Join our community of enquiry

Become an Enquiring School

The Enquiring Schools programme is a high-quality Continuing Professional Developing (CPD) programme that helps to develop a culture of enquiry and professional growth in schools. It works by involving teachers in small-scale evidence-informed classroom enquiry, building a bridge between research evidence and everyday classroom practice. 

The programme, previously developed and delivered by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER), consists of a blend of face-to-face workshops and personalised coaching in order to support innovation and improvement in teaching and learning.

Since 2012, Enquiring Schools has been adopted by more than 50 schools, academy chains and organisations across the UK. 

Effective CPD

Research tells us that the most effective form of professional development:

  • takes place over time and is not a one-off event. 
  • focuses on real issues for real teachers with real students. 
  • involves forms of collaborative enquiry and problem solving.

The Enquiring Schools programme has been carefully designed to make the most of these strategies.

When researchers investigated the factors that most influence the decisions teachers make, they found that, ‘research undertaken by me’ to be twice as influential as ‘evidence presented by a research organisation’.  This is another reason why teacher enquiry is such a powerful force for professional growth.

Expert coaching and mentoring

Alongside our facilitated workshops we put a great emphasis on supporting individuals and groups with expert coaching and mentoring sessions.

Evidence tells us that coaching and mentoring is one of the most effective methods of supporting professional growth.

Our aim is to help develop practitioners who reflect on their impact, engage in thoughtful enquiry to try out new ideas and use evidence from research to support innovation and improvement.

Many participants tell us that engaging in the Enquiring Schools programme has a led to a significant impact on their thinking and their teaching, and that this has led to real benefits for students. 

Some of our school alumni


Find out more

Do you think the Enquiring Schools programme might be something worth exploring in your organisation? We would be happy to answer your questions and share our story with you.