Schools across the UK awarded primary science quality mark

Teenage students caring out experiments in chemistry class

Over 530 primary schools from across the UK have been awarded the primary science quality mark (PSQM) at ceremonies that took place in October and November, celebrating a commitment to excellence in science teaching and learning

The award, which is supported by organisations across the science community, focuses on developing and improving leadership and teaching of science in primary schools. It is delivered by the University of Hertfordshire’s School of Education, with support from the primary science teaching trust.

Associate professor Jane Turner, PSQM director at the University of Hertfordshire, said: “The PSQM is a significant achievement for schools. Since its introduction in 2010, the mark has raised the profile of science in primary schools across the country, providing them with a framework and professional support to develop science leadership, teaching and learning. The standard of submissions for this round has been incredibly high; schools which have been awarded the Mark should be very proud.”

St Katherine’s C of E primary school in Essex was one of the schools awarded. Anne-Marie Taylor, the school’s headteacher, said: “As headteacher, I was aware that it was part of our whole school development plan to ensure we raised the profile of the teaching and learning in science across the school. The primary science quality mark was the perfect way in which to do this. It helped teachers realise the full potential of the science curriculum and ensure the teaching of science was of the highest standards in their own classes. Fundamentally, the programme helped us to come together as a school community to bring excitement and curiosity back to this key subject.

“I can confidently say science is now taught with a fresh sense of curiosity that comes from both staff and pupils, and we are very proud of the whole team for achieving the mark.”

The PSQM scheme enables schools to work together to share good practice and is supported by professional development led by local experts. It encourages teacher autonomy and innovation, while offering a clear framework for development.

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In 2013, a partnership was formed between the primary science teaching trust and University of Hertfordshire school of education to enable continued growth of the PSQM. In 2018, both organisations agreed to extend the collaboration until 2023.

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