Our approach is designed to make every interaction our young people have across their day a therapeutic one. From the classroom to the dining room, whether playing sport or simply relaxing in a quiet zone, any time they meet an adult, that person will behave in a calm and regulated manner and will be trained in how to engage with our young people.
We believe a successful therapeutic school demonstrates three key aspects, which are all interconnected.
A therapeutic culture
A therapeutically informed physical environment
A context that helps each young person reach their full potential
We believe the true gold standard is for our young people to experience this therapeutic way of learning and always interacting with the world. In this way, we give them the best possible preparation for the world beyond the school gates.
Together with our teachers, who are all experienced at working with children with SEN, our therapists work in an integrated way across the school. They can identify barriers to learning and suggest strategies to support our young people to manage these.
Because strategies are shared with all staff, our young people receive consistent, specific support and become able to progress and succeed. Over time, young people become able to internalize and utilise these strategies themselves in their journey towards adulthood.
The Therapy Team supports young people to acknowledge, understand and find successful ways to manage their specific challenges as they develop. The Therapy Team also support our education team to incorporate therapeutic ways of enhancing learning opportunities both in and outside the classroom, during all activities on their journey towards independence.
Our model enables us to offer whole school universal support at a core level, targeted support to identified small groups and specialist support to young people’s, identified on their EHCPs as needing 1:1 sessions.
Therapists also share their advice and expertise with parents so that we are able to help families address the needs of our young people whilst at home.
Specialist: (identified students)
Students whose EHCPs identify a requirement for individual therapy sessions with a SaLT, OT or Psychology, or students whom we have identified as likely to benefit, delivered in Therapy Suite. Therapist shares generalised outcomes with staff.
Targeted: (specific students)
A group of students identified as needing support to identify and better express their feelings are brought together for a series of ‘Understanding Me’ sessions, delivered in classrooms to discrete groups, or ‘Circle Time’ sessions, to engender peer support with some students identified as buddies to foster friendships. Therapist shares outcomes with staff.
Universal (all students)
Therapists round the site observe, support and share advice and suggested strategies with the whole school team.
Therapeutic sessions run by the Therapy Team and are open to all students.
Waves of intervention
Specific areas of need each therapy specialist supports
Speech and Language Therapists (SaLT)
The SaLT team supports students to maximize their speech, language, and communication ability to increase independence. The team promote a total communication approach, which values all forms of communication.
Our OT is experienced in sensory integration. The programmes support students academic learning, behaviour and independence skills in an individualised way.
Our Education Psychologist provide therapeutic input to students whose needs are identified as requiring intervention to support with emotional and psychological issues that can cause barriers to learning. We offer 1:1 timetabled support as well as reactive sessions based on the students needs.
Our Pastoral team adopt a Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) model. PBS is a person-centred approach that focuses on developing skills to improve quality of life and gain new skills by replacing behaviours of concern with more functional or socially acceptable behaviours. The PBS Teamwork with staff and students to provide the optimum environment and develop strategies to support the individual needs of all students