Teachers fear for future of Design and Technology

Students from Sale Grammar School visited the Brompton bike factory to perfect their winning design

A puncture-proof bike tyre, light-up indicator gloves, a healthy energy drink and an app to find lost bikes – these were the winning designs in the Great British Make Off competition for 11- to 14-year olds.

The brief was to come up with innovations to improve cyclists’ lives and develop them with sketches, models and prototypes.

Richard Green, chief executive of the Design and Technology Association, which represents the subject’s teachers, said the competition aimed to boost D&T in schools “because it’s the only place in the curriculum where practical problem-solving takes place”.

Still one of the most popular GCSEs, it was being marginalised by government changes and, without intervention from ministers, may even cease to exist within five years, he added.

Potential profit

There were 150 entries, and the four winners got to perfect their products with the help of top innovators in the field.

Some students definitely developed an eye for potential profit.

“I am not signing anything until I know what my share of the money will be,” said Airann, not entirely joking.

Together with team-mates Shana and Paige, from St Benedict Catholic Voluntary Academy, in Derby, Airann developed the Spa Dew sports drink “in a cycling-friendly container”.

Categories: Technology News