Research Schools Network
Stoke-on-Trent Research School by The Keele and North Staffordshire Alliance

Stoke-on-Trent Research School by The Keele and North Staffordshire Alliance Newsletter

Issue #3

Spring term




A very warm welcome to our third e-newsletter of 2018.

Stoke on Trent Research School training sessions are well underway and have been exceptionally well-received by those attending.


We will soon publish details of our training plan for 2018-19, including information about our 2019 Conference [please see details at the end of this newsletter].


My colleague, Dr. Neil Phillipson, has written an fascinating piece on 'Teaching through and teaching for dialogue'. This can be found on our website here.


The Stoke on Trent Research School team wish you all a very Happy Easter.




[Director of the S-o-T Research School]


Tel: 01782 733119


Latest news



The EEF has published a Red Amber Green (RAG) self-assessment guide to accompany their guidance report, Improving Mathematics in Key Stages 2 and 3. The report set out eight evidence-based recommendations on the effective teaching of maths, and this accompanying guide describes what ‘ineffective’, ‘improving’ and ‘exemplary’ practice can look like in relation to each of the recommendations.

Download the RAG self-assessment guide


Seventeen EEF-funded projects are currently looking for schools, as well as post-16 settings, to take part in trials of high-potential projects. They include:

  • First Thing Music: educating young children through singing, giving direct access to the world of music without the difficulties involved with the use of an instrument. Read more.
  • Speech Bubbles: using drama and storytelling to develop pupils’ communication skills. Read more.
  • Power of Pictures: helping teachers develop their own understanding of the craft of picture book creation and illustration as a way of improving childhood literacy. Read more.
  • Young Journalist Academy: immersing pupils into a fun but realistic ‘newsroom’ environment, providing an authentic purpose and audience for writing. Read more.


There are two EEF grant-funding rounds closing soon:

  1. Science Teacher Retention, co-funded with Wellcome. Closing date: 5pm 22 March 2018 Read more.
  2. Improving Science Education, co-funded with Wellcome. Closing date: 9 April 2018 Read more.





At the recent Research Schools Conference on 7 February, Dr Kathryn Asbury, lecturer in Psychology and Education at the University of York, presented some stimulating findings from her work on the relevance of genetics to education. Not surprisingly, the role that genetics has to play in education is an emotive topic, and one that most people feel wary of approaching. However, whilst Dr Asbury acknowledges the trepidation felt by many at the idea of even talking about using genetic information to help shape our educational strategies, she also eloquently elucidates why the time is ripe for tackling these anxieties head on.

Read More


The EEF recently published Putting evidence to work: a school’s guide to implementation, a guidance report that gives schools the support they need to put evidence to work in their classrooms and implement new programmes and approaches effectively. In this blog, Alex Quigley, Director of Huntington Research School, shares a worked example for changing marking policy using the guidance report.

Read More


Events and training


An evidence-based approach to improving attainment for disadvantage pupils

This three-day programme, developed by the EEF and the Research Schools Network, provides school leaders with the tools they need to devise, implement and evaluate a high impact Pupil Premium strategy. The programme delivers a comprehensive guide to the most important evidence and school improvement resources in education and is developed from the evidence on effective CPD and aligned with the DfE’s Standards for Professional Development.

The programme costs £595 and begins on 21 May at Shireland Research School. As a taster to the programme, a free twilight session will take place on 8 May.

To find out more, and to book your place on the programme or the twilight, contact Emily Hughes at

SAVE THE DATE - Conference 2019


The Stoke on Trent Research School Conference is taking place on 4th April 2019. This will be held in the magnificent setting of Keele Hall [located on the Keele University campus] and will include key note speakers, seminars and workshops on a wide range of educational themes.


Please note this date in your diary and we will publish more information in forthcoming e-newsletters.

Read More