YORK-based specialists in STEM education have formed a new partnership to support their mission to change lives.

STEM Learning, based at Siwards Way, University of York, is the largest UK provider of science, technology, engineering and mathematics education and careers support.

The non-profit organisation has teamed up with the Association for Science Education and Ogden Trust to help strengthen its work.

The Science CPD Partnership will help schools deliver great science education, with advice and support from Institute of Physics, Primary Science Teaching Trust, Royal Society of Biology and Royal Society of Chemistry.

It will also improve teachers’ access to career-long, science-specific continuing professional development (CPD), building on the success of Science Learning Partnerships, Stimulating Physics Network and National STEM Learning Centre.

Government funding will ensure this support is affordable with free or inexpensive help available locally and online.

Generous bursaries will also enable schools to release teachers for career-defining, immersive, residential training at the National STEM Learning Centre in York.

The centre is a unique training and development venue for teachers, mirroring the modern classroom and laboratory facilities, as well as housing a resources centre.

Sir Michael Griffiths, chair of STEM Learning’s strategic advisory group, said: “This announcement reinforces our mission to drive school improvement and pupil outcomes through great science education.

“Science is absolutely fundamental in empowering young people, creating opportunities and ultimately changing lives.”

Science opens up opportunities for good jobs in innovative industries, making healthy choices and tackling global challenges such as climate change.

As the pace of scientific research accelerates, science CPD boosts the confidence of teachers, helping them keep up with their rapidly changing subject.

Evidence shows that CPD improves student outcomes by allowing teachers to enhance and refine their practice, and makes it more likely that teachers will continue in the profession.

The partnership will reduce the disadvantage gap and improve the performance of under-represented groups in science at GCSE and A level, increase student progression to A level science (particularly in physics), boost the confidence of all science teachers and increase science teacher retention.