Oriel Square lends you breadth and strength in education: to develop strategy, and publish.

We turn opportunities into publishing

What we do

Oriel Square lends you breadth and strength: to develop strategy, and publish.

Oriel Square is a trusted publishing partner to the most successful education companies in the world. We can work for you in all the key areas of content development, using market and policy expertise to deliver high-quality, effective digital and print publishing throughout school-age education.

We know that improving education transforms lives, and we want to use our expertise to help. We are committed to developing the global reputation of UK educational publishing and to helping everyone we work with to develop their skills.

Get in touch and from our very first meeting, you’ll see the impact Oriel Square can have.

We bring breadth to your publishing team

Our work

Oriel Square offers three tiers of service to our customers.

Analysis and strategy

We work with customers to identify and develop opportunities. Typically we’ll deliver proposals with their business case or the business case against, with recommendations for anything they might look at next.

Research and concept development

We take proposals and rigorously research them, providing a deep understanding of the audience, customer or user needs and how your organisation can best meet them.


We can handle all aspects of project delivery for print and digital publishing, product trialling and research or event production and training.

Research, Strategy and Publishing

Across the curriculum and through the age range

Click to find out more

Delivering a digital STEM product for class and after-school clubs

Our client wanted to ignite children’s interest in STEM careers by giving them first-hand experience of what it’s like to be a physicist, architect or engineer. To achieve this, we were asked to create a new and engaging digital product that would enable schools to deliver high-quality STEM teaching in class and after-school clubs.

This project required our in-depth understanding of schools’ resourcing and current teaching around STEM, and how this would correspond to the content and approach of the new product. To do this we put together an experienced team of authors, editors, and subject experts to create a range of imaginative, real-world tasks and challenges.

The result was an exciting series of hands-on STEM activities for Foundation to Key Stage 3. Whether they’re testing a wind turbine or exploring alternative food sources by growing algae, this product empowers children to analyse and solve real-world issues.

Creating teacher resource packs for International AS / A Levels

Our client asked us to commission, write and produce a suite of teacher resources to support nine Edexcel International AS / A Level qualifications. The scale and scope of this project enabled us to test our global capabilities, working with a diverse team across a wide range of subjects including Arabic, History and Spanish.

The packs contained in-depth support to prepare students for their exams, all matched to specification and structure: banks of practice exam papers and extra questions, model answers and guidance, as well as audio and speaking material for language subjects.

These were delivered successfully by our team of commissioning editors, authors, editors and rights researchers, led by a project manager experienced in running large educational projects. Throughout the project we also worked closely with our client and other suppliers, including rights vendors, audio producers and design.

Developing a maths mastery product

Our client asked us to develop a resource that would help students and teachers navigate the KS3 Maths curriculum, supporting mastery of each topic through a progression of fluency, reasoning and problem solving practice. The timeline was tight, but we pulled together an experienced team and used our thorough understanding of fluency in mathematics to get up and running very quickly.

Working with an experienced UK typesetting company and the client’s in-house team, we delivered a student book and accompanying teacher book to bridge the gap for KS3 students who have been taught primary maths through a mastery approach; and secondary-level maths teachers beginning to adopt mastery within their teaching. It breaks the curriculum down into smaller blocks and develops maths mastery through structured fluency, reasoning and problem solving practice.

CAIE-endorsed local-language publishing

Our UK-based client asked us to commision, write, edit and typeset the coursebooks for a new Cambridge International IGCSE syllabus for a specific South-East Asian language.

From manuscript to delivery, one of our in-house Editorial Managers oversaw all aspects of the process. This involved creating, and working remotely with, a local team of native-language speaking authors and editors based in two countries in the region, all highly experienced in teaching the language or publishing educational materials in it. They provided both the language proficiency required, alongside a deep understanding of the local context and market. During the design phase, our team worked with an experienced off-shore typesetting company.

Both the student book and teacher guide we produced won full endorsement from Cambridge.

IGCSE Commerce titles

Our client asked us to produce updated editions for a suite of books for students studying for IGCSE and O Level in commerce-related subjects, with titles for Business Studies, Economics, Accounting and Enterprise.

We summarised the impact of curriculum change in order to brief the series authors (including replacement authors) to efficiently update existing material and write new content as necessary, then ran the publishing schedule with teams of subject specialist editors. We used the clients preferred typesetters, managed through the client’s inhouse design team, and updated the existing web content and supplementary print products in line with the curriculum and student book change.

Lending you space and time to achieve more

Our team

What’s most important to you is your customer; so at Oriel Square that’s where we start. From opportunity to publication, our experienced team will be working for you at every step. Just as we can lead or facilitate strategic discussions, our publishers and editors are there to add breadth and strength to your team’s capacity, giving you and them the space and time you need to achieve more.

From customer insight and strategic understanding we identify opportunity, then research and develop the concept for commissioning. Finally, we take the project through until it’s ready to go to press or for switch-on.

Oriel Square is led by John Deans and Sam Derby. John and Sam have between them four decades of experience in the UK and international schools education markets, with leadership roles in a range of education companies, from digital startups to market leaders.

  • John Deans


    John has 20 years of experience in UK and international educational publishing as editor, publisher and author.

    He keeps in touch with the classroom through volunteering as an English teacher, teaching newly arrived workers in Oxford.
  • Sam Derby


    Sam has 20 years of experience in educational publishing as editor, publisher and strategist. He has an active interest in education policy, is Chair of Governors at an Oxford primary school, and former Chair of the EPC's Primary Maths Panel.

    Sam served on the Board of the consortium delivering the Global Learning Programme for DfID.
  • Hannie Kirkham

    Research and Business Development Manager

    Hannie is an experienced publisher and editorial manager, working with publishing teams across the industry on a variety of outsourced education projects.

    She's worked on inhouse teams delivering printed and digital resources for UK education, ELT and vocational markets.

  • Keira Moulding

    Publishing and Editorial Assistant

    Keira has recently made the move to educational publishing after having worked in schools in China and London, either side of studying for a master's degree in Contemporary Literature in The Netherlands.

    Keira has worked on development projects for a refugee education charity and hopes to keep up her work with schools and young learners.

  • Liz Cremona-Howard

    Editorial Manager

    Liz has ten years of experience in educational publishing, working most recently as an editor and publisher for Pearson, one of the largest U.K. and global educational publishers, and has led several complex print and digital projects, mostly in Primary English and Maths.

Be part of our team

Work with us

Applications have now closed for these two roles:

As a growing company, we're keen to hear from you if you think you might have something to bring to our team in Oxford. Please do drop us a line even if we're not advertising for the role you have in mind.

From our first conversation, you’ll see the impact Oriel Square can have


Drop us a line today and find out how Oriel Square can help your team.

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