Alison Kriel was born in South Africa and educated around Africa and in Ireland and the UK.

She has worked in several schools, led two schools and have experienced all the education-related challenges and worked to transform the lives of thousands of children.

After completing her teacher training she taught infant classes for three years before becoming a Year 6 teacher and maths coordinator at Gayhurst School in Hackney.  After one year she was appointed as Deputy Headteacher. 

In 1999 I became the founder Headteacher of Betty Layward School, which was built in response to a sharp increase in the under-five population in Stoke Newington, London. The school grew to become a highly successful school, the most oversubscribed in the borough; noted for its dynamic curriculum and strong leadership.

Due to her success at Betty Layward, during 2008, Alison was asked to go to the Local Authority-managed Northwold School in Hackney to act as Executive Headteacher before a visit from Government school inspectors.  The school was failing and had a high turnaround of leaders and teachers, with staffing attendance at just 64%.

Thanks to the hard work of the team, under Alison's leadership the school grew from a failing school in the bottom 1% of schools to a highly successful school in the top 0.1%.  The school achieved high results and success throughout Alison's headship.  One of the key reasons that the school was so successful was that Alison believed in supporting staff wellbeing and, as a result, could recruit a talented team and sustain staffing attendance at 97% and above.

When she left Northwold in 2017, after taking it through the academy conversion process, it was the highest performing school in the borough, third in London and 70th nationally.

Since leaving Northwold Alison has been working as a consultant and speaker. She founded Above & Beyond in 2017.


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