Top sports stars visit Bolton schools to inspire Olympics stars of the future
THE Olympic and Paralympic Games 2012 won the hearts of the nation.
And now sportsmen and women are capitalising on how the London games captured the imagination and admiration of the country to inspire the next generation to be the best.
Devonshire Road Primary School in Heaton and The Valley School in Astley Bridge were visited by top sports stars to launch the Be The Best You Can Be! — an Olympic and Paralympic inspired programme to build an educational legacy on the back of the games.
The programme is designed to help young people to discover and develop their potential and “inspires, engages and empowers” them to pursue and fulfil their goals.
It has been developed as an educational legacy going beyond sport to inspire the youth of Britain.
Schools that have signed up get a staff development day and a visit by a high achiever to share their story of becoming a success by overcoming setbacks and obstacles.
As role models, they kick start each school launch and bring the “achievement of dreams” into the curriculum.
After which children learn through different projects how to discover the skills they need to follow their dreams.
The project finishes with a celebration where all the young people and teachers share what they have learnt and support each other in pursuing their dreams and goals.
Children who take part receive Recognition Medallion, produced and sponsored by the Royal Mint, intended to encourage them to continue to work towards their goals — or set new ones.
Devonshire Primary was visited by Charlotte Hartley, a former international hockey player. The defining moment in her career was being one of the youngest players selected to represent England in the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
Charlotte shared her success stories of winning, losing and overcoming personal problems to achieve her dreams. She said: “I think it is great to visit schools and share achievements.
“I have a chance to visit different schools and to inspire the young people. Sport helps to develop skills which children can use in every area of their life, such as confidence and team work.
“Life does have its ups and downs and it is about digging deep and trying your best.”
Pam Barnes, headteacher at Devonshire Road Primary School, added: “I was determined that our school would be one of the schools to undertake the Be The Best You Can Be! Programme as it begins to roll out nationally.
“The inspiration offered by high achievers, including Olympians, Paralympians who strive to achieve their dreams, is incredibly powerful and can really reach out and engage our young people.”
And youngsters gave the scheme the thumbs up.
Pupil Amelia Wright, aged seven, said: “If you try your hardest, you will achieve want you want to. It was really exciting having Charlotte at the school.”
Tiffany Lomax, aged 10, added: “I learned it is about keeping on trying and about getting up and trying again.”
Corban Humphries, aged 10, said: “I think sportsmen and women do inspire people and show that if you really want to do something keep trying.”
Daniel Caines, a 400 metres champion, visited The Valley School recently as part of the 21st Century Legacy Programme. The President of the International Paralympic Committee, Sir Philip Craven MBE, has endorsed the programme together with other high profile figures including HRH the Princess Royal.
He said: "It gives me great pleasure to endorse and even more importantly, support with my heart and mind, ‘Be The Best You Can Be!’ “The title is perfect in depicting what the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London are all about — the triumph of the human spirit to whatever level that individual human spirit wishes to go.
“The title also mirrors perfectly the IPC vision which every Paralympian lives and breathes as they train for and then compete in London.”
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