Founding Headteacher Appointed to Lead New Cambridge Mathematics School



The development of the new Cambridge Mathematics School, in partnership with the University of Cambridge, continues with the appointment of a founding headteacher.


We are excited to engage with the Cambridge Mathematics School to enable students from all backgrounds to ‘think like a mathematician’.

Professor Colm-cille Caulfield, Head of DAMTP

Maths education expert Clare Hargraves will lead the state-funded specialist sixth-form college, which is being created by multi-academy trust The Eastern Learning Alliance (ELA) in collaboration with the University’s Faculty of Mathematics.

Clare has maths leadership experience in secondary schools and sixth form colleges across the East of England, including as a deputy head in a school rated in the top 1% of state schools nationally, and during a sixth-form headship where she was responsible for transforming the outcomes of a previously underperforming college. Most recently, her trust-wide consultancy work has focused on curriculum design, the professional development of staff, and embedding a culture of rigorously high expectations in mathematics education.

She said: “It’s an enormous privilege to be the founding headteacher of the Cambridge Mathematics School, but this is of course a collaboration that involves the expertise, passion and experience of many people – including at the University of Cambridge. This partnership is committed to developing pioneering learning and ensuring truly outstanding and enhanced mathematics provision is available to A-Level students across the region.”

The Cambridge Mathematics School – which will open in Mill Road, Cambridge, in September 2023 – will teach 16 to 19-year-old A-Level students from across the East of England, and aims to attract more female students into maths subjects, more minority ethnic students, and more students from socially and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds. The principal aim of maths schools is to help prepare more of the UK’s most mathematically able students to succeed in maths disciplines at top universities, and address the UK’s skills shortage in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

As part of the academy trust-University collaboration, the School is working with  the University’s Faculty of Mathematics, and in particular with the  Cambridge Mathematics project (a collaboration between  Cambridge University Press and Assessment and the Faculties of Education and Mathematics) to create an innovative mathematics curriculum. It is also drawing on the Faculty of Mathematics’ widening participation and outreach experience, in particular the success of the Millennium Mathematics Project (MMP) and its NRICH programme.

Lynne McClure, Director of the Cambridge Mathematics project, said: “There is a wonderful opportunity here to work with high attaining students and their highly qualified and passionate teachers, and to do something different. The Cambridge Mathematics team is looking forward to sharing our research and evidence base in the design of an exciting, engaging and cutting-edge curriculum.”

Professor Colm-cille Caulfield, Head of the Department of Applied Mathematics & Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge (DAMTP), said: “Mathematics in Cambridge has a rich past and a vibrant present. In the Faculty we aim both to advance mathematical knowledge through novel and insightful research, and to train the next cohort of mathematicians through innovative and rigorous teaching. Through MMP and NRICH we are committed to the development and support of pre-University mathematical education for all, and looking to the future, we are excited to engage with the Cambridge Mathematics School to enable students from all backgrounds to ‘think like a mathematician’.”

More information here.

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