How to Qualify

There are two ways that a student can qualify for the Preliminary Finals of the 2016 NSW All Schools Paper Plane Challenge:

(1) Come 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a class or school-based paper plane challenge that follows the rules set out for this competition.

(2) Individually pass the qualifying distance of 12m (K-6), 20m (7-12) or have an airtime greater than 5 seconds (K-12). The throw must comply with the rules and an adult (parent, teacher or other) must verify this throw and their name and email address must be supplied to be able to register.


  1. Our School – The Illawarra Grammar School in Wollongong would love to be involved – are we regarded as regional?

  2. You are not classified as Regional as you are part of the Greater Sydney Region, however, if a student is unable to come to Sydney for the finals on 29th August, then we will allow them to enter the Regional High Flyers competition.


  3. I would love to get my sons school
    Involved. Vardys rd public school Kings Langley. They have already done a contest at school but don’t think it was for this

  4. Hi Hayley,

    They can enter individually. They just have to throw a distance greater than 12m and/or throw a plane that stays in the air for longer than 5 seconds to enter. Once they have done this and have an adult witness then go to the registration page and register their throws and that means they can compete at the finals at The University of Sydney on August 29th.

  5. hi Garth, just confirming, if you run a school event, do all the students have to throw 12m to qualify for the YSPPC OR
    just have to come 1st,2nd or 3rd in their class(say 5B, 2L etc) OR just those who come 1st, 2nd or 3rd in the whole schoo, therefore only 3 per school??
    ta Meredyth Balgowlah HTs ps)

  6. Hi Meredyth,
    Those who come 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a class event can register for Young Scientist Paper Plane Challenge. If you have 10 classes, then you can have 30 students register and they don’t need to meet the 12m qualifying distance. Conversely, if 5 students in a class all throw over 12m then the 5 students can all qualify.

  7. Hi There,

    The wild card event this Saturday ? Do we just turn up to register for this or do we need to register before hand online ?

    My boys super keen.

  8. You just turn up between 10:30am and 11:45am and try to beat the qualifying distance or time. You can have multiple attempts to achieve this. You do not need to pre-register.

  9. Hi. Our school ran the qualifying today due to the weather yesterday but entries have closed. Is there anything we can do about this?

  10. Send the list to stating the name, year level and distance and/or airtime for each student as well as the school name for the group and we will add you to the final list, however, it is now too late to be added to the Leaderboard.

  11. Hi there, my son would love to enter the 2016 challenge. Do the qualifying rules still apply, particularly for individual entries? Thanks

  12. Hello

    Are individuals from interstate able to enter? Or are you aware of any competitions in Victoria.



  13. Sebastian, students from anyway in Australia and even overseas are welcome to take part. It will be very similar to last year with Regional High Flyer entries due by the first Monday, at midnight, after National Science Week which would be August 22nd 2016. We will have the registration system set up in early March and you can enter any time after that. Dylan Parker and James Norton, who inspired the movie “Paper Planes” are the chief organisers this year and both Paper Pilots and the Young Scientist will be having the leaderboard updated on our respective websites. Just to remind all regional entries, that we require a video of the throw which includes a pan of the surroundings so we can establish that there is no wind assistance.

    We look forward to Victorian students taking part. I am not aware of other similar competitions but we are hopeful that in 2017 we will be national with each State Science Teachers’ Association running a state competition with winners being flown to Sydney for the national finals in 2017. We are in the planning stage, but this is what we are aiming for.

  14. Susan, the qualifying rules will still apply except we won’t have the Wildcard event for latecomers on the day. So the only two ways to qualify will be by meeting the qualifying distance/time or coming 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a school event.

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