The main focus of our Alternative SEMH curriculum is to have a good balance of functional skills and academic studies alongside access to a range of therapeutic support. This is layered with external agency working and 1:1 interventions with specialist on site staff.
Our ultimate aim is to support our learners into young adulthood. The lessons and activities are age appropriate and relevant for developing independence and skills for life. They learn teamwork and develop their social, emotional and speech language and communication skills.
Currently, the two classes are based on the ground floor with own outdoor space. There is the opportunity for learners to integrate with some main school activities when it is appropriate for them.
All learners study English, Maths, Science, PSHE and Core PE. Depending on the individual, this offer is further refined to either focus more on literacy and numeracy support or study support for GCSEs. There is also the opportunity to study up to two Option subjects from Art, Construction and Sport. This allows for additional GCSE and vocational qualifications. Units are available to learners of all abilities to be accredited with awards and qualifications ranging from Entry level to L2. Staff personalise the lessons to ensure that all learners are included as well as challenged.
Timetabled enrichment on a Friday afternoon enable learners to enjoy, achieve and participate in activities that will aid their emotional and mental wellbeing as well as develop their cultural capital outside the core and options offer. This has included creative writing workshops, art and craft activities, museums and theatre visits as well as onsite and offsite sporting competitions. There is a conscious focus on wellbeing to include relaxation and developing interests like gardening and community projects to strengthen spiritual, moral, social and cultural education. To date, this has included extensive work with Groundworks UK and Nature Friendly Schools to embed outdoor learning.
We work with external agencies to include MIND, St Giles Trust, Educational Psychologists as well as Speech and Language Therapists where appropriate. This along with teacher feedback forms the basis of 1:1 interventions and/or in class support. Learners already on an EHCP or with SEN status will continue to have their provision reviewed in the usual cycle of annual reviews and mid-year reviews with actions.
This provision is being replaced with the creation of a specialist ASD/SEMH provision circa Jan 2024.