Serious Fun on Saturdays in Harrow

The grant recipient

Park High is a state funded secondary school and a member of the North Executive, a partnership of three independent and ten state schools in the London boroughs of Harrow and Enfield.

The Exodus from the Earth programme

Photo-SHINE at work

  • 12 Saturday morning sessions, focusing on physics and using scientific enquiry that is not covered in depth or at all in the national curriculum
  • for 60 gifted students in year 8 (12-13 year olds) from 10 state secondaries
  • learning includes: investigation of rocket launches and trajectories; composition of the atmosphere; extreme forces on organs of the body; motion; different life forms; DNA and the environment
  • taught by specialists from the independent and state sectors and taking place in the brand new science labs at John Lyon school, an independent school in Harrow
  • aiming to encourage participation in scientific practice; make science exciting and meaningful and stimulate take up and achievement in the sciences at GCSE

Latest results

Photo-SHINE at work

  • average attendance was 93%
  • 8/22 students from the 2008/9 programme chose to do triple sciences at GCSE
  • on average students made expected progress in science; in comparison, students on free school meals at one of the schools made, on average, no measurable progress
  • one student made over 4 times the expected progress while another four made over 3 times the expected progress

The funding

SHINE has made a grant for development and running costs. The schools are also providing in-kind and financial support for the programme.

Funding: 95,526 to Park High School, over six years (2008-14)

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"The first session was a great success. Teaching colleagues were excellent and the students progressed with reference to their learning and enjoyment of science."

Teacher, John Lyon School