Head of School Search

Carolina Day School, a premier independent day school in western North Carolina, invites applications from inspiring, collaborative, and forward-thinking leaders for the position of Head of School, effective July 2020. This is an exceptional opportunity for the right candidate to build on our legacy of excellence and to continue our commitment to a fundamental promise of vigorous academics, student-centered teaching, and an inclusive community that delivers real-world success.




05-07-2019 Message from our Chair

Thank you for the many notes and calls of support for Carolina Day School over the last week. We have come to learn that the ties in our community run deep and true to the CDS mission. It is important that we, as board members, listen to you and support you in our commitment to deliver educational excellence. I wanted to give you a quick update where we are and where we are heading.

Last week, board members participated in community meetings with parents, faculty and staff. On Wednesday, at the Parent Association annual meeting, trustees were present to answer questions and hear concerns. On Wednesday afternoon, there was an All Staff/Faculty meeting, during which two board members—joined by Associate Head Peggy Daniels—facilitated an open dialogue about the school and its future. I will lead a follow-up discussion with faculty and staff this Wednesday, May 8. We are grateful for the open and frank thoughts shared by our faculty, will take their comments to heart, and look forward to continuing the discussion. 

We are appreciative of the school's strong administrative leadership, especially that of Peggy Daniels, who we are grateful and pleased to announce will step in as Interim Head of School for the 2019-20 school year that begins July 1.

Concurrently, we are interviewing search firms to identify potential candidates for the permanent head of school position. We will keep you informed as we proceed through the transition.

We are finishing what has been a challenging year for CDS, but we are enthusiastic and confident about the future. The next couple of weeks will be filled with exciting events on campus, with bell ringing ceremonies, division celebrations, and commencement. We look forward to sharing these special times and traditions with you.

Tom Oreck, Chairman of the Board

05-01-2019 Message from our Chair

Carolina Day School is announcing today that Kirk Duncan, head of school, is leaving CDS effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year. 

Kirk came to Carolina Day School in 2014. Under his guidance, the school immediately launched a strategic planning process, which was completed in August 2015. The school then initiated an $8.9 million building and capital campaign to construct our new Lower School, library, and reception entrance, which successfully opened in August 2017.

We appreciate the role that Kirk has played in helping CDS get to the next level. The school has benefitted from his strong moral and ethical compass. As CDS moves forward in advancing its position as Asheville's leading independent Pre-K/12 school, the Board has decided to make a change in leadership. We thank Kirk for his dedication and service and wish him great success in the future.

CDS will begin the 2019-20 school year with an interim head of school. A search committee, working with an outside search firm, will identify a permanent head of school.

Additionally, I want to thank our talented and dedicated leadership team, faculty, and staff for their steadfast care and education of our children. We are excited about our future and remain committed to our fundamental promise of vigorous academics, student-centered teaching, and an inclusive community that delivers real-world success.

Tom Oreck

Chairman, Board of Trustees

Timing Guideline for Search Process

05/01/2019 Departing Head announcement
05/07/2019 Interim Head announcement
05/13/2019 Search Committee established
09/15/2019 Application Deadline
10/15–10/20 Semifinalist Interviews
with Search Committee
10/28-11/8 Finalists on Campus
11/20/2019 Board Vote for Candidate
Early Dec. Head of School Announcement
07-01-2020 Head of School start date

Search Committee

The search committee is charged with retaining a consulting firm to work in conjunction with the committee to recruit and interview candidates and ultimately make a recommendation to the CDS Board of Trustees. Members of the committee were carefully selected to ensure a diversity of perspective and will benefit from the school’s ongoing commitment to community-wide feedback through individual discussions, focus groups, and surveys.

Search Committee Members

Suzanne Rose, Search Committee Co-Chair

Swati Patel '92, Search Committee Co-Chair

Tom Oreck

John Stanier

Patti D'Angelo

Ann Goosmann

Kemper Brown, Jr. '04

Max Cogburn

Tom Olverson

Mollie Lammers (Faculty Representative)

Keith Love

Consulting Firm

Robert P. Henderson, Jr. of RG175 has been selected as the CDS Head of School search consultant.


Send feedback to HeadSearch@carolinaday.org.

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