Grants from the Gresham’s Foundation

Every year the Gresham’s Foundation (registered charity no 1109441) invites teachers and staff from all three Schools to apply for grants towards projects, equipment and initiatives requiring funding that typically falls outside of departmental budgets. This is the Small Grants to Enhance Scheme (SGTE).

Such projects/equipment must benefit a large range of our pupils, and teachers/staff are able to apply for funding of up to £2,500. The funding in question derives from the generosity of the Gresham’s community (Old Greshamians, parents or friends of the School) and, in particular, from those who make unrestricted donations to the Gresham’s Foundation.

Below are some pictures and further information on just some of the projects that received funding from last year’s Small Grants to Enhance scheme. For more information on the scheme or if you would like to donate to the Gresham’s Foundation, please contact Edward Margetson, Director of Development, on 01263 714529 or email [email protected]   

Sensory, speech and language resources at the Pre-Prep

A sensory garden has been installed in the Pre-Prep and is being used extensively for relaxation, exploration and stimulus activities. In particular, the garden is helping to support children with learning and development needs.

Spiideo: Video recording and analysis software being used on the AstroTurf and rugby pitches

Spiideo has revolutionised the way in which we are able to educate our pupils in sport.  Video is an enormous part of helping the pupils to understand more about sport as well as supporting the coaching staff with a clear debrief of the game.  The video hardware is easy to set up and very portable, meaning we are able to transport to any location we would like.  The cameras record the whole pitch throughout the game, meaning they are incredibly easy to set up and don’t miss any of the action.

The software ‘Spiideo Perform’ allows us to analyse matches and share directly with the pupils on their mobile devices as the match is being played.  We can then present the key coaching points to come from the game and annotate the video for a real match of the day experience. 

The cameras are being used across the major sports and teams.  Our aim will be to record each team at least once per term – in order for the value to be shared across the sports clubs – and to also start to stream matches live for those that cannot be here in person to enjoy all the excitement of Gresham’s School sport.  We are incredibly grateful to the small grants committee for their support in this project; it really is a game changer. (Joe Cowan, Director of Hockey)

The Jetson Nano AI platform

In 2021-22, our Computer Ccience students have been exploring computer vision applications, coupled with artificial intelligence, thanks to a generous grant from SGTE to enable us to purchase a number of Nvidia Jetson Nano single-board computer kits.  This small computer is based on Nvidia’s industry-leading graphics card technology, which is ideal for the high-speed, intensive calculations involved in AI.  Students are currently building self-driving cars based on this computer, which will soon be ready to race through the Dyson Building. In September 2021 the UK government launched its UK AI strategy, with the medium term goal of enabling school pupils to experience and explore the use of AI applications; Gresham’s is already doing just that! (Bill Robinson, Head of Computing)

Kit car building

Two GreenPower F24 kit cars are currently being built in the Makers space in the Dyson Building thanks to the generosity of the Gresham’s Foundation’s SGTE scheme. The teams of pupils are enjoying the challenge of interpreting technical diagrams, working out the appropriate tools and methods for the build and dealing with problems that arise – such as drill bits that keep snapping and bolts that don’t quite align. Once the electronics are in, the teams will need to test drive the completed frame to ensure everything works before starting on the bodywork. We hope to have both cars competing in the Summer F24 Race Series. In these races the cars go around a track for 1hr to see who travels the furthest on the 2 x 12 volt car batteries. This requires a careful balance of speed and weight vs car design and battery efficiency. Watch this space for an update in summer!  (Lisa Stringer, Teacher of Computing)