Last night I went to see my eldest two belles dance at a dance show at their high school. The belles do dance at weekends but this was something they had been doing on lunchtimes and after school for fun - street dance. The school had invited several of the local primary schools and a school for disabled children to take part too. The nicest thing about the Belle's school and one of the main reasons we were drawn to it as a choice was the inclusive spirit of the school. It's small by todays standards, less than 900 pupils. They have a considerable number of students from the hearing impaired unit and the pupils are from a wide variety of backgrounds. Unlike several other local schools they don't cherry pick their pupils on academic prowess. The atmosphere last night was wonderful. The pupils compered, managed the lights and curtains, sold tickets for Sports Relief and looked after their guests from other schools with minimal assistance from staff.
The dance covered everything from Street, to Ballroom, to classical ballet, tap and hip hop. All the performers were great.
The dancers ranged in age from year 4 primary up to age 16 school leavers. One performer was in a wheelchair, several had learning disabilities and some dancers were hearing impaired.
I don't think there was a single person in the sell-out audience who didn't enjoy the show.