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St Helens mum's tears as autistic son gets school praise

Ben Twist
Image caption Mum Gail Twist with her son Ben

An autistic boy's mother was moved to tears after his teacher listed his many talents - which Sats exams cannot measure - in a letter.

Ben Twist, 11, attends Lansbury Bridge School in St Helens and was diagnosed with autism when he was five.

He was given the praising note by assistant head teacher Ruth Clarkson, after he failed his Sats test earlier this year.

Mother Gail said she "welled up" at the "beautiful words" in the letter.

Ben was sent home with two letters from the school, one with his Sats results addressed to his parents and the other one addressed to the 11-year-old from Mrs Clarkson.

It said the tests did not measure his "artistic talents" or "kindness" or "musical ability".

Ms Twist was so moved by the letter to Ben she posted it on social media and has seen it be shared more than 2,000 times.

She said: "I scan-read the first few lines and I just started welling up, because it was beautiful.

"I read through it...called Ben over because I wanted him to hear the beautiful words. I thought it was really important for him to know he is valued in so many different ways rather than what he does in a test."

The letter's author Mrs Clarkson, said: "He is able to put his opinions forward and he is able to express himself articulately, and he is able to show his true potential in a very relaxed manner. That is what we're so proud of him for this year."

Ben said: "It made me feel that I am very great and people know that I am amazing."

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