Debbie Isaachsen is Headteacher at Heatherton, the leading girls’ independent prep school in Amersham and a member of the Berkhamsted family of schools. Debbie is married with two children and lives in Berkhamsted.

Home is…

A lunch with all my extended family. I grew up in Gerrard’s Cross and my brothers and I often head home for a delicious Sunday roast with my parents.

Best meal you’ve had?

Homemade Chicken Katsu Curry. My husband is a wonderful chef and this is a real family favourite.

What are you up to right now?

Enjoying my third year of headship at Heatherton. It’s a wonderful, family-feel school and I am so proud to be part of it and to be instrumental in shaping our girls’ love of learning.

Best piece of advice you’ve been given?

Be yourself and don’t try to be anything you’re not. Also, to be aware of your weaknesses and play to your strengths.

Who do you call when you want to have fun?

Old friends who have been with me through highs and lows and know and love the real me.

Favourite shops?

One of my favourite things is pottering around all the lovely shops in Old Amersham. I love treating myself to a bit of retail therapy followed by a leisurely coffee with friends.

Last book you read?

Mindset by Carol Dweck. Teaching has always been my passion and I enjoy reading about new insights into childhood development and how we can motivate our children and unlock their potential by encouraging a growth mindset. It has made me mindful, both as a mother and as a headteacher, to reward each child’s effort, not just their ability, and to view failure as learning opportunities.

Biggest extravagance?

My brother treated all our family to a trip to South Africa and Mauritius last year. It was an amazing experience and gave us all memories that will last a lifetime.

Can’t live without?

Sunday walks with my family in the Chiltern Hills followed by lunch at a local pub. There are so many fabulous choices in our area.


Heatherton is holding an Open Day on Friday 2nd March, 10am-12noon. Debbie’s headteacher speech will start at 10.15am. To book and for more information:

01494 726433