Emily Ward -
a pioneer

leading the way since 1892

Emily Ward founded Norland in 1892. She recognised the need for early years childcare to be more structured, centered around the child, loving and nurturing. Prior to the introduction of formal training at Norland, children would be cared for by ‘untutored’ housemaids before going to school. Emily Ward was an astute businesswoman and an educational pioneer; she set up Norland as the first educational establishment to offer any kind of childcare training. Training at Norland was focused on the founding principles of Fröbel, the German educationalist best known as the originator of the ‘kindergarten system’, and adapted them to be relevant to the needs of young children and their families. 

Emily Ward's legacy is immortalised through the Emily Ward bursary, which provides students with the opportunity to obtain a grant towards meeting the cost of their tuition fees.

Scroll through Norland's 125 years of history

  • Emily Ward founded Norland 125 years ago