In September 2013 the Cambridge Primary Review Trust (CPRT) took over from the Cambridge Primary Review (CPR). We had a grand launch event in London chaired by Jonathan Dimbleby, but then CPRT went quiet, publicly at least. As explained in our March post, this was because we were waiting for our new website, delayed for reasons we won’t bore you with. Here it is at last. Take a look: you’ll find that silence signalled not inactivity but the opposite. For example:
- CPR’s evidence on the condition and future of primary education remains unrivalled in its scope, diversity and depth. But evidence cannot stand still and we’ve launched eight new research projects to update and extend the evidence that good quality primary education requires. The new projects include five commissioned research reviews relating to CPRT’s priorities and a joint project with York University on dialogic pedagogy as a tool for tackling disadvantage. Joining us in this work are some exceptional talents: epidemiologist Kate Pickett (chronicler of inequality and author of the bestselling The Spirit Level), educational neuroscientist Usha Goswami, assessment and science education expert Wynne Harlen, international pedagogy luminary David Hogan, among others. Find out more
- CPRT’s regional networks and Schools Alliance have been merged to give each region a core group of schools that are not only judged outstanding by Ofsted but are also committed to the CPR aims and evidence and to finding practical ways to tackle the CPRT priorities. Find out more
- Regional activity has taken different forms. For example, the South West now has a lively group of CPRT Research Schools. London has a Teachers’ Reading Group. St Leonard’s School, like an increasing number across the country, builds explicitly on CPR. These are just three examples of regional activity among many.
- CPRT’s partnership with Pearson, which supports but is entirely independent of our core activities, has produced Primary Curriculum 2014, a well-received series of regional conferences plus an excellent handbook and video, all designed to help schools implement the new National Curriculum within the larger framework of CPR aims and principles. Unusually in the countdown to national curriculum implementation, Primary Curriculum 2014 doesn’t confine itself to the core subjects but treats the whole curriculum with equal seriousness and enthusiasm. This the first stage of a programme of joint CPRT/Pearson support for schools which will also cover issues such as assessment without levels, curriculum audit and children’s voice. Find out more
As for the new website, you’ll see that although it remains the definitive source of information about the Cambridge Primary Review, its evidence and its many publications, it has the vital feature of interactivity that the old site lacked. Previously there was no shortage of comment, but responding to it required an email. The new site’s blog enables the debate to become more lively and much more inclusive. This first blog is more in the nature of an announcement, but we promise regular postings about a range of issues relating to primary education policy, practice and research, nationally and internationally. We’ll also be inviting guest bloggers. Watch this space, and then join in. Usual protocols: comment is free but fact is sacred; nothing obscene or defamatory …