top of page

Special Education
– Inclusion,
Neurodivergence &
Employability

Education can only be considered truly future-ready if it is sufficiently prepared to incorporate the needs of ALL pupils, both now and in the coming years. By doing this, we are able to harness their unique individual potential, and give them the platform to thrive during their time in education and in their life beyond.

However, as was noted at last year’s conference, there is a clear requirement for provision for pupils with SEND to be adapted if we are to achieve these goals.

Notably, it was found that this mindset needs to be cultivated from the top down; integrated into the goals of school leaders and national policy makers so that the definition and integration of successful SEND pathways can be passed down through the hierarchy of the education system.

Further, it was felt important that there is more dialogue between specialist settings and mainstream settings to grow understanding and offer multiple options to students, as well as an opportunity for all organisations to become better equipped to support children and young people with increasingly complex needs and an increasingly complex and changing world.

We remain committed to continuing these vital discussions, as we welcome SEND experts to talk on topics such as:

- ‘Adapt for Impact: An AP view of our changing (educational) world’

- ‘The importance of being seen – breaking down cycles of prejudice’

- ‘The culture and ethos of inclusion’

With delegates at this year’s conference including a variety of educational decision makers – including Heads, schools and education group CEOs including MATs, and curriculum leaders – this year’s stream at Future Fwd 2024 provides the perfect platform for collaborative dialogue to take place, with practical steps to be taken away in order to make positive tangible change.

We should all be committed to improving our provision and giving all young people, no matter their age or ability, the best possible chance to thrive and succeed. Come along to this year’s SEND stream if you want to know how you can make a positive impact and take away some practical strategies to make your school, organisation or business as inclusive as possible

Nick-Evans-3-500x571_edited.jpg

Nick Evans

Evergreen School Headteacher

Nick is Executive Head of Evergreen School, an all-age generic special school that operates two campuses either site of Warwick. Nick is also set to become the MAT Director for the proposed Warwick Schools Foundation Multi-Academy Trust.

 

Nick is a passionate advocate for inclusive education and over his career has cultivated a reputation for championing the needs of children and young people with special educational needs. With a vision that stretches beyond his school, Nick dreams of a community where inclusion isn't just a buzzword but a way of life. He talked last year about Inclusion being a human right not a 'strategy'.

 

Nick is on a mission to knit together the fabric of society, one inclusive opportunity at a time, fostering social cohesion and understanding, and is unwavering in his dedication to building a brighter future for all.

Andrew Hammond

Headmaster

Hall School Wimbledon

Andrew Hammond has worked in schools for over 25 years, as a Head of English and Drama, Housemaster, Director of Studies, Deputy Head Academic and as Headteacher in two primary schools and a prep school. He is currently Headteacher at Hall School Wimbledon in SW London, a co-educational, non-selective independent school for pupils aged 8-18. He also serves as Head of CPD across the Chatsworth Schools group.

 

A prolific author, Andrew and has written over thirty titles for a range of publishers and is a regular contributor to educational magazines, newspapers and podcasts. He has delivered CPD in over 150 schools and has presented at many educational conferences in the UK, China, US and UAE. He has served as an ISEB Common Entrance setter and English Subject Leader for IAPS. He is a member of ISA Executive Council.

 

Andrew holds a BA (Hons) QTS from Bath Spa University and an MA from King’s College London.

AJH Jul24.jpg
stein.jpg

StePHen Steinhaus

CEO and Co-Founder, Solihull Alternative Provision Multi Academy Trust

After completing his degree in The Teaching of English and career as an American Football player at The University of Illinois in the USA, Stephen Steinhaus turned down a professional wrestling contract to move as a Fulbright Scholar to the United Kingdom to study for an MPhil in Shakespeare Studies and English Literature at the University of Birmingham. Steinhaus has now lived in England for 24 years. and, in April 2018 he opened Solihull Academy (an Alternative Provision Free School for students in danger of Permanent Exclusion). In the six years since then the Academy (and Trust) has continued to expand and became a Multi-Academy trust in September 2022.

 

In his spare time, he is or has been a singer and songwriter, music director and presenter of a number of festivals, a founding trustee director of The Institute for Recovery from Childhood Trauma, and a published poet. He has also blogged on a variety of educational, fitness and musical topics. Stephen sat on a panel for FF2023 and was inspired to speak this year based on the evolving opportunities for partnership across sectors engendered by the conference.

Amy Creatura

“An exceptionally effective leader” Ofsted

Amy has spent 15 years working in special education, 12 of which have been in school leadership as a Headteacher and Deputy Executive Principle. With time spent at both the grassroots and strategic levels of education organisations Amy has an in depth understanding of the sector.

 

Having seen how quality education can transform the lives of children with special needs, Amy is determined to drive improvement to the school system for them.

 

“I am delighted to be involved in this event, which has making a difference to children truly at it's core. Future Fwd using its platform to facilitate discourse around innovative SEND practice is a testament to its progressive nature."

AmyCreatura.jpeg
BeechHall_1.jpg

JAmes Allen

Head
Beech Hall School

Having worked in the world of inclusive education for my whole career, I now have the very great privilege of working alongside some truly fantastic children, families and colleagues. Beech Hall is a school in which children are happy. It is a school in which children achieve. It is a school which fosters a confidence and a pride in every single individual.

Whatever your strength, whatever your interest, we will help it grow and develop. For me, it's swimming.

That's why, haven't learned to swim at the age of 2 with my grandad, I have continued in this passion, and embarked upon open water swimming several years ago. I completed several 5km and 10km swims, before attempting my first Ice Mile in January 2019, completing this by swimming breaststroke in 49 minutes, in 4.6 degrees. A cold water swimming club at school followed, known as the Ice Swim Club, and then an English Channel Relay in 2020.

Since Beech Hall has its own outdoor pool, it was an obvious progression, which is why fifteen pupils started training in September 2020 for their very own Channel relay crossing. In September 2021, in two teams of five, they crossed the English Channel in relay. They also raised over £33,000 for Mencap. This is just one reason why I am so incredibly proud of the pupils at Beech Hall School.

Rebecca Lynch

Symbol and Education Specialist – Widgit Software

Rebecca is a qualified primary school teacher with over 14 years’ experience.  She worked for 10 years in mainstream and 4 years as primary and communication lead at an autism specialist setting for 4 – 19-year-olds. 

 

This is where she discovered Widgit Symbols and the power that they have to open up a world of communication.

In her role at Widgit, she endeavours to create high quality resources which aid communication, understanding, and the curriculum, as well as supporting school staff and parents through training sessions. Her main passion is working with organisations who wish to become Symbol Friendly, and her vision is that one day, symbols will become mainstream so that every single person feels safe and included.

Jonathan Sullivan

Chief Growth Officer – Widgit Software

With over 18 years of experience in the field, Jonathan has worked extensively across the UK and EMEA regions, primarily focusing on technology, learning, and professional services within the realm of solution sales. 

In his role as CGO at Widgit, he is working with major brands who are committed to prioritising accessible communication and inclusive experiences so that no person feels excluded, whatever their background or need.

 Promoting the power of symbols to support communication and understanding across all settings, Jonathan believes that together, we can make symbols mainstream by working with organisations to champion inclusivity.

bottom of page