Marlborough Science Academy goes to finals of national cooking awards
St Albans Academy food team reaches UK's last 19 of Let's Get Cooking Golden Spoon Awards
The school chef and Food Tech team at Marlborough Science Academy, St Albans travelled to London last week to represent the whole of Herts Beds and Bucks in the UK Let's Get Cooking Golden Spoon Awards.
Organised by the Children's Food Trust, Lets Get Cooking are school-based clubs set up to give young people the opportunity to learn how to cook and enjoy great food.
Although not successful in scooping one of the three major awards, Marlborough’s Head of Food Tech, Alison Pantling, was proud to be representing Herts, Beds and Bucks in the final 19 national clubs and also delighted with what the club has done for the students:
"As funding is limited at school and for a lot of our families, we wanted to use Let's Get Cooking as a way to reach out to students who don't have the money to buy ingredients at home, to give them an opportunity to learn. Having chef on board has been brilliant for the boys, he's actually become a role model for them."
School chef Stuart Hubbard of catering company Cucina added:
"As a school chef, my job is to help teach as well as cook. I've come to the school with a wealth of experience working with some of the best chefs around. In the Let's Get Cooking club I can work alongside the kids in a relaxed, chilled out way. It's got them thinking about food. 2 boys asked if they could shadow me for work experience. It's given them a career path to think about."
Alison Pantling pointed to the club's great success in helping one particular underachieving boy:
"When he first started he needed constant help. But he's really bonded with the chef and he took his mum to meet him on our open evening saying: 'this is the man who is teaching me to cook'.
"Before Let's Get Cooking, he didn't get much praise, he wasn't doing very well and wasn't bothered about lessons. It's the proud feeling he gets after making something in the club that's had a big impact on him. It's made school an acceptable place for him. It's made school seem 'alright' for him."
(Picture: Members of Marborough Science Academy's 'Let's Get Cooking' club with Food Tech teacher Alison Pantling and chef Stuart Hubbard of Cucina)