Having successfully led Falmouth School for well over a decade headteacher Sandra Critchley has announced her retirement.

Mrs Critchley will continue until the end of the academic year, next summer, by which point she will have been at the school for more than 12 years.

Her replacement has already been appointed in the form of current deputy headteacher Brett Miners.

Mrs Critchley said: “I've been really privileged to have such a great job. I never have a day where I don't want to get up and come in to work - I always enjoy my working days.”

Mrs Critchley said she was “most proud” of her students, adding: “I'm always proud to see the young adults that emerge from the school, who have started as young children, and see them take their place in the community and the wider world.”

She has no fixed plans for her retirement, aside from seeing more of her family, but confirmed she planned to stay in the Helston area where she lives. Until that time it was “business as normal” at the school.

Mrs Critchley is taking early retirement for family reasons and also because she believes the time is right for the school, due to a new national curriculum being launched that would take four years to implement fully.

Looking back, she said the “biggest challenge” came at the start of her tenure, when she oversaw the move of pupils from a second school site at Tregenver Road to all under one roof in Trescobeas Road.

As part of this a large extension was built and refurbishment took place throughout the school, between 2001 and 2003.

This time coincided with a negative inspection by Ofsted - although parts of the report were later retracted, due to some technical inaccuracies.

Since then the 1,100-student school has progressed “in leaps and bounds,” with Mrs Critchley leading her staff in continual improvements.

This has resulted in their latest Ofsted inspection showing a school that was “good with outstanding features,” and the school enjoying their best ever set of exam results.

In a statement the school's governors said they were “saddened” to hear of Mrs Critchley's resignation, adding she had also seen the school through conversion into an academy.

They said: “The school under her leadership has gone from strength to strength and we would all like to wish her a long and happy retirement.”