London, 22 June 2018, Gomer Junior School has won the Science, technology and engineering teacher or team of the year award at the prestigious 2018 Tes Schools Awards. The awards, celebrating their tenth year, recognise outstanding contributions made by education teams and individuals to help students around the country to succeed, both inside and outside the classroom. The STEM award was presented by Becky Parker, Director, Institute for Research in Schools.
“Learning today for the challenge of tomorrow” is the ethos of Gomer Junior School in Gosport. Children receive three hours of science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) learning per week – an exceptional standard for a primary school – with children encouraged to “think like engineers”. To facilitate this, the school has linked “engineering habits of mind”, developed by the Royal Academy of Engineering, to its own pedagogy. Learners are motivated by and understand the real-world applications of Stem subjects and they experience hands-on activities that bring learning and career opportunities to life. This can range from designing an F1 car and putting it through speed tests to coding Crumbles and programming BBC microbits.
Not content with championing Stem within its own setting, Gomer is spreading its expertise beyond the school gates. The school is a founder member of the Gosport and Fareham Multi-Academy Trust, and its Stem model is being used to create a continuum curriculum in the trust’s secondary schools of 4,000 pupils. The school has also been awarded an ENTHUSE partnership to lead on Stem improvement locally. Gomer is working with the University of Chichester to share its pedagogy and support the institution with the writing of a primary undergraduate Stem degree course.
The judges said: “Gomer Junior School has developed a wonderful and extensive experience for primary students in science and engineering, offering a rich curriculum. It links into secondary science education and inputs into primary education courses. It showcases how integrated and inspirational primary science can be and it is a truly worthy winners of science, technology and engineering team of the year.”
Tes editor Ann Mroz said, “This was a record year for entries and the standard was exceptionally high. The shortlists were particularly strong so all those who have won an award should be very proud — it’s an extraordinary achievement. We salute each and every one of them.”
Mrs Mulhall said, “I am delighted and very proud that our leading edge and needed approach has been recognised by the TES awards; the highest award available to an educational setting. The team have worked hard to remodel the curriculum and are now sharing this with other schools. We are passionate about all primary schools teaching STEM, with an integrated approach, and we hope more do. Our pupils love gSTEM and never cease to amaze us with the responses to STEM learning. Go Gomer!”