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Mind the Gap – Episode 8 Featuring Mark McCourt

Mark McCourt, the UK’s leading authority on teaching for mastery, is the guest of Emma Turner and Tom Sherrington on this episode of Mind the Gap (John Catt Educational). In the discussion, Mark shares his perspective on mastery and also addresses some of the misconceptions. In particular, he shares that mastery, by definition, means “Bloom’s mastery,” and also explains “Mastery is not a curriculum. It is a model of schooling.” 

Among other ideas discussed, Mark warns the education community not to equate anecdotal experience with true evidence of efficacy, explains why it should be the norm that schools “try to understand what students know and don’t know, and teach them the stuff they don’t know,” and describes his belief that early grades teachers must be the most skilled. 

To find all video episodes, featuring additional segments from Tom and Emma, subscribe to Mind the Gap with Tom & Emma on YouTube.

To listen to the audio version, subscribe here on your preferred podcast app: Mind the Gap Podcast

About the participants:

Mark McCourt is the UK’s leading authority on teaching for mastery. He has trained over 2,000 schools in mastery models for schooling and his latest book is Teaching for Mastery (John Catt Educational). A leading figure in mathematics education, Mark has led many large-scale government education initiatives, both in the UK and overseas. Mark was a Director at the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM) and has also been a school leader, an Advanced Skills Teacher, a school inspector and a teacher trainer. He founded and was Chairman of the Teacher Development Trust. Follow Mark on Twitter @EmathsUK

Tom Sherrington is a co-host of Mind the Gap: Making Education Work Across the Globe. He has worked in schools as a teacher and leader for 30 years and is now a consultant specializing in teacher development and curriculum & assessment planning. Through his consultancy – teacherhead consulting – he is interested in working with educators to explore and implement contemporary educational ideas that deliver an excellent all-round education for young people. His books include Rosenshine’s Principles in Action and The Learning Rainforest Fieldbook.  Tom is a regular contributor to ResearchEd events and other conferences for teachers and policymakers. He regularly contributes to conferences and CPD sessions locally and nationally and is busy working in schools and colleges across the UK and around the world. Follow Tom on Twitter @teacherhead

Emma Turner is a co-host of Mind the Gap: Making Education Work Across the Globe. After 20 years in primary teaching, Emma joined Discovery Schools Academy Trust where she is currently the Research and CPD lead, devising and writing training for staff at all career stages, but specializing in continuous professional development (CPD) for early career teachers. She is the founder of ‘NewEd – Joyful CPD for early career teachers’, a not-for-profit approach to CPD to encourage positivity amongst the profession and help to retain teachers in post. Turner is author of Be More Toddler: A Leadership Education From Our Little Learners. She is an advocate of balance in leadership and family life and regularly speaks at events across the UK on how part-time leadership and flexible working can be a hugely successful model in organizations. Follow Emma on Twitter @emma_turner75

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