Girls should not see ambition as a "dirty concept", a leading headmistress has said.
Young women need to be encouraged to develop their ambitions, whether they are personal or academic, according to Rhiannon Wilkinson, head of Wycombe Abbey School.
She suggested that girls' schools allow their pupils to take risks and to pursue their ambitions by providing a stimulating environment.
Her comments came as Wycombe Abbey, a private girls' boarding school in Buckinghamshire, topped an A-level league table for the sixth year running.
Sixth-formers at the school notched up a string of A* and A grades between them, with each student gaining an average combined A and AS-level UCAS point score of 508. This is almost four A* grades each.
Mrs Wilkinson, who has just taken over as headmistress, praised the girls and said their results were "fantastic". She said she believed that the boarding environment that the school provides helped support their success.