The School was started on its current site in 1948. Its founder Barbara Dockar-Drysdale had looked after children who had been evacuated from London during the wartime blitz.
Barbara Dockar-Drysdale, who dedicated herself, with Dr. Donald Winnicott, to understanding and finding ways of helping such children, is now recognised as a pioneer of therapeutic childcare. Her books Therapy and Consultation in Childcare (1968) and The Provision of Primary Experience (1990) still influence childcare professionals in this country and abroad.
The model of work with the children remained very similar until the late 1990’s working with a large group of up to 36 children. Between then and today, the school, whilst valuing its roots, has changed to focus on working in smaller groups and physically differentiating professional tasks through an extensive redevelopment of the site.