The NGN London Nurturing Schools Conference 2017


Date: Friday 3rd March 2017

Tag Line: Outstanding schools for every child

Venue: Kingsway Hall Hotel, London


The Conference

It is more than 40 years since educational psychologist Marjorie Boxall decided something had to be done about the huge number of children being put forward for special schools in the Inner London Borough of Hackney.

She understood that these children were not ‘maladjusted’ or ‘educationally subnormal’, but had simply not had adequate emotional and social support from their earliest months to be able to deal with the demands of school life. And so nurture groups were born.

Since then thousands of children have benefited from spending time in small part-time groups in their schools and being given the experiences they missed in their early lives.

The Boxall Profile now underpins everything that nurture groups can achieve and groups are being set up in primary and secondary schools, in special schools and units in the UK and throughout the world.

A nurturing school does not just adopt the six principles of nurture in its nurture group (if it has one), but throughout the whole school, embedding them into its culture. Based on the six principles of nurture that have successfully underpinned nurture groups for over 40 years, the National Nurturing Schools Programme allows schools to develop and embed a nurturing culture that enhances stakeholder engagement. The programme has been developed and is administered by The Nurture Group Network, the world’s leading provider for nurture training and consultancy in education.

One school in the north of England is currently undergoing the national nurturing schools programme, with its recent Ofsted report citing nurture groups and the ‘nurturing attitude’ of the school as a key programme for the ongoing success of their learning environment.


The curriculum offer for pupils with special educational needs or disability is well matched to their needs, bespoke and personalised. Pupils and parents value highly the support given in the nurture groups. In 2015, all pupils with special educational needs or disability moved on to further education, training or employment.’ – Ofsted, May 2016.


Come and learn why the national nurturing schools programme is achieving such acclaim from teachers, parents, pupils, educationalists and Ofsted.


Who should attend?

The conference is open to nurture staff, education staff, health staff, social workers, police, policy makers, family support workers and all who are interested in effectively supporting vulnerable children and their families.




Kevin Kibble – Nurturing Schools and the Northern Ireland Signature Project

Kevin is CEO of The Nurture Group Network. Previously he was chief executive at educational charity The Caspari Foundation, and also at Transplant Sport – the organ donation charity.

With over 30 years’ experience in management, communications and marketing, 17 of which have been in the voluntary sector, Kevin is passionate about education effecting change.

This keynote will focus on the significant outcomes that nurture groups have achieved, not only in helping children to cope with social, emotional and mental health barriers to learning, but also in the increase in students’ academic achievement and how this can be adapted to the whole-school environment. Kevin will look at what lessons can be learned from past experience and how this impacts on schools.


Wendy Roden – The development of the National Nurturing Schools Programme

Wendy is an experienced teacher who has worked in a range of primary and secondary settings. She was appointed national training officer for NGN in 2012.

It was through working with the first primary nurture group in Cumbria that she realised the potential of nurture groups. This impacted on her practice as a special educational needs and inclusion co-ordinator in a secondary school and then as a leader of a behaviour and attendance programme. She has worked with schools in an advisory capacity to develop innovative approaches and systemic change targeted towards addressing some of the ‘barriers to learning’ experienced by children and young people. This includes the development of nurture groups.

With a belief in life-long learning she has developed and delivered training and co-ordinated professional development opportunities for staff including for example teachers, learning mentors and teaching assistants. Her commitment to nurture groups is from experience in seeing the positive outcomes for children, young people, parents and carers and schools.

Over the past two years Wendy has developed the National Nurturing Schools Programme in collaboration with a number of schools.


Yvonne Monaghan – The National Nurturing Schools Programme - what it can do for you

For the last 14 years Yvonne has supported schools in Wigan local authority initially as a behaviour support teacher, then as the co-ordinator for The Targeted Education Support Team for SEMH (social, emotional and mental health). As a local authority officer, and part of the TESS team, she has worked with all age range schools ensuring quality support around SEMH, removing barriers to learning in the classroom.

More than 16 years ago Yvonne, while head of primary at an EBD school in the North West, along with her colleagues created a nurturing school, where every child had a Boxall profile. Ofsted was impressed then when the SMT team were deemed to ‘not just talk the talk but walk the walk’. Yvonne is now head of consultancy for NGN and will be leading the nurturing schools programme. Yvonne will discuss how the programme has already improved some school practice and how the NGN consultancy team can help you access the programme and achieve the prestigious award.

Alex Grady

Looked after children and SEND

Alex has worked as a SENCO in a primary school, for the Dyslexia teaching service and in a Language Unit in Manchester, supported Looked After Children in schools, run a Dyslexia Centre for the Learning Support Team in Staffordshire, and been Reading Recovery Teacher Leader for Staffordshire. For the last four years, she has worked for a special school federation, mainly offering outreach support to mainstream schools. These experiences have given Alex a very clear understanding of both the needs of pupils with a range of SEND and also the challenges that providing the right support can bring to both mainstream and special school staff. She believes that providing high-quality staff development and training is the most effective way of enabling all staff to meet the needs of all their learners.

In this keynote, Alex will discuss SEND in relation to looked after children and attachment theory.



Please keep an eye on this page. We will update workshops as and when they are planned.


Booking Form

All booking forms should be sent to Gillian Fewins, Nurture Group Network, 18A Victoria Park Square, Bethnal Green, London E2 9PB T: 020 3475 8980 E:

Closing date Friday 24th February 2017

Please return this form with payment or call our office to pay by credit or debit card


A Nurture Group Network Conference:

Nurture Groups – working together to improve the lives of children, young people and their families

Friday 3rd March 2017

Cost: £150+VAT

Cheques made payable to the Nurture Group Network, 18A Victoria Park Square, Bethnal Green, London E2 9PB


The venue

Kingsway Hall Hotel, 66 Great Queen Street, Covent Garden, London WC2B 5BX



Kingsway Hall Hotel is situated just a few minutes’ walk from Holborn tube station, with access to the Central and Piccadilly lines.



Exit Holborn Station and turn left on to Kingsway. Turn right for Great Queen Street, where you will find Kingsway Hall Hotel.


By train or if arriving by air

Kingsway Hall Hotel is easily accessed from all major London airports and train stations via the tube. Please visit the TFL website to plan your journey (


By car

Kingsway Hall Hotel does not have its own parking facilities. Please see below for list of nearest car parks. Please also note that Kingsway Hall Hotel is within the London congestion charging zone, which incurs a £8 fee (


Car parks


Drury Lane NCP

Parker Street, Covent Garden, Parker Mews, London WC2B 5NT


Holborn NCP

1 Museum Street, Covent Garden, London WC1A 1JP


Bloomsbury Square

30 Bloomsbury Square, London WC1A 2RJ