Blue School wins funding to help improve the quality of teaching in Somerset

July 12 2017
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WELLS Blue School is one of 11 schools across the country to have won funding to boost the quality of teaching in their region through better use of research.

The new Research Schools – part-funded through the Government’s Opportunity Areas programme and part of a joint initiative between the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) and the Institute for Effective Education – were unveiled by the Education Secretary Justine Greening at a summit hosted by the Sutton Trust on July 12.

The Blue School will receive £200,000 over three years to become the focal point of evidence-based practice in the area and build networks between large numbers of schools.

In a statement on its website, The Blue School said: “We were delighted to learn that the Education Secretary has officially confirmed that The Blue School will become one of 11 new Research Schools, as of September 2017.  The Blue School will join a network of 22 schools who've secured funding to boost the quality of teaching in their region through better use of research evidence.

“We look forward to working with schools across Somerset to develop a programme of support and events to get more teachers using research evidence in ways that really make a difference in the classroom.”

The existing Research Schools have delivered a range of activities nationally to help teachers to use research to improve their teaching. They include programmes to help schools make the most of teaching assistants, training to support literacy in the early years and backing to develop Research School leads to spearhead the use of evidence in the classroom.

Ms Greening also announced that Sir Kevan Collins, chief executive of the EEF, would become ‘Evidence Champion’ for the Opportunity Areas. He will support the regions, including The Blue School, to better use evidence to improve outcomes and social mobility prospects for young people, particularly those from disadvantaged homes. 

Ms Greening said:  "Teachers are key to making sure that young people can reach their potential, regardless of where they start in life, so helping the profession be the best it can be will help tackle social mobility. By gathering evidence on what works in the classroom and sharing the best practice with teachers we can help to level up the opportunities for every pupil.”