On Thursday 31st January, I had the pleasure of taking one of my Year 10 BTEC sport classes to the Panathlon Challenge, held at Armley Leisure Centre. Eighteen students were selected to attend this event, with the aim of securing evidence and experience towards the leadership component of their BTEC qualifications.
The Panathlon Challenge is a national charity that provides sporting opportunities for over 17,500 disabled young people each year. Ten teams from the Leeds cluster competed in the event - with over 60 students taking part. There were ten events which were organised and ran by our Leeds West Academy sport leaders, ranging from; boccio, table tennis and ten-pin bowling.
Each student had the responsibility of setting up his or her station and then explaining and running the events. As each team rotated round, the sports leaders interacted, welcomed every student fantastically well, and showed huge amounts of friendliness and enthusiasm.
Many of the teachers and support staff commented on how fantastic our sport leaders were. One teacher said, “They have made us feel so welcome and at ease. It is very rare you meet a group of teenagers who are so accepting of difference and that is amazing to see.”
Throughout the day both, Mrs Bishop-West and I commented on how proud we were of the leaders and how well they represented Leeds West Academy. We definitely pushed some of our Year 10 students out of their comfort zone; however, they thrived at the challenge and led a fantastic day.
We have already been invited by the organisers of Panathlon challenge to help run and lead the Bramley Olympics in the summer. As their class teacher, I walked round all day with a huge smile on my face and was absolutely bursting with pride.
I would like to say a massive well done to my students. I cannot wait to see what this group of sensational student achieve next!