Added: (Wed Feb 28 2001)

Pressbox (Press Release) - The EPSRC Science Race 2001 web site: www.epsrc-sciencerace.net

News release is available online at www.prowse.co.uk/newsf.html

28 February 2001

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) today announced the launch of its Science Race programme for schools. International telecom company Alcatel is once again supporting the on-line activities, which include a science quiz, web-building contest and new cyber-debating opportunities. Following on last year’s successful participation, the BBC Tomorrow’s World team will take up the quiz challenge.

Round one of the quiz will be held on the first Friday of National Science Week (16 March), with the second round on the following Friday. Once again it gives secondary pupils between 11 and 16 the chance to pit their wits against the clock in what is the biggest real-time Internet science event for UK schools. This year, in addition to an overall winner, there will be individual winners for each of the UK’s countries and regions.

Geoff Moore, EPSRC’s Head of Public Awareness, said:

“Over the years, EPSRC has developed Science Race to engage school students across the length and breadth of the United Kingdom in projects that show the participatory and team-based elements of science. With the increasing use of the Internet in science lessons we continue to refine the science race to show students that science is interactive, exploratory, relevant, creative and - dare we say - fun!”

Alcatel’s Chairman, Dr Peter Radley, said:

“If we are to be at the forefront of new scientific and technological innovation, we have to turn our children into lovers of science. Industry must be involved with education if there is to be a change in the way young people perceive science. Instead of industry moaning about the lack of scientists and engineers, we must come forward and lend our support. We must show young people that science is worth pursuing as a career. Industry has to take some responsibility for its future - it is important that we look to lasting solutions rather that quick fixes to encourage young people to embrace science.”

Over 400 schools registered for Science Race in 2000, and more are expected this year. Science Race will see science brains from every corner of the UK competing against one another, a process which will continue through the summer as schools work to build web-sites that highlight the changing face of engineering in the 21st century. Schools short-listed for the web-building award will be invited to a major event in September at the start of Science Year.

For the first time, Science Race will also include cyber-debates, giving young people the opportunity to interrogate leading scientists on controversial subjects from ethics in science to third generation technology. Cyber-debates will take place throughout the life of Science Race with events planned during the summer term and in September.

Schools should register on Science Race web-site www.epsrc-sciencerace.net as soon as possible. All the details they need to take part are on the site.

- ends -

Issued by Prowse & Company on behalf of EPSRC

Schools Science web site: www.epsrc-sciencerace.net
Alcatel web site: www.alcatel.com

Media enquiries:

Peter Prowse Prowse & Co, 01372 363386, e-mail peter@prowse.co.uk
Jane Kerr Prowse & Co, 01372 363386, e-mail jkerr@prowse.co.uk
Simon Goldsworthy Project Co-ordinator, 020 8994 2093, e-mail epsrcquiz@aol.com
Geoff Moore EPSRC, 01793 444241, e-mail geoffrey.moore@epsrc.ac.uk
Kathleen Merrill Alcatel, 01628 428504l, e-mail kathleen.merrill@alcatel.co.uk

Note to editors

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) promotes and supports research and skills development in engineering and the physical sciences, for the benefit of industry in the UK and the research base. It also has the role of promoting public awareness of science, engineering and technology. It is the largest of the Government funded UK research councils, with an annual budget of around 400 million. The Schools Science Race has become one of the major highlights of its programme of activities for schools.

Alcatel (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA) builds next generation networks, delivering integrated end-to-end voice and data networking solutions to established and new carriers, as well as enterprises and consumers worldwide. With 130,000 employees and sales of EURO 31 billion in 2000, Alcatel operates in more than 130 countries. For more information, visit Alcatel on the Internet: http://www.alcatel.com/

School Science Race Quiz Winners 2000

Winner: Sion School, Worthing, West Sussex

Runners up:

St. Ninian’s High School, Giffnock, Glasgow
Padgate High School, Warrington, Cheshire
George Watson’s College, Edinburgh
Solihull School, Solihull, West Midlands
Victoria College, St. Helier, Jersey
The Perse School, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire
South Holderness, Preston, Hull

Web-building awards 2000

Winner: Bedford School

Runners up:

Bexhill High School, East Sussex
King Edward VI Camp Hill, West Midlands
St Cuthbert’s School, Newcastle upon Tyne
St Laurence School, Bradford upon Avon, Wilts
Tiffin School, Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey
Ysgol y Gwendraeth, Carmarthenshire

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