Leadership Spotlight: Lee Hole

The ISS Administrative Search Team was proud to lead the Head of Secondary School search for the International School of Phnom Penh (ISPP), Cambodia. Congratulations to Lee Hole for accepting the position, beginning August 2021! Lee is currently the Head of Secondary School at the GEMS International School – Dubai.

In addition to his experience in the UAE, Lee has been immersed in international settings in the USA and Bahrain with the British Council, as part of their International Professional Development Program. Lee holds a BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Sciences from Sheffiield Hallam University, as well as a Masters in Educational Leadership from Walden University.

In this feature, learn more about what drew Lee and his family to the world of international schools, his vision of student-centered education, and why he’s excited to join the ISPP team.

What drew you to pursue the world of education? And what drew you into international education specifically?

My inspiration to become a teacher (as with most) was the experiences that I had with amazing teachers when I was in school. My wife and I took a chance on international education as a way to experience a different life to that of our friends and families. Once our daughter arrived, it was about giving her a more diverse school experience and lifestyle.

It’s been five years since I began at GEMS International School – Dubai (GIS). The GIS kids and community are just incredible; as I prepare to move onto the next chapter of my international career, I’ll be taking so many amazing memories of the GIS family with me. I’ll miss the school a lot, and I’m so very thankful for my years with them.



Lee and student at GEMS International School – Dubai

National Day celebration at GIS


What excites you about this next chapter ahead at the International School of Phnom Penh (ISPP)?

I was excited about the prospect of ISPP before I met anyone from the school. The reputation, guiding principles, facilities and obvious the IB programmes attracted me. After meeting the team, I am beyond delighted to be joining the ISPP community!

Please tell us about your education philosophy and your leadership style. What can your new community expect?

The easiest way to describe this would be “student centered.” I like to find ways to place the young people in our school at the centre of every decision, project and activity at the school. This may seem obvious but, with the pressures of modern education, the students can easily slip from the epicenter of our focus.

What is an interesting fact, story, or reflection that people should know about you?

When my wife and I considered our next move, we established a ‘wish list’ related to destination and school. This wish list could literally be used to describe ISPP in every way this is such a good fit for us.

What was your experience with ISS and ISS Administrative Search like?

ISS served me very well as an applicant. I was well informed, treated with the highest of professional standards and was able to enter into the recruitment process with confidence as a result of Pauline’s input.

Thanks to Lee for sharing his story and these reflections! We wish him and his family the best as they prepare for a new chapter in Cambodia. You can follow Lee’s journey on Twitter, Linkedin, and his website.

If you’re interested in pursuing a school leadership position, please check out our current leadership searches or get in touch with the ISS Administrative Search Team.

With wife Sarah and daughter Marcela