HMC (The Heads' Conference) is a members' association of Heads of leading independent schools, with many of the benefits of membership extending to the wider school.

Visit our Benefits of Membership brochure.


All HMC members and their schools share the same educational values and commitment to quality, innovation and excellence in education, providing reassurance to parents and pupils that they are choosing the very best education for their child.

Find the right membership for you

Types include;

  • British Isles Membership: open to Heads of independent schools in the UK and Ireland which meet HMC’s British Isles membership criteria.
  • International Membership: for Heads of independent schools overseas which meet HMC’s international membership criteria.
  • HMC UK Associates: open to Heads of high performing maintained schools and key individuals in the world of education.
  • HMC International Associates: for international independent and state schools which do not meet HMC’s international membership requirements, or who are working towards them.
  • HMC Affiliates: open to Heads of Schools in foundations led by an overarching Principal or CEO in British Isles or International HMC membership.

All HMC member schools are regularly inspected and accredited against both qualitative and quantitative membership criteria in order to ensure that the HMC kitemark continues to exemplify qualityinnovation and excellence in education.

To find out more about becoming a member of HMC, please contact our Membership team at [email protected].

The opportunity to share ideas, concerns and good practice with other HMC members around the country and to benefit from shared experiences and interests has been hugely beneficial. I have no doubt at all as to the benefits this has brought to me both personally as a leader but also to my school.
Kevin Fear, Headmaster of Nottingham High School

Benefits of Membership

HMC is a kitemark of global qualityinnovation and excellence in education.

Personal support and professional advice on matters affecting the Head in their role within the school from HMC’s expert senior staff.

Members network and share experiences and expertise through HMC’s regional divisions and its committees.

The association has strong links with exam boards, inspection authorities, sports’ bodies and government departments to keep members informed and lobby on their behalf.

Access to a wide variety of training and professional development opportunities for Heads, delivered by HMC Professional Development through its comprehensive programme of courses and conferences.

A new members’ induction provision, mentoring, a Heads’ appraisal framework, HMC/AGBIS Good Governance Programme and executive/leadership coaching.

HMC’s Professional Development Programme is not exclusive to Heads; courses and conferences are also provided for other staff in senior and middle leadership roles, and for support staff.

Heads’ conferences: key annual three-day Autumn Conference – the highlight of the year for HMC – and an annual one-day Spring Conference.

Research & Surveys – HMC conducts research/surveys on a variety of educational issues with findings shared with the membership.

Annual salary & benefits benchmarking.

Opportunities to develop international links for students and staff across HMC’s extensive international network of members.

HMC Teaching Careers – a dedicated website to support schools in advertising vacancies and recruiting teachers to their schools.

Weekly newsletter and HMC Alerts for issues of urgent importance.

School Leaders’ Directory – details of HMC partner suppliers and professional advisers to schools.

Opportunities to receive staff and students from abroad through HMC Projects.

Access for students in HMC schools to financial help towards worthwhile gap-year opportunities, funded via the Bulkeley-Evans Scholarship Fund.

A dedicated Member Zone on the HMC website and presence for members’ schools in the schools’ directory.

Access to inspection by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI).

Political lobbying on behalf of members and their schools when new policies are being considered or consulted on, particularly where these might adversely affect the independent schools’ sector.

See our Benefits of HMC Membership brochure for more information.