Secondary students are building rocket cars to race at speeds of up to 70 mph.

Year 7 students at Roding Valley High School, Loughton, are participating in the ‘Race to the Line’ project; a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) competition.

Running throughout the academic year, the project will see pupils assemble and build rocket cars.

The finished products will be entered into a regional qualifying round – going head to head against schools in the region to secure a spot in the country finals, and the global final beyond that.

Shetal Patel, science teacher at Roding Valley High School, said: “This is such an exciting opportunity to engage our new Year 7 students with STEM and extra-curricular activities at this critical point in their learning journey. The project will draw out a variety of new skills that tie into our school’s ethos: aspiration - setting each student up for a fantastic start to their time with us.

“We are extremely proud of the academic successes of our students, but we are most proud of their commitment and dedication to extra-curricular activities which, of course, enable such academic success.”

The school’s participation in the project, supported by The Learning Partnership and Dendrite, a free social learning platform, was sponsored by local Loughton-based business, Haslers Chartered Accountants.

Sharon Jenner, head teacher, said: “Encouraging interest and skill development in the STEM area is a big focus for us at Roding Valley High School; we feel very lucky to be supported by Haslers Chartered Accountants, a local company and part of the community, in our pursuit of this.”