Starting school is a big deal for all children but for one brave Fleetwood girl, it’s especially momentous.
For Chloe New it’s her first day at high school today – a day she has been looking forward to and striving towards all year.
As reported in the Weekly News, Chloe has had surgery in America to help her walk - thanks to £60,000 raised locally through lots of different events. She is doing amazingly well and has started taking her first steps unaided.
When her parents Terry and Angela launched their fundraising drive last November to get the operation Chloe so desperately needed, they said they wanted to try and get it all done before she started at Cardinal Allen RC High School.
And their dream has come true.
Chloe, 11, was beaming from ear to ear as she walked through the school gates. She has been full of excitement in the run up to the big day.
Her mum Angela said: “She’s very excited to be starting high school, she loves school and is looking forward to the new subjects.
“Chloe loves English and Maths and she is hoping there’ll be lots of drama classes and activities too.
“It’s such a big transition and things will be different at high school. It’s all new and I hope everything goes fine.”
Chloe, who has cerebral palsy, had selective dorsal rhizotomy surgery in Missouri in May to help her walk unaided.
She recovered from the surgery really well and is now having intensive physiotherapy and has already managed a few steps.
“She’s doing really well with her physio,” said Angela.
“She’s still a bit shaky but it’s down to building up her confidence and increasing strength in her legs. Sometimes she is so tired from all the physio that she physically can’t walk.
“But most of the time she can do it and she is now walking with her sticks all the time around the house and she is building up her confidence outside as well.”