As Kelly-Jo Rafferty, Career, Plot, Review And More

In the series Waterloo Road, Alicia Forde plays the role of Kelly-Jo Rafferty, who is 16 years old. Actress Alicia Forde hails from the United Kingdom and will make her debut in 2022

Since the 3rd of January 2023, the British television drama series Waterloo Road has been running on BBC One. The series is currently on its eleventh season. The drama that unfolds in the lives of the teachers and students at the Waterloo Road High School in Greater Manchester is depicted in this television series.

The drama depicts the struggles that every student at Waterloo Road High School has with a diverse array of societal challenges.

These struggles are portrayed via the lens of the school’s theatre. The audience is taken aback by the realistic portrayal of the serious topic of the series, which focuses on the challenges faced by instructors and students in the classroom and how their decisions affect those around them.

The narrative of the show is not completely made up. It also depicts the real-life difficulties of Britain’s workforce being underpaid and overworked, the troubled youngsters with their bad status and past, and many other problems that exist in the world today.

In spite of all the obstacles, the teaching staff and administration are making every effort to ensure that the students are successful in their educational pursuits. Even while the teachers as a whole could improve, there are only a select few who actually step up to make a difference.

Alicia Forde

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Alicia Forde (Waterloo Road): As Kelly-Jo Rafferty

In the series, Alicia Forde portrays Kelly-Jo Rafferty, who is 16 years old at the time of the events. She is just starting out as an actress and is now performing in a theatrical play.

Despite the fact that she does not have a large number of acting credits, she has been dominant in every character she has played.

Kelly-Jo is a disruptive student who enjoys causing trouble in the television series Waterloo Road. As a result, her presence in the classroom causes her instructors to feel both anger and dread. As a consequence of this, she receives most of her punishments from her teachers for acting out while they are in class.

Kelly is vivacious and exceptionally bright, but she struggles to focus when she’s in the classroom. Despite the fact that she may have intimidated a large number of children at the school and may have caused disruptions in the classrooms, the real problem is that she is unable to communicate her thoughts.

Amy is told that nobody gets and understands what she is and that it breaks her heart. The episode hints that the naughty character might have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), which would explain her often illogical actions. It is possible that her father’s lack of attentiveness toward her is another factor in the development of her conduct.

Samia and Kelly have known each other since they were eleven years old, and both of them are questioning the images that are traditionally associated with girls. Because of this, Samia is Kelly’s best friend.

Alicia Forde
Alicia Forde

Alicia Forde (Waterloo Road): Career

The actress earned a Bachelor of Arts in Performance Acting from MountainView University, recognised as one of the most prestigious acting schools in the United Kingdom.

She very recently received her diploma, in the year 2020, and has been performing in the National Youth Theater in a variety of roles since then.

The closest of companions Kelly-Jo Rafferty and Samia Choudary are responsible for this.

In recognition of the actress’s exceptional abilities as a stage performer, the Laurence Olivier Bursary Award was bestowed upon her in the year 2020.

Prior to her part in Waterloo Road, she has been credited for her playing in a number of stage plays, some of which are Midnight Summer Dreams, Emilia, Gloria, As You Like It, and a great many others. Her most recent film roles were in “The Painter & The Poet” and “Ryan Can’t Read.”

Alicia Forde (Waterloo Road): Review

The Waterloo Road programme that ran from 2006-2015 covered practically every issue that might possibly have an impact on teenagers, however out of the hundreds of children that participated, just a small percentage were disabled or neurodivergent.

The primary form of reading disability that was portrayed was dyslexia, and the autistic student character, Karla Bentham, was portrayed in a fairly stereotyped manner.

The BBC’s reimagining of the show appears to be changing that dynamic, since each of the show’s seven episodes will feature a different crippled character.

The first episode leaves neurodiverse viewers with a few moments of uncertainty about the show’s capacity to deliver accurate representation of their experiences.

Both Chlo’s diagnosis of her son Tommy as having ADD, which is an outmoded condition that is typically not given anymore, and the description of one of Tommy’s instructors as a “clean freak” with OCD play into damaging preconceptions of the conditions.

Student Kelly-Jo Rafferty, portrayed by Alicia Forde, is presented to the audience for the first time during the demonstration that launches the new season. As early as the first episode, she has characteristics that some may describe as chaotic, such as being chatty and intensely loyal.

Obviously, she is more than just disorganised. The fact that she suffers from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is unknown to both her and the others in her immediate environment.

Deputy Chief Joe Casey is heard saying in one of the scenes, “It’s the same narrative every time. You’re confrontational, you’re aggressive, you’re disruptive.”

Kelly Jo’s ADHD has an effect on her throughout all seven episodes, but until the fourth one, many viewers will perceive her as annoying or difficult. For example, when she asks if a minute’s silence is ended, it comes across as rude to those around her.

In hindsight, we are able to see that this is most likely the result of her difficulty in controlling her attention and impulsivity. She fails to articulate how she is feeling and frequently explodes in fits of rage and frustration.

It demonstrates how disparities in sensory overload, internal hyperactivity, and emotional regulation can spiral and build up when neurodivergent people are not given the care they need and are not provided with the skills they require.

Miss Spratt, an Early Careers Teacher who is the essence of Generation Z, brings up the idea of ADHD after going through her reports, and it is almost incomprehensible that it hasn’t been recommended in the past.

It seems almost unfathomable that it hasn’t been suggested in the past. We finally get a glimpse into Kelly Jo’s mind and an understanding of what’s going on internally that’s causing her to behave the way she does outside when they are seated down with Kim.

“I don’t understand why things keep piling up on top of me, but they do.” Things that disturb other people but not me at all give me pause.

“This morning I lost it because I couldn’t locate the correct socks, and I’m never able to gather myself together, and everything is either too much or too hard… It’s not just the people, but also the noise. I am about to blast!”

Alicia Forde
Alicia Forde

Waterloo Road: Plot

At this point, there is a possibility that it won’t turn out that way. Avid viewers would probably anticipate that Kim Campbell’s character would engage with reasonable adjustments almost immediately; however, she instead turns around and tells Kelly Jo that all of the rules have to apply to everyone.

Moving forward, there ought to be a balance between the necessary discipline and the recognition that persons with ADHD have varying requirements. This is something that should be kept in mind at all times.

In a similar vein, Kelly Jo’s friends need to get a handle on what this means for them and their relationships with her.

When Kelly Jo first brings it up, Samia exclaims, “Would it explain why you won’t shut up?,” and it’s clear that there is a long way to go for her peers to understand and assist her.

Kelly Jo’s friends need to get a handle on what this means for them and their relationships with her. Observing that process has the ability to teach young people how to support neurodiverse peers as well, which is another benefit of watching it.

There is also the possibility of having conversations regarding the shortcomings of the system for neurodiverse individuals.

In a later part of the programme, Kelly Jo inquires as to how long it will take, establishing the possibility that it will take significantly longer than anyone would anticipate.

Given that neurodiverse people in the UK often have to wait years to be evaluated, it would be plausible to portray Kelly Jo as requiring assistance in negotiating the absence of an official diagnosis.

In the end, Kelly Jo’s storyline in the first seven episodes of the reimagined Waterloo Road really could support changing attitudes and understanding of neurodiversity in schools, particularly of those who have long been left behind in diagnostic processes. However, it is up to the writers to truly harness that potential, and ultimately, it is up to Kelly Jo herself.

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