Count on Chippenham's pupil team

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Hardenhuish School pupils Daniel Hughes, Luke Milsom, Charlotte Woodacre and Charlotte Farnsworth Hardenhuish School pupils Daniel Hughes, Luke Milsom, Charlotte Woodacre and Charlotte Farnsworth

Sixth form economics students at Hardenhuish School, Chippenham, may have a budding career in the Bank of England after their success in a national competition.

The team from Hardenhuish – comprising Daniel Hughes, Luke Milsom, Charlotte Woodacre and Charlotte Farnsworth, all 17 – won a regional heat of the Target Two Point Zero competition.

They spent months analysing UK and global economic data and their possible impact on inflation and the economic outlook for the UK, just as the Bank of England monetary policy committee does each month.

They had to decide if current monetary policy was appropriate or needed to be adjusted to meet the two per cent inflation target set by the Government.

They competed against seven other schools and colleges – including several independent schools such as Marlborough College – in the regional heat held at Ashton Court, Bristol, on November 20.

Each team gave a presentation to a panel of Bank of England judges on their proposals and answered questions. Hardenhuish pupils recommended an interest rate of 0.75 per cent compared with the Bank of England’s official rate of 0.5 per cent, as they thought there were inflationary signs in the economy and raising the interest rate would tackle that.

They also recommended no further Quantitative Easing as they thought any more would increase inflation.

They will go through to an area final in February. The national final is in March and the winners will receive £10,000 for their school or college. A total of 287 schools entered the competition. It is the first time Hardenhuish School has taken part.

Economics teacher Jessica Auld said: “The students gave an outstanding presentation and we had very positive feedback from the judges.

“The students did a lot of independent research regarding different elements of monetary policy and considering the economic outlook for the UK. They were thrilled to win.”

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