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Excellence in Science Departments: Science Learning Network ‘Science Mark’ Scheme
The Science Learning Network has launched a scheme to recognise excellence among school science departments.
The new Science Mark is aimed at giving schools a framework to evaluate, strengthen and celebrate their science provision. Aimed at secondary schools, the criteria for the award covers learning and teaching, the curriculum, and leadership and management.
On the curriculum, schools winning the award will need to show that students are being shown how to apply key concepts independently, that provision is personalised, and that skills development includes things such as communication, online research and planning investigations as well as actual practical science work. Schools will also need to show that enhancement and enrichment is not just restricted to out of classroom experiences for higher attaining or well-motivated students, but is used to engage all students.
Successful schools can achieve silver, gold or platinum awards, and the award will be valid for three years.
A statement from the Science Learning Network said: “Science Mark has a set of ambitious aims. It sets out to celebrate excellence in secondary science. In gaining this award, schools will show that they are reflective, evaluative and focused on improving outcomes for young people in science.”
To apply, schools will be required to review the criteria, self-assess against the three levels, and submit evidence to support the assessment. The Science Learning Network will then review the evidence and provide feedback. There will be a fee for schools taking part. Further details can be found at www.slcs.ac.uk/science-mark
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