Current News and Events

Please note: We are in the process of updating and moving content from this site to the Derbyshire Services for Schools (S4S) Forest School Resource Pages.  

Derbyshire Forest School E News: 

If you would like to receive our e-newsletter please subscribe here. We normally email a couple of times per term with useful research, resources, dates of our cluster meetings and funding opportunities.

If you would like to be added to the directory below please send an email to

Autumn / Winter 2018

Thank you to everyone who contributed to a fantastic Forest School 2018. For notes and resources from the day and previous events please click across to the Derbyshire S4S Forest School Resource Page 


Search below for local schools and independent practitioners running Forest School Programmes in your area. If you would like to be added to the list please email details to

Upcoming Events in Derbyshire
  • Introduction to Forest School taster days

These one day introductory sessions are aimed at anyone considering beginning running Forest School programmes within their school or setting.


The day will:

  • Outline what Forest School is and the potential benefits of running programmes
  • Provide an opportunity to take part in a Forest School session within an established programme and discuss the value of these sessions with staff and pupils.
  • Provide a framework for initiating Forest School programmes within your own school or setting

Upcoming Dates:

15th October 2018 – The Duke Of Norfolk’s C Of E Primary School

Click here for more information and to book.

Local Cluster Group Meeting

Details of previous meetings can be found in this section Past events and cluster groups

Meetings are open to all as an opportunity to meet up with fellow local Forest School Practitioners.

Upcoming Meetings:

  • June 15th 2018, 4-5pm Bramley Vale Primary School, York Crescent, Chesterfield

If you would be happy to host a cluster meeting (usually 4-5.30pm) please get in touch

 Funding Opportunities
  • Forest School and Primary School Sport and PE Funding

For those of you seeking funding to either have a member of staff trained or for a member of staff to deliver Forest School programmes at a Primary School you may want to consider using the current Sport and PE funding. Forest School although perhaps not an obvious choice can offer a number of important health benefits including improved physical health, mental health and value for money in that it costs very little to run in the long term.

Focusing upon the stated purpose of this funding and the need for schools to demonstrate the impact of this spending we have put our heads together with the DCC School Sports Development Officer and have drafted an outline example case study of how Forest School might be eligible for a portion of the funds available within a school.

School X spent £1000 training one member of staff as a Level 3 Forest School Practitioner:  The trained member of staff ran sessions each week, all year round in a nearby woodland environment.  The Forest School sessions targeted the least active children and those with poor self-esteem who generally did not participate in additional physical activity or sports offers in the school.  The Forest School sessions included building self-confidence, self-esteem, co-operation and increasing levels of activity through – walking, climbing, running, jumping, team games and wider general health promotion including healthy eating and good mental health.  In the following years (at no additional cost) the Forest School Practitioner was able to continue to offer sessions to the target group and expand to offer sessions to other cohorts including an out of school ‘Fit for life’ club involving children and families from the community who were not motivated by traditional sport or outdoor physical activity and sessions for pupils to develop their leadership skills for those showing sporting promise. 

For more potential funding sources please visit the funding page

Forest School Training  taking place in and around Derbyshire 

The Forest School Association provides information about selecting a training course here

National Forest School Events and Information

Forest School Association

 Forest Education Network

Institute of Outdoor Learning

Council for Learning Outside the Classroom

First Aid Training 

  • Lea Green Development Centre This two day (16 hour) first aid course includes assessment for the Emergency First Response ‘Primary and Secondary Care’ and ‘Care for Children’ courses, which are valid for three years.  The course is aimed at staff who work with young people, are involved with DofE expeditions or Outdoor Activities.  The qualification obtained is appropriate for those supervising expeditions, Forest School programmes and also for most National Governing Body awards.

Elements of the course will involve working outside, whatever the weather.  Please come appropriately clothed, with boots/outdoor footwear and waterproofs.

Time:               9.30am – 5.30pm on both days

Location:         Lea Green Development Centre, Lea, Matlock, Derbyshire

Cost:                £120 (Derbyshire applicants)

£145 (Out of County applicants)

Please click here for upcoming course dates and more information.

News Items
  • Lea Primary featured in Reflections magazine

See page 78-82 of the digital edition here 

  •  Duke of Norfolk, All Saints and St Margaret’s Primary Schools

L3 Practitioner Chris Ellison is running Forest School at all 3 schools! Read all about it in the Glossop Chronicle.

  • Alfreton Park Special School celebrate the opening of their new Forest School site

Local company Eurocell have helped staff and students to create a fantastic Forest School base within Alfreton Park’s school grounds. The features included make great use of the space many of which could be added to any site – click here for more details Alfreton Park Special School Forest School Site Features

Eurocell-celebration assembly (14)

  • Lea Primary (Matlock) Judged Outstanding in Recent Ofsted Inspection

The ofsted inspector was invited to observe a Forest School session at Lea Primary and included the following comments in the final report:

Pupils’ attitudes to learning and their conduct in lessons and around the school are excellent. They are hugely respectful of others and of others’ feelings. They talk animatedly about how the personal skills developed through the ‘forest school’ work equip them for now and for later life. For example, they discussed how important it is to ‘get along’ with others, to do ‘jobs we might not necessarily like, but are important for harmonious living’, and to be confident in themselves without being ‘boastful’, because that would not help in later life. They talked about people being ‘dominant’ in some schools, but here ‘we learn to take turns, make a rota, be fair’.

 Outstanding provision is made for all pupils to learn indoors and out and to become increasingly aware of their place in society and the wider world. It starts with an excellent range of outdoor activities in Reception Year, which included making apple pies and ice-cream outside, and continues through to, for example, Year 2 searching for answers to calculations in the woods and the campfire activity observed in Year 6. The school’s very successful engagement with parents, carers, other schools, and external agencies contribute greatly to all of that.

Lea Primary School.  Ofsted Insepction dates: 10th-11th July 2012:  


One response

16 12 2013
Steve Taylor

My children did some Forest School Training @ (if you’re in the area, worth checking out!) and had a brilliant time. If you’re unsure whether your littl’uns will enjoy it or not, take my word for it, they will love it – and who cares if they get a bit dirty – they are kids, its what they do

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