When recruiting academic staff, standard practice in top schools has long been to look for the candidate with the highest possible degree from the best possible university.

Some highly selective schools, however, have recently started to look elsewhere. Although acknowledging that impeccable academic credentials are usually a plus when it comes to face tough questions by bright students – whether young children or teenagers in senior schools – and present the subject matter with flawless precision and clarity, those schools believe erudition is not sufficient. What they are looking for is emotional intelligence – the self-confidence, responsiveness and relationship with young people that enable the leader to engage and motivate the students and spark in their minds the will to learn.

Some go even to the extent of having the candidates vetted by a ‘student panel’ who may decide against the preferences of the school leadership. These panels are themselves a fabulous learning experience where the appointed students are expected to make responsible decisions and often end up displaying levels of maturity and wisdom far above their age.

Read the full article in the Financial Times: https://www.ft.com/content/b23afca8-321e-11df-b4e2-00144feabdc0