Northwold Primary School - No sky too high

Our leadership team

Alison Kriel, Shelly-Ann Malabver-Goulbourne, Serrantha Bhagwandas

Meet our School Leadership Team


  • Alison Kriel

    Alison Kriel, Head teacher

    Alison was born in South Africa and as a child attended schools in various African countries, as well as Ireland and England. She has always taught in Hackney schools because she loves the diversity of the community. Alison was deputy at Gayhurst school for 8 years before embarking on headship when she was the founder head teacher of Betty Layward School, which was the first primary school to open in the new millennium. As head teacher she managed its development from a 90 pupil Early Years school to a very popular and successful primary school for 450 pupils. Alison joined Northwold School in 2008, initially as an interim post to support it during some challenging times, and then became the substantive head teacher in 2009. Alison is very proud to be part of, what she describes as 'a wonderful team of people who, together, have steered the school from a failing school to an outstanding school'.

  • Shelly-Ann Malabver-Goulbourne

    Shelly-Ann Malabver-Goulbourne, Deputy Head for Curriculum and Assessment

    Shelly-Ann was born and educated in Jamaica where she also began her teaching career over 12 years ago, she then moved to England in 2004 to further her career. She joined Northwold in 2008 as Leader for Learning, Language, Communication and Thinking and as class teacher to Year 4. A year later, she became Assistant Head to Alison leading on Curriculum and Assessments. Having specialised in Management and Business Studies and with a Masters in Human Resource Development and Consulting, Shelly-Ann has extensive knowledge and experience of working within schools in Hackney. Prior to joining Northwold, Shelly-Ann worked at Betty Layward as Curriculum leader for RE and later Literacy as well as a class teacher for Year 5 students. As a mother to two young children, Shelly-Ann rarely finds the time to relax but when she’s does she enjoys nothing more than escaping to warmer climates, catching up with friends and family or watching the latest action movie or romantic comedy.

  • Serrantha Bhagwandas

    Serrantha Bhagwandas, Deputy Head for Inclusion and Intervention

    Serrantha was born and educated in South Africa. She completed her teacher training there and undertook a range of different posts in mainstream and special needs schools. She moved to England in 2000 where she embarked on a variety of different projects, including a trip to America for a conference regarding provisions for autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and being part of the British Council delegation that visited Lithuania to review the provisions for Gifted and Talented children in Eastern Europe, and spent 4 years as an education consultant working with two local authorities. Serrantha joined Northwold in 2011 as Assistant Head for Inclusion and Interventions and in addition leads on the Early Year Foundation Stage (EYFS) and KS1 Curriculum. She is passionate about education and aspires to see every child fulfil their potential. She likes to be creative and innovative within the curriculum and is continuously trying different approaches to engage the children and encourage them to learn. She is also committed to community cohesion and recognises and respects the individuality in people. Outside of work Serrantha has an interest in restoring antique furniture. She also loves to spend her free time reading and names Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu and Mahatma Gandhi as leaders who inspire her.

  • Nicolette Lewis

    Nicolette Lewis, Assistant Head, English Coordinator and Lead Teacher

  • Katy Sams

    Katy Sams, Assistant Head, Year 3-4 Phase Leader, Humanities Coordinator and Year 4 Brazil Class Teacher

  • Nichola Ahmed