Job Description

Boarding is central to life at the Purcell School. House-parents play a vital role in the wellbeing of our students, taking full responsibility for their welfare during term time.  

You will be managing the day-to-day care of boarders, ensuring their well-being and safety, promoting a fulfilling educational experience and encouraging a caring, positive and productive ethos in the House.

You will be living within the boarding community and share responsibility for the welfare of students. You should have the ability to develop and maintain warm, respectful and valued rapport with young people, whilst understanding the professional boundaries that must exist between staff and students. You should provide a positive role model, demonstrating self-motivation and mature interpersonal skills.

You will need the ability to negotiate and manage complex events in a professional, effective manner and an understanding of community partnerships and organisation. Imagination, creativity, enthusiasm and a warm sense of humour are all essential!

You will need effective communication skills (oral and written) and the ability to deal with students, parents and staff across the whole school. We expect you to maintain high personal and professional standards, including recognition of the confidentiality issues impacting upon work in a school.

You must be able to demonstrate an awareness of safeguarding and child protection legislation and issues, and will be expected to uphold a full commitment to the best safeguarding practice.

You will need a flexible approach to your duties, overnight and weekend supervision will be required and a willingness to ‘muck in’. This is not a post for someone who counts working hours and is a challenging but hugely rewarding role.

Candidates from a broad range of backgrounds will be considered. 

Avison House is a junior co-ed boarding house of 28 students comprising boys and girls from Year 7 to Year 9. Approximately 15 Day Students are also attached to the house for their routine daily school administration.


These are full-time posts. Working hours will be in the region of 48 hours per week in term time (34 weeks) with a minimum of a protected 24 hour period off each week and regular Exeat weekends. The salary will be based on the School’s salary scale, according to the successful candidate’s experience, with a contributory pension scheme.

The post holder is required to live on site. Accommodation is provided free of rent, council tax and all utilities, and is provided every day of the contract period. Meals are available and free of charge in the School dining room during term time.

There is a sixth month probationary period, with notice of one term on either side, after which the post will be confirmed,  with a notice period of two terms. This post is subject to regular appraisal.


If you wish to apply, please complete the School’s Application Form (available on our website) and send it with a supporting Personal Statement to the Principal as soon as possible. Please do not send a separate curriculum vitae.

Personal statements should outline your experience and evidence your achievements. If you have a specific area of specialism or industry experience, please demonstrate how this enables you to contribute to an outstanding student experience. 

Interviews will explore pastoral experience, the ability to relate appropriately to students and a willingness to contribute to the  whole School community. Candidates will be required to bring evidence of identity and qualifications to the interview.


JOB TITLE: Houseparent and Assistant Houseparent (2 vacancies)

REPORTS TO: The Director of Boarding.

This job specification sets out the duties of the post at the time of drafting. Specific responsibilities are as follows:


  • To provide the day-to-day care of boarders in their charge and to safeguard their welfare.
  • To be aware of and comply with current health and safety, safeguarding and child protection legislation and procedures, and to uphold the school’s policy on child protection.
  • To ensure that daily registration is carried out effectively and according to school policy.
  • To encourage every student in their House to develop their full potential, academically, musically and socially, and to promote their personal development, including leadership, consideration for others and courtesy.
  • To help ensure that boarding staff, parents and students understand the aims and objectives of boarding in the House and the principles on which community life in the House is based. 
  • To help maintain good order and ensure a high standard of discipline within their House, according to the School’s behaviour policy.
  • To liaise as necessary with other members of staff,  tutors, parents and guardians on matters relating to the welfare of boarding students.
  • To help maintain all records as required including students’ individual files and to write the requisite pastoral and other reports as appropriate.
  • To help manage efficiently the staffing, organisation and resources of the House, ensuring that appropriate adult supervision is provided at all times when students are in residence.
  • To help manage the House budget in consultation with the Finance Manager. 
  • To ensure compliance within the House of the requirements of all current legislation (including the National Minimum Boarding Standards and Independent School Regulations) and all school policies).
  • To support the smooth-running of the House by being a proactive presence in the boarding house throughout each week, and via the duty rota.  Up to three nights overnight “on call” will be required per week.
  • To be in residence for 48 hours prior to and after the end of each term to assist with the preparation and closing of the boarding house.
  • To participate in School Inset Day meetings.
  • To contribute to the School’s extra-curricular and/or boarding provision.
  • To assist occasionally at whole school events.