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It’s great for the kids to have the opportunity to take part in sport. When I was a kid you would never have got anything like Panathlon. It’s only right that they get a crack at sport the same as any other kid. Sport is great for him.

Jim Reid, grandfather of Robert Walter, joint winner of the 2014 WNST Primary-Aged Achievers Award

I’m so excited to be going to the Copper Box. It’s a big honour. When I get older I want to be in the Paralympics and it feels like I’m one step closer to that dream.

Rebecca Cavanagh, aged 15, Barking & Dagenham

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, 14, Brooksbank School

I don’t do any sport other than Panathlon. It is my world!  I’m leaving school to go to college so this is my last competition and I’m really sad, but I have had a fantastic time over the last few years, especially the years that we won!

Charlotte Whale, aged 19, Ashford, Kent

“I love it here because it doesn’t make me feel like I’m unusual. Most of the time at school if my legs go and I collapse, I feel unusual, but being here with all these people just makes me feel regular. This is my third Panathlon and it makes me feel there’s other people like me. It makes me feel normal for once. Panathlon makes me feel happy. When I get home I am going to hang my medal on my bedroom wall.”

Mitchell, Pupil at Warren School

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

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

Watching Tom Daley before was just awesome. I love Panathlon because when I get frustrated or angry, it makes me feel free just to run or swim and forget everything else.

Melissa Fletcher, aged 16, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

The kids love it. They really enjoy Panathlon and, being in a mainstream school, they really appreciate getting these opportunities. It’s really important.

Liz Johnson, teacher at Riddlesdown School, Croydon

Panathlon works really well, particularly for our students with severe learning difficulties. It also helps us go back to school with some fresh ideas for the students.

Melissa Pengrave, teacher at Addington School, Reading

On behalf of our children at Girlington Primary School for a fantastic Panathlon experience. The activities were well thought through, taking into consideration a variety of disabilities. Our children thoroughly enjoyed themselves and memories were made. The whole event ran like clockwork which added to the enjoyment. We are already looking forward to next year.

Amanda Simpson, a teacher at Girlington Primary, Bradford

“Our GCSE PE students have been leaders at quite a few Panathlon events now and throw themselves into it every time. They develop their communication and leadership skills and they thoroughly enjoy working with children. They absolutely jump at this opportunity.”

Chessington’s PE teacher, Mr Lucas

I don’t think there’s any better way for the kids to develop their confidence. I’ve seen them develop from shy, retiring children to really confident young men and women. It’s life-changing.

Janine Edwards, teaching assistant at Whitmore High School, Harrow

Our children aren’t involved in deaf activities other than through Panathlon. This competition means that all of our children can join in with something and everyone’s had a chance.

Marianne Haylett, teacher for the deaf at Kingsbury Green School, Brent

I love competing against other schools as it’s great to meet new people. We’re over the moon and amazed to be going to the Olympic Park.

Danielle, Islington

Panathlon offers the most even playing field. It’s the one competition that caters for students of lower ability. It’s imperative that they get the opportunity to compete for their school and their borough. I love the ethos of the event and the competition.

Christie Moloney, Sports Development Officer at Ealing Council

My favourite things about today were the races, the medals and the freedom. I felt fresh, healthy and free in the pool. The ball race was my favourite.

Riley Kane, aged 11, Lowestoft, Suffolk

“It means everything for them to be here, It gives them so much more confidence just to be part of a team. They see other children representing the school and our children are so excited to get that chance now too. They often see the other children go off in their football kits, so even the fact they’re wearing the same shirts here and representing the school is marvellous. They definitely wouldn’t get this anywhere else. They’ll be wearing their t-shirts and medals tomorrow in school all day long.”

Wendy Gibbons, Teaching Assistant – Ardleigh Green School

The most important thing here is that the children get to participate in a competitive event which has rules that you have to play within, but offers the opportunity to be successful no matter how good you are at it.

Paul Searle, teacher at Brimble Hill School, Swindon, Wilts.

I’ve never really done this sort of thing before. It’s my first time in a swimming competition and it’s been pretty amazing.

Max Ross, aged 16, Bury St Edmunds

Panathlon is great because it allows more children the chance to join in and compete. It’s an event that doesn’t focus on their disabilities, but on what they are able to do. It levels the playing field and the children are all enjoying themselves today. It’s fantastic.

Dawn Catley, education engagement officer at Active Essex

Another amazing time at the Panathlon Games. Sam loves the teamwork with children from other schools in events such as this. Socially, it gives Sam the confidence to compete and interact with others with a range of abilities. He looks forward to these events for weeks beforehand and is always keen to know when the next one will be.

Mother of Sam Jarred, Somersham Primary School

The thing that we like about Panathlon the most, and our staff and parents always comment on, is that Panathlon levels the playing field. That’s the key for them to be able to perform equally against their peers.

Jeremy Lonsdale, Greenacre’s PE Lead

Panathlon gives young people a sense of pride, self-esteem and achievement. You can take that into all aspects of life.

Elaine Burgess, school games organiser for Barking & Dagenham