Schools round-up (including the children who investigated a ‘crime scene’!)

Buster the walk to school week mascot visited children as they arrived at Hemel Hempstead's Micklem Primary School
Buster the walk to school week mascot visited children as they arrived at Hemel Hempstead's Micklem Primary School

The latest news from schools in your area:


Awards assembly at Longdean School PNL-140530-142126001

Awards assembly at Longdean School PNL-140530-142126001

Four students from Year 7 and 8 at Hemel Hempstead’s Longdean School who won a science competition took part in the Salters’ Festival of Chemistry at the Southbank University.

Their first task was the Salters’ Challenge which was about forensic science – chromatography and sampling.

Students took an ink sample from a staged crime scene and tested it against other samples retrieved from six suspects.

The objective was to find out which sample matched the ink at the crime scene.

Hobletts children and their artwork in Sainsbury's PNL-140530-151729001

Hobletts children and their artwork in Sainsbury's PNL-140530-151729001

The other part was to test for non-metal particles found in powders at the crime scene and try to match one that was found on the suspect’s person.

After completing all of these tests, the students completed a forensic report to determine who the culprit was and after much deliberation - they did.

In the second part of the event on Wednesday, May 14, the students took part in a challenge set by the university.

The brief was to create a chemical clock because someone had forgotten his clock and he liked his eggs to be boiled for exactly two minutes.

The group did this by creating a chemical compound made up of sodium thiosulphate, distilled water and hydrochloric acid.

Mixing these together would cause a reaction that meant the liquid went from clear to opaque.

Students had to experiment with different amounts to find an exact chemical reaction that lasted for two minutes.

Emma Hayles, from Longdean’s science department, said: “The day finished with presentations of chemical magic and was a brilliant experience for all of the students involved.”

In other Longdean news, students in Years 7 and 8 had impressive results in the prestigious National Maths Challenge competition.

Gold certificates were awarded to Karl Allen, Paige Hastings, John Brocklebank and Oliver Barling. Eleven Silver and 25 Bronze certificates were also awarded.

This follows the highly successful Intermediate Maths Challenge, where Lewis Kimber reached the National finals and received a Merit award.


Children from Hemel Hempstead’s Adeyfield School recently completed the first stage of challenges in a national competition.

Teams of students - with the help of student ambassadors - were tasked with developing a new flip flop for the social enterprise Gandy’s flip flops.

The event was part of the Ryman National Enterprise Challenge - an inter-school competition open to secondary schools across the UK.

The winning team from Adeyfield School will now go on to the national finals this July where they will compete against up to 100 schools.

The Adeyfield students will pitch their idea and participate in a Q and A session with Dragon’s Den stalwart Theo Paphitis.

The challenges are tailor-made, real life business situations that offer students the opportunity to develop enterprising, communication and leadership skills, time management, teamwork, confidence and public speaking.

They seek to inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs and assist young people in developing key life skills.

This year, exams and qualifications body OCR is funding the entry for students from Adeyfield School.


Buster the walk to school week mascot visited children as they arrived at Hemel Hempstead’s Micklem Primary School recently.

The youngsters got told all about the benefits of walking to school during their assembly.

School spokesman Wendy Godleman said: “We were also fortunate to have a visit from county councillor Terry Douris.”

Buster also dropped by at four other schools during the week, visiting Micklem on Thursday, May 22.

In other news from Micklem, May 12 saw the start of SATS for its Year 6 class. They did so well that they were rewarded with a ‘duvet day’.

The school thanks the Warners End Tesco Express for donating bottles of water to keep the children hydrated while sitting their exams.


Artwork from children in Years 5 and 7 of Hemel Hempstead’s Hobletts Manor Junior School is now on display at the town’s Sainsbury’s supermarket in Apsley.

The pictures were inspired by The Gruffalo’s Child by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, a favourite book for young children.

The school has recently received the Art’s Mark from the Arts Council in England – achieved through demonstrating commitment to quality arts education.