Fresh Thinking

Join Attain’s Editor as he talks to leading Heads, as well as other special guests, about the issues affecting independent schools and parents today. Our 'Fresh Thinking' programme is published every Wednesday during term time and you can watch below or listen via your favourite podcast app.

Watch the latest episode of Fresh Thinking

Episode 35: Learning from nature

Joining Matthew this week is Stuart Douch and David Buckingham from Sompting Abbotts Prep School in West Sussex. We discuss how spending time learning about wildlife can be hugely beneficial for children, not just as a learning opportunity but also to help boost pupil wellbeing.

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Episode 34: School communications

Joining Matthew this week is Emma Goldsmith of The Dragon School and Kate Reynolds of the Royal High School Bath GDST. We discuss school communications – how to ensure parents are always in the loop but don't feel overwhelmed by the quantity of information coming home.

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Episode 33: The politics of education

Joining Matthew this week is Richard Backhouse, Principal of Berkhamsted Schools Group and Chair of HMC. Independent schools have once again found themselves in the political spotlight – we discuss charitable status and Labour's tax plans.

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Episode 32: Diversity, tolerance and equality

Joining Matthew this week is Jason Whiskerd of Brentwood Preparatory School and Irfan Latif of DLD College and a founder member of the Inclusion and Diversity Group of the Independent Schools Council. We discuss diversity, tolerance and equality in the independent sector.

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Episode 31: Reimagining prep schools

Joining Matthew this week is William Goldsmith, Vice Chair of the Independent Association of Prep Schools, IAPS, and Head Master of St George's School, Windsor. In a wide-ranging interview, he discusses the pressure on schools and teachers during the pandemic and why the role of prep schools should be reimagined.

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Episode 30: Transitions

Joining Matthew this week is Paula Mortimer, Head of the Junior School at Lady Eleanor Holles in London and Mark Mortimer, Headmaster of Bryanston School in Dorset. We discuss how parents can help their children take transitions in their stride – whether it's going up a year group or moving to a new senior school.

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Episode 29: Rethinking Governance

Joining Matthew this week is Ceri Jones, Headmaster of Caterham School in Surrey and Richard Harman, Chief Executive of AGBIS – the Association of Governing Bodies of Independent Schools. We discuss the role of governors in a school, how they shape the direction of development and how boards should reflect diversity.

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How to subscribe to Fresh Thinking

You can listen to Fresh Thinking on the Attain website or subscribe via Apple Podcasts, Spotify or Google Podcasts. You can also sign-up for our email newsletter and receive Fresh Thinking each week, plus the latest school news and features.