Investigation launched into improving science results for disadvantaged pupils

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), in partnership with the Royal Society, has launched an investigation into ways to improve science results for disadvantaged pupils across England.

The investigation will cover pupils at both primary and secondary levels, with the organisations commissioning a review of evidence about the current state of science education.

The EEF and the Royal Society hope to identify best practice and approaches to support young people to achieve in science, with a particular focus on pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds. This could range from programmes that focus on professional development for teachers, individual and small-group interventions and support at home.

Kevan Collins, chief executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, said: “The data is clear. Pupils from disadvantaged homes are much less likely than their peers to achieve five good GCSE results. We believe that helping schools to use evidence and understand better the most effective ways to improve results is the best way to tackle this country’s stark attainment gap.

“I’m pleased that EEF is partnering with the Royal Society who are offering funding, support and advice. Together, we hope to be able to identify the most promising ways to tackle the attainment gap in science.”

Professor Tom McLeish, chair of the Royal Society’s Education Committee, said: “Science is at the heart of modern life and provides the foundations for economic prosperity. In a world increasingly dependent on scientific and technological advances, it is absolutely vital that every UK citizen has a good science education grounding. It’s also of absolute importance that young people from all backgrounds are given the chance to do well in and enjoy these subjects.

“The Royal Society is excited to be working on this project with EEF - it’s a first and vital step towards to understanding how we can help give disadvantaged students the means to improve their science results and expand their horizons.”

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