Special basketball carnival aims to include everyone

MORE than 70 of the Mid North’s best junior athletes from various special education programs converged on Donaldson Stadium for two days of basketball action.

John Pirie Secondary School, the Mid North Education Centre as well as two schools from  Whyalla, Port Augusta and one from Clare competed at the Mid North Students with Disabilities Carnival – with many of the students returning for the second year.

Teams from across the Mid North previously travelled to Adelaide, but the event there ceased last year.

Mid North Education Centre physical education teacher Graeme Frick could not let his students go without so he decided to host the event in Port Pirie – and it was so successful it is now a yearly fixture.

“It is something they look forward to all year. You can just tell by the noise how much fun they have,” he said.

“It is a chance to have a go at something they wouldn’t usually do.”

John Pirie special education coordinator Matt Black said his students were also incredibly eager.

“It is a fantastic event,” he said.  “They are absolutely pumped. They have been looking forward to it for two terms!”

The athletes may be there to win, but they all have fun and share in the inclusive atmosphere of the carnival.“It is all about participation. The aim is everyone shoots a goal,” Mr Frick said.