The Perse School

Perse Education Conference 2016

Transforming Education:
Global Perspectives and Partnerships


Conference 2016 - sponsors - Capita SIMS Independent and Live Register


Friday 23rd September 2016 with Thursday keynote dinner/accommodation option
Book online

Booking deadline for Thursday pre-conference dinner, accommodation and Friday Conference: midday on Wednesday 14 September (accommodation subject to availability)

Booking deadline for Friday conference only: midday on Friday 16 September


The Perse is very pleased to be hosting the bi-annual conference of the SAGE group of overseas schools. SAGE (The Strategic Alliance of Global Educators) unites forward-looking and innovative state and independent schools from around the world with the aim of bringing educators together to form professional networks that allow wider and deeper sharing of pedagogical ideas, resources and best practices. Every two years, a SAGE partner school hosts a conference of school leaders to share and exchange educational resources and expertise on an international platform.

As a part of this 4 day SAGE conference, The Perse will be hosting a one day learning conference Transforming Education: Global Perspectives and Partnerships. We are delighted to announce that George Freeman MP, Secretary of State for Life Sciences at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department of Health, will introduce the conference, and keynote speakers will be Valerie Hannon and Conrad Wolfram.

We will then move into the elective element of the day, and will be running three streams:

(1) The Digital Generation (2) Global Perspectives (3) Health and Well-Being

The three streams will give delegates the opportunity either to focus on one area, or to mix and match elective sessions from different streams.


It is possible to book tickets for day attendance, but we also offer the opportunity to come to Cambridge the evening before, stay in Homerton College and enjoy the opportunity to meet colleagues from different schools in the UK, as well as some of the world’s leading state and independent schools. The pre-dinner speaker on the evening of Thursday 22nd will be Jo Whitehead.

The fees are:

● £125 for the day conference

● £250 including the Thursday evening package of evening dinner, keynote and accommodation at Homerton College

● £595 for the three-person full package.  Early booking is recommended to secure accommodation

No payment required now; billing will be by invoice to your supplied bursary email address

Any proceeds from the conference will be split between our three nominated 400-celebrations charities: EACH, Christel House and The Enduring Gift Campaign.

Book now, with invoicing then completed separately.

Thursday 22 September

6.30pm, Homerton College, Dinner and Keynote Speaker

Pre-dinner talk from Jo Whitehead at 7.15pm “Think again: How to avoid making bad decisions”. Dinner served at 7.45pm

Dr. Jo Whitehead is a Director of the Ashridge Strategic Management Centre, and has published books on corporate strategy, business strategy and decision making. He teaches on executive strategy courses at Ashridge and London Business School, and provides executive education and consulting support to a number of major and mid-sized European companies. He is the author of a number of books, including Think Again: Why Good Leaders Make Bad Decisions and How to Keep it from Happening to You, in 2009. Previously he was a Vice President and Director of the Boston Consulting Group, where he worked for 20 years in the UK and US. Jo is Vice-Chairman of Cambridge University Musical Society as well as the founder of the England over 40’s and over 45’s Touch Rugby team.

Friday 23 September

Coffee served from 8.45am, The Perse School

  • 9.15am. Conference introduction from George Freeman MP.
  • 9.30-11am. Keynote address and questions with Valerie Hannon and Conrad Wolfram.
  • 11.15am, 1.15pm and 2.30pm. Elective sessions.
  • 12.15pm. Lunch.
  • 3.30pm. Tea and depart.

Seminar sessions

Pick three sessions from the nine options below, one in each elective slot:

The Digital Generation Global Perspectives Health and Well-Being
11.15 – 12.15 Dr Steve Hodges – Goals, resources and partnerships for the make-it-digital project Valerie Hannon – Learning from leaders around the world Nick Phillis – Opportunities for coaching in schools
1.15 – 2.15 Carrie Anne Philbin and James Robinson -Raspberry Pi in Education: update and practical workshop Tim Oates – How to draw lessons from international comparisons Chris Jeffrey – Pupil well-being issues
2.30 – 3.30 Prodigy Learning – Aren't ICT skills still important? Strategies for tight curriculum time inc. The Perse approach & Certiport certification. Head Panel – Headship east, west and down under. The challenges facing 21st century schools and their leaders Natasha Devon MBE – The Self-Esteem Team
Our speakers

George Freeman was first elected to Parliament in May 2010 after a 15 year career in and around the Cambridge cluster supporting high growth businesses. He was re-elected in 2015 with an increased majority of 17,000.

During his time in Parliament, he has served as PPS to the Minister for Climate Change, Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Science & Technology in Agriculture, a UK Trade Envoy and Government Adviser on Life Sciences to the Minister of State for Universities and Science. In July 2014, he was appointed as the first ever UK Minister for Life Sciences at the Department of Health (DH) and the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in charge of the £15bn NHS drugs budget, digital health and data, the Life Sciences and Agri-Tech Industrial Strategies, genomics, industry engagement and NHS R&D.

Conrad Wolfram, physicist, mathematician and technologist, is strategic director and European co-founder/CEO of the Wolfram group of companies. Described as the place where “Computation meets Knowledge” and “The Math Company”, the Wolfram Group specializes in pushing boundaries at the intersection of computation, data science, maths, and knowledge, including making Mathematica software, the Wolfram|Alpha knowledge engine (powering knowledge answers for Apple’s Siri), the Computable Document Format (CDF) standard and Wolfram Language. All Wolfram technology is now being hybridised to the cloud, including providing private computation cloud installations. Conrad is also a leading advocate for a fundamental shift of maths education to be computer-based and founded (CBM) to drive implementation of the change. The movement is now a worldwide force in re-engineering the STEM curriculum with early projects in Estonia, Sweden and across Africa. Conrad regularly appears in the media and as a keynote speaker on subjects ranging from the future of the web to 21st century education. He holds degrees in natural sciences and maths from University of Cambridge, UK.

Dr Steve Hodges is Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research (MSR) Cambridge managing the Sensors and Devices group. His research spans a broad range of technologies within the themes of ubiquitous computing, interaction and embedded devices. His group aims to deliver compelling new user experiences, with the ultimate goal being to better understand how advances in technology will impact traditional computing and the ways in which people use and interact with computing devices. One of his current focusses is how embedded devices like the BBC micro:bit can inspire and motivate school students to engage with computer science.

Valerie Hannon was Director of Education for Derbyshire. She became a founding Director of the Innovation Unit, and now sits on the Board. She is now an established thought leader in the field of education innovation. She is a founding member and Co-Chair of the Global Education Leaders Partnership ( supporting jurisdictions globally to scale their innovation and transform their systems. Valerie is senior consultant to the OECD Innovative Learning Environments programme, and a regular contributor and adviser to the World Summit on Innovation in Education (WISE). Valerie’s books include Learning A Living: radical innovation in education for work (Bloomsbury, 2012); and Redesigning Education: shaping learning systems around the globe (Booktrope, May 2013) . Recent publications include: What is Learning For? European Journal of Education Vol 50 (Jan 2015); Creative Public Leadership: How School System, Leaders Can Create the Conditions for System-wide Innovation, WISE/RSA 2016; Personalisation and Globalisation: three paradoxes facing educators. CSE Melbourne, 2016.

Nick Phillis has experience of leadership at The Kings School Canterbury where he was Senior Housemaster. He is a qualified executive coach and currently works in the City, in the education sector – where he leads the coaching for personal development at The King’s School – and with 18 to 30 year olds. Nick works for Longbow Future, a company that coaches people through career transition issues. Throughout his 30 years in education he has taken a coaching approach to all pastoral work, whether with staff or pupils. Nick believes that coaching is empowering, helping both staff and pupils increase independence and self-awareness and develop professionally and personally.

Iain Henderson is Deputy Head at Wellington College. He has taught in both the state and independent sectors and held leadership positions across the school as Head of Year, Housemaster and Assistant Head. He believes strongly in the power of the coaching approach to unlock potential in people and to enable them to grow in self-awareness and self-sufficiency. For the past 4 years, he has been building and embedding a coaching culture at Wellington and across its international and UK-based partner schools. This coaching is now widely used in the leadership and management of staff, performance development and career progression.

Carrie Anne Philbin is Director of Education at the Raspberry Pi Foundation and an award winning computing teacher and author of ‘Adventures in Raspberry Pi’ a physical computing book for teenagers wanting to get started with Raspberry Pi, Programming, and Digital Making. She is also the creator of a YouTube series for teenage girls called Geek Gurl Diaries. Episodes include interviews with women working in technology and hands on computer science based tutorials. Carrie Anne is Chair of the Computing at Schools diversity and inclusion initiative ‘CAS #Include’, a CAS Board member, and a director of the Python Software Foundation.

James Robinson is an experienced cross phase Computer Science Teacher and has worked with CAS training educators to deliver computing lessons in schools. He now works for the Raspberry Pi Foundation creating learning resources and supporting their education mission through teacher training and outreach. James also currently leads the Skycademy project, which seeks to empower educators to launch their own near space missions with their students using low cost hardware.

Tim Oates is Group Director of Assessment Research and Development at Cambridge Assessment, a large non-teaching department of Cambridge University. He focusses on national and international research on assessment, measurement and curriculum. From 2010 to 2013, he was chair of the Expert Panel for Review of the National Curriculum in England. He has published widely on assessment and international comparisons. He has been a long-standing member of OFQUAL’s standards advisory group and is a current member of Ofqual’s vocational qualifications group. Tim routinely provides briefings and advice to UK and other governments. He is Fellow of Churchill College Cambridge.

Andrew Griggs is UK Country Manager at Prodigy Learning. Prodigy Learning is a multi-award winning provider of IT learning and certification solutions for Adobe, Autodesk, Microsoft and other technologies, and have recently been crowned Certiport Global Partner of the Year 2016.  These IT certifications deliver job-ready skills, improving employability for students and productivity for employees.  As the Certiport Solution Provider for the UK & Ireland, Prodigy is responsible for managing the Adobe Certified Associate (ACA), Autodesk Certified User (ACU), Autodesk Certified Professional (ACP), Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) and Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) training and certification programmes.  Learning solutions supporting these certifications include Textbooks, Online Learning Software, Practice Tests and Certification Exams.  This range includes products from partners such as CCI Learning, GMetrix, LearnKey, MeasureUp, Microsoft Press and Wiley.  Andrew Griggs is the UK Country Manager for Prodigy Learning with 9 years’ experience in the IT Learning and Certification sector.

Chris Jeffery is currently Headmaster of The Grange, but will be head of Bootham school by the time of the conference. Previously Deputy Head and Head of Middle School at The Perse School in Cambridge and before that Housemaster and History teacher at Bristol Grammar School, he is particularly interested in issues of pupil and staff well-being and welfare, as well as fashioning an education that equips pupils to thrive in the future, not that serves the current exam system. Chris chairs the HMC Wellbeing Working Group.

Natasha Devon MBE  is an author, columnist and television pundit recently appointed as the government’s first Mental Health Tsar. She has co-authored a number of best-selling books (many centred around food, exercise and body image) in collaboration with scientists, psychologists and celebrities.  She writes regularly for the Telegraph & Independent Online, the Sun newspaper and is a columnist for Cosmopolitan Magazine.  She is a body image expert for BBC Breakfast, Sky News and ITV’s Daybreak and was one of Gok Wan’s body confidence mentors for the channel 4 series ‘Gok’s Teens: The Naked Truth’.  Natasha works alongside the All Parties Parliamentary Group on Body Image, specifically reporting on the issues faced by 14-18 year olds. Natasha’s book ‘Fundamentals: A Guide for Parents & Teachers on Mental Health & Self-Esteem’ was published in January 2015. She has also gone on to personally work with in-excess of 30,000 students from throughout the UK and to create the award-winning Body Gossip Education Programme.



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