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Vertex Foundation boosts STEM education for UK students

Published: Jun 30, 2020 3 min read

STEM learning

Building on the Vertex Foundation’s long-standing commitment to STEM education around the globe, it has generously donated £100,000 to the ENTHUSE Charitable Trust, STEM Learning is delighted to announce.

Photo of Vertex Executive Director Katharine Jensen with the quote: "The Vertex Foundation believes it is critical to invest in STEM education to inspire the next generation of innovators."

The donation will help ENTHUSE, a charitable trust which supports STEM Learning, to continue funding the continuing professional development (CPD) of science teachers and other educators of science.

The Vertex Foundation is a not-for-profit entity established in 2017 that aims to improve the lives of people with serious diseases and those in its communities through education, innovation, and health programmes. It is the philanthropic arm of global biotechnology company Vertex, which invests in scientific innovation to create transformative medicines for people with serious diseases, such as cystic fibrosis.

Vertex has a well-established STEM education programme worldwide, including an already established two-year ENTHUSE Partnership with UK schools in Didcot, and a successful STEM Ambassador programme.

ENTHUSE funds bursaries to enable teachers to take part in STEM Learning’s transformational CPD at the National STEM Learning Centre. Teachers who benefit from STEM Learning CPD are more than twice as likely to stay in the teaching profession as colleagues, with the retention effect even more pronounced for newly qualified teachers who are almost three times as likely to stay and gain valuable teaching experience. This in turn benefits hundreds, if not thousands of young people.

In 2018/19, evaluation shows that 16,000 more young people achieved two good science GCSEs thanks to STEM Learning CPD, while an additional 2,000 went on to study A level STEM subjects in the same year.

Vertex’s donation to the ENTHUSE Project will provide bursaries to more than 300 teachers, which will, in turn, benefit over 30,000 young people around the UK.

Katharine Jensen, Executive Director of Vertex Foundation said:

“We are pleased to have expanded our partnership with Project ENTHUSE to support teacher professional development and deliver impactful science curriculum in schools across the UK. The Vertex Foundation believes it is critical to invest in STEM education to inspire the next generation of innovators.”

Yvonne Baker, Chief Executive of STEM Learning, said:

“The Vertex Foundation’s support enables us to work with teachers from across the UK to build a world-class STEM education for all young people. We know that STEM subjects and skills are a driver for change and Vertex Foundation’s generosity will make a measurable, positive difference to thousands of young people’s lives.”

STEM Learning’s vision is for a world-leading STEM education for all young people, with a particular focus on those from disadvantaged communities, who may need extra support, particularly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis, which is causing those young people to fall further behind their peers.

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