School History


The Academy opened as County Secondary School for Girls, South Hackney on Cassland Road site.


In May the Academy moved to its new building in Laura Place with a new name: Clapton County Secondary School for Girls Motto: To do good work whether we live or die.


On the 2nd of September 1939 the Academy was evacuated to Bishop's Stortford. A partial return to Clapton occurred in 1943, followed by a full return two years later in 1945.


In the Summer Term of 1947 the school was renamed The John Howard School; although locally the Academy continued to be known as 'Laura Place'.


The Academy adopted a new motto: Possunt Quia Posse Videntur (usually, though rather inaccurately, translated as 'they can because they think they can').


The Academy had the privilege of a royal visit from the Queen Mother.


The Academy was reorganised as part of the Inner London Education Authority's comprehensivisation programme. John Howard School, and the neighbouring Clapton Park School, ceased to recruit. The school on Laura Place site was extended and reorganised as Clapton Secondary School for Girls with a new motto: Wisdom and Togetherness .


Clapton successfully fought off proposals by the Local Education Authority to make it into a mixed school.


The Academy was awarded Technology College status. It became known as Clapton Girls' Technology College, with the motto: Learning Together, Working Together, Welcoming the Community.

2008 to 2010:

The Academy went through a transformation to its site under the national multi-million pound Building Schools for the Future programme.

1st September 2011

Clapton Girls' Technology College gained academy status and became Clapton Girls' Academy.


Our Academy is unusual in that it has only had seven Headteachers in over 100 years of existence.

This says a lot for the stability of the Academy and the dedication of its staff. The longest-serving Headteacher was in post for 24 years, and 2 others served for over 20 years each. The shortest serving Headteacher was in post for 2 years before becoming an HMI, (His Majesty's School Inspector), in 1930.



1906 to 1928

Dr Mary O'Brien Harris

1928 to 1930

Miss Ruth Fletcher

1931 to 1955

Dr Ursula D. Hunt

1956 to 1977

Miss Margaret Shaw

1977 to 1988

Mrs Pamela Williams

1989 to 1997

Mrs Margaret (Miggie) Hillson

1997 to 2016

Dr Cheryl Day

2016 to present

Ms Anna Feltham