Graeme Burgess, Headteacher, Balsall Common Primary
Academy, Solihull (719 pupils) told us about his fantastic
'Our dads-only Scalextric night has been running once a term for
four years now. A parent and I both had an interest in Scalextric
racing, and I had been running a lunchtime Scalextric club for
pupils, which had proved popular. The idea of a "dads-only" evening
was to get dads more involved with the school, through an event
that would hopefully be of interest and at a time when they were
free. Furthermore, funds could be raised! There was some initial
trepidation on my part - what if mums felt alienated? What if
no-one came? These concerns proved unfounded, as since then there
has been no shortage of dads wanting to race!
Our last event took place in November. Dads signed up in
advance, paying £10. The race order was drawn up, the track
prepared, prizes purchased and the kitchen staff were briefed to
prepare the food. On the night, racers arrived at 7pm for a
preliminary view of the track and the cars that they would be
racing - we change the track layout each time, based on one of the
Grand Prix circuits. The score sheet organised the racers so that
over four heats and five races each driver raced each of the cars.
This kept the race fair since each car performs differently. We
provided food: pork pies, black pudding, red onion and sausage
rolls. Dads brought their own drinks with them, so we didn't need a
licence. Trigger fingers were readied... and they were off!
In the event of a car malfunction the racer was eliminated from
that heat! Finishing orders were entered onto a spreadsheet - the
data projector hummed away and dads could scrutinise the emerging
race order! At 11pm the racing was over and the podium was
populated. This was a wonderful event which put me on first name
terms with about 50 dads. It did take time to organise, and cars
need replacing from time-to-time, however, the outcome has been
fantastic with about £200 raised at each event.'
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