Welcome to Nitty Gritty Learning

About Us






  Nitty Gritty Learning's lead consultant, Lynda Kempsey, is passionate about English and whole school literacy and it is this streak of madness that led her to the decision to set up Nitty Gritty Learning in September 2008. In July 2009, Lynda was a finalist in the Wear Valley and Teesdale Business Awards in the Start Up Business Category for recognition of clients' needs.

Second Left - Lynda Kempsey of Nitty Gritty Learning - Finalist of the Wear Valley & Teesdale Business Awards 2009



Lynda has twenty eight years experience as a successful English teacher and training provider across Darlington, Durham, Cumbria and Derbyshire; fourteen of these as Head of English and Literacy Coordinator in secondary schools. She is different from other education consultants in that she never has more than eighteen months out of full time English teaching in order that she can keep up to date with current demands on staff and learners. A further difference is that she fully expects to roll up her sleeves and teach if that is what it takes to help students succeed. She will never simply leave a school with yet another action plan to fulfil. Her most recent stint was teaching English full time at Parkside Academy, Willington in County Durham for twelve months ending in December 2016. English GCSE results for Summer 2016 were 80%, which is well above expected levels of progress. Prior to this she was in Parkside again, this time for sixteen months, the English results across this period being 73% in 2012 and 78% in 2013. 65% of Parkside's pupils are in the Pupil Premium category.

As well as devising strategies for whole school improvement and raising achievement in English, she regularly teaches intervention classes and delivers CPD. For a list of current readymade courses, please click 'news' on the menu to the left. Courses can also be tailor made to suit your learners' and/or staff's needs. She also marks and delivers CPD for major exam boards.

Currently, several partner schools are working with Nitty Gritty Learning to research the possibilities of improving literacy through gaming.

In order to share ideas with as many teachers and pupils as possible, she has also established “The Nitty Gritty”, an e-newsletter aimed at sharing learning tips and inspirational ideas. The newsletter is issued three times over the academic year. You can subscribe by clicking on the orange icon at the top of this page. Subscriptions are free.

Lynda also writes historical articles for a magazine called Vintage Script and has written a novel, "The Puppeteer", a twelfth century murder mystery.


Lynda has an MEd in Teaching English and Literature from Leeds University.