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Building a love for construction

07 November 2019

A 14-year-old Le Rocquier School student, who has recently been fitted with a prosthetic arm, has praised his teachers for helping him overcome physical barriers to foster a love for construction.

Despite being born with a rare condition affecting his arms and one of his legs, Adam Dalton has thrived in his construction class and is now studying the subject for a City & Guilds qualification. He puts his achievements down to his own determination and the school’s ongoing support to personalise the curriculum to suit his needs.

Students at Le Rocquier design and make a range of products including wooden money boxes, electric lamps and mixed material objects – skills which they can apply during their City & Guilds course. Staff support students to handle complex tools safely.

Adam hopes that his new prosthetic arm will increase his ability to tackle tasks unaided.

“When I was younger I tried out prosthetics but nothing like what I’ve now got,” said Adam. “Construction is my favourite subject because I really like making stuff and using new materials. Over the years, I have persevered as well as I can with some of the tools but teachers at Le Rocquier have really helped me with what I’ve been able to achieve.

“My first lesson was wood work and I just loved it so I’m really pleased to be continuing with my construction course.”

City & Guilds Construction teacher and assessor Stewart Elston said that the school would continue to support Adam by adapting aspects of the curriculum.

“The prosthetics are going to be lifechanging for Adam and an incredibly valuable element to his education,” he said. “The tools Adam needs to use for his City & Guilds assessments are much more complex, and the move into the construction course sees more of a focus on a student’s ability to work with less support and more independence. To make this work for Adam, flexibility in the course could have a huge impact on career options later down the line.

"Luckily we have a really understanding management team who appreciate our students and the life chances we can offer them. This means being open to personalising the curriculum to suit the student. Adam will be able to work on different assessments to gain credits for his qualification, for instance by combining elements of the Design and Technology course.

“We have fantastic students who go on to be electricians and carpenters so we want those doors to be open for all our students.”

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