A head teacher left her post at the helm of a Watford school to look after an unwell family member.

Clare Wagner took on the top role at Watford Grammar School for Girls, in Ladys Close, in September last year, replacing long-standing head Helen Hyde.

However she announced her departure “with great sadness” before the start of the new term this September so she could support a family member undergoing serious surgery.

Mrs Wagner thanked pupils, parents and members of staff for “welcoming me to the school so warmly”.

In a statement, chair of governors Percy McCloskey said: “The governing body has been in discussion with Mrs Wagner in relation to this matter and is supportive of this difficult decision.

“Mrs Wagner is very proud of all that has been achieved by everyone in the school. She has great affection for the girls and the staff and will miss them very much.”

Former deputy head Sylvia Tai has taken over the role of acting head teacher.