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Cambridge International is pleased to announce that a team from Jayshree Periwal International School in India is the overall global winner of the first-ever Cambridge Upper Secondary Science Competition.
Schools from around the world took part in the competition, in which Cambridge students studying for Cambridge IGCSEs or O Levels investigated their own choice of scientific topics.
The competition involved small teams, each supported by a teacher, spending 20 to 25 hours on a science project involving practical or investigative work outside of normal curriculum time.
The aim was to give learners the chance to develop their passion for science and to promote the attributes of a Cambridge learner through collaboration, communication, innovation and creativity.
Jayshree Periwal International School in Jaipur was declared the global winner after winning the South Asia region. It was one of 60 schools from the region, and 257 globally, to take part in the competition which was introduced by Cambridge International last year.
The winning entry – submitted by team members Ravishankar Yadav, Divya Gupta, Chetan Jain and Suvira Singh Katoudia - was titled “Live or Dye? Negative impacts of synthetic dyes”. The project was an investigation into the effect of synthetic food colour dyes on the respiration and growth of yeast, a subject directly relevant to the everyday lives of the students.
Describing their experience, the students said: 'Winning the competition is truly a delight for us and all the hard work that we put in has finally paid off.
'After a great deal of brainstorming, we decided upon a topic of food colour toxicity because of its topical and universal significance. The process of performing the experiments and coming to a conclusion was indeed challenging, however, it was far more intriguing and satisfying performing the experiments rather than just studying about them in books.
'Not only did the competition provide us with a platform to showcase our innovation and imagination, it also gave us an opportunity to learn the importance of teamwork.'
Dr Jayshree Periwal, Chairperson, Jayshree Periwal Group of Schools said: 'The world needs great researchers with inquisitive minds to accomplish new inventions and discoveries and to amend the existing anthropogenic legacy. I congratulate all the young researchers for their stupendous efforts and foresightedness in bringing awareness regarding the harmful effects of food colour. I wish them all the best for their future endeavours.
'Students are always excited about performing hands-on experiments rather than rote learning science. Our school always tries to provide such opportunities where students get to explore and unfold the secrets behind a scientific phenomenon and process. Winning the very first Cambridge Upper Secondary Science competition has electrified the students and has invigorated them.'
The school will receive a plaque of recognition from Cambridge International, in addition to team certificates, medals and a letter of recognition celebrating the success.
Tristian Stobie, Director, Education, Cambridge International, said: 'This is a significant achievement that deserves to be celebrated, and reflects well on the successful students and the schools. The students’ enthusiasm and commitment and understanding of science was evident in their work and we hope they have found the competition to be a rewarding experience.'
There are also six regional winners. The winning schools and students have been notified and we will announce the details shortly.
The expert judging panel included Dr Helen Eccles, ex-Director of Cambridge International and Science Competition Lead, Dr Rachel Garsed, Senior Engineer at CMR Surgical, Dr Elaine Wilson, Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Education at Cambridge University and Dr Judith Roberts, Head of Cambridge Primary and Lower Secondary, Development, Cambridge International.
A statement from the panel said: 'The judges would like to commend all the entries for the high quality of investigations performed for this competition.
'We read all the entries with real pleasure and were pleased to see evidence of strong scientific research techniques as well as excellent practical science skills. The subject matter across all regions was wide and varied, and it was pleasing to see many groups explicit in their interest of a local or global issue.'
The competition for 2019/20 launches in September this year. For more details, go to Cambridge Upper Secondary Science Competition