Pop Up Festival at an SEND School

Daniel Garbutt has been Head of English at Bradfields Academy, a large and successful special needs academy which caters for students aged 4-19, for the last two years. During that time, Bradfields has won four regional awards for their literacy and creativity initiatives including Kent’s ‘Most Inclusive School Award’ 2016 as well as recently achieving their first Outstanding Ofsted judgement.

The Pop Up Festival has become an integral part of both the academic year and the curriculum as a whole. At Bradfields Academy, the festival is supported across the board by teachers of all subjects. We have been running the Pop Up Event for three years now and every year it gets bigger and bigger. The wide range of authors and texts enable us to reach students of all levels and the resources available in the Pop Up Hub are a priceless way of introducing the texts in the months leading up to the event in manner that has become an embedded part of the English schemes of work. Students get incredibly excited leading up to the visits and the workshops never fail to live up to expectations. The variation of the different deliveries is perfectly suited to our complex needs students up to our GCSE students with each and every one of them gaining so much from the experience. It really brings alive the creative process in an accessible manner and I can honestly say it has been massively valuable to in developing a passion for reading, writing and illustrating across the academy that has been paramount in our rising levels of achievement but most importantly, the excitement shown by our students after meeting the incredible authors/illustrators who put so much into their workshops shows that memories are being made that will last them forever.