Brussels, 17 Oct 2003
The UK is to create a network of science learning centres aimed at stimulating science teaching across the country.
The six regional centres and national centre will seek to transform the quality of training and support available to the UK's tens of thousands of science teachers. The national centre, to be located at the University of York, will house a major resource centre, a multi-purpose laboratory, an information technology suite, seminar rooms, an auditorium for up to 300 people and a workshop where prototype science equipment can be used and assessed by science teachers. It will offer both one day and residential courses. More than 1,000 teachers are expected to visit the national centre alone during its first year.
'The quality of science education depends crucially on the supply and professional expertise of science teachers - they hold the key to motivating students towards high achievement,' said Professor John Holman, from the University of York.
Teachers will be able to follow contemporary science courses led by research scientists from participating universities at the forefront of their disciplines. Courses may address subjects such as the impact of genetics on future reproductive technology, the controversies attached to genetically modified foods, and the technology behind the quest to find extra-terrestrial life in the universe.