The Junior School is delighted to have recently achieved the prestigious Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM).
The PSQM is awarded to schools who demonstrate their commitment to excellence in science teaching and learning. Schools achieve the PSQM through a rigorous year-long process.
Mrs Heard received a comprehensive review of the School’s work across the curriculum and beyond, with a few snippets of the report from PSQM quoted below:
“It is clear that the school has worked hard in developing science and embedding initiatives to enhance teaching and learning at Pitsford school. There are clear plans in place to continue this development and embed the good practice after this year.”
‘There is evidence in the submission to show monitoring including learning walks, review of pupils’ work and pupil voice. Pupil work and planning show increased opportunities for practical investigations. Classroom displays are vibrant and provide good evidence of the learning taking place.”
“There is evidence to show pupils engaged in role-play, experiential learning, making models and multi-sensory activities within the portfolio. A focus on integrating more practical activities into planning and lessons for pupils is evident and the use of the outdoor environment and Forest school is reported to have enhanced pupils’ science experience and enjoyment.”
“There is good evidence to show science links to other curriculum areas. This has been well supported by a review of the Creative Curriculum map which has supported staff to develop further links to curriculum areas besides history, including art, DT. The strengthening of links between the junior and senior schools has further enhanced this.”
“There are many opportunities for pupils to participate in external initiatives and science events at Pitsford school, including a number of clubs i.e. STEM, Crest, Eco club and Coding club and visits, such as the Space Centre and Zoo. Participation in the Great Science Share was a great success, as are the many initiatives to engage parents.”
“The focus on the use of the outdoor environment and local environmental issues has supported pupils to understand more the importance and relevance of science to their lives. This is supported by participation in many visits, clubs and extra-curricular activities.”
The Primary Science Quality Mark is led by the University of Hertfordshire in collaboration with the Primary Science Teaching Trust. Associate Professor Jane Turner, PSQM National Director said of the award:
“There was never a more important time for primary children to have a high-quality science education. The coronavirus pandemic and climate change crisis have made everyone aware of the importance of science in our world. Primary schools have an important role to ensure that children understand how science works and keeps us and our planet healthy and safe. Schools that have achieved a Primary Science Quality Mark have demonstrated a significant commitment to science teaching and learning. The profile and quality of science in each awarded school is very high. Children are engaging with great science both in and outside the classroom, developing positive attitudes towards science as well as secure scientific understanding and skills. Science subject leaders, their colleagues, head teachers, children, parents and governors should be very proud.”
The review of Pitsford Junior School’s work across the curriculum helpfully identifies areas where the school can continue to improve and gives plenty of ideas on where to go next with this aspect of the school curriculum. This award links well with the Eco Schools scheme already in place.
Congratulations to Mrs Heard and the Junior School on this fantastic achievement. Being awarded the PSQM confirms their investment in Science teaching and helps raise student’s aspirations along with helping to dispel the idea any students have that ‘science isn’t for me’.
Details of the PSQM scheme can be found here.
The portfolio submitted by the Junior School is attached below, this was submitted as part of a body of evidence to achieve the award.