Posted on 1 March 2002
The University's Science Education Group is internationally renowned for developing new and exciting approaches to teaching science which are used all over the world.
Lord Sainsbury will be briefed by Professor John Holman, Director of the Science Curriculum Centre, who invited the Minister to the University, on how its work with departments such as Chemistry, Biology, Educational Studies and Physics is laying the foundation for the scientists of the future by providing improved science programmes for schools and teacher training.
Professor Holman said: "Lord Sainsbury has a personal and ministerial interest in education and in the professional development of science teachers. We're delighted he's coming here to meet staff who have designed such innovative and exciting science teaching materials."
Lord Sainsbury will also visit the University's Department of Biology, one of the largest in the country, where a £25 million redevelopment will provide new and refurbished buildings for the Biology Department's research groups and for the Structural Biology Laboratory of the Department of Chemistry. The department has over 400 scientific and support staff and teaches over 400 undergraduates. The buildings have been designed to cluster around a state-of-the-art technology hub which will bring together different technologies and equipment.
Professor Alastair Fitter, Head of the Department of Biology, said the programme will centre around the Technology Facility, a novel suite of laboratories containing £5M of state-of-the-art equipment. "These laboratories will allow all of our international research teams to use the most modern technologies, whether in cancer research, plant biotechnology or ecology and are made possible by Government recognition of the infra-structure needs of UK science.
Lord Sainsbury said, "I'm very pleased to have the chance to see at first hand the innovative work that is being carried out at York into science education and biology research. Science education is vital for a thriving economy. I am also excited to have a preview of the major building redevelopment for the Department of Biology which the DTI's Joint Infrastructure Funding (JIF) is helping to get off the ground."
The funding for the work has come mainly from the Government's Joint Infrastructure Funding scheme.