Indonesia Principals’ Academy Policy Manager

IPA Background

Global School Leaders (GSL), with the support of Indonesian foundations and corporations, will create a not-for-profit organization, the Indonesian Principal’s Academy (IPA) to improve school leadership in underserved schools. IPA will begin work by piloting a two-year continuous professional development program for the principal and leadership team of poorly performing schools. The goal of the pilot will be to develop a model for school leadership development that IPA can use to make an impact on student learning at scale throughout Indonesia and serve as a demonstration model relevant for government and education stakeholders.


The pilot group in year 1 will consist of twenty-five principals, and their vice-principals, of low performing schools, likely in a suburb around Jakarta. The second year we will bring on an additional 50 schools for a different geography making the total pilot group 75 schools. The cohort would consist of primary schools both from the public and private sectors and schools under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education as well as the Ministry of Religious Affairs.


Need for the Program

Indonesia’s school system is at a time of reform. Indonesia has seen great improvements to access of education, evidenced by the fact that the average years of school completed by an adult have more than doubled since 1980.  While it has seen gains in enrolment, the movement toward ensuring quality in all schools is in progress. Indonesia ranked 38th and 40th in math and science respectively out of 45 countries on the 2011 TIMMS exam (LaRocque, 2015).


Research on the importance of school leadership suggests it could be a key lever in transforming education systems. After studying headmasters in India and abroad, Stanford University Professor Nick Bloom and his colleagues write, in a recent article for the Harvard Business Review, that a one point increase on their scoring of school management practices is associated with a ten percent increase in student performance (Bloom, 2012). McKinsey’s global review cites that a school principal – just one person – accounts for twenty-five percent of the impact that schools have on student learning (Barber, 2010). Furthermore, leading education economist Eric Hanushek and his colleagues show evidence that suggests the ability of the principal matters most in schools serving the most underprivileged students (Branch, 2013).


Indonesia has a school head teacher preparation pre-service system that the Lembaga Pengembangan & Pemberdayaan Kepala Sekolah (LPPKS) administers. In addition, there are Principal Working Group Forums (KKS) which are implemented with various degrees of fidelity to support to head teachers in their role on an on-going basis. GSL seeks to build on this base of support for head teachers by delivering a continuous professional development program that builds the capacity of head teachers to improve the underperforming schools through a combination of global best practices and peer professional learning communities.



IPA will be part of a global network of organizations set up by GSL to promote and improve school leadership as a vehicle for improvement of student learning. GSL has set up similar organizations in India, Malaysia, and Kenya. GSL’s model, which IPA will use as its core customized for the needs of leaders in Indonesia, is based on the India School Leadership Institute, a New Delhi-based organization that is working with 600 principals across five cities. Through its work with the leaders, IPA impacts more than 32,000 teachers and 400,000 students. Over the next two years, IPA will grow to support 1,000 schools across six cities who serve nearly half a million students.  IPA intends to achieve similar outcomes in their work in Indonesia.


Policy Manager, IPA

The IPA program will begin in 2019 with a cohort of 25 school leaders.  The continuous professional development program will include training through workshops, in-school support and peer professional learning communities.


We are looking for highly experience individual who can represent IPA in its partnership with government and school networks. The Policy Manager is responsible for establishing and maintaining relationships with key community and government constituents in order to promote IPA’s visibility and enhance leadership. The Policy Manager actively engages with national government, local government, and community stakeholders and provides timely analysis to internal stakeholders of environmental developments to maximize the effectiveness of IPA’s work with school leaders.


The IPA Policy Manager will report to the IPA CEO.


Roles and Responsibilities

Key Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Represent IPA at national, local, and regional meetings, hosted by various public and private organizations, to enhance IPA’s visibility and give IPA a voice in reviewing new developments and influencing policy agenda.
  • Establish and maintain positive relationships with these key community and government partners, key referral sources and other constituents. When possible, act as community resource and hold active positions on committees and work groups relevant to reaching organizational goals.
  • Coordinate meetings with local elected officials and their staff to enhance visibility
  • Respond to inquiries from offices of local governmental officials as needed.
  • Understand and navigate the intricacies of the education community, associations, unions, and local government. Maintain a high level of awareness of policy trends
  • Identify high-potential and strategically important referral sources (e.g., key education organizations, agencies, school networks) in designated markets and link those sources with IPA team.
  • Develop and maintain systems to track participation of IPA staff in national and local-level policy and planning activities and disseminate relevant information to internal stakeholders.
  • Monitor information released through a variety of media and other news sources to identify key policy changes that impact IPA
  • Cultivate strategic relationships and partnerships with key education and community leaders to develop new programming and generate new partnerships. Connect them to IPA leadership and track the maintenance of these relationships.


Candidate Profile


  • Bachelor’s or equivalent degree required, preferably a master’s degree, in political science, education, or public policy
  • Minimum of 5 years of work experience
  • Government and/or policy experience is highly preferred
  • Bahasa Indonesian required


Key skills, mindsets, and knowledge to be successful in the role include:

  • High levels of integrity are required
  • Belief that all students can achieve at the highest levels
  • Conviction that all school leaders can develop and grow, and dramatically improve learning outcomes of their schools
  • Self-awareness, integrity, and empathy


IPA’s work environment requires:

  • Ability to thrive in a start-up, fast-paced, highly collaborative work environment
  • Willingness and ability to give and receive tough feedback
  • Dedication to results-orientation


Work Location and Remuneration

The candidate will be based in Jabodetabek but must have the ability to travel to various parts of Indonesia as required as well as frequent travel to Karawang is expected.  Salary is commensurate with experience and competitive with the non-profit education sector in Indonesia.

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Global School Leaders (GSL) is a non-profit organization to develop effective school leadership that improves learning of students from underserved communities around the world. GSL contextualizes global best practices to meet the distinct demands placed on school leaders in developing world school systems. It is based on the program and experience of the India School Leadership Institute (ISLI), a non-profit that has trained heads of 600+ schools in India since 2012.

Strategic aims and approach:
GSL is incubating locally-led organizations in developing countries that train leaders serving the neediest students, focus on student learning, and rigorously measure impact. GSL is also developing a global network of school leadership trainers who are focused on schools catering to marginalized communities to promote knowledge sharing and research on this issue. Finally, GSL is developing an online course for the professional development school leaders that we see as a major strategy of creating scalable approaches.

Past and present projects:
Since the launch as an organization in 2017, GSL has been working on developing programs in Malaysia, Indonesia, Kenya, and Ghana. In each country, GSL is incubating locally-led not-for-profit organizations that are dedicated to the professional development of school leaders in under-performing schools. In Malaysia, GSL is launching a 25-school pilot program in the Klang region that will began in January 2018. GSL is partnering with a funding consortium led by the YTL Foundation and have a Malaysian team and board leading the effort. In Indonesia, GSL is launching a 75-school pilot program in and around Jakarta that will lead to the creation of a Principals Academy. GSL is partnering with the Tanoto Foundation in Indonesia and will receive additional support from Dubai Cares for this initiative. In Kenya and Ghana, GSL is exploring a pilot in both government and low-cost private schools.

In addition to GSL’s projects in-country, it is partnering with the Australia-based Agile Schools to create a global network of institutions focused on the development of school leaders.

About the Founders
Azad Oommen was the founding Executive Director of the Central Square Foundation (CSF), an Indian venture philanthropy fund that invests in organizations looking to improve the quality of student learning. He has worked extensively in the field of leadership development, having run the Clinton Fellowship for Service in India, the Clinton Democracy Fellowship for City Year in South Africa, and the Mickey Leland Hunger Fellows program for the Congressional Hunger Center in the US. In addition, he serves on the board of the India School Leadership Institute. Azad has a Masters degree in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and a Bachelor’s degree in International Economics from Georgetown University.

Sameer Sampat was the India School Leadership Institute’s (ISLI) first CEO. Prior to that, he worked as a Project Manager and Research Analyst with the Education Innovation Laboratory at Harvard University where he designed, implemented, and evaluated interventions to close the racial achievement gap found in the United States. He is a Teach for America alumnus and has worked with Akanksha and Adharshila Shikshan Kendra. Sameer earned his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from UCLA and also completed a Master’s degree in Economics and Education from Columbia University.

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