About Us About Us About Us

About Us

Award-winning consultancy for schools, pre-schools and colleges

Hats Off to Learning

Challenging Learning is an independent consultancy founded by James Nottingham in 2005. We provide professional development training and resources for people working with 3-19 year olds. Our team of experienced teachers, leaders, researchers, and admin staff are based in the UK, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, and the USA.

Our many “hats” include specialisms in challenge, creativity, dialogue, feedback, growth mindsets, leadership, progress and teaching thinking.

We are also the official partners in Scandinavia for John Hattie’s Visible Learning, and are co-directors of P4C.com, the international cooperative for Philosophy for Children.

Everything we do is context-driven. We design keynote speeches, one-day events, accredited courses, and long-term professional development programmes for teachers, leaders, support staff (pedagogues), and parents.

Who Wears The Hats?

New-James.png (9) New-James-Fez.png (3)

James Nottingham

Executive Director

Founder of the company, teacher, author, and world-renowned keynote speaker

Read More
Martin Renton 1 Martin Renton 2

Martin Renton

Director of Consultancy, Training and Development

Ensures all our long-term projects happen with great quality. Also, our post-16 specialist & sought-after keynote speaker

Read More
MarianneSkogvoll 1 MarianneSkogvoll 2

Marianne Skogvoll

Senior Consultant & Regional Manager, Scandinavia

Project leader, adviser, evaluation-meister, and all-round superhero

Read More
Per_Jensen1 Per-Jensen2

Per Jensen

Consultant

An expert in Mindset theory, and fluent in Danish, Swedish and English, Per supports pre-schools, schools and gymnasiums right across Scandinavia.

Read More
Helen Richards 1 Helen Richards 2

Helen Richards

Director of Admin & Executive Assistant

Longest serving (suffering?) member of staff. On the Board of Directors and Head of Admin

Read More
Lesley_1.png Lesley_2.png

Lesley Roberts

Deployment & Evaluations Administrator

Does everything from deployment and workbook distribution to travel bookings, PA work and report typing

Read More
Steeno_1.png Steeno_2.png

Martin Steno

Senior Consultant

Danish polyglot with a real talent for teaching. Speaks with an English accent posher than Prince Charles.

Read More
Lucy_1.png (1) Lucy_2.png

Lucy Bennison

Product Development Manager

Writes resources, grows our network of schools & teaches demo lessons

Read More
LisaBarrett 1 LisaBarrett 2

Lisa Barrett

Evaluations Administrator & PA to Director of Consultancy

Travel bookings, PA to MD, office admin, dog showing (but not necessarily in that order)

Read More
Ditlev carousel 1.png Ditlev carousel 2.png

Ditlev Sorensen

Consultant

A wealth of experience with kindergarten teaching, P4C, growth mindset, thinking skills and feedback for 0 to 12 year olds

Read More
Beccy Morley 1 Beccy Morley 2

Beccy Morley

Financial Controller

Financial prudence, contract management, budgeting forecasts, and Spanish interpreter are just a few of Beccy’s many talents.

Read More
Tom_1.png Tom_2.png

Tom Burston

Business Growth Manager

Former strategic manager with Oxfam. Now our business growth manager and hill-farming hobbyist

Read More
Marianne_1.png Marianne_2.png

Marianne Miles

Scandinavian PA to James Nottingham and Business Growth Administrator

Swedish secretary, handling everything to do with James Nottingham's work in Scandinavia. Also a part of the Business Growth team.

Read More
Sue Millns 1 Sue Millns 2

Sue Millns

Finance Administrator

Keeps the accountant, the tax authorities AND the bank manager happy

Read More
sarah_1.png Sarah_2.png

Sarah Unwin

Events & Online Coordinator, PA to Operations Director

Manages all our conferences & events, study tours, websites and online resources. Always with a smile.

Read More
GeorgeT with No Hat.png GeorgeT with Hat.png

George Telford

Senior Consultant

Ex-Principal, Head of Challenging Learning’s operations in Australia, project leader, consultant, recruiter and pretty handy golfer.

Read More
Deb_1.png Deb_2.png

Deb Ions

Marketing and Partnership Manager

Twenty years of international marketing for media groups, universities and business schools and now for Challenging Learning

Read More
Mark_Bollom1 Mark-Bollom2

Mark Bollom

Senior Consultant

With a background in primary, secondary, tertiary and special needs education, Mark is the perfect all-rounder. He’s also pretty handy with a hammer, saw and wrench.

Read More
Marylin_1.png Marylin_2.png

Marilyn Keenan

Deployment & Evaluations Manager

After 37 years as a teacher and headteacher, Marilyn now leads all our evaluation processes

Read More
Richard_1.png Richard_2.png

Richard Kielty

Senior Consultant & Regional Manager (UK & Australia)

Ex-Headteacher, psychotherapist, project leader, consultant, recruiter, Smoggy

Read More
Jill_Nottingham1 Jill_Nottingham2

Jill Nottingham

Operations Director

Co-founder of the company, specialist in education for 3-11 year olds, recruiter, trainer & writer

Read More

Our Associate Hat Wearers

Our Associates work with Challenging Learning on a part-time basis.  They provide additional expertise and training capacity as and when needed. They are all accredited Visible Learningplus trainers.

Kim Cowie

UK

Lisa Cook

UK

Henrik Hallig

Denmark

Sophie Holmstrom

Denmark

Bosse Larsson

Sweden

Pippa Leslie

UK

Bill Lowe

UK

Rene Nielsen

Denmark

Anne Marie Vinther

Denmark

Gordon Poad

Newcastle, UK

Lasse Reichstein

Denmark

Anette Rumann

Denmark

Bitte Sundin

Sweden

Helen Tyrvin

Sweden

Mette Ingemann Uhre

Denmark

Head Office

  • 2 Linnet Court
  • Cawledge Business Park
  • Alnwick, Northumberland
  • NE66 2GD
  • United Kingdom

Company Information

In 1999, James Nottingham set up a freelance consultancy so that he could share Philosophy for Children (P4C) with local schools in Northumberland. This became the catalyst for the award-winning N-RAIS project, a multi-million pound initiative to raise the aspirations and achievements of young people in North East England.

In 2005, James Nottingham and Jill Nottingham set up JN Partnership Ltd so that the best strategies for challenge, feedback, growth mindset, leadership, P4C, and thinking skills could be shared with schools and pre-schools around the world. Helen Richards joined the company full time in 2006 and then Martin Renton joined in 2009. 

In 2010, James published his first book Challenging Learning, followed by Encouraging Learning two years later. In 2013, the company secured the exclusive rights to John Hattie’s Visible Learning in Scandinavia, and in 2016 they launched the Challenging Learning Process (CLP) as well as two new books in the “Challenging Learning Through …” series. Eight more titles will follow over the coming months. 

Today the group of companies (JN Partnership Ltd in the UK and Challenging Learning in Australia, Denmark, Norway and Sweden) employs 25 staff in 6 countries, with further appointments scheduled for 2017.

Top