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Sustainability Strategy Group

Share and promote information that illustrates how a graduate led workforce can contribute  the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals so that graduate professionals are proactive in campaigning for and implementing provision likely to lead to a more sustainable planet. Delivering quality early education which promotes:

  • Active Citizenship
  • Equality and Diversity
  • Environmental Education
  • Anti-discriminatory practices in EY contexts with a particular emphasis on decolonising.

Promote research and the dissemination of information on the sustainability of quality provision including identifying issues of cost in the sustainability in provision of such structures.

Advocacy for EY structures that support practices promoting:

  • Children’s rights and voice
  • Democratic processes in ECE
  • Gender awareness Respectful relationships
  • Environmental awareness- sustainable use of resources

Vice Chair and Members

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Diane Boyd
Co-Vice Chair

Diane Boyd has been at Liverpool John Moores University since 2005 working with early childhood and early years students. Her research interests are about early childhood education for sustainability and she is very active in promoting transformative change. Diane is on the executive committee for the Early Childhood Studies Degree Network and is the Sustainability Lead. Her expertise is recognised as a member of the LJMU Institutions Climate Change Panel and she will be an active member of the Department of Educations post COP 26 working group ensuring early years is embedded into the final strategy.

Web Home - Liverpool John Moores
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Dr Martin Needham
Co-Vice Chair

Naomi McLeod

Dr Naomi McLeod

Martin trained and worked as an Early Years and Primary teacher in Nottinghamshire, London and Pakistan. This was followed by developmental roles in education management and leadership in Pakistan and then with early education, extended schools services and children’s centre provision in England. He became a Senior Lecturer in 2003 and a Principle Lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University in 2014 as Associate Head of School of Education Studies. He has published work on multi-agency working, young children’s learning and leadership in early years conducting research projects in these areas funded by the DFE and NHS Scotland. He has recently been involved in international early education consultancy work in Kazakhstan and China. Martin is passionate about improving the well-being of children and young people and to developing professionals who are able to take a broad view of children's upbringing.

Naomi is at Liverpool John Moores University where she teaches across Early Childhood and Education Studies and is the Deputy Coordinator for the CERES Research-informed Pedagogies Group. Previous to this, she led Early Childhood and the Undergraduate and Postgraduate Early Years Teacher Education Programme at Liverpool Hope University. Her doctorate focused on developing pedagogical participation for young children, and critical reflection as a tool for Continued Professional Development for early childhood educators across the sector. This focus on valuing children as agents of change for a sustainable world is embedded in her work with students and continues to inform her research. Naomi is editor of ’Empowering Early Childhood Educators: International Pedagogy as Provocation’ and more recently she led a team of co-authors to publish ‘Global Perspectives of Early Childhood Education and Care: Valuing local cultures’. 

Web Home - Liverpool John Moores
Emma Ransome


Emma Ransome is a Senior Lecturer in Education and course lead for Working with Children, Young People and Families (BA) Hons at Birmingham City University, with an Early Years background who specialises in Social Justice, Children and Young People’s Rights and Advocacy. Emma has worked in the Education sector for over fifteen years, in that time she has worked with children and young people in a variety of settings, including children’s centres, primary schools, nurseries FE and HE. During this time, Emma has worked as a family support worker, a childminder, a nursery manager, a forest school teacher and Key Stage One and Two teacher within which she took the additional responsibility for leading the arts and mental health and well-being for pupils.

Emma is undertaking a PhD in Education and Social Justice at Lancaster University, whereby she is co-constructing a curricular with Early Childhood students to embed sustainability into the degree program. Emma is also a member of the Amnesty International Teachers Advisory Board within which she helps to develop its Human Rights Education Work and has recently worked with a local nursery school in Birmingham to analyse its Rights Based Approach to teaching. 

Web Home - Birmingham City Uni
Rachel Strisino


Rachel Strisino is an Assistant Professor on the Early Childhood degree programme at the Centre for Lifelong Learning, a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, member of the ECSDN Sustainability group and an External Examiner. Rachel’s early career was in Nurseries in the late 1990s which inspired her to embark on her BA (Hons) degree in Early Childhood Studies at Warwick. From this, Rachel worked with members of the local community at the Women’s Multi-refuge centre and Sure Start, supporting mainly women back into education. 

Rachel’s research has explored the perceptions and interpretations of early years’ practitioners when working with the Early Years Foundation Stage framework and the concept of ‘what is a child in the 21st Century’. Rachel has been part of a steering group which explored ways in which adult learners engaged with lifelong learning can be best supported to maintain motivation, success in assessment and well-being whilst studying. Her current research interest is exploring the relationship between the development of identity, lived experiences and environment of young refugee and asylum seeking children who are not in any early childhood care or education provision. Rachel also been instrumental in launching the Warwick Award to early childhood students which focuses on sustainability and transferable skills acquired whilst studying.

Web Home - Uni of Warwick
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Angela Scollan

Angela Scollan joined Middlesex University in 2012 as Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies, Education Studies and Early Years Initial Teacher Training. She was previously a lecturer of Early Childhood Studies at Roehampton University, a freelance early years Ofsted Inspector and EYPS Lead Assessor. Angela also managed foundation degrees in Learning & Teaching and Early Years Childcare and Education at Carshalton College in Surrey for six years, writing programmes to support students from unique and diverse backgrounds aiming to access academic and professional progression routes. In 2015 Angela was the first member of her department at Middlesex University to be nominated for and awarded 'Best Tutor Feedback' from the Student Union. Previously, Angela worked within the early years sector in a variety of teaching, leading and practitioner roles where her passion for children’s rights and voices, self-determination, emotional intelligence, spaces to play and reflexivity grew and were impacted upon directly during interactions with children, families and peers.

Web Home - Middlesex Uni
ECSDN Strategy Group - Sustainability Diana H - waiting Image

Diana harris

Diana Harris is a Senior Lecturer for Early Years in the School of Education at the University of Greenwich. Diana's education specialised in nursery and infant age teaching, with experience of working in nursery and primary school settings before moving to lecturing within further education (FE) colleges as course leader on aspects of childcare (Levels 1-5). Diana joined the university in 2006, as a senior lecturer and leader on Foundation degree (FdA) Montesoori Early Years. She was also involved in the validation process for BA Hons Early Years, Foundation Early Years, and Foundation Supporting Teaching & Learning programmes, as well as part of a small higher education team that introduced FdA for teaching assistants. Diana has subsequently moved to lecture on BA Hons Early Years and MA Early Childhood programmes. She is also a Link tutor for partner colleges' Early Years and Education degrees.


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Kerrie Lee

Kerrie is the Programme Director for the FdEd Early Childhood Studies and BA (Hons) Early Childhood Education and Care (Top-Up) and a lecturer in education with Early Years specialism. Kerrie joined the University in 2009 following 12 years’ experience as an Early Years practitioner and is in the School for Education. Her current role includes the Programme Directorship of both the Foundation Degree Early Childhood Studies/Early Years Professional Practice 0-8s and the BA (hons) Early Childhood Education and Care (Top-Up). Kerrie has always been committed to supporting the development of Early Years workforce and has been involved in the development of all Early Years programmes at the University including producing the recent transformation of the Foundation and Top-Up degrees.


Web Home - Uni of Sunderland
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Pamela Calder

Pamela Calder BA, M.SC, C. Psychol., AFBPS, FRSA

Pamela is Honorary president of the ECSDN where she was previously Chair from its foundation in 1992 until 2015  and is an Honorary Visiting Research Fellow at London South Bank University. She is a chartered psychologist and her research and campaigning for over fifty years has been concerned with establishing a sustainable system of early education and childcare that works for women rights, for children, for its workforce and for the wider society.

She has consistently argued for better education and training for those working with the youngest children, including babies, and in arguing that workers should be graduates.

She was a founder member of the National Childcare campaign in 1980 which later became the Daycare Trust and is now Coram Family and Childcare, and in the early 1990s, was instrumental in the creation of the Early Childhood Studies Degrees Network. The aim was to create  Early Childhood Studies, as a new subject area and degree in universities, and also to advocate for provision that was good for children, their families, for women and for the workers/practitioners/professionals as well. The new subject area was achieved in 2007 with the establishment of the first QAA subject benchmarks for Early Childhood Studies, where she was committee chair.

London South Bank University