Peterborough’s Roger Neilson Public School has been selected as the site of Canada’s first public elementary research school – the outcome of a new partnership between Trent University’s School of Education and the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (KPRDSB).
This new research school will bring educators and researchers together to learn more about how children and youth learn, and to explore best practices for teaching and learning.
“This will be the first publicly funded elementary research school in Canada,” said Dr. Jackie Muldoon, provost and vice-president of Trent University. “Roger Neilson will be a place where educators and their research partners from our School of Education can collaborate on projects of mutual interest.”
Dr. Cathy Bruce, dean of Education, Teaching and Learning, added: “Research projects at the school will start gradually, as we build a vision, a framework and procedures for this new collaboration. Although research schools may be sometimes referred to as laboratory, or lab, schools, which can conjure up images of experimentation, these schools are not about experimenting, but are about exploring best practices and further innovations in education that are based on a bedrock of solid research evidence. Our research school, like others, will strive to always place excellence in student education first and foremost.”
“KPRDSB and Trent University have been partners in education for many years, and we look forward to this new and highly innovative phase in our work together,” said Diane Lloyd, chairperson, KPRDSB.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for our students and teachers to be engaged in innovative learning. Over time, we hope to apply these best practices within classrooms across our school board,” says Dr. Jennifer Leclerc, director of education for KPRDSB, about the collaborative project.
Denise Humphries, the principal of Roger Neilson Public School, adds, “The expertise and resources available to Roger Neilson by way of this partnership are a tremendous boost to the community and to our important work with students.”
To manage the number and range of research projects, Tara Flynn has been appointed as research director on the project. Ms. Flynn has been working as research staff at the School of Education since 2007, and is currently serving as the director of research for the Trent Math Education Research Collaborative.
Teacher education is a key feature of the research school. Through this partnership, Roger Neilson will commit to taking teacher candidates from the Trent School of Education B.Ed. program for teaching placements on a regular basis.