Keep checking back for more information about our guest speakers and seminar subjects.

Confirmed speakers :


nasen Live 2018 Speakers

  • Pat Bullen

    Preparing for Adulthood: Approaches and strategies for schools

    Pat Bullen has over 30 years of experience as a teacher, Head teacher and senior education leader, having qualified in 1984 to teach children with severe learning difficulties. Pat works for NDTi as one of the regional facilitators for Preparing for Adulthood, and also works with local authorities in the East Midlands region.

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  • Rob Webster

    Maximising the Impact of Teaching Assistants: Lessons learned from schools and classrooms

    Rob Webster is based at the Centre for Inclusive Education, UCL Institute of Education, where he leads the Maximising the Impact of Teaching Assistants (MITA) school improvement and CPD programme. He has directed large-scale studies of the educational experiences of pupils with SEND, and written extensively on how schools can make better use of teaching assistants. Rob is currently leading a trial, funded by the Education Endowment Foundation, to test the MITA approach.  

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  • Brenda McHugh

    Supporting the Mental Health and Wellbeing of Your School Community

    Brenda McHugh is a consultant systemic psychotherapist, lecturer and teacher. Having worked initially in mainstream and special schools she then worked for over thirty years in child adolescent mental health services. There, she jointly devised and ran the first multi family therapeutic classroom designed to help children and young people presenting with complex emotional, behavioural and mental health difficulties and their families. She is now one of the programme directors at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families where she has co-founded The Family School, London for children excluded from mainstream schools. The school is an alternative provision for children with SEMH difficulties and was recently judged by Ofsted as Outstanding. As an internationally recognised trainer she has recently created an online training programme for mental health and school-based professionals. The model of families working together in multi-family groups in schools has attracted keen professional and political interest and is being adopted widely in Britain and across Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Germany and Greenland .
    Her latest publication is: Psychology, Emotion and Intuition in Work Relationships. H Brown, N Dawson and B McHugh. Routledge. 

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  • Jaime Smith

    Supporting the Mental Health and Wellbeing of Your School Community

    Jaime Smith is the Programme Director for Mental Health and Wellbeing in Schools at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families.  Jaime’s background is in education, with many years teaching experience in inner London secondary schools. After teaching Jaime worked for the London borough of Camden with a caseload of children and young people who were at risk of exclusion from education.  Jaime worked for the NSPCC for 8 years, first coordinating outreach work with ‘hard to reach’ children and young people across London and then as the London manager of the NSPCC Schools Service, leading a team to deliver safeguarding work to over 3000 primary schools.  Since joining the Anna Freud Centre Jaime has led on a number of national programmes including the DfE and NHS England schools Mental Health Link programme and the DfE Peer Support for Children and Young Peoples Emotional Wellbeing.  Jaime runs the Schools in Mind network, a free network which provides information and resources about mental health and wellbeing for anyone working in education.

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  • Louise Wilkinson

    Square Peg, Round Hole

    "Louise is the Head of Information and Learning for the Child Brain Injury Trust, a national charity that supports families affected by childhood acquired brain injury.
    Louise has been working with and training professionals in the field of ABI for over 10 years, and is often asked to speak at Conferences and Events.
    She has been instrumental in highlighting the issues of childhood acquired brain injury (ABI) and the links with offending behaviours. She is founder member of the Criminal Justice and Acquired Brain Injury Interest Group (CJABIIG), and won the Stephen MacAleese Award for Inspiration by an Individual in the field of ABI, for her work in this area. 

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  • Jean Gross

    The state of the nation for communication

    Jean is a national expert on special educational needs and has frequently acted in an advisory capacity to government. She was until 2011 the government’s Communication Champion for children and young people, and recently chaired of the Bercow Ten Years On review of services for SLCN.  Previously she headed the Every Child a Reader and Every Child Counts one-to-one tuition programmes, and was Senior Director within the National Strategies, responsible for work on overcoming barriers to achievement. She is the author of numerous articles and best-selling books on SEN, including Beating Bureaucracy in SEN (NASEN/Routledge, 3rd edn. 2015) and Time to Talk (nasen/Routledge, 2nd edn. 2017). She was awarded a CBE in the 2011 New Year’s honours list, for services to education.

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  • Ali Fiddy

    Common misconceptions about the legal framework for supporting children and young people with SEND

    Ali Fiddy is the Chief Executive of IPSEA, a charity that provides free, independent, legally-based advice and support to families of children with special educational needs and/or a disability. Ali is a qualified solicitor with extensive casework and policy experience in the fields of education, community care, mental health and public law. She has spent many years working in the not-for-profit sector, including as Head of Legal at Mind, Assistant Director of Legal Services at NYAS and Deputy Practice Manager at the Children’s Legal Centre. 

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  • Kevin Kibble

    Nurture and It's Impact

    "Kevin Kibble is Chief Executive at the Nurture Group Network the national charity promoting nurture practice in education especially for children and young people affected by social, emotional and/or mental health issues.
    Kevin was born in Suffolk and trained as an engineer before pursuing a successful career in publishing. Prior to joining NGN in January 2013, Kevin was Chief Executive at Caspari Foundation, a charity providing educational psychotherapy for children & young people who need help to overcome emotional barriers to learning & development, and prior to that Chief Executive at Transplant Sport UK a charity promoting organ donation and transplantation using the British Transplant Games to highlight the benefits.
    Kevin has over 30 years’ experience in management, communications and marketing, 18 of which have been working in, or in support of, the voluntary sector. Kevin is passionate about the power of education in effecting societal change, he is also a regular presenter at conferences where strategic management and individual giving are important elements. Kevin is a Fellow and founding trustee of The Chartered College of Teaching, an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Fundraising (IoF), and Chair of the IoF Nominations Committee. Additionally he is an executive coach and mentor with team and individual performance his major interests. Kevin also has the misfortune of being a long-standing member of Saracens Rugby Football Club.

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  • Margaret Mulholland

    Making the Most of Partnerships: Strategic working in challenging times

    "Margaret Mulholland is Director of Development & Research at Swiss Cottage School and leads the Swiss Cottage Teaching School Alliance of mainstream and special schools. 
    A leading advocate for the role SEND settings play in improving understanding of inclusive pedagogy for all teachers, Margaret supports organisations in strengthening the integration of SEND into Initial Teacher Training and Early Career Teaching. She is passionate about ITT enabling all teachers to teach all children.
    Margaret is the SEND Representative on the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) Council and sits on the Universities’ Council for the Education of Teachers (UCET) Executive Committee.

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Please note that speakers are subject to change and all views expressed are speaker views only.