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Ok so, my dh wants to set up a free or forest school and I’m wondering what kinda help or advice we can get.
We’ve been looking at the forest schools website and though it seems to imply you need to be trained, it doesn’t say that its compulsory, so do you? To set up or work in a forest school?
If we were to set up a free school then does he need a PCG (teaching degree)
Basically I think he wants to teach about working in the woods and sustainable woodland management, and basically getting kids out enjoying woodlands more.
Not sure if that makes any sense, but thought here would be a good starting point lol
I would definitely recommend the Forest School training before trying to start a FS. The ethos of Forest Schools is not just about Forestry. I don’t have much time now but have a search on here for Forest Schools and look at the information on the various Forest school training providers websites. Birmingham has a great Forest school cluster. I haven’t got links handy but they do all come in Google.
If your husband is interested in working with older children, there is a specific ‘Social Forestry’ section which looks really good.
Will try to add links later
think your big issue if you are not trained will be insurance. Its pretty expensive as it is but the forest schools organisation insures people whose qualifications they recognise at a good rate.
my kids go to a fantastic forest school, but its a lot of work. The woman who runs it is great, very very experienced. I’m a pretty relaxed parent about safety, but I’m aware that they are taking about 10 6-8 year olds up a remote hill for a day in all weathers and there is stuff that could go badly wrong. I’d want whoever was running any forest school my kids were in to be very aware, but also very very good at keeping control of the group especially in an emergency situation.
If you’re looking after kids for more than 2 hours a week you have various regulations you need to abide by-CRB checks, ratios, and so on.
Wonder if one way to do it might be to start with a course for the age group he’s interested in that doesn’t go over 2 hours a week-the regulations are less stringent then.
He doesn’t need a PGCE to set up a free school, iirc, but there’s LOADS of admin, paperwork etc. TBH think the big obstacle will be getting enough kids to pay for the school to run.