I hope you had a good summer, and are feeling alright about going back tomorrow. I won't keep you long- I just have an important message for all of you. Most of you know that I am visually impaired (I'm blinder than what you'd expect partially sighted people to see, but not completely blind) and you've probably seen me walking around with my white cane, or stick. I can't see where I am going, so I depended on that cane and my wonderful friends to get around school, until now. I have a guide dog called Laila who will be coming to school everyday with me- and will be the first canine member of BHS. It's really exciting and I can't wait to be able to move around the school easily.
There's certain things you need to know:
- Please do not stroke or talk to Laila. This is not because I am mean or nasty, it's just she is a working dog and works very hard at her job. Stroking her will distract her and could potentially damage her training. The no stroking rule (i'm afraid) is going to have to apply all the time in school, whether she is physically guiding me or just sitting by me. There are a lot of you and only one of her, so I'm sorry but that's how it has to be.
- If you see us moving about please just step out of the way. If you are directly in front of us Laila will try and steer me around you, but she is yet to learn the ability to fly. I know accidents will happen but if you see or hear her (she has a bell on her collar) I'd really appreciate it if you could just step to the side.
- Be accepting, at the end of the day she is an amazing dog, but she is exactly that- a dog. She will get rained on and possibly smell of wet dog (I'm putting a towel in my locker) and she may well snore or do occasionally strange things. I try my best to sort stuff like that out but she is an animal and always will be. We're both learning.
- Come see me! If you want to chat about anything, dog related or not you can always talk to me. I'm happy to talk about Laila and I'd like to get to know more people. I'm afraid you still can't stroke her, but if you want to know more come see me.
Thank you :) I'll see you tomorrow!
Imi and Laila
(Please share this, the more people know the better!)