Meols Cop High School

Meols Cop High School

Brokering Aspirations

  1. Research School
  2. About Us

About Us

Meols Cop Research School is an exciting development and part of the evidence based journey that the school has been on. We have taken part in the Education Endowment Foundation-funded RISE project and have been one of the schools embedding evidence-based practice into all aspects of school life. As a Research School our core purpose is to:

  • Share the very best of evidence-based practice to schools and teachers across the North West
  • Provide evidence-based training and support to schools in the region
  • Host conferences and events
  • Develop interventions and practices that help improve the life chances of students.

We are very proud to support many different schools locally as well as taking part in innovative research projects, such as the King’s College London  ‚ÄčBest Practice in Student Grouping’ project and the Spaced Learning project.

We work closely with the Education Endowment Foundation and are currently conducting a national trial into effective marking in English, called FLASH marking. More information is available at


The Research Schools Network is a collaboration (EEF and IEE) to create a network of schools that support the use of evidence to improve teaching practice. 


Meols Cop Research Leads 



Information on Greg Thornton to follow 

Ms R Pilling: PE and Dance Teacher, Research Lead

Research experience: My research journey started in 2015, looking at how we can use technology effectively in practical lessons, looking at the impact technology had on the quality of feedback, group work, independent learning and recall opportunities. All my research experience has proven that trialing new things by gathering evidence is key to making the right decisions when combating barriers to learning and extending learning opportunities. Most recently I completed an SSAT case study around the impact of ‘Anxiety In Schools’ which is now even more of increasing concern. This has been published in the 2021 spring edition of ‘The Leading Edge Network Magazine’. From this my research has now channeled to explore further into Social and Emotional Learning and the impact this has on improving student’s self-awareness and lower performance anxiety.

Throughout my journey as a research lead, I have had the opportunity to support a range of professional development opportunities for teachers in and outside of school, sharing the impact of research carried out, some of which is now at the forefront of my teaching.

Research interests:

Social and Emotional Learning,

Parental Engagement strategies

and the use of Feedback.


Current roles for 2021-2022:

Supporting the delivery of the Wirral- ‘Learning Behaviours programme.’

External training offered around ‘Evidence informed feedback in practical subjects.’

Internal training offered around ‘Evidence informed feedback in PE.’


PICO Question 2021-2022: For GCSE Dance students, does the implementation of SEL within the curriculum design have an impact on improving student’s self-awareness and lower performance anxiety? Will the inclusion of SEL provide evidence to support the understanding of student results?

Miss H Walsh: Science Teacher, Research Lead


Research experience: I first became a Research Lead in 2015 and initially I focused on using regular retrieval practice to secure content into pupils’ long term memory. Since then, I’ve trialled using metacognitive strategies to improve pupil progress. I’ve worked with the EEF to produce a training package based on the Improving Secondary Science Guidance Report, and have delivered this training to many schools in Liverpool. I’ve also secured an SSAT Innovation Grant and completed my case study on promoting the use of diagnostic questions within a lesson to act as a checkpoint, and to assess misconceptions on assessments. I love having the opportunity to support staff both in Meols Cop and out, sharing the impact of evidence-based strategies to close the disadvantaged gap and allow all pupils to thrive.


Research interests:

Improving Secondary Science

Self-regulated Learning & Metacognition

and the use of Feedback.


Current roles for 2021-2022:

Internal support to staff in becoming a Research Lead, or are less experienced.

External training offered around ‘Improving Secondary Science’ and ‘Metacognition’.


PICO Question 2021-2022: What impact does explicitly teaching metacognitive strategies around answering exam questions have on student assessment scores?

Information to follow 

Name + Job Title: Ms J Morgan

Head of Design and Technology, Teacher of Art and Design and Textiles Technology and Research Lead.


Research experience: My research experience started in 2013, working with colleagues within the Art Department with a focus on improving the progress of males in core and GCSE Art lessons. During this research I focused on the use of collaborative planning, use of demonstrations and scaffolded practical tasks; since 2018 my personal research has developed to become focused on the effective use of modelling in practical lessons. My time spent using research to influence and support my teaching has allowed me to not only continually develop my skills as a teacher, but also support colleagues with their development within Meols Cop High School. In 2019, my article Cognitive Load Theory explored through modelling in the practical classroom was published in the Chartered College Impact magazine and resulting from my article, I presented my research and teaching strategies at Rugby ResearchEd in 2021. 


Research interests:



Use of Feedback

Professional Development of Teaching Staff

Current roles for 2021-2022:

External training provided on Modelling and Cognitive Load

Internal training offered around Modelling in the Classroom

Internal training offered around High Expectations in Lessons

PICO Question 2021-2022:

For both GCSE Design and Technology and GCSE Art students, how can a focus on developing creative confidence improve both sketchbook and designing outcomes?