Focus Education Responds To ‘Unprecedented Demand’ For Training Following Maths Curriculum Changes

Leading education resource provider Focus Education has announced that it is to host a total of 10 Mastery in Maths events over the coming six months following ‘unprecedented demand’ from subject and primary school leaders across the country as a result of the introduction of ‘fundamental changes’ to the mathematics curriculum.

Introduced in September 2014 the new curriculum has had a profound impact; not only on the way the core subject is taught – with pupils expected to learn ‘fewer things in greater depth’ - but also on the way teachers are expected to challenge and support their pupils. 

The training, led by education veteran and former head teacher, Clive Davies OBE, is aimed to support teachers across the primary sector. The series of events will set about tackling any concerns shared by members of the teaching profession; directly addressing the ‘plethora of detailed and varied queries’ received by the organisation. Focus Education founder and former inspector Clive, said: “The response to the ‘Mastery in Maths’ events in particular this year has been overwhelming. Although that was to be expected to some extent, with the changes to the curriculum that came into force in 2014, we have found ourselves putting on additional courses in more regions in order to ensure that everyone who wants to attend is able to. We started off with 4, now we’re up to 10. “A critical concept of the new mathematics curriculum is that it encourages the learning of fewer things in greater depth and, inevitably, this is serving to catalyst conversation within the profession as to how to ensure that the right balance between quality and quantity is being struck whilst also ensuring that any methods adopted will stand the scrutiny of assessment.” Questions received by Focus Education have included how to challenge the most able pupil whilst providing the right amount of support for the vulnerable ones. Clive added: “Our focus at the events, which will play host to in excess of 200 delegates, is therefore to ensure that teachers feel confident about delivering a mathematics curriculum that is fit for purpose and provide staff with the basic knowledge they need to implement the changes and really feel in control.” The roll out of the 10-strong training schedule – which will see events take place in Manchester, Wigan, Oldham, York, Derby, London, Leicester, Southampton and Middlesbrough – begins just weeks before the release of the company’s highly anticipated Focus Maths resource; designed to deliver continuity and progression in the teaching of the subject further to the changes. The resource ensures that teachers have autonomy but supports them in providing the right day-to-day support for helping pupils to master the basic skills as well as providing greater depth activities for pupils that need them. Author Clive said interest across both the events and the digital and print maths resource was indicative of the importance that the profession was placing on the new curriculum. He said: “Clearly the changes are being taken seriously by school and subject leaders who are demonstrating their commitment to getting it right – for their students, their institution and themselves. “It’s going to be a busy few months but we’re really looking forward to getting stuck in and meeting the delegates.” Commenting on the Focus Maths publication Victoria Saville, Principal at the Fieldhead Primary Academy in Birstall, Batley, said: “It has made medium term planning much easier and you can see where the gaps are in teaching that has already been taught; it saves you a lot of time and thinking space too!” Sara Goya, a Head teacher in York, commented that the resource had ‘saved’ her maths leader ‘8 months’ work’. Further information regarding the Focus Maths – Whole-School Maths Curriculum – can be found on the company’s website here: