Katie Price spent a long time searching for the perfect residential college for her disabled son Harvey, and describes her relief after finding it
Katie Price was relieved when she finally found the perfect residential college for her disabled son Harvey.
The search was captured for her BBC documentary Katie Price : Harvey and Me, and now, in her new book of the same name, she’s shared how a “bad omen” almost got in the way.
Harvey has settled in at National Star in Cheltenham after both he and his mum fell in love with the campus during a visit.
But she said that their first visit almost went horribly wrong, when Harvey “kicked off” before they’d even walked through the front doors.
Writing in her book, published by Mirror Books, she said the 19-year-old was “already causing havoc”.
She wrote: “‘Oh no, is this a bad omen?’ I thought to myself. I had to use my usual techniques to get him out of the car and calm him down. We’d come all this way, so we were staying here whether Harvey liked it or not.
“Once he was inside and the staff started showing us around, Harvey absolutely loved it – and I loved it. Like I said before, you just get that gut feeling.”
The school is situated in the countryside with “lovely surroundings” and “picturesque” views from the bedrooms.
There’s a swimming pool on site, as well as a gym, and a music room and arts and crafts room, which will be popular with Harvey, who loves to draw and play the keyboard.
The college also has a huge sensory room that’s great for Harvey, who is partially blind and has autism and Prader-Willi Syndrome, along with a number of other complex needs.
Katie’s one concern over the school was how far away it is.
Cheltenham is more than 100 miles away from Katie’s Horsham home, but the mum-of-five couldn’t deny that it was “perfect” for Harvey.
She penned: “But in the end, I had to. I didn’t have a choice. National Star ticked every single box and I had to keep telling myself that if I wanted a good college, it wouldn’t be on our doorstep.”
Katie applied for a place for Harvey at the college, as well as the £350,000 a year Government funding to cover his residential stay and healthcare.
The famous mum has faced criticism for not funding it herself, but she’s explained why she doesn’t.
She wrote: “I don’t need to justify anything, but I guess some people might question why I wouldn’t pay for the college myself if I can afford it. Especially after the whole debate about me not paying for Harvey’s school driver.
“But it’s nothing to do with me, it’s for Harvey. He’s 19 and he’s an adult and those are his rights. You wouldn’t expect a mum with an able 19-year-old to pay for their house and pay all of their bills for them. They go out to work and earn their own money. So why should it be different?”
Katie Price: Harvey & Me, published by Mirror Books, is on sale October 26. Get £5 off (RRP £20) with offer code FA9 from mirrorbooks.co.uk.