After announcing that he would be resigning and that he, his wife Kirsten and children Xavier and Clementine would be moving back to Melbourne, Mr Maruff stated that he was proud of what Girton had achieved in the past 10 years.

“The place is flying,” he said.

“That’s the time to pass the baton… you pass the baton when you’re running at full speed.”

Girton Grammar School board chair David Jemmett listed a more than $20-million building program and the introduction of the explicit teaching of emotional intelligence among standout achievements under Mr Maruff’s leadership.

“The school has enjoyed excellent academic results and exemplified the headmaster’s passion for ensuring that students leave Girton well prepared for whatever comes next, as well as a lifelong love of learning and a desire to develop personally,” Mr Jemmett said.

In a letter to the school community, Mr Jemmett said Mr Maruff had led and represented the school with pride and passion and left with the board’s best wishes.

“The board of Girton Grammar would like to thank Mr Maruff for his commitment to Girton,” he wrote.

He said Mr Maruff’s belief in the power of education to transform a life had shaped his vision of education, where students always came first and emotional intelligence was key to learning.

“Mr Maruff has built on Girton’s strong educational and co-curricular foundations, helping to shape Girton into one of Australia’s finest regional schools,” Mr Jemmett wrote.