Researchers present at Forest School Research Symposium

CCRI researchers Dr Demelza Jones and Dr Alice Goodenough attended the Forest School Association Research Symposium at the University of Liverpool, where they presented a paper from the project: Impacts of socio-economic context on Forest School and Outdoor Learning in Gloucestershire state primary schools.

Working with University of Gloucestershire Primary Education Lecturer, Clare Harris, Alice and Demelza’s research draws on practitioner insights and school survey and interview data from varied school demographic contexts, to understand if known broader social inequalities in access to nature and green space are challenged or reproduced in school settings. They find that childhood nature deprivation outside school cross-cuts socio-economic contexts and rural-urban settings in complex and highly localised forms, and that school is increasingly seen as the primary site of childhood nature engagement and ‘levelling-up’ children’s nature access. But this importance isn’t mirrored in resourcing and security of provision. With school budgets in crisis, volunteerism and goodwill is essential to maintaining Forest School or Outdoor Learning provision in many settings; with schools in less-disadvantaged contexts better positioned to mobilise this from their school community.

You can find more about previous research conducted by Demelza and Alice on the University of Gloucestershire’s Research Repository.