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Wednesday, 15 August 2012
Page: 8707

Mr FLETCHER (Bradfield) (13:55): In recent days I have had the opportunity to visit two fine schools in my electorate which cater for children with intellectual or physical disabilities or, in many cases, a difficult combination of both—that is, St Lucy's School, in Wahroonga, where I am pleased to say I was accompanied by the shadow minister for education, the Hon. Chris Pyne, and also Sir Eric Woodward Memorial School, in St Ives. In addition, there are other fine schools in my electorate providing services to children with intellectual and physical disabilities, including Cromehurst School, in Lindfield, and St Edmund's School, also in Wahroonga.

The overriding impression that you get when you visit schools of this kind is the extraordinary love, care and commitment shown by staff, by parents and by all involved in the care of the children who attend those schools. Whatever the challenges those children face, be it autism—there is a specific program for autism at Sir Eric Woodward school, and there are also a number of autistic children at St Lucy's School—or be it other disabilities, the commitment to getting the very best out of these children is extremely impressive, and the focus not on their disabilities but on their potential is always a wonderful thing to see. I congratulate those schools.