An external evaluation of the programme also found that 87% of pupils enjoyed more challenge in their STEM learning and 77% had increased aspirations in terms of STEM careers.
Now RAiSE, which has been active in 12 authorities during the pilot period, will be made available, on a rolling basis, to other regions in Scotland to improve primary teachers’ confidence and skills to deliver high-quality, motivating and engaging STEM lessons to pupils.
RAiSE, which is delivered through a partnership of Education Scotland, The Wood Foundation, Scottish Government and participating local authorities, deploys Primary Science Development Officers (PSDOs) to devise and deliver professional learning, foster key community and industry relationships and create sustainable STEM networks.
Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, Mr Richard Lochhead MSP said:
“I am pleased to see the positive results from evaluation of the RAiSE pilot, particularly in raising teacher confidence in delivering STEM in the school curriculum.
“The objectives of the programme are clearly aligned to the Government’s STEM Education and Training Strategy, and complement other activity taking place to drive forward improvements in STEM education and training in Scotland and the wide range of fantastic activity that is taking place in our schools and wider communities.
“It is clear that the programme has brought benefits to those in the initial eight local authorities that participated. I am sure that these benefits will also be seen in the four authorities who joined the programme this year, and I look forward to more authorities taking advantage of the flexibility of the programme to suit their local needs.”
Gayle Gorman, Chief Executive of Education Scotland, added:
“This is an exceptional example of how working collaboratively with local authorities can deliver real outcomes for our schools – most notably in boosting the confidence of teachers in delivering STEM education to our children.
“Supporting our teachers is vital to delivering the RAiSE programme and it is encouraging to see their increased confidence and skills having a flow on effect to improving pupil engagement with STEM.
“The evidence shows us that pupils are really taking the messages of the programme onboard, with children telling us that they think that STEM should be taught in primary schools and that anyone can have a job in STEM-related careers.”