Dr Anne Cotton will be leaving Portsmouth Grammar School in summer 2022 after almost four years in the position.
She will take up a new appointment as head of King’s College School in Wimbledon.
Dr Cotton became the first female head of Portsmouth Grammar School, following the departure of previous head James Priory in summer 2018.
In an e-mail seen by The News, Walter Cha, the chair of governors, said: ‘During Anne’s tenure, she has continued the work of her predecessors so that PGS remains one of the leading co-educational schools in the south, with an enviable reputation for all-round excellence across a wide range of academic, cultural, and sporting activities, whilst ensuring that these opportunities are available to talented young people according to need.
‘Anne has led from the front during her time here, developing the through-school ethos, introducing a new Sixth Form enrichment curriculum and promoting strong links with the local community. Anne’s stewardship of the school during the COVID-19 pandemic has also been exemplary.
‘Marshalling school resources to deal with changing circumstances and guidelines has undoubtedly been a challenge; the fact that the school was able to function successfully over the last year or so despite these unwanted challenges is a testament to Anne’s leadership and forward planning.
‘Naturally we are very sorry to be losing Anne and her wonderful family from the Portsmouth scene, and we will ensure that all these achievements, and our appreciation of all that they have done for the school, are recognised appropriately before they leave us.’
The school governors are now in the process of appointing a successor.
Walter said: ‘As governors, we are now beginning the process of appointing a successor to take over from Anne in September 2022.
‘I am in no doubt that PGS will be an attractive proposition for those seeking a dynamic and forward-looking educational leadership opportunity, and we have every confidence that our search will produce a strong field of talented applicants.’