Job Description

Guildhouse School is a co-educational independent day and boarding school serving international students aged 15+. The school specialises in preparing students for pre-university exams, including I/GCSEs, A Levels and the University Foundation Programme (UFP). There are approximately two hundred and fifty students on roll, class size average is nine, and students take part in an extensive range of extra-curricular activities including leadership awards and national/international competitions. Approximately half the School’s students live in our boarding accommodation. The school is a member of the Independent Schools Association (ISA) and inspected by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) and was most recently (May 2019) rated “Good”. It is in Bloomsbury Square at the heart of London and counts among its neighbours some of the world’s greatest centres of education, art, fashion, and finance.

The school seeks Non-Resident House Parents (NRHPs) to work in its principal boarding facility (“Premier House”) in central London. Premier House has about 120 international students, typically aged 15-19, accommodated in a large building near Bloomsbury Square. The great majority have English as an additional language; some speak English fluently, others less so.

NRHPs work within the team of about 15 House Parents and boarding staff assisting with the personal, moral, spiritual, and intellectual development of each student in the House. They must model the high personal and academic standards of responsible adults that students respect, and have the personality to contribute to a secure, stable, and caring environment.

The post of NRHP at Guildhouse School is unlike posts in other schools. Our students are older, and that brings both managerial challenges and professional opportunities. All House parents have responsibility for student welfare and behaviour. They also look after the fabric of the building, making sure it is well cared for and maintained.

Successful house parents come from a range of backgrounds and employment sectors. Education and social care are likely backgrounds. Equally, successful candidates might demonstrate suitable interest and experience through volunteer work with young people or the more vulnerable.

The RHPs report to the Assistant Head (Boarding & Independent Accommodation) through the House Leader.

The duties specified are not intended to represent an exhaustive list and will vary where necessary to suit the skill set of the post holder and the needs of the school. The role of NRHPs is to work in the Boarding Team with the House Leader and the Assistant Head (Boarding & Independent Accommodation).

Responsibilities include the following:
1. Aiding the well-being, safety, discipline, and pastoral care of students.
2. Helping to create a calm, quiet and tidy living and working environment.
3. Helping supervise the day-to-day routines of normal boarding school life, such as wake-up duties, laundry, and bedtimes (as appropriate, depending on shift timings).
4. Assisting in the academic life of the School during the School Day and being involved in activities.
5. Maintaining confidentiality and other professional standards of the education sector, such as the implications of the National Minimum Standards for Boarding.
6. Completing records of progress, welfare, problems, achievements, conduct and other reports.
7. Responding to circumstances of individual boarders, including those from different cultural backgrounds or with specific health needs.
8. Knowing and treating each student as an individual and encouraging self-discipline and a sense of responsibility.
9. Supporting Induction Programmes to ensure that the settling in process is a happy one, equipping students with essential initial information and resolving any problems as soon as possible.
10. Supporting, helping run, and enthusing students to participate in the Guildhouse School extra-curricular programme.
11. Helping with any emergency that may arise, such as fire alarms, and to accompany students to occasional medical appointments.
12. Attending House meetings, staff and School functions as required.
13. Any other reasonable request of the Head.

As required by legislation related to Boarding Schools, Guildhouse School publishes a “Statement of Boarding Principles and Practice”. Candidates should use this to understand the philosophical and practical approach of Premier House.

Guildhouse School Statement of Boarding Principles and Practice
The Guildhouse vision is that “The School is an immersive environment for ideas and creativity, where students are empowered to make a positive impact on our world”. As part of CGS, Guildhouse is committed to the CGS core values of Pioneering, Persevering and People, which are given practical form in three simple values that guide the activity of students and staff alike. These Guildhouse values are to “Aim High”, “Work Hard” and “Be Kind” and the Guildhouse School Boarding Principles and Practice reflect these values.

Premier House typically houses a diverse group of over 100 boarding students, girls, and boys, almost all of whom are from overseas. They are age 15-21, with the great majority age 16-18. Most are on courses that prepare them for university entry in the UK, but some come to the college for a shorter period of “study abroad” experience. The Premier House staff are themselves diverse in background. They are experienced, well-trained and benefit from positive, supportive, and experienced leadership across the College.

Guildhouse School Boarding Principles
For students who board at Guildhouse, the experience should not just be of a safe and secure base from which to go to school, though it must of course be that. Our ambitions are much greater.

To help students Aim High, staff have high expectations of students, not just academically but personally. Staff encourage students to take advantage of the enormous range of learning opportunities available in central London, many of which will be new and unfamiliar to them.

In fostering perseverance and encouraging students to Work Hard, staff help, guide and support students, many of whom have not lived away from home before and might have limited experience of organising their own responsibilities or doing things for themselves.

Encouraging students to Be Kind, staff help students to be responsible members of the community and of society at large. Rather than a self-centred approach to life, house staff seek that students should develop a recognition of the value of contributing to others’ lives, and expect students to be courteous, organised, self-aware and considerate.

Guildhouse School London Boarding Practice
To help students Aim High, staff seek to understand students’ individual ambitions, strengths, and concerns. The boarding house supports good study and self-care habits, with house staff in contact with all students each day.

There is excellent academic, pastoral and medical liaison and a clear and supportive routine that encourages regular sleeping patterns, with house staff checking each student’s welfare first thing every morning and last thing every night.

Through meetings in the House, individual discussions and wider promotion, students are made aware of and encouraged to take part in activities available in-house and in London.

In encouraging students to Work Hard, house staff help students learn the skills of time-management, and study planning. They also help students manage their day-to-day responsibilities, from doing their laundry, to keeping rooms tidy, to being up on time each day. Some students need far more input than others in these areas.

In encouraging students to Be Kind, staff help students understand the norms, manners and customs of the UK and the behaviour that is recognised as polite in the adult academic, business, and social situations they will encounter. Students are taught how to live appropriately in the community of a coeducational boarding house.

Guildhouse helps its students learn independence and maturity and so are allowed significant freedom to be off site on their own. House staff support students to develop skills to manage this, such as making requests in a timely way, understanding the reasons why this is important and accepting that sometimes the answer will be no.

The boarding house, Premier House, is unusual in its layout. It consists of 7 floors of student accommodation and has 3 or 4 student flats on each floor, each able to accommodate 4 to 8 students. On the ground floor is the house entrance and in the lower ground floor is common room space.

A key requirement is that NRHPs have the confidence to spend time with students, making sure that students are behaving well, providing light-touch, friendly supervision and making sure rooms are tidy and organised. This helps ensure that students go to bed on time, and that they are then ready for school in the mornings.

The characteristics we seek are:
1. Good educational background, such as a degree (subject immaterial) or the intention and plan to achieve similar qualifications suitable for teaching or boarding education roles.
2. A fluent speaker of English with strong written skills.
3. Energy.
4. Flexibility.
5. A calm, positive, pragmatic approach to life.
6. Confidence and resilience when dealing with teenagers.
7. Charisma and maturity, able to establish friendly relationships with students whilst recognising that friendship would be inappropriate.
8. Enthusiasm to participate in the wider life of the school.

Full-time, permanent post, year-round (not restricted just to school term-time).

Salary is £25,500pa paid in 12 equal monthly instalments.

The working pattern consists of 11-hour shifts. The day shift is nominally 8am to 7pm, with a period for handover between staff leaving/arriving. This requires arriving 15 minutes before the shift starts and potentially staying up to 15 minutes after the shift ends.

The night (“sleepover”) shift is nominally 7pm to 6am, with a period for handover between staff leaving/arriving at 7pm. This means arriving 15 minutes before the shift starts.

The rota is 3 shifts on, three shifts off operating throughout the year. The House only fully closes over Christmas.

Duties include residential supervision, checking maintenance of the building, making sure it is well cared for and reporting needs for maintenance, organising/supporting activities, and in-school support.

Holidays are 28 days per year (20, plus allowance for bank holidays). As the boarding house is open year-round, bank holidays are normal working days. Holidays normally need to be requested four working weeks in advance and must fit with the needs of the school, which inevitably means mostly during school holidays. The Christmas closure typically requires 9 days of the 28 days’ holiday allowance. Most other holiday should be taken during the summer, mid-June to end of August.

Some staff are needed up to ten days before term starts (approx. 20th August) to assist in preparation of the House and to take part in whole school INSET.

When on duty, meals are available without charge in school whenever the school kitchens are operating. House parents are expected to undertake “natural surveillance” supervision when in the dining room. This natural surveillance supervision is always the norm for staff around the school, including in the boarding house.

The notice period is one full term (that is no later than the end of the preceding term) on either side.

The school offers a wide range of training and support. NRHPs who are interested in developing a career in teaching or boarding will be supported to explore these career possibilities.

We are committed to diversity, inclusion and belonging. Building on our core values – Pioneering, Persevering, People – we pledge to deliver a series of events, guest speakers, and focus groups to ensure we offer respect and understanding to all communities.

Employees of The School have a responsibility for, and must be committed to, safeguarding, and promoting the welfare of children and young people and for ensuring that they are protected from harm. As such, appointment is subject to the satisfactory completion of safer recruitment pre-employment checks in line with KCSIE guidelines. This will include satisfactory references, enhanced disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service and, where applicable, any international equivalent being obtained.


Job Type: Full-time

Salary: £25,500.00-£30,000.00 per year


  • Canteen
  • Company pension
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Discounted or free food
  • Employee discount
  • Enhanced maternity leave
  • Enhanced paternity leave
  • Health & wellbeing programme
  • Referral programme
  • Relocation assistance
  • Sick pay


  • 10 hour shift
  • Day shift
  • Night shift

Ability to commute/relocate:

  • London: reliably commute or plan to relocate before starting work (preferred)

Work Location: In person

Reference ID: 000910

Source  – Head of Boarding Jobs – 2023 |