A voice for science

25 November 2019

Although science is considered a core subject, it is not assessed in primary years in the same way as English and maths and may not always get the same level of attention, especially when strategic plans are made. However, the new Ofsted framework for primary schools has shifted the focus away from data and put more emphasis on a broad, engaging curriculum, which means science provision should become increasingly important.

Why not support your school as a science governor?

If you have a science background or career, and a passion to promote science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects you could bring your experience and expertise to the role of school science governor.

If you take on the responsibility for science within your school’s governing body, you are in a prime position to ensure that the subject is embedded into the ethos of the school from the very top. You can provide a voice for science and play a crucial role in setting the strategic direction for science education across your school.

Being a science governor enables you to:

  • inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers by showing them the opportunities that can open up from studying STEM.
  • support the head of science in lots of small but important ways; from collecting bottle tops for an investigation to being someone they can bounce ideas off.
  • get involved in a local school, seeing first-hand what the children are experiencing and being able to join in (and help to grow) the school STEM activities.
  • give back to a school that is helping children to develop and learn. One headteacher commented: “we couldn’t do our job without you.”

Serving as a school (science) governor may seem to be a daunting prospect but The Ogden Trust has created a set of resources to help you. We also have a School Governor Lead, Clare Webster, who is co-ordinating an Ogden Science Governors Group. The group is an informal network of primary science governors, who (remotely) share practice, ideas, comments and questions so that they can all better support school science provision.

“As a school science governor, I am proud to offer my assistance wherever possible to the fantastic work done by our science lead,” explains Clare. “Be that reviewing the school development plan, undertaking the pupil voice questionnaires, helping with external trips, or taking on the difficult task of judging the science fair entries!

“I benefit from being part of the science governor group because I feel more informed when I meet with my school science lead, and I can bring relevant ideas to the table,” continues Clare. “It gives me a network of useful contacts with their own insights into the STEM world and provides a valuable link to like-minded individuals with their wealth of experience and ideas. As the Ogden lead for science governors, I would love to expand the group membership.”

“Clare is a governor at a school with an active commitment to science,” says Wendy Cox, Head of School Partnerships. “We know that not all schools have the same resources or programme of science provision, and that the role of science governor in other schools may be more challenging - but none the less vital and rewarding. The Ogden group is perfectly placed to share support, resources, ideas and experience with those governors who may find themselves in more difficult situations.”

Why not find out more about becoming a science governor and take a look at the Ogden resources available to support you. Find them here.

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