By @SkySportsLFS. Last Updated: March 15, 2013 9:03am
Twelve regional finalists will find out on Friday if they are the Sky Sports Living for Sport Student of the Year 2012.
Each will collect their regional awards at a star-studded ceremony at Sky Studios, an event that Olympians Jessica Ennis and Darren Campbell will attend, before one is named as the overall winner.
In addition, one of three teachers - each of whom have been recognised for the outstanding sport led projects they have delivered and the positive impact they have had on their students' lives - will be crowned the UK Sky Sports Living for Sport Teacher of the Year 2012.
You can watch the ceremony live on your laptop or PC at www.skysports.com/SSLFSawards from 11.30am.
Olympic heptathlon champion Ennis and Olympic gold medal winning sprinter Campbell - Sky Sports Living for Sport's two Ambassadors - will be joined at Sky Studios by Baroness Sue Campbell, Chair of the Youth Sport Trust, and Jeremy Darroch, Chief Executive of BSkyB, as well as over 20 Sky Sports Living for Sport Athlete Mentors.
Sky Sports Living for Sport - now in its 10th year - is a free secondary schools initiative run in conjunction with the Youth Sports Trust that uses sport stars and sport skills to boost confidence, change behaviours, increase attainment and improve life skills.
You can find out more, including how to sign up, at www.skysports.com/livingforsport
THE 2012 REGIONAL FINALISTS ARE:
Scotland: David Edmeades, Perth Grammar School, Perth
North West: Ben Clark, Kingsland School, Failsworth, Manchester
Watch the ceremony at www.skysports.com/SSLFSawards from 11.30am
North East: Emma Barnwell, All Saints School, Stockton-On-Tees
Yorkshire & the Humber: Justice Dje, Balby Carr Community Sports & Science College, Doncaster
East Midlands: Iqra Shah, Frederick Gent School, Alfreton, Derbyshire
West Midlands: Alex Griffiths, Earl Mortimer College, Leominster, Herefordshire
Northern Ireland: Fionnuala O'Hagan, St Mary's Grammar School, Magherafelt, County Derry
Wales: Dylan McLachlan, Llandary Community Centre, Llandarcy, Neath
Find out more at www.skysports.com/living for sport and follow us @SkySportsLFS
East of England: Wayne Instrell, Bedford Academy, Bedford
London: Maaryiah Atta, Brentford School for Girls, Brentford, Middlesex
South West: Alan Townley, Kingdown School, Warminster, Wiltshire
South East: Cassidy Rolfe-Yates, Perins School, Alresford, Hampshire
THE TEACHER FINALISTS ARE:
Alan Keane, Lampton School, Hounslow
Lesley Reynolds, Brockington College, Leicestershire
Natalie Wilsher, The Sele School, Hertford
Perth Grammar School ran a project for the students within its learning support facility. David, 13, was chosen to be part of a project, which prepared and trained students to enter a 5km run.
David has difficulties with social communication and interaction related to autistic spectrum disorder (ASD), developmental delay and anxiety and it was hoped that the project would help him to make friends, build confidence and enjoy life at the school.
From the outset of the project he blossomed and his self-confidence improved. David's teachers also reported increased interaction with peers and an ability to make suggestions for group projects. Following weeks of training, David and the project team all completed the 5km challenge in record time, demonstrating genuine camaraderie and teamwork skills.
In 2011 Ben joined Kingsland School, in Failsworth, after his challenging behaviour led him to being removed from mainstream teaching.
Kingsland's Sky Sports Living for Sport project focused on teaching pupils the importance of healthy living and physical and mental well-being and early on Ben's skills as a leader became obvious.
Ben, 15, is now more confident, a great role model for his peers and a pleasure for staff to teach. He is now attending a mainstream school a few hours a week working towards a BTEC PE course and has recently taken up horse riding. He is also competing for a local trampoline club and has represented the school and town at football.
Emma Barnwell, 14, was one of a number of students at All Saints CE School, Stockton on Tees, who had low self-confidence. She joined the school's Sky Sports Living for Sport project in order to increase her self-esteem, learn new skills and gain a sense of achievement.
The project taught the students the skills required to lead a Year 4 rounders festival. In preparation for the event the pupils were taught vital leadership and communication skills which they put into practice teaching younger pupils at a primary school.
Over the course of the project Emma's confidence increased, and, incredibly, she is now a mentor to other students supporting those who are struggling with school life.
Justice, 13, moved to the UK from the Ivory Coast aged 10 and her first language is French. In her first year at Balby Carr Community Sports & Science College, in Doncaster, she was very withdrawn and lacked confidence in PE, especially in team sports as she struggled to communicate with her peers.
She was chosen to take part in a Sky Sports Living for Sport project entitled 'Girls Get Active', created for the college's Year 7 students in order to improve self-confidence, attitudes to health and well-being and social skills.
When the new sporting activities were introduced, Justice started to shine and slowly but surely became an active member of the group. With increasing confidence and enthusiasm to excel, Justice's English skills - both written and verbal - started to develop rapidly. She is now able to access the full PE curriculum and has recently been supporting a student who lacks confidence in dance.
The Sky Sports Living for Sport project at Frederick Gent School, Doncaster, was aimed at Year 10 girls who had been identified as disengaged with school life and disruptive to others.
Working with PE and support staff, a group of 12 girls organised and took part in six after-school Zumba sessions. The girls were so inspired by the classes that the sport was put onto the school curriculum for the rest of term.
Sixteen-year-old Iqra, who was previously disruptive in lessons and had poor relationships with members of staff, showed a fantastic improvement in her leadership skills and commitment to achieving goals. She was always on hand to inspire the group and was determined to raise as much money as possible for a special, sponsored Zumba session for charity. As a result of her improved attitude, Iqra's attainment and effort grades have noticeably risen.
Alex was one of 10 students from Earl Mortimer College, Herefordshire, selected to take part in the college's Sky Sports Living for Sport project because he lacked good social skills and had low self-esteem.
The aim of the project was for the students to build on their own leadership skills so that they could run the Year 6 Sport Induction Day involving over 100 students.
Athlete Mentor Mel Clarke taught the students that, despite setbacks in life, anything is possible. For Alex, this was the turning point and the Induction Day was a huge success. Alex, 15, did a particularly brilliant job and his confidence in delivery was outstanding. He was excellent at praising and encouraging the students under his leadership.
Fionnuala, 13, has a rare genetic eye condition called Achromatopsia and is registered blind. Although she loves sports, she felt incredibly frustrated and disappointed at her lack of success, especially in team and field sports.
St Mary's Grammar School, in Magherafelt, ran a Sky Sports Living for Sport project designed to improve fitness levels and the development of a healthy lifestyle. Fionnuala was chosen for the project in order to help boost her self-confidence and encourage her to take part in sports despite her difficulties. The small things counted for her: not getting picked last, making a good pass and, most importantly, enjoying sport!
As a result of the project, Fionnuala's self-esteem had a massive boost and she even had the confidence to train with the first year girl's Gaelic football team and play a match with them.
Dylan McLachlan was referred to the 'Engage' programme, run by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council Youth Service, in his final year of statutory education in late 2011 having become a frequent truant from school.
The Sky Sports Living for Sport project was set up by Engage to give young people the opportunity to support them through the Duke of Edinburgh's Award. Among the challenges was a 100km cycling expedition, which Dylan completed in just two days, and a 40km canoeing expedition.
Throughout he displayed strong leadership skills and became a role model for other young people, with strong values and high morals. Dylan has since joined the Armed Forces Preparation Course at Gower College, Swansea with the aim of enrolling in the British Army where he is making a positive contribution.
Bedford Academy's Sky Sports Living for Sport project was designed to help students who were unable to swim. Wayne was having difficulty in school and had been bullied so badly that he was no longer participating in mainstream lessons.
Wayne, 16, volunteered for the project even though he found it very difficult. After a visit from Athlete Mentor Maggie Alphonsi, he decided to take up rugby and now plays every week for Bedford Blues youth team.
Since participating in the Sky Sports Living for Sport project, Wayne has returned full time to mainstream lessons and is no longer afraid to contribute in class. He has also increased the amount of extra-curricular activities he takes part in and volunteers his time to the school's sports leaders.
Maaryiah, 12, was one of 20 ambassadors for Brentford School for Girls' Sky Sports Living for Sport project, Gateway to Success, which encouraged other students to attend the sport clubs and help to spread the word about the activities on offer.
Maaryiah's hard work to promote after school clubs - and her excellent time management and commitment - inspired many students to take part in sport.
As well as being an excellent student, Maaryiah is also very committed to her faith and studies the Qur'an after school. She loves sport but has to juggle her time between her studies, her sport and her faith. The project has developed Maaryiah's leadership skills and she wants to take on further responsibility whilst maintaining her commitment to her schoolwork, faith, family and sport.
From September 2011, 15-year-old Alan was part of a Rugby Club project, which was delivered at Kingdown School, Wiltshire, as part of an alternative curriculum with Bath Rugby Club.
Alan was selected by Bath as the student who had made the most progress, attending every session and developing and improving communication skills.
Throughout the project the students made a video documentary of their activities, which Alan was most interested in and natural at. Given his difficulties in self-confidence and body language at the outset this was great progress. Alan also supported an after-school disability sports club as part of the project and, over the weeks, increased in his ability to show empathy.
Cassidy, 14, had an arm injury when Perins School began its hula-hoop project and initially took on the role of project commentator, enthusiastically filming clips of the project sessions and workshops, as well as interviewing students.
As a result of meeting Athlete Mentor Hannah Beharry, Cassidy became extremely keen on the idea of participating in an individual sport and also gained the confidence to practice and perform hula-hooping routines in front of her peers.
At the project's closing ceremony Cassidy received three awards, firstly for 100 per cent attendance across the project, secondly, for being the most improved participant and, finally, for demonstrating the Olympic and Paralympic value of determination.
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