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So You Want to Be a Principal
So You Want to Be a Principal
So You Want to Be a Principal
So You Want to Be a Principal

So You Want to Be a Principal

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Publishing 22/6/2022, advance copies available now. 

From ideation to success

By Dr Paul Teys
ISBN 9781922607249


“The role of independent school principal is a complex and demanding one ... it is one of the most noble and fulfilling roles that anyone could attain.”


Dr Paul Teys shares insights gleaned over four decades of teaching, and two decades of principalship in P–12 independent schools in this engaging book. Knitting together his doctoral research and extensive lived experience in the world of Australia’s independent schools, Dr Teys lays down a path for aspiring and early-to-mid career principals to take the next exciting steps in their careers.

Providing the latest information and guidance on what it is really like to be a principal of a school these days, Teys offers a glimpse into a world which is not often understood by those, not in the hot seat. Real examples help to illustrate the complex layers associated with leading a school and becoming its CEO. With an earnest combination of strategic focus and personal anecdote, So you want to be a principal is a must-read for the next generation of independent school principals.


Dr Paul Teys began his teaching career in Toowoomba, as a Mathematics and Physics teacher, and has been working in independent schools across Australia ever since. Highly regarded, Teys has four decades of teaching experience and two decades of years of experience as a principal of large independent schools. A passionate school leader, Teys has held responsibility, delegated by the respective boards, for the day-to-day leadership and management of schools. He is keen to share his knowledge and lessons learned with aspiring and early-to-mid career principals.

Industry reviews

With a highly practical and no-nonsense approach (with little use of educational jargon thank goodness). Dr Teys has highlighted both the joys of being an independent school principal with his particularly sound advice on the complexities of the role. Theory is illustrated with real examples from his successful career and doctoral research. It is particularly recommended for relatively new principals or aspiring principals.
Dr David Mulford, School Leadership Consultant

As an aspirant principal, I thoroughly enjoyed learning more about the challenges, complexity, opportunity, and rewards of contemporary principalship. Dr Teys provides comprehensive insights and shares authentic inner and outer leadership reflections which will support educational leaders to understand and navigate the myriad of complexities of the role of principal more deeply. I strongly recommend this as a must-read for aspirant and early-career principals – in fact, principals in general!
Scott Downward, Head of Teaching and Learning


This book provides excellent guidance to aspiring principals, providing advice and sharing anecdotes about aspects of a principalship which are not often understood by those of us, not in the hot seat. Paul draws on his own experiences, as well as utilising the stories from other principals who were involved in his doctoral thesis, to provide colourful examples which help to illustrate the complex layers associated with leading a school.
Gordon Oldham, Deputy Head of School and Head of Secondary

An honest and heartfelt account, Paul’s book provides an easy to read, no nonsense approach for CEOs to shape their own unique leadership style. Paul draws on his own experience to discuss the foundations of leadership, the complex challenges faced
by leaders today, and importantly, he articulates the joy and rewards which come from his passionate approach to leadership. A thoroughly compelling and enjoyable read.
Rachel Thomas, CEO Canberra Symphony Orchestra