Staff and students of Aycliffe School were taking on the roll of Santa’s little helpers this week in preparation for their Christmas Fete.

The annual event, which took place on Wednesday, December 13 at the North East Autism Society school, saw an enormous range of products being sold in the festive market – all made by the school’s students.

Principal Nicola Brown said: “I’m enormously proud of all of my students who worked so hard this year, not just to make the products but to also drum up support in the community through leaflet drops.”

But it’s not just another school fundraising event – although the pupils, based on the North East Centre for Autism site, did collect more than £250 to boost school funds.

Nicola explained: “Every product that we sold was made as part of a highly personalised curriculum to help each of our students who may have autism or other learning difficulties tackle specific skills.

“We had customised mugs, children’s aprons, fudge, sweet mince pies, wreaths, personalised baubles all made by my pupils. To get to the end result involved learning new skills like weighing and measuring ingredients, researching new product ideas, sourcing materials.

It’s a creative way to teach skills for life with the maths, English and other curriculum subjects necessary, in a way that can be understood and enjoyed. I couldn’t be prouder.”

The school team would like to thank everyone who came and supported the event.

“We always love to see families of our children come along and this year was no exception. Thanks also to the students from our college who also supported the event and our neighbours in the community for accepting the invitation to visit our fete.”

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