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Lincolnshire Gateway Academies Trust

Children inspired to stand tall

Surprised children and staff were joined in assembly by former member of the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters Paul Sturgess.

Paul (7ft 8in) is recognised as the tallest professional basketball player in the world and Britain’s tallest man.

Principal Rebecca Scott said children were very impressed to learn he has been in well-known films including Marvel pictures, Avatar 2, the Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power series on Amazon and Fantastic Beasts.

Paul delivered an inspiring assembly, describing his life, career and how he has embraced his difference.

Instead of feeling self-conscious, Paul viewed his height as a positive difference that could help him achieve his goals in life.

Acceptance and positive self-image are something Paul is extremely proud of and passionate about, and hearing him talk about these was really inspiring to all, said Mrs Scott.

Following the assembly, all children enjoyed a basketball session with Paul, taking part in a range of key drills and some impressive tricks.

Mrs Scott said it was an excellent way to introduce basketball to children who may never have played it and perhaps some of them were inspired to take it up in the future.

"As part of our extended PE curriculum and wider school values, we aim to provide our children with exciting and inspirational experiences,” Mrs Scott said.

“Paul spoke to the children about accepting his height and being proud of who he was, then using this to create amazing experiences for himself.

“All of the children and staff have had a wonderful day and cannot thank Paul enough for taking time out of his busy schedule to spend the day at Reynolds Academy.”