Special needs education
We recognise that the issues faced by individuals can affect their learning abilities. Education is a key aspect in a young person’s treatment programme and a vital driver for change and future development. We have developed a range of tuition covering academic and creative studies as well as outdoor pursuits to challenge a young person physically and mentally.
We provide space and opportunity for a rich diversity of educational experience. Students are enabled to develop lively, enquiring minds as they gain greater independence and self-belief.
Our school values the creation of an ethos that is caring, supportive and collaborative, providing the foundation upon which personalities can grow and skills and abilities find full expression. We promote a culture which is high in expectation, enabling students to achieve their optimum potential. Partnership is the key to our success.
Our curriculum offers a wide range of learning experiences to students being educated at our school. It is most effectively delivered using a variety of teaching approaches including class, group and individual methods – depending upon the aims for particular units of work.
High student/teacher ratios enable us to differentiate learning and cater precisely for the individual needs of the young people we care for.
We deliver the National Curriculum drawing upon programmes of study as appropriate from Key Stages 2, 3 and 4.
These subjects are taught using a thematic or project based approach. Twenty five hours per week are dedicated to education and each project is completed over a half term, allowing a total of six themes to be covered during any one year.
Part of each week is organised around thematically based outdoor pursuits to challenge and enrich a young person’s all-round education.
Individual Education Plans (IEP)
Differentiated learning with quality support is the key to our efforts. All pupils have an IEP which is carefully constructed identifying three key target areas linked to success criteria. Students are encouraged to understand and internalise their learning by care staff who are involved in the preparation of the IEP and in subsequent reviews.
The IEP and care plan review documentation is very valuable in the regular review cycle that helps to reflect on each pupil’s learning and progress, coupled with their response to the teaching on offer.
Pathway to mainstream education
The final phase of the young person’s life at our schools is characterised by a mix of continuing educational provision.
Depending upon progress over time, some students make the successful move into partial or full-time integration within mainstream schools. For others, the placement might be on a part-time basis at a further education college pursuing vocational-type courses. Opportunities to engage in work experience programmes provide young people with the goals necessary for moving on from our schools.
Special needs education – Case study
Maria’s educational success
Names have been changed to protect identities.
Maria has a learning disability. She lives on her own and receives assistance from support staff on a daily basis.
We first came across Maria when she was 16 when she came to live at one of our residences. Here we gave her the best start we could by providing her with specialist education and support.
Two years and some qualifications later, we found her a house and helped her adjust to her new lifestyle.
Maria began a course at a local further education college. We continued to provide her with additional support and she has successfully completed a BTEC diploma course!