An enthusiastic, experienced and dynamic Assistant Director of Music is required by this academically selective North London day school to start in September 2024. This position would suit experienced, well-qualified Music teachers who have ambitions to lead their own faculty.
As Assistant Director, as well as promoting music at all levels within the school, the post holder will be involved in the strategic planning, organisation and execution of Highgate’s exciting and comprehensive programme of performances that take place throughout the school year. The Assistant Director will also have the chance to direct ensembles and to initiate other ensembles or groups as appropriate. Keyboard skills are highly desirable and the ability to accompany high-stakes solo performances such as A Level and GCSE recitals and solo platform concerts would be an advantage.
The successful applicant will be an excellent classroom practitioner and their timetable will involve a full teaching allocation across the age and ability range, including up to A Level and Oxbridge preparation. Applicants should demonstrate a deep love of music, an enthusiasm for communicating this to pupils across the school and high expectations of pupils’ approach to music, performance and learning. Working closely with the Head of Academic Music the successful candidate may have the opportunity to take strategic ownership of an agreed part of the curriculum, though this is not a core requirement of the role.
In the Senior School, the Music Department consists of the Director of Music, Head of Academic Music and Choral Music, four full-time academic teachers, one Musician in Residence (Organ) a Music Department Manager and a Graduate Music Administrator. There are over fifty regular Visiting Music Teachers and six permanent Heads of School. The Music department is proud of its commitment to partnership activities; it currently seconds two of its teachers, part-time, to the London Academic of Excellent in Tottenham, where these colleagues run the school’s A Level and co-curricular Music programme. As this partnership grows, there will be plenty of opportunity for the Assistant Director of Music to contribute to joint events.
In the Senior School, the Music Department teaches all pupils from Year 7 to 13; there are over 50 pupils studying for GCSE Music and 13 studying for A Level. Results are excellent and pupils regularly make successful applications to Oxbridge and Music colleges. Class sizes are small, with a maximum of 24 in Years 7 and 8 and an average of 12 in Year 9, which is setted. Academic Music lessons take place in four bespoke classrooms, one of which features a 13-Mac Music Technology Suite.
Each week, over 35 musical ensemble rehearsals and over 500 individual music lessons take place in 12 practice rooms, our auditorium, recital room, Chapel and other rehearsal spaces. Most senior ensembles are duplicated at intermediate level, providing transition from the Junior School into the Senior School. Every ensemble will have an opportunity to perform each term and concerts take place in school and in central London venues, most recently Southwark Cathedral.
Highgate School seeks to appoint teachers who will have, in addition to the professional qualities outlined below, the following proven personal qualities, or the potential to develop them. At interview, candidates will have the opportunity to demonstrate or give an account of these attributes.
Support | A welcoming, comfortable and exceptionally well-resourced environment with significant assistance from a range of support staff.
Pension | The School pays the employer’s contribution to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme.
Professional development | Comprehensive induction. Focus on continued learning and development for all employees.
Holidays | Terms are shorter than in the maintained sector.
Location | Highgate Village, adjacent to Hampstead Heath, with quaint shops and easy connections across London.
Facilities | Free access, at stipulated times, to our sports facilities, including a fitness suite and new swimming pool. Staff can borrow from 1,700 books held in the Sir Martin Gilbert Library.
Lunch | Free tea and coffee A complimentary lunch including hot meals, sandwiches, salads, fresh fruit and dessert.
Sustainable travel | Access to the Cycle to Work Scheme and a Season Ticket Loan scheme for public transport.
Flexible working | Flexibility for parents, enhanced maternity pay and paid dependant leave.
Highgate is a caring, open-minded community, where we promote kindness, empathy and friendship. Everyone who works and studies with us deserves to feel they are part of a welcoming environment that enables them to be themselves and to thrive as individuals.
Our community extends beyond the school, through partnerships, charity work and our commitment to equality, inclusion and sustainability. All members of our school community are encouraged to look outwards and play an active role.
In a recent ISI inspection (Dec 2021), it was noted that “Pupils show exceptional respect for, and appreciate diversity within the school and wider community, and their own and other cultures, demonstrating sensitivity and tolerance to those from different backgrounds and traditions.”
Highgate is committed to staff wellbeing, which we promote by encouraging a strong work-life balance; trying our best to support flexible working requests; providing a nutritious complimentary lunch in the dining hall; and offering access to sporting facilities including our recently renovated swimming pool.
The Staff Wellbeing Committee, with representatives across the School, meets regularly to drive forward initiatives, and a selection of staff have been trained as Mental-Health First Aiders.
We encourage an open culture throughout our school, with regular staff surveys, action committees and opportunities to feedback. We strive for continual learning and improvement, and staff training and development is paramount. There are opportunities to participate in the wider life of our school, such as taking part in trips or societies and getting involved in partnership projects.
More details about working at Highgate can be found here:
As an independent school, we want to use our position as a charity effectively: to make high-quality education accessible to as many children as possible – through our bursary programme at Highgate and through our work with local state schools. We have partnerships with over 60 state schools across 7 London boroughs, and we are the principal educational sponsor for London Academy of Excellence, Tottenham – an academically-selective state sixth form in a community where such opportunities are lacking.
Alongside this, our staff and pupils undertake charitable activities throughout the year. These range from staff giving up their time to neighbourhood schools and charitable organisations, focused fundraising campaigns, to pupils undertaking community work in the local area or further afield.
As a school, we have a central role to play in educating our pupils, staff and parents about the importance of environmental sustainability. We are taking positive action to adapt our operational performance to tackle the negative effects of climate change. We encourage all our staff to reflect upon their personal and professional practices, to support our environmental agenda and to make positive changes wherever possible.
Early Application: Applications will be considered ‘as and when’ received and we may close the vacancy if we appoint before the closing date.Apply here
We know that more diverse teams are stronger teams, and that the more inclusive we are, the more our staff and pupils will feel a sense of belonging and will thrive. To enable us to make reasonable adjustments, please let us know of any disabilities (including neuro-divergence) when you submit your application.
As this role will have regular unsupervised contact with children you must, if appointed, comply with Highgate’s Safeguarding Policy and Staff Code of Conduct. If, in the course of carrying out the duties of the post, the post holder becomes aware of any actual or potential risks to the safety and welfare of our pupils, these concerns must be reported immediately in accordance with the Safeguarding Policy. If, while in the post, Highgate becomes aware of any safeguarding concerns to staff, pupils or the community, these will need to be followed up in line with the safeguarding policy and code of conduct which is underpinned by KCSE and other legislation. These concerns may need to be shared with other agencies. A copy of these policies will accompany all offers of employment. Training will also be provided to all staff to support Safeguarding practice.
Highgate is committed to the safeguarding and welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to this post, including checks with past employers, the Disclosure and Barring Service and overseas police check if necessary. Candidates from overseas must provide information about their past conduct, for example, by providing documents issued by overseas teaching authorities.
Please note that this role is ‘exempt’ from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and therefore, you are required to declare any convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings that are not ‘protected’ (i.e. filtered out) as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013). Shortlisted candidates will be asked to provide details of all unspent convictions and those that would not be filtered, prior to the date of the interview.
In accordance with the latest guidance from KCSIE, we shall be conducting online searches on any candidates who are shortlisted.