All's fair in pupils' search for scientific facts
Months of preparation, hundreds of Google searches, emails to Parliament and a bit of nagging from teachers has been a recipe for success at the Southland Social Sciences Fair.
Dozens of children submitted research projects for the annual event, covering everything from whether sports stars should be role models, to the impact of Burt Munro on Southland.
Southland Boys' High School pupil Ronan McNeill, 12, was one of 30 boys who entered the competition from his high school and said that the project had been a lot fun.
Ronan focused on poverty in Southland and spent three months gathering information and even emailing Social Development Minister Paula Bennett to find out what problems the region faced.
"In the future I am wanting to stop this ongoing problem and give people in Southland a chance to have a financially successful life," he said.
There was much more poverty in Southland than he first thought but the Government's benefits did not provide enough money for people to get by, he said.
Ronan's teacher Geoff Folster, said the school only had one pupil enter last year but this year 30 boys had taken part.
They chose a variety of topics but had all enjoyed the experience, he said.
The public will have a chance to look at all the projects from today until lunchtime on Sunday.
The Southland Times