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Deeper Discovery of the Curriculum through the power of reading

Join us for an opportunity to be inspired, reflect on the subject of reading and the benefits of reading across the curriculum.

At every level of the curriculum, the importance of being a fluent reader cannot be understated. Not only does reading unlock access to the breadth of the curriculum in every phase of education, but students begin to plumb the depths of what each subject has to offer if they can read about its intricacies.

Our annual conference will be exploring the power of reading in supporting children to dig deeper into subjects, and how as educators we can foster positive and aspirational reading cultures as children take each step along their individual journeys. With more confidence in reading, we will delve into how lessons can become more knowledge rich and engaging for each child we work with.

You’ll explore a dynamic range of CPD filled sessions. As always, our conference is completely free to attend, with some funding opportunities available to eligible schools. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to see what we can offer you.


It is an in-person event on the 27th February 2024, starting at 9:30am finishing at 4:00pm and is free of charge. 

Guest Speakers

We have a great line up of speakers for you! Join Dame Ruth Miskin, and Debbie Thomas from the Open University for live sessions and Q&As.

Hosted by our English Hub Lead - Nina Rothery.

David Baddiel
Special Guest - David Baddiel
Live Q & A

2024 marks the ten-year anniversary of the brilliantly funny, bestselling children’s novel, The Parent Agency, by highly acclaimed author, comedian and screenwriter, David Baddiel.

This epic wish-fulfilment adventure, set for publication on the 15th February includes two bonus chapters which feature two songs from The Parent Agency musical stage adaptation which is currently in the making.

Since David Baddiel first made his debut into children’s books in 2014, his books have celebrated exceptional success and growth in the UK and international markets – with TCM sales of over 1.5 million copies and translated into 29 languages.

His books have received critical acclaim and won some of children’s books’ highest accolades including the inaugural Laugh Out Loud Award for The Parent Agency. Through chart toppers like Birthday Boy, Head Kid and Future Friend, David’s children’s books continue to capture the hearts of children year on year.

Dame Ruth Miskin Picture
Dame Ruth Miskin
Reading changes everything

Ruth has made significant contribution to teaching children to read across the country, using techniques she developed as a headteacher in Tower Hamlets. She believes that every child can and must learn to read. Over the last two decades, her time has been devoted to developing Read Write Inc. This has been adopted by over 7000 schools across the UK and worldwide.

Since 1997, successive governments have drawn on her expertise in the teaching of literacy. She advised on the Rose Review into the teaching of reading, the phonics screening check, the National Curriculum and Lord Bew’s SATs Review Committee. She also ran the English Hubs training centre and co-wrote the DfE’s Reading Framework.

She received a damehood in the New Year’s honours list.

Ivor Baddiel
Ivor Baddiel
Live Q & A

Ivor Baddiel is a scriptwriter and author. He’s written for some of the biggest shows on British television including The BAFTAs, The Voice, The National Television Awards and The Coronation Concert. He is also the author of twenty-three books for both children and adults.

Anne Harvey
Anne Harvey
Working Out the Words on the Page

After two decades teaching in primary schools in Birmingham and Somerset, Anne became a Primary English Adviser for Somerset LA and then, since 2010, has been an independent consultant working across the south-west of England.

She has worked with the Somerset Literacy Network and, as well as supporting primary schools, has worked across Early Years and into KS3. Anne has led training for a range of ITT providers, is an accredited trainer for Speech and Language UK and is an Evidence Lead in Education (English) for the Somerset Research School.

She is perhaps most delighted of all when children remember her as Thannisara Storysharer!

Becky Gibbs
Becky Gibbs
Read to Succeed in Maths

Becky Gibbs is a primary school teacher and Maths lead with almost 20 years experience. She began her career in London before relocating to Somerset. During her teaching career, she has predominantly worked in schools with high levels of pupil premium and disadvantage and is passionate about equity for all pupils.

Becky is also a Mastery Readiness Lead for the Boolean Maths Hub where she works with Headteachers, Maths Leads and teachers to overcome barriers and teach mathematics through a mastery approach.

Debbie Thomas Picture
Debbie Thomas
Reading for Pleasure

Debbie is a Lecturer in Reading for Pleasure with the Open University RfP team, working to promote RfP research and pedagogy, through their flagship Reading Schools Programme and a national network of Teachers’ Reading Groups. She has always enjoyed reading and is now privileged to have a job where she has to read children's books all the time!

Debbie has a degree in English and Primary Education and has a post graduate diploma in reading and action research, which mirror her passion for children’s literature and ensuring all pupils achieve well in this subject. She has over 25 years’ experience as a teacher and consultant, specialising in English. This includes extensive experience of supporting a wide range of schools and settings with all aspects of teaching, leading and inspecting English and assessment. Recent roles have included: Lead School Improvement Advisor for English, working across two London boroughs, working as an NPQ facilitator and phonics specialist for the Wandle Teaching School Alliance and being a Regional Associate for The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education.

Her areas of expertise span strategic leadership of all phases of English, reading for pleasure pedagogy and practice, the design and delivery of CPD, leading strategic reviews of practice and the implementation of assessment and effective practice.

Jon Eaton
Jon Eaton
An Introduction to Reading Fluency

Jon is Director of Kingsbridge Research School and Research Lead for Education South West, working with schools and other improvement partners in the South West to broaden schools' understanding of evidence and to provide access to guidance, training and support. Jon is working with the EEF to co-author the next iteration of the EEF's implementation guidance.

Zoe Milligan
Zoe Milligan
An Introduction to Reading Fluency

Zoe Milligan is Assistant Head at Oldway Primary School, SLT at Riviera Education Trust, an English SLE and an Evidence Lead for Kingsbridge Research School. Zoe has worked with the Research School since 2016, designing and leading large-scale programmes focused on improving primary literacy.

Katie Nuttall
Katie Nuttall
Science Stories: BFG

Katie is an Education Coordinator at the Royal Society of Chemistry covering south west England. She offers local support to everyone involved in teaching chemistry and science, including primary science.

We provide professional learning and development opportunities for teachers, and work in partnership with local STEM and education-focused organisations to encourage engagement with the chemical sciences.

Prior to working at the RSC Katie was a secondary chemistry teacher working in both the south west and south east England.

Sarah Hercod
Sarah Hercod
Creating an Effective Reading Curriculum in the Early Years

Sarah Hercod is a Primary Teacher with expertise in Early Years and Outdoors. Sarah is a Qualified Teacher of Deaf Children and Young People and is the Area SENDCo for the Early Years South West Stronger Practice Hub (covering Cornwall, Devon, Plymouth, Torbay, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole). Sarah strongly advocates for keeping the curriculum door open to curiosity, social interaction and inclusion.


You’ll have the opportunity to network with colleagues and take key messages and strategies back with you. The day will centre around the role of reading and its profound impact not just in ‘English’ lessons, but across the breadth of the whole curriculum – laying the foundations for children to succeed across subjects.