New Science Lab for Silverdale School

A project by: Silverdale School



from 16 donors

This project received pledges on Mon 15 Apr 2019
Inspiring students through practical learning!


Number of students that will benefit: over 1,200

Age of students: 11-18

Percentage eligible for free school meals: 12.4%


About us

We are a comprehensive secondary school with a sixth form in Sheffield. We are a friendly, inclusive community with a track record of outstanding results at all stages. In 2018 we were named Top State School in the North by the Sunday Times Good School Guide. In the same year our students achieved the highest Progress 8 score in South Yorkshire. Our A-level results continue to be amongst the highest in the city.

We also run a large Teaching School, training new teachers for both primary and secondary schools, and supporting teachers throughout their careers, by sharing excellence and expertise in teaching.

What do we want?

We want to refurbish one of our existing classrooms and turn it into a science lab, to increase the number of science lessons taught in fully equipped labs.

Science is  a hugely popular and successful subject, with increasing numbers of students studying it at GCSE, A-level and our new BTEC in Applied Science.

We have already been successful in getting a grant for £50,000 from the Wolfson Foundation for this purpose. However, we need to raise further funds to cover the full costs of the refurbishment.

Who is this for?

All of our students study science up to GCSE level, whether they take the Triple or Combined papers. Our A-level science and BTEC courses are also increasingly popular, with 1 in 3 students choosing science in Sixth Form.

how will it benefit our students ?

We want to increase students access to hands-on learning by ensuring they can practically apply the knowledge gained in theory-based lessons. Students will be able to experience the excitement of testing their hypotheses and learning through tangible experimentation. The breadth and depth of lessons planned by our teachers will be greater once it is certain that every student will have access to the necessary equipment in their lesson.

We have a long-standing team of dedicated and highly skilled and knowledgeable teachers, who are committed to providing the very best teaching and learning for our students. They pride themselves on providing engaging, hands-on lessons taught by subject specialists. Indeed, such is their knowledge that they now run subject-specialism training for other science teachers in the region via our Teaching School.

At A-level, all three sciences have a track record of extremely strong results for over a decade, and regularly achieve results in the top 5% of the country. The teachers bring a passion and commitment that provokes very positive feedback from students. Our teaching staff aim to inspire all students to enjoy their subject and achieve their best, regardless of ability. High quality marking and feedback support students’ progress. We have a good sized cohort of girls who choose Physics A-level every year and who also achieve outstanding results.

We have excellent practical resources and technical support, allowing teachers to incorporate practical work into lessons whenever possible – well beyond the ‘required practicals’ of the curriculum. But we need to extend this in response to the increased popularity of science amongst our students.


We already have a grant of £50,000 from the Wolfson Foundation. We estimate the total cost of the project to be in the region of £100,000. Whilst we will have to fund the rest of this from our school budget, the current national funding crisis means we are looking to raise at least £10,000 of this from external sources, to pay for the new equipment needed. See below for full details (all prices include VAT).

If we reached our minimum target of £516.84 we would buy:

  • 2 x pack of 100 pyrex test tubes = £207.70
  • 30 x pipette bulbs = £309.24

If we reached our target of £1,061.70 we would also buy:

  • 4 x pack of 10 heatproof mats = £59.42
  • 25 x tripods = £352.50
  • 25 x gauzes = £37.80
  • 40 x thermometers = £95.04


If we're fortunate enough to raise more than our initial target of £1,061.70 then we would add a stretch target to help us reach the overall goal of £10,075.10.

That would mean we could also buy:

  • 5 x pack of a dozen 250ml beakers = £457.32
  • 6 x pack of ten 100ml beakers = £223.20
  • 1 x pack of various measuring cylinders = £586.80
  • 25 x bunsen burners = £467.10
  • 30 x 25ml pipettes = £797.40
  • 2 x 22lt waterbaths = £1,159.99
  • 30 x 10ml pipettes = £714.96
  • 30 x 5ml pipettes = £629.28
  • 30 x test tube racks = £185.04
  • 2 x pyrex 24 x 150 test tube (pk100) = £301.38
  • 30 x burettes = £1,005.38
  • 30 x burette holders (double) = £1,898.64
  • 30 x burette stands = £586.80


Please do donate, but if you can't donate right now you can help us in other ways! Share this project with anyone you think would support us. Share the link at the top of the page on Twitter, Facebook, email, your website, blog, mention us in a phone call or even just a chat over the fence! 

If you have an employer who might want to donate, match fund, or help by providing support in kind, please do get in touch with us.

Please support us and help make a difference to our students.

Rocket Fund is a pilot project by Nesta. Nesta is a registered charity in England and Wales 1144091 and Scotland SC042833