Skip to content

Past event

Alternative ways of educating teachers to educate children differently: What do curriculum, assessment and pedagogy look like when ‘done differently’?

Online registration has now closed. If you want to attend this event, please email for details of how to register onsite.

This conference looks to bring together teachers, educators, academics and other practitioners – especially those who lead or see themselves as having a remit to lead in some way, even if not as a manager – into a space of child-led and alternative education.

In this space ideas, philosophies and principles for putting children first are privileged. Leaders in and of or for school education – at every level of the teaching career ladder – are invited to join the BERA Alternative Education SIG, the BERA Educational Leadership SIG and the BERA Curriculum, Assessment and Pedagogy SIG for a day conference of presentations, interactive workshop sessions, networking and professional support.

The day as a whole is to build bridges, develop professional knowledge and thus practice around putting the child first in a range of education contexts. The day ultimately is to give leaders in school education ways to embed leading for the child into their schools and tools to deal with any agenda which marginalises children and their voice in teaching and learning.


10.30 Registration and refreshments
11.00 Welcome and opening address
Helen Lees and Max Hope
11.15 Re-imagining teacher education, letting go of the constraints and thinking differently
Rachel Lofthouse, Leeds Beckett University
12.00 Workshop I
 Feedback: giving control to the learner
Ruth Dann
Fear and alienation in teaching – the response of the ‘principled pragmatist’
Jenny McCabe
Real cultures of mutual respect/equality in Quaker schools? 
Nigel Newton
12.30 Lunch
13.30 Disrupting teacherly conduct
Gopal Krishnamurthy, Brockwood Park Krishnamurti School
14.15 Workshop II
How does it feel to be an alternative educator (in the mainstream)?
Helen Lees
Children’s voice and autonomous learners in ‘alternative’ Islamic faith-schools – Contradictions and Possibilities
Farah Ahmed
Designing and enacting micro learning situations that begin to explore an alternative paradigm for teaching and learning
Gopal Krishnamurthy
14.45 Refreshments break
15.00 Networking/discussion groups (implications for research and practice)
 Group one:
Being alternative in the mainstream – the pain and peril, the joy and the success
Group two:
Getting out of mainstream schooling to do education the ‘right’ way and to find oneself as an educator
Group three: Researching alternative education in schools, FE and HE
16.15 Moving forward – plenary
16.50 Completion of evaluation forms
17.00 End of conference


The BERA Early Career Researcher Network offers a limited amount of bursaries to the value of £75 towards travel for BERA Student Members only.

To apply for one of these bursaries, please email with a 250 word statement on why you want to attend this event and why you need the financial assistance. Bursaries are offered on a first come, first served basis. Travel expenses will be reimbursed after the event in accordance with our travel policies. You must not have previously received bursary funding from BERA.