Cambridge Mathematics School aims to increase diversity in subject

The state-funded school will open in 2023 for 16-19 year olds across East Anglia

A state-funded Cambridge Mathematics School will open in Cambridge in September 2023. The multi-academy trust will run a specialist sixth form in collaboration with Cambridge University, with a focus on widening participation in STEM.

It aims to attract more female students, students from minority ethnic groups, and students from socially and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds into maths subjects.

It also aims to  help prepare more of the UK’s most mathematically able students to succeed in maths disciplines at top universities and address the UK’s skills shortage in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

The news follows the government’s announcement that 11 specialised mathematics schools will be created (one in each region of England). An extensive outreach programme will see research and best practices shared with schools and students across the region and the UK as part of this scheme.

Based in Mill Road, Cambridge, the Cambridge Mathematics School (CMS) will welcome 16 to 19-year-old A-Level students from across the East of England. It will be run by the Eastern Learning Alliance (ELA) in collaboration with the University. Students will study maths and further maths, and then choose from physics, chemistry, biology or computer science A-Levels.

Clare Hargraves, The ELA’s Curriculum Lead for the Cambridge Mathematics School, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with the University of Cambridge to create the Cambridge Mathematics School.

“The School will offer a new and innovative approach to learning in A-Level maths, and associated subjects, and help young people manage the jump to degree-level mathematics.”

CMS will draw on the University’s Widening Participation and outreach experience, such as The Millennium Mathematics Project (MMP) which provides online mathematics resources for students free and available to all.

Professor Colm-Cille Caulfield, Head of the University’s Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, said “this partnership has the potential to do enormous good in terms of addressing inequality and reaching the brightest students, regardless of background.”

He continued, “Data is everywhere – it’s collected by social media channels, it’s used to measure climate change, it’s being presented to us on a daily basis during the pandemic – and it’s more important than ever to be able to understand what all that means.”

Feature Image Credits: Jess Marais 

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