Independent Minds 2016 and 2018 were two very special events and my thanks go to all those who took part - either as presenters or delegates.  Both conferences offered a rare and genuinely exciting opportunity for schools to hear from each other about what really works on the ground. 

In total now, 15 presenting schools have shared their stories, demonstrating the impact they are having by focusing openly and creatively on helping young people to learn about and develop the intellectual qualities and skills that will allow them to thrive both in school and beyond. 

Feedback and scores for both events were outstanding and we are all delighted that everyone felt they got so much from the days. 


“Brilliant - best course I have been on.  Great variety of presentations at a cracking pace."

“Extremely informative.  A wonderful, relaxed and supportive environment where like-minded people shared some fabulous practice.”

“I will take away an enormous number of ideas to feed back to my school.”


“Thanks for a superb course with instantly applicable ideas relevant to all levels and ages.  Q&A very helpful, speakers informative and keynote inspiring.”

“Brilliant to hear accounts of ideas in practice.  A common theme, but infinite variation.”

“It is essential for all schools to take this approach in an increasingly stressful world.  It’s so positive.”

“We are often asked ‘so how will this work, who is already doing it?’ - this was an opportunity to see success and ask lots of questions.”

Independent Minds

C. J. Simister organised and was the Course Director of two conferences for the Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS):

Independent Minds 2016: From Rhetoric to Reality

London, 19th May 2016

Independent Minds 2018: Stories, Strategies and Shared Practice

London, 17th May 2018

These courses were open to IAPS and non-IAPS members

Follow the links for further information

Conference flyer 2016

Programme 2018

Short film: Highlights of the 2016 event

Comments about C J Simister:

“I would like to borrow her!  I wish all my team were here.”  (2016)

"A first-rate communicator and motivator." (2016)

"Practical strategies which empower staff." (2016)

“A truly inspirational woman who made everyone feel valued.” (2018)