Are you passionate about your subject area? Are you interested in bringing cutting edge research into the classroom? Would you like the opportunity to develop an outreach activity and engage with secondary schools across Greater Manchester? Then the School-University Partnership Initiative might be for you!

About the School-University Partnerships Initiative (SUPI)
The School-University Partnerships Initiative (SUPI) is a three-year RCUK-funded project to create structured and strategic mechanisms for HEIs to work in partnership with secondary schools and FE colleges. This partnership will support researchers’ direct engagement with students and bring contemporary and inspirational research contexts into formal and informal learning to enhance and enrich the curriculum. To find out more about SUPI visit:

About the Training and Funding Opportunity
A one-day interactive workshop for researchers exploring the why, what and how of engaging with schools. Participants will be able to apply for a small pot of seed funding to develop your ideas and go into schools in January-February 2013 to deliver your activity.

The workshop is being held on Thursday 21 November 2013 (9:30 – 16:45) followed by a Dragon’s Den pitching session on Wednesday 8 January 2014.

If your idea is selected at the pitching session you will be matched up with a local school. You will be supported along the way with drop-in surgeries, where you can talk through the development of your ideas with experienced engaging researchers.

Who Is This For?
The training Initiative is a cross faculty initiative and is open to the research community in all faculties. In particular the initiative is aimed at Postgraduate Researchers and Research Staff (Research Associates, Postdocs and Research Fellows) and New Academics with little or no experience of working with secondary schools.

Participant Numbers
A maximum of 25 participants on the training, with 6-10 seed funded projects.

Workshop Programme
On this practical course you will:

  • Explore how engaging with schools can benefit early career researchers, your research and the schools with whom you engage.
  • Explore the collaborative nature of developing effective working partnerships with schools and teachers.
  • Consider a range of methods and approaches for presenting contemporary research and the research process from all disciplines to secondary school pupils.
  • Improve your familiarity with the current school environment (including curriculum, operational protocols, and positive learning environments).
  • Enhance a range of skills including communication, collaboration, and project management.
  • Generate activity ideas for bringing contemporary and inspirational research contexts into formal and informal learning to enhance and enrich the curriculum.
  • Develop evaluation and reflective mechanisms for assessing the impact of your activities as well as your own professional development.

But we don’t just want to inspire you with great ideas. We want to help you develop those ideas into concrete plans! This course is all about developing confidence, networks, and experience in engaging with local secondary schools.

Following the one-day workshop you will look to develop your ideas for an outreach activity to pitch at the follow up Dragon’s Den event in January. Winning ideas will be given funds and matched-up with a secondary school.

What we’d like from you

  • Great communication, people and organisational skills.
  • Ability to enthuse and engage learners about your subject area.
  • Creative and innovative ideas for outreach activities.
  • Ability to be proactive, flexible and to use your initiative.
  • Willingness to manage own time and involvement.
  • Commitment to the training initiative and willing to see your project through to delivery in a local school.

How to Apply

Places for this training and funding initiative are limited.

Please complete the application form – SUPI_Application_Form (doc) and return to: no later than Tuesday 19 November 2013.

Note: This training Initiative is running alongside the School-University Partnership Networking Event taking place Wednesday 20 November. The networking event provides an excellent opportunity for researchers to meet with teachers interested in fostering links, and running collaborative research-led activities for secondary school and college students. If you are interested in applying for this training and funding initiative, we highly recommend that you also attend the networking event. For details see:

Posted on behalf of the SUPI Training Group: Dee-Ann Johnson, Suzanne Spicer, Kate Dack, Ceri Harrop and Rosalyn Cooper