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Centre for Excellence in Maths

About Centres for Excellence in Maths 

Centres for Excellence in Maths (CfEM) is a five-year national improvement programme aimed at delivering sustained improvements in maths outcomes for 16–19-year-olds, up to Level 2, in post-16 settings. 

Funded by the Department for Education and delivered by the Education and Training Foundation, the programme is exploring what works for teachers and students, embedding related CPD and good practice, and building networks of maths professionals in colleges. 

Harlow College is one of the 21 Centres for Excellence in Mathematics in England, created by the DfE, to research ways of delivering a step change by trialling innovative approaches to teaching maths. The college has succeeded in recruiting 14 network partners including FE and sixth Form colleges who are teaching post-16 GCSE re-sit maths, so that together we can work collaboratively to achieve greater success. 

Action Research Projects 

The 21 Centres for Excellence in Maths have embarked on Action Research projects. The projects are focused primarily on four themes of activity:

  • An adapted mastery approach to mathematics, suitable for the post-16 sector
  • Approaches to contextualisation which relate maths to real-world situations
  • Motivating and engaging learners
  • The use of data and technology within mathematics education in the sector.

The aim is to develop a sustainable model for supporting FE maths teachers and associated colleagues from across partner networks. These action research projects aim to solve problems and improve good practice and learner attainment.

Harlow College worked collaboratively with Northampton College and USP College on two action research topics, small group support and technology, to support the national vision for improving teaching, learning and assessment practices and results in FE maths using action research.

Small group intervention through Maths Labs and Maths Clinics

Technology Action Research Project Report

Harlow college is also currently working with four colleges (Capel Manor, Buckinghamshire college group, USP and Northampton) this year on two new Action Research topics:

  1. Mathematical Growth Mindset
  2. Realistic Mathematical Education

All in a bid to further find better ways of improving learner experience and attainment of higher grades in mathematics.

Excellence in Maths