Pupils and staff at Silverdale Primary Academy took part in a special fun Awareness Day last week to raised £304.50 for the Down Syndrome Awareness Association.
Centre of attention was ten year old John Badrock, who has Down Syndrome and has attended the school since reception.
The Observer went along to meet John. Asked how the day had made him feel John replied. “Happy.”
It was clear how loved and appreciated he is by fellow pupils and staff. His classmates told us: “We love John, He is always so happy and makes us happy.”
Rosemary Hawkins, who has worked as an individual needs assistant for John for 6 years, with Saiqa Khan, said: “Our academy is extremely inclusive and we strive to meet John’s needs in a way which doesn’t exclude him from an education similar to other pupils at the school. My aim for the day was to raise awareness of Downs Syndrome as there is still such a negative view in some areas.
“People with Down Syndrome want to be treated the same as others, to feel included and have the same opportunities. John has the same experiences as his peers at school, he learns the curriculum and has made a huge impact on students and staff.”
John’s parents said: “He touches the hearts of everyone who meets him. His smile is infectious, his cuddles are filled with love and he lights up every room he enters. We are so proud to have him in our lives.
“Having a child with Down Syndrome is a little like taking the scenic route through life, it may take a little longer but the journey is that little bit more interesting and well worth the trip. He may be a little slower than others but that just slows down life for everyone around him. It puts every day things into perspective and teaches that the simple basic things in life are the most important, like love, laughter, strength, pride, family ties, achievement and endeavour.
“Silverdale has been fantastic. John is well known and loved by all staff and pupils, and has come on leaps and bounds. He often amazes people with his in depth knowledge of history, particularly the battle of Hastings, and Henry VIII. The dedication of staff and the inclusion and acceptance of everyone at the school should be used as a model of how to integrate children with learning difficulties into the education system so they will have the same opportunities in life as other children. We are extremely grateful to everyone at this wonderful school especially Rose and Saiqa.”
Benefit from an ongoing discount on your Observer series tiles by joining our voucher membership scheme. Once you’ve subscribed we’ll send you dated vouchers which can be exchanged for your paper at any news outlet. To save money on your Observer simply click here (www.localsubsplus.co.uk)