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Temba Maqubela named headmaster of Groton School

Maqubela's appointment begins July 1, 2013

October 25, 2012 --Temba Maqubela, Phillips Academy assistant head for academics and dean of faculty, has been named the eighth headmaster of Groton School. His appointment begins July 1, 2013.

Head of School John Palfrey shared the news with the Andover campus community and congratulated Maqubela on the “extraordinary opportunity.” He also thanked Temba and his wife, Vuyelwa, for their immeasurable contributions to Academy life and learning. Temba and “Vuvu” have been devoted members of the Andover community for 25 years, serving in classrooms, in the dorms, and on the athletic fields. They have also been ambassadors for Andover on the road, reaching out to alumni and parents, hosting events, and advocating for students and programs that advance the Academy’s highest priorities. They are the proud parents of three PA alumni: Kanyi ’03, Pumi ’06, and Tebs ’11.

A beloved house counselor and track coach, Vuvu joined the English faculty in 2008. She has also taught in the (MS)2 program and co-directed Andover Bread Loaf with colleague Lou Bernieri.

Temba has been a member of the chemistry faculty since 1987 and served as chair from 1994-1999. In addition to balancing duties as a teacher, coach, and house counselor, he was director of (MS)2 from 2001-2004. He was named dean of faculty in 2004 and took on additional responsibilities as assistant head for academics beginning in 2006.

His passion for educational access and a personal calling to address the “preparation gap” is evidenced in a number of initiatives, including the ACE (Accelerate, Challenge, Enrich) Scholars Program, which he conceived and helped launch, along with physics instructor Peter Watt, in 2007.

Temba also spearheaded the rise of the Global Perspectives Group (GPG), which seeks to educate faculty with a worldwide lens on contemporary issues and instill global citizenship among students. Embracing Andover’s role as a private school with a public purpose, he has also been a consultant to outreach programs and schools around the country and abroad. In 2011, he teamed with Russian instructor and GPG coordinator Peter Merrill to host “Sharing Best Classroom Practices: Context for Change.” The conference drew educators from as far away as China and South Africa.

With these and other education innovations, Maqubela will leave an indelible mark at Phillips Academy, said Palfrey.

“On a personal level, he and Vuvu have been incredibly welcoming to me in my initial months at PA, offering historical perspective and forward-looking ideas,” he said. “I will miss them both, not only for their contributions to PA’s programs and unwavering commitment to students, but for their shared enthusiasm, kindness, and generous spirit. I know I am not alone in saying that we wish them every success in this next stage of their extraordinary journey.


Contact Info

  • Tracy Sweet, Director of Academy Communications
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