A Brighton school took its high achievers to the sky on British Airways i360 this week in a bid to show them what’s possible if they aim high.

On Monday, 11th June, 30 students from Longhill High School in Rottingdean enjoyed sweeping views of Brighton, the South Downs and the Sussex coastline from 450ft before heading to the onsite exhibition to learn about architecture, science and technology.

The children are part of the school’s ‘Ignite’ group – its top achievers – and are in years 7 to 10. Trip organiser Mel King, coordinator for high ability students at the school, said the outing was aimed at celebrating students’ achievements this year and focusing their minds on future career pathways.

“We are working this year on raising aspirations and achievements for our academically most able, our high ability pupils,” she said. “We wanted to make sure they’re making the right decisions about their future careers, their pathways, whether they go to university, where they go to university.”

“We want to ensure that all students, no matter their background or what home they’re from, are offered academic opportunities for success.

“British Airways i360 really is iconic – it’s symbolic of high aspirations. The children really enjoyed themselves, they loved looking at the views. It’s something that will stick with them.”

After the pod flight, assistant headteacher Fiona Barton presented prizes to the students including Rania Abdelaal, Jess Magee, Laith Abbas, Isobel Ryder, Spencer Murfitt, Jacob Campbell, Henry Taylor, Joel Sayers, Daisy Lawlor, Gene Ronaldson, Radford Harvey, Tianna Howard, Shannon McCann and Madison Wright. The prizes were given over six categories: Maths, English and Modern Foreign Languages, Science, Creativity and Enterprise, Humanities, and PE and Performance.

Steve Bax, executive director of British Airways i360, said: “Local schools are doing great work training Brighton’s next generation of talented professionals. We were delighted to support this important celebration and look forward to considering the young people’s CVs in a few years’ time!”

Since opening in August 2016, British Airways i360 has sent free tickets to more than 40,000 Brighton & Hove state school children.