Front-line research breakthrough for EEF

Four major trials were announced by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) in June to investigate the best ways of getting teachers to engage with research and improve pupil attainment. The initiative involving 8,000 schools across England will cost around £1.8m and is the first time the government has spent money on practical trials in schools.

The government promotes evidence-based policy-making through What Works Centres but, as EEF points out, despite increasing interest and expenditure in education research, current evidence suggests its impact in schools is often limited. International evidence shows a strong correlation between high performing education systems and the effective use of research in schools and these studies will test which approaches most effectively engage teachers with research findings.

Strategies being tested in the EEF trial range from face-to-face instruction, access to websites and twitter chats to posting information booklets to schools, professional development sessions and research conferences aimed at teachers.

Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, said: “These trials are unique in trying to rigorously test the most effective ways to communicate research findings to schools. We know that the best performing education systems embrace research and act on its findings. The results of these trials will bring us closer to building a system that can cost effectively keep teachers informed about research and help them achieve the best possible outcomes for students.”