The Friary School celebrated national disability awareness week with the rest of the UK last week. We were privileged to have Mike Berry come into assemblies all week as our guest speaker and talk to the students about no matter what barriers life may throw at us, we as people will always find a way to overcome them.

As part of the week, Mr Foster organised a series of sporting clubs at lunchtimes where students had the opportunity to try out a variety of disability sports such as goal ball. Mr Foster said “It was amazing to see so many Friary students want to take part in disability awareness week. I was pleased to see over 240 students in total over the 5 days of clubs!”

During the week, the students were faced with many challenges ranging from losing the use of a limb to being completely blind. This was so they could experience how people with an impairment could still access the sports that they loved. Year 9 pupil Romy Sayce said “It was really difficult. I wanted to take off the goggles so I could see what I was doing. I felt so vulnerable with the ball bouncing around and not being able to see it. I would hate to lose my eyesight however this week has made me realise just how amazing the people are that have an impairment. I can only hope I have the drive and determination that they have if I am ever faced with something like that.”

Disability awareness week was a great opportunity for students to show their empathy towards each other and judging by the numbers at the activities, it was a huge success.

Matt Allman, Headteacher, added: “We have a whole year campaign on ‘Respect for All’ and this Focus Week fitted well into that theme. Empathy and awareness of the needs of others are important traits for life and this week was a great way of developing both of these important life qualities.”