The Independent Schools Association

The Independent Schools Association (ISA) brings the Headteachers of over 650 independent schools together, representing the diverse range of independent education practised across the UK and overseas

of independent schools. It is one of the oldest of the associations that make up the Independent Schools Council (ISC). 

ISA exists to provide professional support, fellowship and opportunity to their 650 Members who nurture and develop over 130,000 pupils within their schools. Promoting best practice and fellowship remains at the core of ISA, as it did when it began over 145 years ago. 

ISA supports headteachers using their independence to meet the specific needs of their pupils. At ISA there are schools with different approaches to the curriculum, schools with different religious characters, and none, and schools with different ways of operating. This all contributes to a wide-ranging membership, not confined to any one type of school, but including all: nursery, pre-preparatory, junior and senior, all-through schools, coeducational, single-sex, boarding, day, bilingual, performing arts and specialist provision.

As well as the support and specialist professional development opportunities for ISA Members through their programme of courses and conferences, pupils in ISA schools benefit through their Head’s membership with access to the extensive ISA Sport and Arts programmes. ISA Sport champions inclusion in physical activity through positive experiences for young people across a programme of 54 national (and over 150 regional) events at venues such as the Olympic Park’s London Aquatics Centre.

ISA Arts helps schools inspire creativity, expression and individuality across the arts through both virtual and in person events.

Membership is open to any Head or Proprietor, provided they meet the necessary accreditation criteria, including inspection of their school by a government approved inspectorate. 

ISA is supported by a number of committees, comprised of serving Heads and Honorary Members, who meet regularly to consider the issues that affect independent education. Some committee areas include education, monitoring developments and formulating responses to Government, also developing and promoting the principles of inclusion within the Association and supporting Members in promoting Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) in their schools.

President: Lord Lexden
Chief Executive Officer: Rudolf Eliott Lockhart

ISA House, 5-7 Great Chesterford Court, Great Chesterford, Essex CB10 1PF
Tel: 01799 523619