The IOP Teachers of Physics awards celebrate the achievements of teachers in raising the profile of physics and science in secondary schools across the UK. This year, Andrew Seal – Ogden Bath Partnership Co-ordinator and Head of Science at Beechen Cliff School – was one of seven people recognised in the awards.
In making the award, the IOP commented: “Andrew is an enthusiastic head of science and his strong leadership has seen science regarded across the school for its quality. The high demand from external applicants for A-level physics is a testament to his impact. The energy and commitment of both Andrew and the team have led to the school being used as a hub to develop the interest and aptitude of physics teachers across the region. Determined to inspire future physicists, Andrew has worked widely with The Ogden Trust to facilitate a range of events that aim to improve physics education, including a trip to CERN. Passion for utilising research and developing quality teaching is at the heart of his work – and that of his team.”
We asked Andrew what the award means to him?
“Whilst I am honoured to be the recipient of this wonderful award, it is truly a recognition of the hard work of all of the teachers and technicians at the Physics Department at Beechen Cliff School, who, over the past few years, have put all of their efforts into seeing the understanding and enthusiasm for physics grow within the students. Our reward is seeing them walk away at the end of the course with good results and a passion to continue working in the field of physics before the new cohort arrives. As educators, we do not necessarily ever 'see' the culmination of our efforts and receiving this award is one way in which my team and I feel recognised and rewarded. It has been a welcome surprise and will help us to continue our work. I am very much looking forward to the IOP awards evening in London!
“Working with our partnership schools in and around the Bath area, we have been able to put on many enrichment events, ranging from science fairs, trips to CERN, guest speakers, space days at the University of Bath, and rocketry competitions - to name but a few. These have really bolstered our enrichment of the curriculum and would not have been possible without the support provided by The Ogden Trust.
“Having recently joined the Midsomer Norton Schools Partnership, we hope to expand the number of Ogden partnership schools this year, increasing the range of pupils who have access to the events already available, as well as to expand the range we offer. We also intend to setup a partnership website which will hopefully function as a central location for event news, recognition of achievements and celebration of physics in the local area.”
The Teachers of Physics awards are now in their 33rd year. They honour secondary school physics teachers alongside distinguished research scientists and industrialists; recognising that teachers contribute an immense amount to society and that without dedicated teachers there would be no physics research community or technological base.