16 March 2023

The first activity of our Science Week was a day of forensic science workshops for Years 7 and 8. These were led by John Bates, a former forensic scientist for the Home Office who took the pupils through some of the methods used to gather evidence in crimes and the ongoing process of taking that evidence to court. John set up a burglary crime scene in which caretaker Lenny had fought off a team of would-be thieves. Some in the pupil teams donned onesies to do the scene of crime work, swabbing ‘blood’ stains, dusting for fingerprints and collecting evidence. The others worked together in the lab to analyse shoe prints and check the suspects’ clothing for blood stains and other markers amongst other tasks. We looked at DNA profiles for the suspects together and then noted the importance of cyber security when a chain of deleted texts was revealed. The workshop then moved onto the trial, with pupils dressing up to play all the parts from judge to defendant, barrister to usher. However, the most important part was that of the forensic scientist expert witness who stood up to cross-examination without a script! Needless to say, convictions were secured thanks to all the forensic evidence gathered. Years 7 and 8 all gained a great appreciation of some of the types of detailed science that are required in this job. A huge thank you to John for leading such enjoyable workshops.

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