It is all change at the top at St Martin’s Ampleforth.
Mark O’Donnell has been unveiled as the preparatory school’s new head teacher and will succeed Nick Higham, who leaves after a decade in the role, from September.
His appointment comes less than a fortnight after David Lambon was announced as the first lay Head of Ampleforth College.
When they start in the summer, both Mark and David will be charged with ensuring pupils from the age of three to 18 have a rounded education nurtured by Ampleforth’s Benedictine ethos.
A native of Australia, Mark arrives from Alleyn’s Junior School, currently ranked as the top co-ed Prep school in London and the South East by The Times and The Daily Telegraph, by way of Sydney Grammar School, Australia, and Thorpe House School in Buckinghamshire.
An expert in teaching and learning theory, Mark has a Masters of Education from Harvard University and a Post Graduate Diploma in Education from the University of Oxford.
“Ampleforth is one of the world’s great Catholic schools and it will be a privilege to contribute to the work of a forward-looking Benedictine Abbey and thriving educational institution,” said Mark, who is married with three children.
“St Martin’s Ampleforth has a strong ethos of providing an education for the whole person. Working closely with David, I’m looking forward to helping all our pupils flourish not only academically, but as children and individuals.”
Married with three sons, he is a Fellow of the Royal College of Arts (FRCA), a Duke of Edinburgh assessor, and the organiser of the Independent Associated Prep Schools’ National Ski Championships.