Dr. Blaine Harris, an American environmental biologist, has recently been appointed Headmaster of Vale Verde International School (VVIS) in the Lagos council.
Together with his wife Suzanne and their two children, the family arrived from the USA in June 2010 to settle in Praia da Luz.
Dr Blaine Harris said: “I see the opportunity to work and teach at Vale Verde International School as a great privilege and joy.
“I wanted to combine my passion for teaching with our desire to travel the world. We had visited many countries in Europe but Portugal was at the top of our list for its history, beauty, variety and culture.
Although he admits settling into a new environment can be a real challenge, the new headmaster said the school’s friendly and open community spirit had made the process easy not only for him but also for new students: “We cannot help but feel instantly a part of the community.”
Dr Blaine Harris feels confident that the slower pace of life in the Algarve allows students to have a better education and discover their true potential.
“I taught in a school of 1,200 students where it seemed that life was coming at them so fast that they had to grow up quickly or get knocked over,” he said.
“At the school, the student population represents six continents and over 12 countries, and we hope to continue this trend of diversity. We understand the need to offer an education that is more globally recognised and, in order to do so, we have initiated the process in becoming a centre to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) programme.
Vale Verde follows the UK National curriculum and offers certification through IGCSE and A level examinations.
For more information, please visit http://vvis.org