Ian Cooper - Science - Director of Science, Outwood Grange Academies Trust

Science has all the components needed to excite, enthuse and develop students’ natural curiosity. The key challenge for any teacher is the relentless pursuit of opening up the ‘world of science’ whilst delivering excellence in the classroom. Over the past four years Ian has worked with a number of schools under various contracts (NLE, Gaining Grounds and OGAT) and fully appreciates the challenges that are inherent in large teams and also those that lay ahead specifically for science faculties.

Ian’s key role within these contracts has been to contribute to the relevant SLTs and provide leadership and support to the science teams. This has included teaching, leading numerous meetings, setting expectations, support plans, Ofsted inspections and developing resources. For every school, he has achieved the resulting judgement that was needed to demonstrate improved practice in science. As a member of the OGAT team, Ian works collaboratively and strategically with a number of leadership teams to strive towards academic excellence through pupils’ achievements and uses every opportunity to use effective assessment methods to track pupils’ progress including RAISE and Praising Stars©.

Through his intervention in science he has contributed significantly to exceeding FFT targets, improving CVA, and ensuring the high percentage of 5A*-C grades in a number of schools, changing the culture of departments by focussing intervention on A*-A grades as well as A*-C. Looking ahead, science departments are facing significant changes. Whilst working to make the best opportunities from these changes, Ian has a number of other initiatives working across the Outwood Family of Schools, for example literacy drives, numeracy strategies, continuing work with Leeds University and closer collaboration with Sheffield Hallam SLC.