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Testimonials

One of our girls used to hate PE. We took a punt and brought her to the first Panathlon competition and the change in her was huge. Now she continuously shows enthusiasm in PE. The change in her confidence and focus has blown me away.

Donna Rose, teacher at William Bellamy School, Barking and Dagenham

We absolutely love Panathlon. It’s brilliant for us as a mainstream school, because our more able-bodied students get involved with our disabled students and they play games together, so there’s a really nice crossover.

Mark Simmons, lead teaching assistant (disabled and medical) at Myton School, Warwick

We’ve never represented the county in anything before, so that’s great. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our students.

Brianne Hogg, PE co-ordinator at Riverwalk School, Bury

Today was my first ever football match and it’s been a wonderful opportunity. There were a few strong tackles this morning but I can cope with it – I’m tough! I’m going to put my medal on my bedroom wall when I get home.

Yoel Tesgay, aged 12, Lambeth

Kieran Rutter, Great Arley School 13, “I feel proud to be here in this venue. It shows if you work really hard you can earn experiences and medals like this. Put your head down, don’t worry about anyone else, and just head for the gold!”

We love Panathlon. There’s always something for everyone. That’s what’s fantastic about it. It’s a major part of our PE year.

Simon Hughes, senior teaching assistant at The Bridge School, Islington

The structure was brilliant. The format was for the kids. Usually we are tagged on to some event. Thus we don’t compete that often. This was the opposite. It was for the children and the children responded brilliantly having an event for them.

Lee Puckrin, teacher at Priory Woods School, Middlesbrough

Our team won the gold medal. It feels very nice, like we’ve won the Olympics.

Valentin Roci, aged 10, Haringey

Lillie had no confidence in the water, but today she amazed us, the activities made it so inclusive and the all the children surprised us what they could do, today gave children at Norfolk Primary a chance to shine.

Norfolk Primary Parent, Natalie Mitchell

Panathlon is pretty much the only competition these kids have. A lot of them don’t have the option for sports outside of school. Having this big tournament is really the only time they can access all of these sports in one place. It’s very rare and it’s very good.

Brandon Mullins, Head of PE at Beacon Hill Academy, Essex

This is the only chance I have to play team sport at school and outside of school, so it is really important to me and my other teammates that we can do this through Panathlon.

Courtney Burgess, 15, Beacon Hill Academy

They’re a great little team. The day after a Panathlon you see them walking round the school with the medals around their necks looking so proud. They’re absolutely buzzing.

Lewis Sharpe, teacher at Kettlethorpe School

Panathlon is the best competition we enter because it’s so inclusive. I can bring children to this that I wouldn’t even consider taking to anything else, because everyone can compete here. It’s really important that all kids get the chance to take part in sport.

Kirsty Wiseman, teacher at Parkwood Hall, Kensington & Chelsea

It gave them an opportunity to excel in a world that they otherwise find difficult.  Giving them confidence and pleasure.  I thought it was brilliant that parents were allowed to come and watch.  It gave the children a real sense of pride – especially when they won.  It also gave an opportunity for the children and parents to really share something at home, hopefully supporting great and positive communication.

Jane Campbell, teacher at Great Baddow School

Panathlon is brilliant. I’ve been coming here since the age of nine and enjoy it every year. I take part in the wheelchair slalom and the relay races. I love racing against others.

Jo Makumbi, aged 15, West Lea School, Enfield

Since we got involved in Panathlon, the kids all really want to do PE now. Their self confidence has just come on amazing. The more events we come to, the more the kids are getting used to it and the more they are enjoying it.

Andrea Griffiths, sports co-ordinator at Doucecroft School, Colchester

I went back to my school and showed everyone my medal, and all the people in school were cheering. It made me feel impressive!

Ryan Gardner, aged 11, Cirencester, Glos

Sport is really important because it allows people to express themselves. Disability shouldn’t hold you back. If you want to play sport you should be able to do it to the best of your ability and not be held back in any way.

David Ejinkonye, 2014 Panathlon Young Leader of the Year, St Paul’s Academy, Greenwich

For schools to come together like this is great, you don’t get that luxury very often. Social skills are some of the most important things we try and teach them at our school so to see them interact, celebrate when they win and shake hands at the end is spot on

Liam Welch, teacher at Billing Brook School, Northampton

“This is an experience that they don’t usually get at all. It’s great for them to be somewhere where they know Olympic and Paralympic athletes have competed and it gives them a huge sense of achievement.”

Leanne Judd, SEN class teacher, Eastfield School

It’s the best event we’ve been to so far. It’s a brilliant atmosphere and a really good competition. If you’d seen where these kids have come from, it’s incredible, especially one of our boys, Alley. This time last year he was terrified of water and now he’s competed here. I’m really proud of him. The children are so proud of themselves, when they go back to school, there is such a big fuss made of them and their confidence is boosted so much by it.

Sam Stevens, sports coach at Trinity School, Barking & Dagenham

Our strong team culture has impacted into school – behaviour has improved, relationships developed, a sense of achieving can be found in all areas of the school.

Lucas Neocleous, football coach, Haringey

We’ve got lots of smiling children. It’s fantastic because it links with a lot of the class curriculum at the moment which is around the Olympics. It gives them a great sense of wider achievement. It’s been a really positive experience for them.

Sarah Beck, Teacher at Woodland School, Harrow

At the end of a Panathlon event I feel like it’s a big achievement for me, because I can’t really do many sports. This is one I can do, and I love it.

Thomas