Speaker & School Guidance

How it works

Our team connects schools with inspiring and influential people for impactful school talks, helping young people to think big and aim high – all for free.

Apply to host speakers

  • All UK secondary state schools, academies and colleges across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are eligible to apply for a talk.
  • To take part, a school/college (Headteacher, Deputy, selected coordinator) must submit a completed application on behalf of their institution.
  • Applicants must understand the commitments outlined in the application form when applying for a talk.
  • To find out about our speakers and who we work with click here

Matching Speakers with Schools

When matching a speaker to a school, we consider:

  • The school’s application and teacher statement
  • Which speaker might be suitable
  • Speaker availability and location
  • When the school last hosted

We prioritise under-served schools in high-need locations and aim to reach students with the least access to outside speakers. Unfortunately, schools cannot apply for a specific speaker or specific dates.

Each speaker has different availability and commitments, often with challenging diaries. We work to find a date that suits both parties. For this reason, we ask that schools reply as soon as possible when offered a speaker so that neither party is disappointed!

Getting Ready to Host

  • Once we’ve confirmed a school and speaker, we will put you in touch with one another.
  • You must have at least one phone call to agree the talk format, key messages, audience age and size.
  • You can find a full guide for planning your in-person talk here and our full guide for planning your virtual talk here
  • Of course, we are here to help if you have any issues.

Preparing for your talks

  • In-person SFS talks are one hour long in total. Virtual talks are around 40-60 minutes long in total.
  • A key part of any SFS talk is the Q&A session.
  • For in-person SFS talks we ask that speakers leave 30-40 minutes for a Q&A, allowing for maximum student participation.
  • For virtual talks we ask speakers to leave around 15-20 minutes of the talk for Q&A.
  • We advise students to prepare in advance, so they can make the most of the event.
  • The school/college should be on hand to facilitate the Q&A with a few questions prepared to get the ball rolling.
  • We have a handy guide to help with student prep here.

How did it go?

  • Following the talk, we ask the speaker and the school to return a short feedback form about the event
  • This is essential to our monitoring and ensuring we create the best quality and most impactful events for your students.
  • You can see more about our impact here