Science Quality Mark awarded to primary academy in West Yorkshire

Batley based Birstall Primary Academy has received the PSQM GILT award after its efforts and sustained improvements in raising the profile of science across its whole school community.

The GILT is awarded to those schools who have clearly established science leadership, successful teacher autonomy and innovation, development into science teaching and learning, and has shown a positive impact across all year groups.

In the feedback received, the school were praised for its ‘enriched’ subject experience and for its initiatives such as its science ambassadors’ and science club which were oversubscribed due to pupil popularity.

The school’s efforts to engrain science wider than the classroom has also been commended after the school facilitated a dedicated parent and pupil project and have supported parents in carrying out investigations and experiments from home during the coronavirus lockdown period.

This continued professional development programme has seen the school bolster its already successful science programme and as schools return in the next academic year, the teaching staff want to increase science capital with dedicated career learning sessions.

The school is amongst 160 schools from across the country who have received this prestigious accreditation.

Associate Professor Jane Turner, PSQM National Director said: “Schools that have achieved a Primary Science Quality Mark have demonstrated a significant commitment to science teaching and learning, even at this challenging time for schools.

“Children are engaging with great science both in and outside the classroom, developing positive attitudes towards science as well as secure scientific understanding and skills.

“Science subject leaders, their colleagues, head teachers, children, parents and governors should be very proud.”

Jayde Weir, Vice Principal at Birstall Primary Academy and lead on the project commented: “Thanks to the collective hard work of our dedicated staff throughout the school we have been able to enhance our science curriculum and begin to not just make this part of our school culture, but the wider communities too.

“We’ve had some excellent feedback from parents with children teaching younger siblings what they have learnt in the classroom which shows their level of engagement and enthusiasm for science.

“We are now looking to see how we can further improve on the next academic year, as for us what is most important is that we continue to thrive and provide our pupils with the best education possible.”

Birstall Primary Academy operates as part of Focus Trust – a charitable multi-academy trust which is based in the North West of England with a vision of providing an engaging and challenging learning environment where the children are happy.

Find out more about the PSQM at http://www.psqm.org.uk/.

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