Mr. Adrian Allan Named New Head of School at Harrisburg Academy

 WORMLEYSBURG, PA – The Board of Directors of Harrisburg Academy is pleased to announce that Mr. Adrian Grant Allan will serve as the next head of school, effective July 1, 2019. He will succeed Dr. Jim Newman, who is retiring after 16 years. 

“I am honored to be the incoming head of school of Harrisburg Academy with its long and rich history. When I visited the Academy as a candidate, I was struck immediately by the clarity of the school’s mission and its philosophy as it prepared young people for the road ahead,” said Mr. Allan. “Dedicated faculty and staff, and bright students of sound character were at the heart of the experience and resonated with me on that day.” 

Mr. Allan looks forward to getting to know the Academy community in the coming months. During his interview and conversations with the members of the school community, he was impressed by the Centers for Experiential Learning & Innovation and hopes to expand the program. “Students must be taught to generate good research questions; to evaluate the validity of information; how to use information effectively; and to use information in new situations,” said Mr. Allan. “A good school does all of these things to prepare its students for the 21st century.” 

Throughout his career, Mr. Allan’s engagement in the school communities he served yielded great success, and he comes to the Academy with more than 20 years of exceptional leadership in independent schools. His career spans the globe with teaching appointments in England, Finland, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands, and service as a school administrator in Norway, China, and the United States. 

Mr. Allan has demonstrated an impressive record for developing international programs and establishing International Baccalaureate (IB) programs within schools. In his position as headmaster at Chatsworth Hills Academy (California), he introduced the IB Primary and Middle Years programs, making it the first PYP IB school in the San Fernando Valley. His prior headship at Le Jardin Academy (Hawaii) not only resulted in establishing the first full IB program in the state of Hawaii, but demonstrated accomplishments in cultivating innovation, increasing enrollment, and securing grants and donations of $40 million for construction of a new Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade campus. 

“I am thrilled that Mr. Allan will be the Academy’s new head of school,” said Javier Idrovo, President of Harrisburg Academy’s Board of Trustees. “From my interactions with him, it is clear that he possesses the enthusiasm, vision, and leadership skills to continue the success of the school. Mr. Allan made a strong impression on the community. I believe he will collaborate well with the various constituents and build relationships to support the Academy’s mission and strategic goals. I look forward to seeing how his extensive experience and innovative new ideas will propel Harrisburg Academy and our students towards a bright future.” 

Mr. Allan earned undergraduate degrees in psychology and engineering from Leeds University (UK). He went on to receive a postgraduate degree with a teaching certificate in physics and math from Cambridge University (UK), where he graduated in the top 10 students of his year. He holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Alabama. 

Established in 1784, Harrisburg Academy is the 17th oldest non-public school in the nation and Harrisburg’s only independent school. Our coed, diverse school community inspires students from age three through 12th grade by providing an academically challenging and globally minded liberal arts education focused on dynamic classroom experiences, strong student outcomes, and a commitment to character development. The Academy proudly stands as the first school in the greater Harrisburg area to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma program and merit scholarship. 

For more information about Harrisburg Academy please visit our website or contact Miranda Connelly at 717-763-7811 or via email at