So, yesterday on BBC London News I saw a report on eleven year old Idayah Miller, who was refused a place at London’s City Academy because her wheelchair took up too much space. Now, I’m no fan of overused capital letters, but WHAT? Yes, a girl with cerebral palsy, who has been in mainstream education all her life, was refused a place at a school because her small, manual wheelchair compromised health and safety. Huh. What’s more, they said her presence might compromise the education of others.
Being me, I was not best pleased. I’m writing to David Cameron. He doesn’t know what’s coming for him, I’ll tell you that. I better get a response. The thing that gets me is: I go to a top independent school (which sounds really bad put like that, but whatever) and I do just fine. Better than fine. It’s hard work, granted, and access is not brilliant, but I manage. Idayah is physically more able than I am, so why on earth is her disability a problem? It just goes to show what we all battle with everyday. For me, and I’m guessing most disabled people, it’s the prejudice – not the disability – that really hurts.