Established organisations that provide information and support for the development and implementation of Forest School.
Forest School Association FSA
“The professional body and UK-wide voice for Forest School, promoting best practice, cohesion and ‘quality Forest School for all’.
FSA aims to provide a nationwide base for Forest School Practitioners and those interested in Forest School and works to
- develop & maintain the curriculum content for approved Forest School qualifications
- increase opportunities for people to experience quality Forest School in the UK
- provide a central point for collecting, storing & sharing information about Forest School & good practice in Forest School (including notes on good practice, advice on choosing leaders, and advice on choosing trainers)
- stimulate, store & share practitioner & academic research & learn from it
- work collaboratively with other organisations with similar goals & in related areas.
“We are open to all levels of Forest School professional and all those interested in providing and growing opportunities for people to experience quality Forest School within our UK nations.”
Forest Education Network FEN
The Forest Education Network seeks to engage more young people in forest and woodland environments by supporting delivery of education in forest and woodland settings, networking and sharing good practice, and facilitating communication between the sectors and practitioners involved.
As a free networking organisation, FEN largely provides an information, signposting and support service for members that are themselves directly involved with providing or promoting forest education opportunities.
FEN is hosted by the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom (CLOtC).
The Forest Education Network covers activities and networks in England. For information about Scotland and Wales see below.
Forest School Wales
“Forest School Wales is a practitioners network working to ensure that throughout Wales there is sustainable Forest School provision supported by a national network that will nurture the development of projects, offer advice, provide resources, guide best practice and provide continuing professional development.
As a voice for Forest School in Wales we involve members in our regional networking & skillshare gatherings, meetings and online resources while keeping them up to date on current legislation and other events relevant to Forest School. We also help connect members to other organisations involved in Forest School related activities.
We don’t run training or Forest School sessions ourselves.”
Outdoor Learning Wales
Outdoor Learning Wales (OLW) is a national network that aims to increase the understanding, appreciation and sustainable use of Wales’ natural environment.
OLW supports regional network groups working towards:
• developing environmental awareness by understanding, appreciating and using Wales’ natural resources sustainably
• increasing first-hand outdoor learning opportunities in and about the natural environment
• improving physical and emotional well-being through opportunities in the natural environment.
OLW supports individuals and groups who are involved in outdoor learning at a local level. These groups are independent, locally managed and free to join. Members share information and develop resources to deliver projects and events.
OWL Outdoor & Woodland Learning Scotland
OWL Scotland is dedicated to increasing the use of Scotland’s outdoor environments for learning.
Learning outdoors, be in in playgrounds, towns, cities, parks or our stunning natural environments, actively engages young people and connects their broader learning with the world around them.
OWL Scotland is supported by Forestry Commission Scotland and evolved out of the Forest Education Initiative (FEI) which has run successfully for over 20 years.
Nationally OWL Scotland supports outdoor and woodland learning for local OWL groups through provision of :
- networking opportunities
Other related organisations
Not strictly Forest School, but with a similar ethos…
American Forest Kindergarten Association
‘Uniting early childhood educators, parents, policy-makers, and other stakeholders in the interest of encouraging children to become attuned with their surrounding natural environment and the American landscape.’
Forest Childcare Association
Childminders giving small children the opportunity to spend time in the great outdoors on a regular basis – members can become Forest Childcare Providers.
Forest Kindergarten Association
Directory & voice of forest kindergartens across the UK – preschool education where children are encouraged to play, explore and learn in a forest or natural environment. also known as a nature nursery, outdoor nursery, or forest preschool.