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Students inspired by paralympics athlete
A PARALYMPIAN has motivated students at a Shoebury school to achieve their dreams.
Wendy Smith, who represented Great Britain at the Athens 2004 Paralympics at wheelchair basketball, visited Shoebury High School.
Her visit launched the school’s Olympic-inspired “be the best you can be” programme, designed to help youngsters find the skills they need to achieve their goals, inside or outside of school.
Specially-trained Year 7 tutors will help pupils develop their life skills in 25-minute tutor periods, equivalent to 12 school days over the year.
Deputy headteacher, Fran Haddock, said: “The programme is about our Year 7 students setting goals and developing a strategy across the curriculum to achieve them.
“Wendy is truly inspirational and our students loved her.
“One of the key messages our students took home was never give up and as soon as you’ve achieved your goal, start working towards the next. She was very down-to-earth, and a fantastic role model for students.”
Wendy, who was left with spinal injuries following a motorbike accident at the age of 17, gave an hour-long presentation about her life and sporting accomplishments, with a question and answer session afterwards.
She then took part in a workshop, helping pupils visualise their goals and come up with a strategy to achieve them.
As a qualified basketball coach and referee, Wendy then spent the rest of her morning with the school’s basketball academy, who had also attended her presentation.
She will return to Shoebury High School next summer to present the students with medallions produced by the Royal Mint, in recognition of their achievements.
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