Dr Amanda French
has worked in higher, further, adult education and the voluntary sector in the West Midlands for 30 years. She has worked in partnerships and taught across a wide range of settings and agencies including schools, community centres
, voluntary and community groups, as well as colleges and universities. Amanda is currently Head of Professional Development, Research
and Enterprise at Birmingham City University’s School of Education. Her particular research interests include child-led research, academic writing practices and development, social justice in education and creative critical pedagogy and methodologies and she has published and presented on her work nationally and internationally.
Dr Matt O’Leary is a Reader in Education at Birmingham City University. He has worked as a teacher, teacher educator, head of department and educational researcher in colleges, schools and universities in England, Mexico and Spain for over twenty years. Many of his research interests are rooted in the field of teacher education, particularly exploring the relationship between education policy and the continuous professional development of teachers. He is internationally recognised for his work on classroom observation, which has been instrumental in challenging engrained orthodoxies and influencing policy makers and national debates.