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My name is Dale Watts. I am currently head of Design Technology & Engineering Design at Lewis School Pengam Secondary school in Caerphilly. Established since 1729 and originally a school for disadvantaged boys, Lewis School has made amazing progress over the years.
We have a positive and forward thinking engineering and design department, which over the last fourteen years, has embraced new technologies and always taught the basics. It made complete sense to us to incorporate 3D printers into our curriculum and, with the help of the Create Team, becoming an educational 3D HUB is a massive achievement for us and our young learners. I am delighted to be involved in this project and hope to inspire current and future learners.
My initial aim for the HUB was to improve current learners design and CAD skills. Engineering and Design Technology can no longer be the poor relation in education. Our aim is to upskill students and guide them into quality jobs and placements in engineering and design. Since installing the printers I have seen improvements in pupils understanding of design and realisation work. Improvements in scale and orthographic design work have also seen a massive improvement. Once fully up and running, with the aid of our digital leaders, our aims are to assist our primary feeder schools in current design projects. Upgrading our current PC stock and getting younger generations trained in the use of up to date, industry standard, CAD software can only benefit and engage potential designers.
Lewis School Pengam is at the heart of a close knit, but deprived, community. With roughly 23% of our learners receiving free school meals, we are keen to provide a community facility to engage and motivate pupils and parents who require support. Our digital leaders and 6th form pupils are key to the HUB’s launch and future success.