Head of House, Oxfordshire

Closing date:


Date posted:
Start date: January 2020
Contract type: Full Time
Salary: 23,000.00
Contract term: Permanent

Role overview

Heads of House (previously referred to as Houseparents) are responsible, in a pastoral and practical sense, for all aspects of the running of their House. They are responsible for its smooth and orderly running and for the welfare and wellbeing of the students within it. 

In conjunction with colleagues in the Boarding Team, Heads of House are also responsible for overseeing the domestic and health & safety arrangements in the House and for ensuring that students are supervised effectively and appropriately and that the House rules are observed by everyone in the House. 

The same ethos and approach prevail in the boarding context as do in all other aspects of life at d’Overbroeck’s. 

Our boarding environment is marked with the same relative informality, boundaries that are clear but not overbearing, and an atmosphere which is homely, welcoming, flexible and supportive. Heads of House clearly have a critical part to play in creating and maintaining such an atmosphere in the boarding houses. They are, therefore, an integral part of the school’s pastoral team. 

Heads of house (and other house staff) report to the Head of Boarding.

Principle duties and responsibilities

For full detail on the duties and associated responsibilities of this role, please refer to the attached candidate brief.
In short, Heads of Houses are expected to:

  • Run the house:
    • Create and maintain a happy, safe, warm and homely environment
    • Lead in the creation of suitable standards of behaviour 
    • Foster a sense of House identity and spirit 
    • Ensure that the House rules are being followed at all times and address any infringements that may occur.
    • Foster a positive atmosphere in the House and aim always to be fair and consistent in daily interactions with students
    • Meet prospective students and parents and show them around the House
    • Organise and run weekend activities for students in the House 
    • Build and maintain open, cordial and constructive relationships with the parents and guardians 
    • Be responsible for mentoring the Boarding Assistants 

  • Be aware, and take responsibility over, Pastoral matters, such as:
    • Building and maintaining positive and constructive relationships with the students;
    • Being alert to any signs of unhappiness or indications that a student may be experiencing difficulties, and liaise with other relevant staff as appropriate;
    • Being alert to any tensions or signs of bullying; and
    • Facilitating contact between students and their parents/guardian where requested

  • Maintain high levels of administration and record keeping for the house.

  • Be aware of, and maintain the upkeep of Regulations, Safeguarding and Compliance:
    • Be aware of the National Minimum Standards for Boarding Schools (NMS) and fulfil obligations to ensure they are met
    • Be aware of all relevant school policies, including in particular the school’s policy for Safeguarding and Promoting the Welfare of students
    • Keep abreast of periodic updates in these policies and regulations, undertake training as necessary and ensure compliance with them at all times in the way that the House is run

Person Specification

Relevant experience of working in a comparable role or of having held comparable responsibilities in a different context would be highly desirable. 

In addition, and given the nature and responsibilities associated with the role, candidates will need to demonstrate the following: 

  • A caring and cheerful personality and a manifest interest in young people and in being in their company; 
  • A demonstrable ability to relate to students, parents and colleagues with empathy and sensitivity;
  • Well-developed EQ (emotional intelligence) and a mature, responsible, patient and resilient attitude to life and work; 
  • A commitment to promoting safeguarding of children and to continued professional development in this respect; 
  • The ability to work as a member of a team with a commitment to high standards of pastoral care; 
  • An ability to be firm while doing so in a friendly, engaging and respectful manner; 
  • Very well developed communication skills, both in person and in writing; 
  • Good, reliable and balanced judgement; 
  • The ability to handle pressure where necessary; 
  • The ability to think clearly and rationally in an emergency; 
  • The ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team; 
  • Fluent and confident IT skills; 
  • Good practical and administrative skills


Applicants should complete the Form entitled Application for a Non-Teaching Post. This, along with a full Curriculum Vitae and a covering letter should be emailed to HR@doverbroecks.com and a signed copy sent to: 

Helena Barron
333 Banbury Road
OX2 7PL 

Please apply as soon as possible, as applications will be processed on receipt, but no later than 2 December 2019

More about d’Overbroeck’s
Type: Mainstream School
Phase: Secondary with sixth form
Funding status: Independent
Gender: Mixed
Age Range: 11 - 18 years
Address: Independent Sixth Form, The Swan Building, 333 Banbury Road, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX2 7PL, United Kingdom. View in Google Maps
Telephone: +44 1865 688600
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Founded in 1977, d'Overbroeck's is a co-educational independent school for students from age 11 through to the Sixth Form. The school is based in central and north Oxford. Current student numbers stand at around 485.

d’Overbroeck’s consis...