We are delighted that Bedford Free School is one of the first schools in the country to be selected to lead the Department for Education’s new Behaviour Hubs project.  The project, which started at the beginning of the summer term in 2021, aims to support 500 schools across the country that want to improve their behaviour and culture.

As a lead school, Bedford Free School will partner with other schools to form a collaborative hub, which involves working alongside schools to identify what improvements they wish to make, and support them in achieving and maintaining their vision through bespoke training, action planning and ongoing mentoring of school leaders.

Bedford Free School staff have expertise in establishing and sustaining systems and routines that promote positive behaviour, and as a result enjoys outstanding pupil conduct, which was highlighted in the schools recent Ofsted report:

“The very calm atmosphere at the school enables pupils to learn with great focus… Pupils work exceptionally well independently and are highly supportive of each other when working together in lessons.

Some pupils told us that joining this school has transformed the way they behave. They say that they now can do well in education and have improved life chances. Pupils feel safe and confident in the school’s orderly and purposeful learning environment.”

Leadership staff at Bedford Free School have also made a significant contribution to the Behaviour and Culture module of the national Exemplary Leadership Programme, and over the past three years, the school has welcomed over 300 school leaders who have visited to learn from their great practice.


“Achieving great school behaviour is complex and challenging. We have spent many years crafting an exemplary culture at BFS. We are excited to now be able to offer a supportive approach to other schools so that we can develop a whole school culture that means that pupils are happy, fulfilled, respectful, and can achieve their potential.


“For children to flourish, the conditions for learning must be effective.  We will open our doors to others to see how we do it, and work collaboratively to help ensure that in different contexts, common lessons can be learnt and all children get an even better deal.”


Jane Herron, Principal, Bedford Free School

“Without strong behaviour and culture, children can be held back from achieving their potential. We’re delighted to have been selected to be a behaviour hub lead, and look forward to working with other schools with humility – sharing what we do well and learning about them.

We’re completely committed to collaboratively improving the offer for all pupils and their families in our region.”

Stuart Lock, CEO, Advantage Schools


Jane Herron – Principal, Bedford Free School

Jane was one of the founder members of Bedford Free School and has in excess of twenty-five years teaching experience in secondary schools in Bedfordshire. She is also a qualified SENCo and drama teacher, and is passionate about creating the conditions for all pupils to achieve their absolute best. Jane has significant expertise in school leadership, particularly around creating systems and routines that support a safe and supportive learning environment.


Tom Wood – Behaviour Hub Lead and Vice Principal, Bedford Free School

Tom joined Bedford Free School as Assistant Principal in 2020 and became Vice Principal in 2022, and has extensive experience leading teaching and learning, curriculum and assessment, as well as behaviour and culture in schools across Bedfordshire.


Alice Damon – Key Stage 4 Lead, Bedford Free School

Alice is a longstanding staff member at Bedford Free School, where she has worked as a drama teacher and Head of Department before progressing to her current role on the senior leadership team.  Alice is responsible for the pastoral welfare and academic achievement of pupils in years 10 and 11.


Michael Cox – Key Stage 3 Lead, Bedford Free School

Michael is a very experienced school leader, having worked previously as a coach, PE teacher, Community Development Leader and Head of Department. Michael is responsible for the pastoral welfare and academic progress of pupils through their transition to Bedford Free School in Year 7 up to the end of Key Stage 3.


Further information

For more information about applying to the Behaviour School Hubs project, see the Department for Education’s website here

To arrange a visit to the school contact: Esther Logan

For an informal conversation about the support we can provide schools in establishing an excellent culture and behaviour outside of the behaviour hub project, contact Sallie Stanton