Niall Hand has been in post as Headteacher of Prendergast Ladywell School since September 2013, having been part of an outstanding leadership team in the borough of Southwark.

A great deal has happened to transform this community school in the heart of Lewisham.

The commitment and talents of its staff have been fully focussed on ensuring students reach their full potential.

“It is only when you look back, that you realise how the changes which we have made are adding up to a real transformation in the school.”

A relentless focus on improving standard of Teaching and Learning is at the heart of school improvement. With this in mind the leadership team in the school have developed whole-school systems for monitoring and evaluating the performance of staff and the effectiveness of their teaching.

“My son has a brilliant rapport with all the teachers at the school. This has definitely contributed to him achieving above his target grades.”

We have revised the assessment and reporting structure in the school. There are now 4 modules over the school year, each of which ends with a revision week and then formal assessment in all subjects.  We collect this tracking information and a summary of students’ achievements is reported to parents and carers in October, December, March and July. This provides information about the progress their child is making toward their aspirational target grade in every subject, and an indication of their engagement in learning. This report is used to stretch our most able students, and support and challenge those who are not making good progress.

“My daughter has come on in leaps and bounds since transferring from her previous school.”

We revised the curriculum offer in Year 10 and 11. Our pathway curriculum demands that our most able students take the most challenging EBacc GCSE’s, ensuring they are well prepared for A Level qualifications and application to Russell Group Universities. The appointment of a Most Able co-ordinator in the school ensures that students predicted A and A* grades at GCSE are given the challenge and support they need to succeed.

High expectations for all academically is mirrored in the work we are doing to ensure a firm but fair approach to standards and discipline, with a clear emphasis that children feel safe to learn.  A strong stance is taken with students who disrupt the learning of others. High standards of courtesy and politeness are expected of students at all times, students are expected to wear the school uniform with pride and work hard at school and at home. 

Parents are very positive about the school.

We are proud of our community of parents, students, staff and Governors, who make our school a great place to learn, work and share with our neighbours and community.

Headteacher's Message


Welcome to Prendergast Ladywell School. I am proud to introduce the successes and strengths of our school to you.

We believe that all our students can achieve excellence and that they deserve the very best teachers and resources to reach their potential. Our caring environment values achievement and we insist on tolerance and mutual respect.

As Headteacher, it is my job to ensure that every child's educational journey is positive and enriching. Prendergast Ladywell School provides high quality teaching, a curriculum that supports individual needs, a regular and rigorous assessment process, and a range of enrichment activities; we encourage students to take leadership roles within our community.

We are part of the Prendergast federation of schools and benefit from the outstanding support that the Leathersellers’ provide. Students have an entitlement to the exceptional Sixth Form provision the federation offers, and educational opportunities beyond the school gates.

Our students deserve to have the best so that they can be the best. The knowledge and skills they acquire at school will equip them for life as responsible, resilient and independent learners, equipped to thrive in our rapidly changing world; with us they can achieve their full potential and maximise their chances of future success in all areas of their lives.

Prendergast Ladywell School is a place where we have the highest expectations of young people and where ambition is valued. The school is ambitious for every pupil, and will work tirelessly to support them to achieve their goals; we expect students to work hard to meet these high expectations.

The forthcoming years at the college will be exciting for all who are here; we warmly invite you to be part of our future.

I look forward to meeting you.

Niall Hand