How this A Level student's autistic brother inspired her future studies

St Bede’s and Byron Sixth Form College students have opened their A Level results along with the rest of the country but one student is hoping to be back in the classroom sooner than most.

Thursday, 15th August 2019, 11:55 am
Updated Thursday, 15th August 2019, 12:36 pm
Bethany is going to continue her studies to get into teaching

Bethany Rollins, 18, opened her A Level results with her fellow students at St Bede’s and Byron Sixth Form College in Peterlee on Thursday, August 15 and achieved Distinction* Distinction* and Distinction, a brilliant set of results.

She has been studying Children’s Play Learning and Development at level three.

Her results have lead to her getting a place to study Primary Education at the University of Sunderland.

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Bethany achieved high results in her college studies

Her inspiration has come from her brother who is autistic and she hopes to become a special needs teacher in the future. She said: "I'm hoping to be a primary school teacher but I might go into special needs education.

“My brother is autistic so that has inspired me.”

Her brother, Austin Graham, is 7-years-old and he was diagnosed with autism when he was two-years-and-nine-months-old.

Since he had his diagnosis he has faced many challenges that include limited speech, anxiety, and education difficulties.

Austin managed to gain a place at a special education provision at Easington Colliery Primary School in 2018 and Bethany believes that her brother has come on leaps and bounds since then. She said: “We have seen great improvements. He now can interact well with his peers and meltdowns are now very limited.

“I have also found that my relationship with my brother has grown since receiving the right help.

“He is a joker and such a genius in many ways. Seeing how the right support has changed Austin’s life and our family life has inspired me to look into a career in which I can have this sort of impact upon other children and families.”

Francesca Craik, Head of School at St Bede’s and Byron Sixth Form College is proud of Bethany and all of the other students who opened their results.

She said: “We would like to congratulate our students and wish them all the very best for the bright futures which lie ahead of them.”