Chris Petz, head of Chestnut Street primary, Ruskington, Lincolnshire, left the 400-pupil school blaming "half-baked" government initiatives. The 56-year-old has now bought a pound;1,500 van and intends making a living doing DIY.
"I miss teaching like a lanced boil," he said. "I wasn't happy doing the job any more and decided I had to get out before it made me ill."
As a head, Mr Petz saw his school top local key stage 2 league tables and won praise from Ofsted.
"I enjoyed some wonderful times with the children," he said. "I had a brilliant school and the best Sats results ever. But I was becoming more despondent with half-baked government ideas, knee-jerk reactions and strategies not being thought through."