Headliners announced for South Yorkshire education festival

21st March 2019

Leading national figures from the field of education have been announced to speak at the first ever Hallam Festival of Education.

Baroness Estelle Morris (former Secretary of State for Education and Skills), Tracy Brabin MP (Shadow Minister for Early Years), Anne Longfield OBE (Children's Commissioner for England), Sir Tim Brighouse (former Schools Commissioner for London), the Rt Hon. David Laws (former Minister for Schools), Dan Jarvis MP (Sheffield City Region Mayor), and Amatey Doku (Deputy President at the National Union of Students) join the ever-growing festival line-up. More headline names are expected to be announced over the coming weeks. The Festival, which is sponsored by Tes and takes place 14-15 June at Sheffield Hallam University venues, will combine a festival-style atmosphere with stimulating debate about current and emerging challenges in education. The five new speakers announced today will join over 100 other speakers, groups and organisations from local, regional, national and international education systems for a range of events across the two days. Baroness Morris, a life peer in the House of Lords and Secretary of State for the Labour Party from 2001-02, said: "It is always a welcome initiative to bring people together, to share ideas and challenges about the future of education and the Hallam Festival of Education comes at a key time. "Whilst there is concern about the funding situations in schools, there is also a great deal of good work and new ideas that must be nurtured so that they can shape our future school system. "The Festival provides an excellent opportunity to bring together academics, teachers and all those interested in education to learn from each other and for this to have a positive impact on the children and young people in our schools." Other speakers already announced include Matt Hood (director at the Institute for Teaching), Ty Goddard (co-founder of The Education Foundation and chair of Edtech UK), Dame Alison Peacock (Chief Executive of the Chartered College of Teaching) and Ann Mroz (editor and digital publishing director of Tes). The Festival is being curated by South Yorkshire Futures, Sheffield Hallam's social mobility programme which is helping to improve attainment and raise aspirations for young people across South Yorkshire, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Greg Burke, Director of South Yorkshire Futures, said: "We are really excited to be bringing speakers of this calibre to South Yorkshire for the inaugural Sheffield Hallam Festival of Education. "Our region is taking a lead in developing new ways of thinking and working to ensure we can give our young people the best possible start in life. The festival is a fantastic opportunity to bring together influential figures from the English education system, alongside our colleagues on the ground, to ensure we keep encouraging and developing innovative solutions for challenges around attainment and aspiration." For more information about the festival and to get tickets visit the website. Sheffield Hallam University is the most prominent university in the UK for driving improvements in education and championing social mobility. From early years through to higher education, the Sheffield Institute of Education at Sheffield Hallam provides around 1,000 qualified teachers each year to the education system regionally and nationally. The University works with a range of partners to undertake world-leading education research to inform and influence practice and policy, including working with UK and international governments. For press information: Laura Burden in the Sheffield Hallam University press office on 0114 225 5301 or email l.s.burden@shu.ac.uk  

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