AVC 'Step into Sport' with Paralympian

Ten students from Avon Valley College proved they are ahead of the game when it comes to leadership.

For the 10, who took part in a Wiltshire Step into Sport conference spending the day working on how to be a better leader, learnt how to perform Makaton - a language programme using signs and symbols to help people communicate. 

The annual event, open to all secondary schools in Wiltshire, is funded through the Youth Sports Trust with the aim of inspiring students to help lead the school games events organised throughout the year by school games organisers.

The 10 Avon Valley College students involved were chosen by college PE teacher and school games organiser, Mrs Collette Harries for either their leadership ability or for their disability. 

As well as learning how to perform Makaton, they took part in a practical session focusing on the STEP process used to change a game. 

Adam Batty, nominated by Mrs Harries as the Wiltshire Athlete Role Model and selected from all Wiltshire nominees was also present, working with Paralympian swimmer Kate Grey (pictured with Adam and in the group shot).

Each talked about their experiences of being both a leader and having a disability.  

Adam helped Kate lead a session getting students to think about the skills and qualities a leader needed and who was their role model.

Adam later said: "It was a great honour to be selected and today's experience is one I will remember for a long time.” 

"I am very proud of what Adam has achieved," countered Mrs Harries. "What a fantastic role model he is for other AVC students.

She added: "Getting students involved in leadership improves their confidence and self esteem, improves their understanding of organisation, improves their social skills and having to communicate with adults and their peers."

The students, Jack Stevens, Diarmuid Murphy, Ben Gazzard, from Year 9; Stacey Pawluk, Tia Featherstone, Kai Halfon, Jordan Kershaw, Curtis Meredith, Jake Meek, from Year 10 and Bethany Haggathfrom Year 11,  will now help Mrs Harries with all level 2 School Games festivals.