Teachers support the NHS through visor innovation
It is widely known that STAHS has an outstanding Design and Technology department. However, through the coronavirus crisis the dedication, innovation and expertise of the team has shone through.
Visor making in action in the school workshop
Four members of staff – Thomas Walland, Tim Parker, Dan Fitzgibbons and Wendy Emes – have not only produced over 900 visors based to the specification sent by NHS Harrow Clinical Commissioning Group, but have redesigned the process to reduce production time from four and a half hours to about 50 minutes.
Wendy Emes, Head of Design and Technology at STAHS said: “Without the creativity of my colleagues we would not have been able to produce as many visors. They have cut down production time to around 50 minutes each on the 3D printer and two minutes each on the laser cutter, thus significantly increasing production. Not satisfied with that, the team are constantly reviewing and amending the design to perfect the fit, ease the assembly of them and reduce material costs.”
To date the team has produced 620 visors for NHS Harrow using a mixture of 3D printed and laser cut designs and another 85 visors using the 3D printed designs which were delivered to Lister Hospital. In addition, 235 3D printed and laser cut visors are due to be delivered to Hemel Hempstead Hospital. Extra materials have now arrived and they hope to produce a further 200 visors on the laser cutter.
Wendy added: “It has been an extremely rewarding experience to help support our NHS and has highlighted the importance of design and engineering within modern society. We will continue to do whatever we can, albeit a small contribution, to assist them.
“As teachers, it is rare that we get to spend this much time working on a single project with such focus. We’re very grateful to the High School for supporting us and allowing us to show our students what they can achieve within the realm of Design and Technology at St Albans High School for Girls.”
Amber Waite, Head, said: “Through their expertise, innovation and sheer hard work the Design and Technology team are having a real impact supporting the NHS. They have worked tirelessly in the Easter holidays and now in term time, in addition to their teaching duties, and I am immensely proud and grateful to them for enabling STAHS to make this contribution to support those at the front line.”