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NCETM Annual Conference - Sir Peter Williams: One mathematics specialist in every primary school

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 30 June 2008 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 18 August 2008 by ncetm_administrator
NCETM Annual Conference 2008 - London, 17th June 2008
This was a memorable day packed full of positive ideas and strategies focused on improving mathematics teaching and learning for all. The Conference featured the launch of both the Primary Mathematics Review and the NCETM Annual Report.

Sir Peter Williams at the NCETM Conference

One Mathematics Specialist in Every Primary School

The Williams Report will give a new momentum to improving pupils’ understanding of mathematics and raising achievements in schools. One of the main recommendations put forward is for there to be one mathematics specialist available in every primary school.

At the NCETM Annual Conference where the report was launched, Sir Peter Williams recognised the contribution already made by teachers:

“We value highly the national teaching force in the land.”

He also believed that there are many “protomaths specialists” that can be brought “through into becoming a mathematics specialist in the primary school”.

There were other highly commendable and potentially effective recommendations and guidelines that Sir Peter made in his speech at the launch. In his comments he stressed:

  • the importance of “the development of deep subject knowledge married to deep pedagogical knowledge and skills”
  • incentives to think more favourably of teachers taking part in INSET
  • “ … the value of in-school activity is also a vital part of the CPD programme.”
  • the need to encapsulate the critical characteristics of the specialist teacher
  • putting in place a ‘masters level’ programme in teaching and learning
  • the grade C hurdle in mathematics at GCSE should remain
  • “the mathematics curriculum is pretty much ok”
  • there needs to be increased focus on “getting children talking about mathematics, learning about deduction, logic and reasoning”.

Early Years provision was very much a high priority in the report. Sir Peter Williams focused on the importance of the ways in which children begin their learning journey.

“My big message in Early Years is learn through play. It is vital we let the child have the freedom to learn.”

And equally, the need for children to have access to “adults gifted in intervention teaching.”

Sir Peter Williams assured the audience that his team tried to work as much as possible from an ‘evidence base’ and he thanked teachers and practitioners for sharing their practice.

When you read the report and recommendations, which the government has fully accepted, it is likely that you will agree with Sir Peter William’s observation that:

“In years to come we can look back and know we did the right thing.”

Click here to read an article on the final report of the Williams Review.
The full Williams Report of the Independent Review of Mathematics Teaching in Early Years Settings and Primary Schools can be viewed on the Teachernet website.  Click here to download a copy of the report.
Click here to join a discussion about specialist mathematics teachers.
Click here to join a discussion about the Williams Review in the Primary Forum.


Support your and your school's CPD by using the conference materials


Browse by
Homepage / Workshops / Articles
Celia Hoyles: Turning the spark into the flame
Lord Adonis: Transforming our education culture
Sir Peter Williams: One mathematics specialist in every school
Workshop: Raising and improving standards in mathematics through active learning
Workshop: Bowland Maths - Improving pupils' confidence
Workshop: Enhancing professional development for primary teachers of mathematics
Workshop: Mathematics Matters - Valuing what is important
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Workshops - Read more about the conference workshops


Articles - Find out more about the day


Photo Gallery - View images from the day


NCETM Annual Report 2007/08 - Read the article or download the full report - click here for more


Executive Summary - Click here to download the Mathematics Matters Executive Summary PDF.


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