Highlights from the Schools & Academies Show Birmingham 2023
On 22nd November 2023, we saw the UK’s largest gathering of senior School and MAT leaders and decision makers at the NEC, as almost 3,000 attendees gathered for the annual Schools & Academies Show Birmingham.
After 12 years of providing thought provoking insights, practical advice and sharing best practice, the Schools & Academies Show is now well established as the go-to event for serious discussions and networking around how to tackle the biggest challenges facing the education sector.
This bi-annual event takes place in London in May and in Birmingham in November, and this year’s Birmingham iteration of the show saw our biggest attendance since pre-Covid, which is a testament to the innovative exhibitors being showcased, as well as the carefully curated line-up of insightful speakers and practical content being provided.
With a likely election in 2024, the Schools & Academies Show took the opportunity to showcase representatives from the three major parties on the Main Stage to give their advice and guidance on the biggest priorities for education moving forward into what will be an exciting year. Representatives included:
- Baroness Barran, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Minister for the School System and Student Finance, Department for Education
- Catherine McKinnell MP, Shadow Schools Minister, The Labour Party
- Munira Wilson MP, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Education
During Baroness Barran’s keynote address, when asked about a possible drop in school numbers nationally, the Baroness stated there were no plans currently for “significant school closures”.
“There has been quite a lot of discussion and some pressure that we should close schools because of the change in pupil numbers,” she said.
“And I think that there’s a real caution about that because when we came into government in 2010, we inherited a period where school places were being closed. We then had to build places for a million children. That was an extremely expensive thing to do.”
Across the rest of the show, visitors were able to pick and choose the most relevant topics, speakers and exhibitors to visit and enjoy, with 9 themed content theatres, networking features including the CPL Village and Government Education Village, over 200 innovative suppliers showcasing products, services and solutions which solve all of the biggest challenges facing Schools and MATs.
After such an eventful show, and jam-packed day of content the day ended with a networking hour, giving all attendees the chance to summarise and absorb the day’s information.
The next Schools & Academies Shows take place on 1st May 2024 at ExCeL, London and will feature exciting new additions including the School Estates Summit, EdTech Innovate and the SEND Conference. You can register your interest in joining us here.
About the Events:
The Schools & Academies Show is the UK’s leading education policy event, tackling the biggest topics and changes across the sector in order to ensure better outcomes for pupils and staff and is organised by GovNet Education.