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Conference for Co-curricular Deputy Heads

Wednesday, 19 June 2019 at Hilton London Olympia

Conference for Co-Curricular Deputy Heads – Wednesday 19 June 2019

Supporting Co-Curricular provision is an increasingly complex issue.  As school programmes become more extensive and intricate, taking place in an increasing variety of venues, the task of managing it all becomes more challenging.  

There is a delicate balance of providing as rich a programme as possible, and yet ensuring that there is time available to accommodate everything. Inevitably, there are conflicts, and preventing, minimising and resolving these is important in maintaining morale and goodwill.  John Neal’s keynote speech will suggest how this delicate task might be best approached.

Much co-curricular provision is an attempt to meet market demand. Understanding the opinions and aspirations of parents is essential when making programme decisions. Russell Speirs will present the robust science of what ten years of research into parent attitudes has revealed, and establish some facts upon which the programme can be built.

Many activities take place away from school sites, and managing risk in different environments becomes a regular challenge.  Professor David Ball is a specialist in this field and will explain current legislation, and provide advice in interpreting this.

Co-Curricular activity is different in all schools, as are the concerns of those who manage them. The afternoon therefore provides a choice of seminars to allow delegates to pursue specific interests and concerns.

The Conference will also provide an opportunity to share experiences, consider case studies and network with like minded professionals in what is an emerging field of educational leadership.


Conference assembles

Managing and Resolving Conflicting Staff Interests 
with John Neal

Managing Risk Outside the Classroom
with Professor David Ball

Refreshment break

What Research says that Parents Want from Co-Curricular Activity
with Russell Speirs

The Future of Team Games in Schools
with Neil Rollings

Restaurant Lunch

Optional Seminar Programme
Delegates may choose ONE of the following sessions, which will occur simultaneously

either Managing the Co-Curricular Programme through SOCS 
with James Kershaw-Naylor

or Creating an Integrated Timetable of Co-Curricular Activity
with Rick Sellers

or Developing Resilience through Outdoor Activities
with Martin Chester

or Building a School-wide Culture of Health and Fitness
with Neil Rollings

Conference disperses


1 place £185 2 places £309

Conference runs 9.30am – 3.30pm. Price includes lunch, refreshments and notes. Excludes VAT.


John Neal

John is Professor of Practice, Sports Business Performance at Ashridge Business School. He teaches leadership, team dynamics, coaching, change and personal performance. He is also Head of Coach Development at the England Cricket Board, having experience of working with elite international sports teams as a consultant psychologist responsible for organisational dynamics and the individual performance of players and coaches.

Professor David Ball

David is Professor of Risk Management at Middlesex University. He has a doctorate in physics and has worked in local government, industry and academia. His interest for many years has been decision making, particularly in relation to assessing and managing risks of all kinds, from nuclear to flooding and food. Of late his interest has focused on beyond-the-conventional-workplace, or ‘public,’ hazards, including sports and adventure activities, and in 2011 he co-authored the book ‘Public safety and risk assessment.’ This takes a multidisciplinary look at risk assessment and decision making including scientific aspects, law, ethics and philosophical considerations. In his spare time David is a keen orienteer and hill walker.

Russell Speirs
Russell Speirs

Russell is the founder of RSAcademics, which is a marketing consultancy which specializes in enabling independent schools to thrive. Part of this provision is a parents survey called Schoolpulse, which enables schools to judge satisfaction in a number of areas, and benchmark themselves against competitors. He holds a first class degree from Oxford, and was the first ever marketing Director at Uppingham School.

Rick Sellers
Rick Sellers

Rick was one of the UK’s first Co-Curricular Assistant Heads, a role he held for the last 18 years of his 30 year career at Bristol Grammar School. He had previously been Director of Sport at the same school. He has long been a passionate advocate of the educational benefit of activities beyond the classroom. He now advises schools and trains the next generation of postholders.

Martin Chester

Martin was formerly Chief Instructor at the National Mountain Centre at Plas-y-Brenin. He is a mountaineer of worldwide experience, and a specialist in the ways in which adventure experience improves performance, mental robustness and wellbeing. As an adviser, he conducts research, provides critical evaluation and gives guidance to National Governing Bodies across the sector.

Neil Rollings

Neil was in charge of rugby at four independent schools over a 21 year career, including 10 years as Head Coach at Sedbergh.  He also coached North Schools and England Schools’ President’s XV.  He now advises independent schools on the development of sports coaching programmes, and is a member of the RFU Technical Advisory Group


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