Gatsby Foundation launches Good Practical Science report to transform practical science education in England

The new report follows Gatsby’s impactful report Good Careers Guidance and provides ten benchmarks for world-class delivery of practical science education.

The Gatsby Charitable Foundation has launched its latest report, Good Practical Science, designed to transform practical science education in England by providing ten new benchmarks based on national and international standards.

The report, led by Sir John Holman, Gatsby’s senior education advisor, details recommendations to help secondary schools achieve a higher standard of practical science education even when facing tight budgets. The benchmarks include recommendations for schools, policymakers, Ofsted and teacher trainers.

Sir John Holman and his team looked at more than 400 secondary schools in England to gauge the status of practical science, and visited world-leading nations including Finland, Germany and Singapore to learn what was done differently internationally.

By international standards, the UK is well provisioned with the facilities to deliver practical science, but at a time when schools in England are under intense pressure to perform, practical science is at risk. When compared to the other countries visited, the accountability system in England is the most intense, narrowing teachers’ choices and constraining practical science.

EdComs supported the launch of Good Practical Science through a multichannel marketing and communications strategy targeting all secondary schools in England.

Sir John Holman, who is also a founding director of the National STEM Learning Centre and a former head teacher and science teacher, said:

“Time and time again we have seen that practical science is key not only for learning, but also for inspiring the next generation of scientists, engineers and technicians. The benchmarks presented in this report reflect world-leading standards and we hope to empower our teachers by giving them the tools to include practical science in a greater proportion of their lessons.”

Download the full report at:

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