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Themed talk times

The School of Education is committed to sharing research-informed practice from expert colleagues both at St Mary's and in our partnership schools. 

Themed talk times are hosted virtually and all interested colleagues are invited to attend. Recordings of our themed talk times are available on this page and also added to our research-informed CPD library.

Upcoming themed talk times

Preparing trainee teachers to meet the intersectional needs of children and young people with SEND with Julia James and Suzanna Challenger, Orchard Hill College and Academy Trust

Timing to be confirmed. Join this themed talk time

Previous themed talk times

Embracing artificial intelligence with Sam Lovatt, Lecturer in Primary Computing and Dr Clare Martin, Senior Lecturer in Education, St Mary's University

Sam Lovatt and Dr Clare Martin consider the evolving place of artificial intelligence in our classrooms and the importance of practitioners embracing the possibilities presented by new technology. If you are interested in further information about the ongoing research at St Mary's around AI in education, please contact Sam (

Counting the cost of cuts: how austerity increases inequality with Dr Viki Veale, Senior Lecturer in Primary Education, St Mary's University

Dr Viki Veale, Senior Lecturer in the School of Education, considers the inequalities presented by cuts to educational funding and the impact this has on the most vulnerable learners in our schools. Exploring policy, adverse childhood experiences, the care system, and the wider profession, Viki provides insight into how we can work to promote good outcomes for all pupils.

Promoting emotional wellbeing in the post-pandemic classroom with George McWilliams, Chinthurst School 

George McWilliams, Chinthurst School, joins a themed talk time to share how the Zones of Regulation have been implemented in a school-wide effort to promote the emotional wellbeing in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. George shares insight into the structure, content, and impact of the approach and considers how it has improved pupils' ability to be ready for learning. 

Retrieval practice and knowledge organisers with Laura Smith, Poulton Lancelyn Primary School

Laura Smith, class teacher and St Mary's alumnus, shares the way retrieval practice is planned and implemented in her setting to promote effective learning. In addition, Laura shares how working walls and knowledge organisers are employed as strategies to promote progress, effective planning, and communication with parents and carers.


Mental health in schools with Sophie McGeogh, Deputy Headteacher & Designated Safeguarding Lead, Hollyfield School

Sophie McGeogh, Deputy Headteacher & Designated Safeguarding Lead, Hollyfield School leads this themed talk time concerning mental health in schools and considerations for practitioners. This important content explores implications for students, staff and wider school communities. 


An introduction to speech, language, and communication: perspectives from a speech and language therapist with Alex Porter, Cognus

Alex Porter, Speech and Language Therapist with Cognus, leads this themed talk time with an introduction to speech, language, and communication needs and how these can present themselves in the classroom. With coverage of the different aspects that make up effective communication, this discussion prompts considerations for work with individual learners.

Helping individual learners to thrive: perspectives from a speech and language therapist with Alex Porter, Cognus

In the second part of Alex Porter's input on speech, language, and communication, we are introduced to a range of strategies and considerations for practitioners to apply to their setting. Alex builds on the previous session's overview to explore how teachers can promote success for individual learners in their class. 


Supporting the disadvantaged child: perspectives from the classroom with Alex Bartle, Senior Teacher and Upper KS2 and Overall KS2 Phase Lead, St Peter's Catholic Primary School

Alex Bartle from St Peter's Catholic Primary School joins us for a themed talk time focusing on the support for children who are disdvantaged in their education. Alex shares a perspective from her role as Deputy DSL, Phase Lead and Year 6 class teacher along with strategies for promoting success and belonging for their pupils.