Pupils from Doncaster School for the Deaf are among hundreds of deaf young people from across England who are flourishing through sporting competitions run by charity Panathlon.
Panathlon gives over 10,000 students with disabilities and SEN every year the chance to engage in competitive sport that they are so often denied elsewhere.
The charity differs from the many ‘have a go’ projects by offering a competitive pathway of multi-sport, boccia, swimming and football events. Winners of local and county competitions progress to regional and then divisional (north/south) finals.
Doncaster School for the Deaf has regularly hosted multi-sport and boccia competitions featuring deaf students from as far as the East Midlands and Teesside – but until this month they had never actually won gold medals.
That changed at the South Yorkshire Primary Panathlon, held at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield, when the school won the pan-disability event, competing against pupils with a mixture of disabilities and SEN.
Afterwards, Jane Goodman, the school’s Deputy Head Teacher, commented: “Panathlon certainly champions the word ‘inclusive’. The atmosphere at their events is absolutely fantastic, positive and friendly.
“From our first Panathlon two years ago until now, our school is overjoyed at taking part. We look forward to each day and the children get what they want both competitively and socially. We hope to be taking part in many more.”
Doncaster School for the Deaf’s primary PE teacher Rebecah Taylor commented: “Panathlon offers equal opportunities to all our children and an opportunity to compete against other schools.
“Every child has achieved something and it has been valuable for them to experience the fast pace of the hearing world, but also learn to follow guidelines, have patience and work as part of a team. Panathlon has given them time to learn in a supportive and safe environment.
“Panathlon games also help them develop hand-eye coordination skills and promotes life skills generally. This complements our pupil-centred approach to education.”
The school is a national resource for the deaf and has deaf learners, primarily from across South Yorkshire but also via local authorities from across the UK.
Pupils from the school are now looking forward to competing in the Panathlon Divisional Swimming Finals on June 6 at Ponds Forge in Sheffield to compete for the title of northern champions.
For more information, go to www.panathlon.com
The Limping Chicken is the world's most popular Deaf blog, and is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne. Find out how to write for us by clicking here, how to follow us by clicking here, and read our disclaimer here.
The site exists thanks to our supporters. Check them out below:
- Eyewitness Media: TV and film from a Deaf perspective
- Ai-Media: Remote captioning. Find out about the Deaf fashion bloggers taking on the world!
- Bellman & Symfon: home alerting solutions
- Deaf Umbrella: sign language interpreting and communications support
- Appa: Communication services for Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing people
- SignLive: Online video interpreting for Deaf people
- SignVideo: Instant BSL video interpreting online
- 121 Captions: captioning and speech-to-text services
- Signature: Leading awarding body for BSL qualifications
- The National Theatre: Captioned and BSL accessible theatre in London
- Doncaster School for the Deaf: education for Deaf children
- Signworld: Learn BSL online!
- Action Deafness Communications: sign language and Red Dot online video interpreting
- BSLcourses.co.uk: Provider of online BSL courses
- Association of Notetaking Professionals: The professional body representing Electronic and Manual Notetakers
- Sign Solutions: communication support, training and translation
- InterpretersLive: On demand BSL video interpretation
- Cast Theatre, Doncaster: The UK's the UK’s first fully BSL integrated pantomime
- Hamilton Lodge School in Brighton: education for Deaf children
- Lipspeaker UK: specialist lipspeaking support
- Ozen: Australian hearing aid specialists
- Elmfield School, Bristol: Inclusive education for Deaf pupils
- deafPLUS: BSL advice helpline
- Exeter Deaf Academy: education for Deaf children
- Royal Shakespeare Company: Captioned and BSL interpreted performances (see dates here)
- Royal School for the Deaf, Derby: Residential education for deaf children
- RAD Tax Advice: Tax and Tax Credit info for Deaf people
- Deaf Independent: Deaf care and support services
- Performance Interpreting: BSL interpreting at concerts
- National Deaf Children's Society: The leading charity for deaf children
- Signed Culture: Advocating for BSL access to arts and culture
- SignHealth: healthcare charity for Deaf people
- CJ Interpreting: communication support in BSL
- British Society for Mental Health and Deafness: Promoting positive mental health for deaf people