Does your school meet these 10 benchmarks for world-class science practicals?


The Tes reports that schools in England are “well short of achieving world-class practical science”, when measured against a set of 10 benchmarks, a new report has claimed.

Sir John Holman, a former headteacher and science teacher and currently president of the Royal Society for Chemistry, outlines the 10 benchmarks in a report, Good Practical Science, published today by the Gatsby Foundation.

The report outlines the measures for “good practical science”, which were developed following a review of existing research, in-depth study visits to six high-performing countries or territories, and in consultation with experts in the UK and abroad.

Here are the headline benchmarks:

Benchmark one: planned practical science

Every school should have a written policy that explains why teachers use practical science, the outcomes they expect from it and how they achieve those outcomes. The value of having a written policy lies in the process of its production.

Benchmark two: purposeful practical science

Teachers should know the purpose of any practical science activity, and it should be planned and executed so it is effective and integrated with other science learning.

Benchmark three: expert teachers

Teachers should have had subject specialist training (both initial and continuing) in the subject (biology, chemistry, physics etc) and age range they teach, so they can carry out practical science with confidence and knowledge of the underlying principles.

Read more benchmarks Does your school meet these 10 benchmarks for world-class science practicals?

How does your science lab measure up? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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