A PRIMARY school has been designated a National Research School in an effort to “boost the quality of teaching in the region through better use of research”.

Settrington All Saints Primary School, part of the Esk Valley Teaching Alliance, is one of 11 schools to have won funding to develop a programme of events to get more teachers in the area sharing best practice.

The school will get £200,000 over three years to “become the focal point of evidence-based practice in the coast and Ryedale region, and build networks between large numbers of schools”.

Settrington has joined a growing network of research schools across the country. The first five were announced in October 2016, with a second six established in January 2017.

Mari Palmer, head teacher at Settrington All Saints Primary School, has been leading the research strand on behalf of the Esk Valley Alliance for four years.

She said: “We are delighted and thrilled to have been designated as a research school and to have the opportunity to work collaboratively with the Education Endowment Foundation, Institute for Effective Education and Research Schools Network.

“This will enable us to further develop our work with schools, promote the use of evidence-based practice and ultimately improve outcomes for children and young people in the North Yorkshire and Ryedale, and the coastal and rural regions.”

Programmes created by the initiative so far include guidance on how to make the most of teaching assistants and supporting literacy in early years. The research schools also host conferences where teachers can swap best practice and produce newsletters sent to thousands of teachers. Justine Greening, the education secretary, said: “Teachers are key to making sure that young people can reach their potential, regardless of where they start in life, so helping the profession be the best it can be will help tackle social mobility.

“By gathering evidence on what works in the classroom and sharing the best practice with teachers we can help to level up the opportunities for every pupil.”

Sir Kevan Collins, chief executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, added: “We know that there are big differences in social mobility across the country.

"Reaching those ‘coldspots’ is one of the biggest challenges we face in our drive to improve social mobility.

“The new Research Schools will be crucial.

"They’ll help to break down barriers so that research doesn’t stay in the pages of academic journals but has a real impact on classroom practice.”