Paralympian Jeanette Chippington speaks to Burnham Grammar pupils

A gold medal winning Paralympian dropped in to Burnham Grammar School on Thursday to talk about how to turn hardship into success.

Paracanoeist Jeanette Chippington MBE spoke to the school’s year 10 pupils as part of their Study Skills Day.

Jeanette’s speech on focus, perseverance and determination, no matter what, to reach your goals was designed to give the pupils a boost to their confidence as their exams draw closer.

Jeanette, a former pupil of Newlands Girls' School in Maidenhead, was paralysed in both her legs after contracting a virus which damaged her spinal cord while at the school.

She won medals in five consecutive summer Paralympics as a swimmer, before changing to paracanoeing, in which she won gold in Rio in 2016.

Dani Williams, assistant headteacher, said: “We are very grateful to Jeanette for coming in and sharing her inspirational stories.

"She really is someone our students could relate to and learn from.

"We hope they have taken inspiration from her to pursue their dreams.”

The students were also able to ask the 13-time medal winner about the further impact of her disability, how it was to change sports after swimming for 20 years, the level of training and commitment required to get to the Paralympics, and the psychology of focusing on particular opponents to beat during a race.


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