Forest School Leader Level 3

Who is this course for?

This training course is the nationally recognised standard of training for individuals wishing to develop, lead and manage Forest School programmes.

Entry Criteria

  • Participants should be over 21 and should hold a qualification at Level 2 or above in teaching, pre-school education, youth work or have significant experience of working with young people in the outdoors.
  • All participants must hold a First Aid certificate by the end of the course. This can be the 16-hour outdoor first aid certificate or the 3-day First Aid at Work certificate.
  • As part of your training and in order to complete your portfolio you will need to have a suitable site and a client group to deliver your ‘Introduction to Forest School’ programme. This will consist of a minimum 6 two-hour sessions with the same client group.
    It is not vital to have this in place before the course, however it will help provide a context for your training if you are able to picture your site and have some knowledge of your client group(s). 

Course Cost:  £950 - Subject to change April 2022

Course Layout

Module 1 - Five consecutive days of training in theory and practice which will cover;

  • Learning and development at forest school
  • Forest school practical skills
  • Setting up, delivering and evaluating of a forest school programme

Module 2 - Three consecutive days to further develop and assess practical skills and to discuss progress. 

  • Forest School practical skills
  • Woodland management at Forest School

Training days run from 9.30am – 4.30pm. As much time as possible will be spent outdoors

A supportive observation at one of six Forest School sessions to be planned and delivered by you at your setting.

A coursework portfolio should be completed within 12 months of the course start date (Please refer to booking Terms & Conditions).

Additional benefits

Five optional mentoring days to assist you with the completion of your portfolio and to help with the development of your forest school.

Course Content

The Level 3 course will prepare you to plan, deliver and monitor all aspects of a Forest School programme. 

We will discuss up to date theories on the Forest School approach to learning, the holistic development of Forest School learners and a positive attitude to risk taking. The practical outdoor learning will include tool use and the safe lighting, management and use of a camp fire in a Forest School setting, safe use of a range of hand tools and a variety of outdoor games and activities. Also covered will be the identification of woodland flora and fauna, and the sustainable use of a woodland within the context of Forest School. The course will be run on Forest School principles, so you will see the Forest School ethos in action.

Will this course lead to a nationally recognised qualification?

Yes, on successful completion of the course you will gain the nationally recognised qualification Level 3 Certificate in Forest School Programme Leadership (QCF), which was developed in collaboration with the Forest School Association (FSA) accredited by the Open College Network West Midlands.

What will I need for the course?

Once your application is confirmed you will be sent a full kit list but this is what you will need for the 5 day course.
Please make sure you bring the following with you each day:

  • Packed lunch, cup and snacks
  • Suitable outdoor clothing for the weather conditions (trousers, not shorts)
  • Stout shoes or boots, please do not wear sandals
  • A camera can be useful for recording some of the activities

We will provide:

  • All required portfolio paperwork
  • All tools and equipment for the outdoor tasks

(N.B. For a variety of reasons we would ask you not to bring your own tools)

Course Dates 2022

Price £950  -  Subject to change April 2022

Times: 9.30am to 4.30pm  


Course 1: Module 1: 14th to 18th March 2022 / Module 2: 4th to 6th May 2022 – Tilgate Park, Crawley - BOOKINGS CLOSED

Course 2: Module 1: 16th to 20th May 2022 / Module 2: 4th to 6th July 2022 – Tilgate Park, Crawley - FULLY BOOKED

Course 3: Module 1: 13th to 17th June 2022 / Module 2: 21st to 23rd September 2022 – Mallydams Wood, Hastings - 2 PLACES AVAILABLE

Course 4: Module 1: 22nd to 26th August 2022 / Module 2: 23rd to 25th November 2022 – Tilgate Park, Crawley

Course 5: Module 1: 10th to 14th October 2022 / Module 2: 18th to 20th January 2023 – Mallydams Wood, Hastings   

To make a booking or to go on the waiting list please email us here

Please read our Booking Terms and Conditions below before making a booking.

Mentoring Days at Woods Mill, Henfield

Optional mentoring days to assist you with the completion of your portfolio and to help with the development of your forest school.

Fridays from 10am - 3pm

25th March 2022

13th May 2022

9th September 2022

21st October 2022

18th November 2022

To book your place please email us with your preferred date here

Please book as soon as possible as places are limited.