St. Paul’s High School Bessbrook are holding a Quiz on Wednesday 23 May, 7.30pm in the Yellow Heifer, Camlough to raise funds towards creating a Sensory Space at the school.

St Paul's is the largest education provider in this area, with almost 1600 secondary school age children enrolled.  As their student population has grown, the diversity and needs of students has changed.  Currently 24% of enrolled learners have a special educational need, most of whom attend mainstream classes on a part time or full time basis.

Staff and Pupils from St Paul's get ready for the Fundraising Night.
Staff and Pupils from St Paul's get ready for the Fundraising Night.

One aspect of provision the School is keen to develop is a “Sensory Space”, for learners with special education needs including autism, ADHD and emotional and behavioural difficulties.  Sensory spaces are rooms which have been specially designed, combining a range of stimuli to help engage the senses.  They can include lights, colours, sounds, aromas and sensory play objects.  The stimuli are held within a safe environment, which allows an individual to explore without feeling frightened or over-whelmed.  Sensory spaces have been found to be beneficial for young people with a variety of special educational needs.

It will cost approximately £8,000 to develop the project and maintain it in the future. Run for Autism are going to part fund the facility. Sean Quinn, from Run for Autism, has been a long-time supporter of provision for autistic students in St. Paul’s and the wider the community.

To make up the shortfall in funding, the students and staff of St. Paul’s Learning Support Centre are organising the Fund-Raising Quiz. On the night the Quiz Master will be Mr. Harry Collins (Year 10 student) with the help of Mr. Gerard McMahon. There will be a raffle with a wide range of prizes donated from local businesses.  The school would like to thank all the businesses who have supported the endeavour and look forward to seeing everyone on the night.

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