Falkirk area pupils to learn about flooding and how to fight it

Grangemouth Flood Protection Scheme (GFPS) hopes to engage the skills and imagination of youngsters across the very area the scheme is looking to protect.

By James Trimble
Monday, 29th November 2021, 3:30 pm

The scheme, which will provide almost 17 miles of flood defence walls, embankments, flood gates, flow regulation measures and drainage work, is looking for budding flood engineers to take part in a new Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM) education programme for local primary schools.

GFPS will launch the new education programme in 2022 with the aim of engaging with 100 pupils in its first year.

All 12 primary schools across the scheme area are being invited to take part in the STEM education project which has been developed by Falkirk Council’s education department in conjunction with the Jacobs STEM team.

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The Flood Protection Scheme aims to protect areas from coastal and river flooding

Pupils will learn about flooding and the need for the flood protection scheme, as well as finding out about the wide range of jobs available working on this type of project.

At the end of the programme, the students’ knowledge will be put to the test when they will be asked to design their own flood protections solutions which they will showcase to industry experts.

The winning designs will be presented at a special prize giving event at the Zetland Park Science Festival in 2022.

Councillor Paul Garner, Falkirk Council’s environment spokesperson, said: “We are delighted to be launching the STEM programme for schools along the area of the Grangemouth Flood Protection Scheme and we are sure the pupils will get a lot out of the programme.

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“It is designed to be fun and engaging, to give the students more information on flooding and why the scheme is needed, and hopefully to inspire a new generation to get into jobs within STEM.

“The programme is open to all 12 primary schools based in the scheme area, and we hope to expand it to secondary schools in the near future as well.”

Falkirk Council is leading the development of Scotland’s largest flood protection scheme. Backed by the Scottish Government and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). It is seen as the highest priority flood protection scheme in Scotland.

The Grangemouth Flood Protection Scheme, which will protect 5800 people, 2650 homes, 330 businesses and road and rail infrastructure, covers the areas which can be impacted most by coastal flooding from the Forth Estuary and river flooding from the River Carron, River Avon and the Grange Burn as climate change increases the risk of such events.

Construction could start as early as 2024, with the flood defences being in place by 2035.

The scheme involves wide-ranging engagement and consultations with local residents, businesses and other interested parties.

And now youngsters are able to become involved through the new education programme.

Leigh Watson, education team manager at Falkirk Council, added: “We hope the pupils will be excited with the opportunity to show their creativity by designing their own flood protection solutions at the end of the programme.

“I’m sure the innovative ideas they come up with will impress the industry experts when they present their ideas. Who knows, for some pupils, it could be the start of a future career within science, technology, engineering and mathematics.”

Visit https://www.grangemouthfloodscheme.com for more information.

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