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COVID-19 recovery boost for primary school science in Bradford

Pupils in Bradford are to benefit from a major science funding boost as part of the district’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Bradford Opportunity Area has awarded a £50,000 grant to the North & West Yorkshire Science Learning Partnership, with the funding being used to create a Bradford Primary Science Network alongside a practical science activity scheme focusing on those children most in need of extra science subject support.

The programme will see over 2,000 specially created ‘science in a box’ home learning kits sent out to Key Stage 2 pupils.

There will also be a number of networking, mentoring and continuing professional development (CPD) events for teachers designed and delivered by expert science consultants.

The aim is to get younger children enthused by the world of science, address learning gaps caused by COVID-19 and to lay the foundations around some of the building blocks of scientific knowledge needed for success in the GCSE curriculum.

Kate Walter, Director of the Northern Lights Teaching School Alliance, explained:

This is an exciting offer for Bradford which is about supporting schools with a fully-funded primary science network whilst at the same time providing a remote offer for high-quality science CPD that’s accessible around the pressures of remote learning. 

The science in a box kits come with full instructions and can be used at home or in class, by teachers or by parents. Younger children often find the hands-on experiments the most engaging part of science and it is really important during the disruption caused by COVID-19 that we maintain their levels of interest and engagement.

Each home science kit will enable pupils to carry out five main investigations covering areas such as liquids, mass and electricity. They are supported by YouTube tutorial videos and children will be encouraged to use social media to share and celebrate their science experiment achievements.

In addition, the funding will be used to deliver a series of free hour-long webinar sessions for small groups of up to ten secondary school students in Years 9 and 10. The sessions which will be carried out alongside their teachers or parents will focus on the ‘big ideas’ that underpin scientific discovery.

Mrs Walter added:

As well as providing rich and colourful content for children, teachers nominated by participating schools can access up the three hours free tailored one-to-one mentoring to help them gain confidence in their science pedagogy.

And, because we appreciate that in can be really difficult in the current climate for teachers to leave classes during the day, so we also have created a series of short evening events – twilight CPD sessions tailored to specific teaching challenges.”

The first twilight event focusing on ‘Teaching Practical Science in a Bubble’, is being held on Thursday 11thFebruary 2021.

Any school interested in finding out more should email