For hundreds of GCSE and A-level students August marks the end of an era.

They have just enough to time to breathe a sigh of relief before their thoughts turn to taking that next step into employment or education.

For Ros Hudson it is also the end of ten years hard work, as she hangs up her hat as headteacher of Alexandra Park School.

Since its opening in 1998, she has overseen the school’s progression into one of Haringey’s top-performing comprehensives but says the time has come to hand over her legacy and take a small pause of her own.

Though she is retiring from headship, Mrs Hudson does not plan to sit idle on what she calls her "gap-year".

Over the next year, her passion for education will see her travelling to Indonesia and South Africa where she plans to teach English. She also intends to set up a secondary school for girls in Kerala in Southern India.

Mrs Hudson, the mother of two sons, said: "Alexandra Park is very close to my heart. I am lucky to have been here from the start — it’s like my third baby. But I think schools benefit from fresh blood and I am ready to move on.

"Leaving on such a high, having got such good results, is the best retirement present I could have hoped for."

She praised staff and students at the school in Bidwell Gardens, Muswell Hill, for being the most dedicated group she has ever worked with.

The school, which specialises in science and maths, is heavily over-subscribed with four applicants for each available place.

The number of students entitled to free meals is above the national average as are those with special needs, a disability or who speak English as an addional language.

But the school has continued to thrive.

60 per cent of students achieved A*-C GCSE passes including key subjects like maths and English. The Haringey average is 42.2 per cent.

At A-level, 33 per cent of grades were As or Bs grades and the majority of pupils, 95 per cent, passed every exam.

Mrs Hudson added: "Our students don’t all live in £1million houses — they come from all walks of life. Alexandra Park shows that a truly inner-city comprehensive can still achieve excellent results.

"While it makes me proud to see students who worked hard get top grades, I am equally proud of our students who overcome personal difficulties to get grades that will give them better choices. Our motto has always been 'success for all' and I am proud to say we achieve that.

"Schools should not become factories for passing exams but about helping children develop into well-rounded individuals."

Mrs Hudson said she had "every confidence" in Michael McKenzie, the incoming headteacher who starts his post on September 1.

"I couldn’t have handed it over to anyone else. He is definitely the right man for the job" she added.