Sedbergh School Year 9 and 10 Scientists recently entered the Society of Biology ‘ Biology Challenge’ for the second time and ranked in the top five per cent of the 32,500 participants.

The pupils came away with three Gold, seven Silver, 15 Bronze. Silver winners fall into the top 10 per cent and Bronze, the top 15 per cent.

Gold winners were Ailsa Duncan (L), Victoria Bailey (L) and James Thomas (H). Silver winners were Brad Moss, Joy Stanley, Isobelle Page, Crystal Yi, Phyllis Guo, William Ross, Fergus MacMillan.

Bronze winners were Kate Russell, Benjamin Hunt, George Thomas, Sahana Rose Grimaldi, Kristapus Vabalas, Edward Sanson, Harriet Bramwell, Robert Bradley, Rory McAneny, Arthur Daniel, Maria Page, Josh Redmayne, Alexander Kuksov, Georgia Thomas and Daniel Sieburg

Ailsa Duncan, 15 (L), from near Carlisle, said: “Taking part has challenged me to seriously consider a career in Biology; perhaps Marine Biology or Biological Anthropology.”

Victoria Bailey, 15 (L), from Kirkby Lonsdale, said: “I really enjoyed the challenge and although it was difficult, I’m definitely taking a career path in Science seriously.”

James Thomas (H), 15, from Sedbergh, said: “I was already interested in Biology but my eyes are now more open to how interesting a career in Genetics or Biological Engineering could be.”

Alisdair McMeechan, Head of Biology, said, “The competition is online – the pupils don’t have to go anywhere to sit the tests. The whole purpose is to encourage an interest in Biology beyond the school curriculum and to stimulate curiosity about the natural world.

It consists of two 30-minute papers to maximise participation and provide flexibility, and it rewards those who read around the subject out of lesson time – by reading books, magazines, watching National History programmes and those who just have an awareness of Biology in the news and media.”

Dr Mark Downs FSB, chief executive of the Society of Biology, says: “I was delighted to see such high standards and enthusiasm for biology at this year’s competitions.  

Biology tackles some of the 21st Century’s greatest challenges – everything from conservation to research into diseases such as cancer. It is therefore essential that we inspire today’s students to become tomorrow’s biologists.”

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