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Principal as CEO

Being a principal in an independent school in Australia is a complex and demanding role, multi-faceted and carrying responsibilities akin to that of a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a medium-sized, not-for-profit company, or corporation in Australia.

There are no shareholders in not for-profit companies, but in these school-businesses, there is a multitude of stakeholders. An independent school principal is expected to be able to effectively discharge all the responsibilities of a CEO, answerable to the school board, and with overall accountability for the organisation’s operations and outcomes. Independent schools in Australia are businesses, run like any business or corporation; they must be financially viable and deliver services and benefits that the customer (parents and students) wants; otherwise, their viability is at risk.