from the main Aldenham campus) in 1918 and operated independently for many years until it became part of the Aldenham Foundation. The school continues to offer girls’ only preparatory education. The Bluebird Nursery which runs on the same site provides 40 week a year nursery care for girls and also boys. (www.sthildasbushey.com)
In the UK, the Aldenham Foundation therefore educates children from the start of education at age 3 to the end of Advanced Level at age 18. It employs around 270 staff in teaching and administrative roles.
All schools in the Aldenham Education Group follow this core vision, wherever they are in the world. Aldenham Prep School Muscat is our first school in Oman, and we are pleased to bring this vision for education to this beautiful country for both expatriates and for Omani children.
The Aldenham Education Group – Supporting Growth and Leadership
The Aldenham Education Group is the international arm of The Aldenham Foundation. It consists of educational expertise directed from the Aldenham Foundation HQ in Hertfordshire UK, and investment and business expertise directed from our International HQ in Dubai. Together, this perfect partnership enables the Aldenham Education Group to support its international schools from their start-up phase to their continued growth and established success. It is to this Group that the Principal of Aldenham Prep School Muscat will report.
Each Head or Principal is autonomous in the running of their school. The Aldenham Education Group is careful to appoint leaders who are able to understand and buy in to the vision and ethos of the Aldenham Foundation and deliver it successfully. Nevertheless, any Head or Principal in an Aldenham Education Group School is supported by being able to draw on help from others and their expertise and experience.
The Aldenham Education Group is committed to providing its School Leadership teams with the resources and guidance they need to deliver an excellent Aldenham product, but doing so in a manner which enables each School to stand on its own and have its own local character.
Aldenham Prep School Muscat – The Opportunity for International Education
Oman is committed to education. There has been rapid reform over the last 30 years and Oman has been keen to ensure that its own people can be educated enough to staff the labour market in a way contrary to other gulf states who often rely on expatriates. Although the Omani education system itself has made huge strides, there is welcome for international education from private providers specifically to give choice and additional quality to the local Omani population in addition to the expatriate community.
There are many International Schools in Muscat, delivering a range of curriculums. However, although some of these schools themselves are reasonably well established, there are no long established UK Independent Schools present, and as such, Aldenham is bringing something completely different by offering the same quality education it has been providing for so long in the UK. Please note also that this is not a franchise or license where the School is Aldenham in name only. The connection between Aldenham Prep School Muscat and the UK Foundation will be strong and the support provided by the UK HQ will make this a very strong offer in Muscat.
Aldenham Prep School Muscat will be established in a prime location close to Qurum Park, Muscat. This highly sought after area will provide us with the chance to provide convenient and attentive coeducational education for children from Reception to Year 5. (In Oman, the first cycle of the basic education phase is described as KG1-4 and mirrors these years, so although it is unusual to end at Year 5 in a UK school, it is not unusual in Oman for a Prep School to end at this point. Clearly in larger schools which run all through to UK Year 13, the division would more naturally end after Year 6). The Aldenham Education Group plans to open another K-12 (Reception to Year 13) school in Muscat and Aldenham Prep School Muscat will be a natural feeder for this.
Aldenham knows that what it offers will be extremely attractive in Oman, as one of the key areas of Educational Reform in Oman is the desire to prepare young people for the real world. The Aldenham Foundation ethos with its holistic education is ideally suited for this.
Aldenham Prep School Muscat – The Aims of the School
The School will be able to provide an education based on the UK primary curriculum with appropriate local provision of Arabic and Islamic Moral education as required under our licence from the Ministry of Education. The main curriculum will be delivered in English. The School will be offering parents the same quality of education which is so desirable and seen in the Aldenham Prep School based on our main school site in Hertfordshire, UK.
The key aims of Aldenham Prep School in the UK will form the basis of the key aims for Aldenham Prep School Muscat. The Principal will be able to use the success of Aldenham’s primary curriculum in the UK to apply to children in Oman:
- To encourage a love of learning in order to aspire to academic excellence, and a broad education for all pupils
- To foster good relationships and partnership between staff, pupils, parents and the wider community
- To ensure that each individual pupil is nurtured and encouraged to make the most of their own special talents
- To emphasise the importance of the social, moral and spiritual dimensions of community life in a modern society
- To provide a well-planned, well organised environment giving children rich and stimulating experiences
The School Principal will be able to establish for the children of the new school a sense of values and an approach to education which is welcoming and highly attractive. The school will be international in outlook whilst grounded in UK educational programmes which are so highly regarded across the world. The new Principal will be responsible for establishing this programme in close collaboration with the Aldenham team in the UK and will be able to benefit from a programme of induction at the Aldenham UK site in the summer of 2020.
Aldenham Prep School Muscat – Governance and Local Compliance
The Aldenham Education Group will support the new Principal in meeting the compliance needs of the local and national authorities in Oman. We have strong links with the Ministry of Education in Oman and aim to appoint experienced administrative staff who can manage necessary liaison in this regard.
The Principal and staff team will report directly to the Aldenham Education Group. There will also be a separate advisory group of Governors which will contain members from the Aldenham Foundation and others more locally to the School who will act as critical friends and will be on hand to support the Principal as the school grows.
Aldenham Prep School Muscat – The Project to Date
There will be one class of around 25 children for each year group (Reception to Year 5) and the children will be educated in a superbly modernised facility over three floors. The creative conversion and extension of an existing building will be completed by early 2020 and the School will open its doors to pupils in all years from September 2020. Some design renderings are below.
The Principal of Aldenham Prep School Muscat – Conditions and Terms, Remuneration and Additional Benefits
We are looking for candidates who have the confidence, ambition and resourcefulness to be the Founding Principal. The ability to work effectively in the Middle East will be an important criterion which may be demonstrated by experience in similar schools in the region, or other relevant experience. They need to be an outstanding practitioner with a suitable teaching qualification and a native English speaker. It is important that the successful candidate has the ability to take the best of what an Aldenham Foundation school provides and be able to ensure that it is offered to a new parent body overseas effectively and with passion. It is anticipated that the successful candidate will be able to spend some of their induction phase at the Aldenham site in the UK working closely with members of the Foundation Leadership Group, including the Head of Aldenham Prep School UK.
- To be able to plan for the establishment of the new School and oversee its final planning and opening.
- To lead the process of recruiting initial pupils, as part of a wide scale supported marketing campaign within Oman.
- Managing the appointment, appraisal, and promotion of all Aldenham Prep School Muscat staff and dealing with any attendant disciplinary matters.
- Direction of the academic and pastoral care of all the pupils in the School, in liaison and co-operation with staff and parents.
- The creation and maintenance of a well ordered and disciplined environment for learning.
- The overseeing of all aspects of the curriculum, timetabling and future developments based on a UK model of primary education, but in line with the Omani curriculum requirements.
- Ensuring the provision of a full and appropriate range of co-curricular activities appropriate to each pupil.
- The effective promotion of the School to prospective parents and the wider community.
- The resourcing and management of available accommodation to the best advantage of the pupils including, prior to opening, overseeing the set up of the new School and its educational resources.
- Contribution to the School ethos and a constant evaluation of its further development.
- The management of the annual budget and resource allocations in liaison with the Aldenham Education Group.
- Preparation of the School for necessary inspections and management of the validation processes necessary for membership of appropriate accreditation bodies.
- Undertaking other reasonable tasks as may be required by the Aldenham Education Group.
The ideal candidate will:
- Be an enthusiastic and dedicated educationalist in sympathy with the School’s foundation and history.
- Be a well-qualified graduate with appropriate teaching and management qualifications and experience.
- Have relevant experience and knowledge of international education as delivered through the UK curriculum.
- Have the confidence and charisma to be the Principal of a brand new school.
- Be an experienced and sensitive manager of people and resources.
- Be a leader who is able to delegate and motivate a team towards the achievement of high standards.
- Be a person who communicates effectively at all levels with adults and children in an international setting.
- Be a dynamic teacher committed to the welfare and development of children and the full potential of each individual.
- Be a self-aware educationalist fully engaged in personal/professional CPD.
Remuneration and Benefits
We are looking to appoint the Principal on an initial contract beginning in April 2020 and ending in July 2022.
We are able to offer a generous remuneration package which includes:
- An attractive tax free salary paid in OMR
- An accommodation allowance
- International Medical Insurance
- Life Insurance
- Discounted School tuition for dependent children in Aldenham Prep School Muscat
- Annual flight allowance
- End of service gratuity
Life in Oman
Oman is a naturally beautiful and geographically diverse country that has stunning beaches, rugged mountains, hot deserts and fertile green regions all wrapped up in a friendly package that has for many decades welcomed visitors from far and wide. Omanis are proud of their country and welcoming to visitors, making it a top destination for teachers and tourists.
The capital city is Muscat which, in contrast to nearby Gulf cities that are packed with gleaming modern skyscrapers, is instead brimming with historical sites such as the 16th century Portuguese built forts of Al-Jalali and Al-Mirani. In addition visitors can enjoy shopping, restaurants, cocktail bars, sports bars and clubs. A stroll along the Corniche is a must, but the real magic of Oman is in the natural surroundings. You can drive into the Hajar mountains or to the Wadi Shab, visit a beach to see sea turtles hatching, climb down to the blue-green waters of the Bimmah sinkhole or go bird watching at the Al Ansab wetland. A short flight will take you to the beautiful Salalah with the Indian Ocean and its beautiful beaches.
Oman has a significant expatriate community but recently has introduced a policy of “Omanification” to better train and prepare its citizens to take on jobs that are commonly done by expatriates in other countries. This means that Oman has a more authentic and cultural feel whilst not being exclusive or unfriendly in any way.
The expatriate community is more compact than the UAE and by comparison, there are a limited number of international schools in Oman, so posts are very desirable. Oman is well suited to those who are interested in culture, outdoor pursuits and natural beauty. There are plenty of bars and restaurants in Muscat, but if you do want a Dubai style nightlife, Dubai itself is within easy reach for a weekend away.
The official language of Oman is Arabic, but English is widely spoken, and the national religion is Islam. Like the UAE, Oman is tolerant of other religions as long as they avoid proselytising. Oman has a desert climate, but everything is air-conditioned, from taxis, apartments, shopping malls through to schools, and the temperatures are overall slightly more pleasant than other popular Middle Eastern countries owing to the sea breezes.