5 - 7 April, 2022

What Works? Education Conference

The What Works? Education Conference is designed for educational publishers, edtech organisations and educationalists seeking insights into international developments impacting their industries and markets.

Distinguished speakers from around the world will discuss how they, and schools they work with, have responded to the challenges of lockdown and remote and hybrid learning as a result of COVID-19. Each will present the different strategies and technologies used related to the contexts they work in, the insights gained into what worked, and what will be retained going forward to address the challenges and optimise the opportunities that have emerged.


13:00 – 13:05



Andy Ventris, Event Director, The London Book Fair

13:05 – 13:15

Introduction to Conference

Lindsay Nadin, Director, Primary & Direct to Learner Pearson UK Schools, Pearson UK Schools 

13:15 – 13:55


Is Digital Education the New Normal?

  • Digital Learning: Blended, Hybrid, Remote
  • Accelerating Digital Transformation for Students,Teachers and Parents
  • The Future of Education

Dr Neelam Parmar, Director of Digital Learning and Education, Harrow International Schools Asia.

13:55 – 14:30

Responding to The Need for Remote Learning in Uganda: Lessons Learned and Building Back Better

Emily Goulborn, Head of Partnerships & Daniel Omaya Head of PEAS School Network, Uganda from Promoting Equality in African Schools (PEAS)

14:30 – 14:55

Coffee Break Chat

Join the breakout room to meet other attendees and discuss today’s sessions

14:55 – 15:15

Insights from Case Studies and Research with Schools During Lockdown

Sam Derby, Oriel Square Publishing & Strategy

15:15 – 16:00

Opportunities and Challenges for Teachers and Students in The Post-Lockdown Classroom

The session will explore the possibilities that opened up through the remote learning experience, the importance of collaboration and connection both during the lockdown and moving forward in supporting each other and the challenge of tackling learning gaps.

Rob Chambers, National Geography Lead Astrea Academy Trust/Head of Geography St Ivo Academy

16:00 – 16:25

Panel Discussion: Edtech That Works – Lessons from Edtech Suppliers and The Classroom

  • Dan Sandhu, CEO, Sparx
  • Katie Blainey, Publishing Director for RS Assessment, Hodder Education
  • Dr Kimberly Mueller, Professional Learning Manager, Twig Education

16:25 – 16:30

Closing Remarks

Lindsay Nadin, Director, Primary & Direct to Learner Pearson UK Schools, Pearson UK Schools

Speaker information

Director, Primary & Direct to Learner Pearson UK Schools, Pearson UK Schools

Lindsay Nadin is Director of Primary Learning Services and Direct to Learner, within Pearson’s UK Schools business. Lindsay has 16 years’ experience within educational publishing, working in Primary, Secondary and International roles. With her specialism in primary reading, Lindsay was instrumental in developing Pearson’s ground-breaking reading programme, Bug Club, and more recently, led the team behind the DfE-accredited primary maths programme, Power Maths. To support Pearson’s mission of helping people make progress in their lives through learning, Lindsay’s team are committed to ensuring Pearson’s products and services draw on a solid evidence base and are continually evaluated to ensure they provide a positive impact on learner outcomes.

Director of Digital Learning and Education, Harrow International Schools Asia

Dr. Neelam Parmar currently works as Director of Digital Learning and Education for AISL Harrow Schools in Asia. Previously, Neelam worked as Director of Digital Learning and Innovation at Ashford School and as Educational Technologist for The United Learning Group of schools. 

Neelam is an award-winning professional, international researcher, author, thought leader and speaker for the use of educational technology, digital pedagogy and innovative curriculum within education. She is also the author of the ‘Digital Literacy in the Primary’ series and ‘Digital Parenting’ book, locally published and distributed globally. 

As an advisor, in the UK and internationally, Neelam has engaged with the DfE EdTech Leadership Group, EdTech Impact workshops, The @womenEd_Tech movement and is also a member of the Bett Awards judging panel. Neelam has consulted for groups of schools, ministries of government and has supported the development of large scale blended, hybrid and remote learning education solutions worldwide. 

 Head of Partnerships, Promoting Equality in African Schools (PEAS)

Emily joined PEAS in 2019 to lead on the delivery of the organisation’s income generation strategy. Emily is responsible for consolidating and growing income to take PEAS’ Ugandan and Zambian networks to full financial sustainability.

Prior to joining PEAS, Emily worked for a number of UK and International organisations including The Prince’s Trust, Impetus-The Private Equity Foundation and Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor. For over a decade, she has led professional teams to win and develop profitable, long-term partnerships with corporates, trust & foundations and high net worth individuals.

As a member of the Global Strategy Team, she supports the Chief Executive and fellow Senior Leadership Team members with strategic direction and leadership of the organisation.  

 Head of PEAS School Network, Uganda, Promoting Equality in African Schools (PEAS)

Daniel joined PEAS in 2015 as an Educational Specialist taking lead in delivering Teacher Professional Development. Since then, he has held several roles including Education Quality Manager and Head of Programs before transitioning in 20219 into his current role as Head of PEAS School Network in Uganda.

Daniel provides strategic leadership to PEAS School Network teams which involves leading on the design and implementation of PEAS’ network support strategy and education approach. He also supports the PEAS school network in Uganda to increase access for more marginalised students and improve education quality.  

Oriel Square Publishing & Strategy

Sam Derby has more than 20 years of experience in educational publishing, having worked as editor, publisher, head of department and director at Pearson and Nelson Thornes. He takes an active interest in education policy and research, serves as Chair of Governors at a local-authority maintained East Oxford primary school, and is a past chair of the BESA / EPC maths panel. Sam is a director and co-founder of Oriel Square Ltd, the Oxford-based educational publishing and strategy company.

Session will draw on research Oriel Square has been involved in with regard to the impact of COVID and illustrated with real projects emphasising the ‘what works’ and drawing out insights for future teaching and learning.

National Geography Lead Astrea Academy Trust/Head of Geography St Ivo Academy

Rob has 20+ years teaching experience and is Head of Geography at St Ivo Academy in St Ives, Cambridgeshire and has recently become National Geography Lead for Astrea Academy Trust. He is a member of the Geographical Association, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, and a Chartered Geographer. Rob has a strong interest in the use of ICT and online learning in supporting effective teaching and learning and spent 8 years as an Advanced Skills Teacher/ Lead Practitioner in Geography and ICT across the curriculum. Rob is a GA consultant and has acted as a Schools Programme Consultant for Geography for the Princes Teaching Institute. In 2019 Rob was awarded the Royal Geographical Society’s Ordnance Survey Award for excellence in Geography teaching at Secondary level.

CEO, Sparx

Dan has an extensive career in the education and technology sectors, both in the UK and internationally. Leading and guiding education teams around the world, Dan has previously been voted as one of Education Technology’s top 100 most influential leaders globally.  As a member of BESA’s Executive Council and having joined the Center for Universal Education’s Leadership Council, Dan is influencing the education and EdTech landscapes beyond his role at Sparx.


Dan’s breadth of experience in education is demonstrated through his role as a founding investor in Youth4work (a global vocational assessment platform with 3.6m users), and his work with Emerge Education and Teachers’ Media International. Dan was also Chairman and CEO of Digital Assess and sat on their advisory board, supporting the international partnership strategy. He also advised a $100m European technology business around their product, international growth and partnership strategy. Previously, Dan co-founded a London-based technology service business which grew to a team of 2,500 across Europe, set up an Indian business, co-founded and chaired a workforce and skills management business – SwiftShift – and much more.


Dan’s current role is focused on ensuring that Sparx will achieve sustainable impact in the delivery of maths education in the UK and internationally. Sparx focuses on the use of education technology and personalised learning to improve numeracy, and therefore life opportunities, for millions of learners around the world.

Publishing Director for RS Assessment, Hodder Education

Katie is Publishing Director for RS Assessment from Hodder Education, part of the Hodder Education Group, one of the most diverse educational publishers in the UK. Her experience spans primary, secondary and the independent sector publishing print and digital resources. She is passionate about developing resources that solve teachers' problems and save them time, whatever the delivery method. Katie’s team is focused on developing data-rich products and services that deliver insight and support decision making in schools to improve pupils’ learning.

Developing assessment resources has given Katie a heightened awareness of the challenges facing schools and in particular MATs, and how EdTech and other resources can truly make a difference in the classroom. Katie is a firm believer of high quality research and evidence to ensure informed decisions and to help influence educational stakeholders. She is a member of BESA’s Executive Council.

Katie will be drawing on the white papers she published this academic year, that provide insight in to the impact of school closures on primary school attainment, and reflecting on the launch of eduu.school a flexible online learning platform that helps connect learning for school, home and the future with integrated mental health and wellbeing support.