Annual Boarding Conference 2024

Posted: 24th June 2024

On June 4-5 the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) welcomed over 120 delegates and 18 exhibitors along to London Heathrow’s Hilton Hotel for the Annual Boarding Conference.

The theme of the two-day conference was “Future-proof your boarding” and kicked off with a warm welcome from David Walker, Executive Director, Boarding and Director BSA/TIOB, followed by an address from Chris Wheeler, Conference Chair 2024, Chair, TIOB and Principal, Monkton Combe School.

The keynote address was delivered by Lee Mears, Executive Coach, The Preston Associates and former England rugby player, who captivated the audience with insights on the meaningful and positive impact teachers and boarding staff have on children.

Following the keynote, a series of engaging sessions took place alongside networking opportunities throughout the day, including:

  • Trouble sleeping with Dr Lindsay Browning, CEO, Trouble Sleeping
  • Inspection and compliance with Sarah Griffiths, Deputy Head, (Pastoral & Wellbeing), Caterham School, Rhiannon Williams, Senior Director (Safeguarding, Legal and Complaints), Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) and Alex Large, Head of Boarding, The Royal School Wolverhampton
  • Update from the BSA Foundation with Martin Reader, Headmaster, Cranleigh School
  • Wellbeing – supporting everyone in the boarding community with Alicia Drummond, Founder, Wellbeing Hub and Teen Tips
  • BSA Research Fellowship with Madeleine Killacky, Housemistress and Mathematics Teacher, Moreton Hall.

Day one concluded with a drink’s reception amongst exhibitors, accompanied by a wonderful Chamber Choir performance from St George’s School, Windsor Castle. Delegates enjoyed time to relax during a fantastic evening dinner with thanks to  after-dinner speaker Areti Bizior, Head of Luckley House School.

Day two began with a discussion on the Boarding Staff Survey Findings with Gaelle Sullivan, Director of Research, Inclusion and IELA. Then moved swiftly onto our Horizon scanning in boarding with David Walker, Executive Director, Boarding and Director BSA/TIOB.

Our workshop sessions allowed delegates to discuss some key areas within boarding and raise questions. These sessions included:

  • Working with gender-questions pupils with Ben Collingwood, Partner, Schools & Charities, Moore Barlow, Adam McRae-Taylor, Legal Director, Schools & Charities, Moore Barlow and Joanna Lada-Walicki, Head of Schools & Charities, Moore Barlow
  • Heath and wellbeing with Lee Glaser, Group Services Director, BSA Group
  • Current online safety including sextortion with Will Gardner, CEO, Childnet International
  • Marketing and branding your boarding house(s) with Ed Venables, Head, Eagle House School.

Other key sessions included Managing the youth mental health crisis with Jane Lunnon, Head, Alleyn’s School and Is boarding inclusive? with Tyler John, Head of Diversity, Equality and Inclusion, St Paul’s School and Naima Charlier, Director of Equality, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Responsibility, Wellington College.

Categories: BSA News