Meet the Principal

Emma Gowers set up The Gower School in Islington in 2000, and it now provides primary education to about 160 children aged 4-11 and nursery care to about 150 children aged 0-5, including her own two daughters. The school’s approach is firmly grounded in the Montessori philosophy, and children from the school go on to all major independent schools in north and central London, often with scholarships. She has served as Principal of The Gower School for over two decades. Her leadership has seen the growth and expansion of the school from a community nursery to a world-class Montessori Nursery and Primary School. Our schools were rated Outstanding or Excellent in every area by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) in 2014, and again at its most recent inspection in 2022.

Prior to setting up The Gower School Emma was Director of Music at two London schools, and also ran a business providing a range of musical services. She is a graduate in music and education from Trinity College of Music, and holds Early Years Professional status and the Montessori teaching diploma from Montessori Centre International. She had nearly completed the NPQH qualification before the arrival of the pandemic put a sudden end to the course.

Emma’s starting point is that children should find their learning interesting and enjoyable, so that they come to school keen to find out new and exciting things. This approach underlies the educational approach throughout the school and nursery. There is a strong focus on children pursuing achievements in a Growth Mindset way so that children feel they can achieve and pursue things they are interested in, and can sense their progression in a supported environment.

Through her programme of Great Work Treats Emma sees every child with their work every term, as well as separately termly reviewing each child’s development with their teacher. Emma is particularly closely involved in supporting children and their parents through the 11+ admissions process to their next school, working directly children with all year 6 children, and 1-1 support to parents. She runs a Local History project with year 6 children which takes place mostly out in the local area.

Emma is also active in the wider education world. She has been active in the Montessori movement since 2004, and was Chair of the Montessori Schools Association’s group for primary schools, after several years as Deputy Chair, as well as Deputy Chair of the MSA’s London region for a decade. The Gower School was fully accredited as a Montessori school by the then Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board (MEAB) in 2008 and 2016, and by Collaborative Montessori in 2023 and 2024. She is an active member of the Independent Schools Association (ISA) and has been Treasurer of the ISA London North region since 2015. In this role she organises and hosts multiple events and conferences each year for fellow Headteachers, as well as running the regional Music Festival.

Emma feels strongly that The Gower School draws strength from being rooted in its local community in Islington. She was a member of Islington’s Schools Forum and has continuously been the face of Islington’s independent and private early years providers since 2002, chairing various early years forums, including the statutory EYDCP. For fifteen years she has chaired the Islington Early Years Providers Forum which she and a colleague set up, now with the support of Islington Council, for all early years providers in all sectors in the borough.

Come visit us!

Come and visit our ‘Outstanding’
Montessori Nursery and Primary school

Holiday Fun Club – book now for holiday fun with friends this summer!

Nursery Open Mornings

Primary Open Mornings

Empowered Parenting Course

Can’t make our Nursery Open Morning dates? Call 0207 700 2445 or email us at to schedule an ad-hoc tour.

We look forward to welcoming you to
The Gower School!