Pupils at Clarendon School in Hampton cycle to Ireland
By adam_leone | Tuesday, October 16, 2012, 11:45
Special needs facility, Clarendon School in Hampton have rounded off three years worth training in cycle mechanics with a bike ride from Bushy Park to Dublin.
Pupils with special educational needs have been learning about the intricate parts of a bike to help build confidence and a new range of skills.
The idea is to increase the chance of employability on leaving the school.
To make sure pupils at Clarendon received the best training, the Deputy Head, Paul Jenson, hired cycle mechanic Laurence Balcombe one day a week, offering students a City and Guilds qualification.
The school are now looking for funding so they can take on Mr. Balcombe on a full time basis to raise the profile of the new scheme. Mr. Jenson, Mr Balcombe and James Hayden, a teacher from Dublin, along with a group of pupils set off from Bushy Park last Friday to embark on a 300 mile trip to Dublin.
Mr Jensen, Deputy Head at Clarendon said: "The cycle scheme was originally envisaged as an intervention to support young people with special educational needs to develop self-confidence. From humble beginnings, we have exceeded our wildest dreams"
Councillor Paul Hodgins, Cabinet Member for Schools, said: "This is a wonderful example of our schools demonstrating fresh approaches to helping their pupils and equipping them with important skills essential for use in later life."