Provision Mapping at Rosebank School
Rosebank School is a specialist primary school accredited by the National Autism Society. We provide an excellent education for children with autism spectrum condition, Asperger’s syndrome, social and communication difficulties and associated learning difficulties. We are registered to admit pupils aged 4 to 11 years of age.
The Rosebank Ethos is to Listen, Respond and Learn. We listen to families, to pupil voice and behaviour and to pupil’s strengths and needs. We respond to individual needs with appropriate, targeted, ASC specialist support. We learn the skills and knowledge we need to work together, to understand our emotions and reactions, to embrace our differences, to make positive relationships, to challenge ourselves, to make academic progress, to achieve independence and to take our place in the community.
This Ethos underpins the Rosebank Curriculum and ensures that our curriculum is ambitious and tailored to the strengths and needs of our pupils.
Rosebank School apply the ‘Universal’ (provision accessed by all pupils), ‘Targeted’ (additional provision needing a specific strategy/intervention aimed in a targeted way at a particular pupil), and ‘Referral’ (provision beyond what is available in-house, and requires a referral to an additional service) approaches to support, intervention and strategies.
Our core curriculum is based on a combination of an adapted and differentiated EYFS/National Curriculum and the Autism Education Trust Progression Framework, and is driven by each child’s EHCP (Education and Health Care Plan). We use the TEACCH approach to provide a very structured and systematic environment to support pupils’ learning. Where appropriate communication is supported using PECS. We are flexible in the use of our autism approaches, tailoring these to the needs of each pupil. All pupils have an Individual Pupil Support Plan outlining their individual needs and preferences, what works to help them regulate their emotions and sensory needs, and what skills they are working on to support these needs. All pupils have a termly PLIM (Personal Learning Intention Map), which works in conjunction with their EHCP to identify and track the skills and knowledge pupils are working on to address their additional needs.
We have small class sizes comprising 5 - 9 pupils to 1 teacher and 2/3 teaching assistants (depending on the level of pupil need). Staff are trained and highly skilled at working with pupils with autism and associated difficulties and are able to address the differences in individual pupil needs. Staff access Continuing Professional Development opportunities throughout the year to enhance their knowledge and specialist skills.
To support our pupils ASC needs we provide a ‘Good Practice for Autism’ approach set out in ‘A Guide to the Theory and Practice of Meeting the Needs of Pupils at Rosebank School’ available from the school office or website. In addition, Rosebank School implements strategies as outlined by the Autism Education Trust (AET) across the school. The AET is a not for profit programme led by two national autism charities – the National Autistic Society and Ambitious about Autism. Established and supported by the Department for Education, the AET promotes and supports partnerships throughout the education system to improve educational access, experience and outcomes for children and young people with autism. Underpinned by current research into good education practice, the AET promotes a person-centred, outcomes and process focussed, inclusive and accessible, evidence-based, high quality and working in partnership approach to supporting individuals with Autism. Each class implements strategies, as needed, from the AET “Tools for Teachers” resource. This resource identifies a range of practical tools across six key areas designed to support classroom success.
- Knowing the Individual
All staff who work with the pupil should understand their needs and know how to support participation and learning. This is achieved through the Personal Learning Intention Maps and Individual Pupil Support Plans
- Teaching Social and Communication Skills
Understanding and promoting Friendship Skills and Indices of Friendship as outlined by Tony Atwood. Developing and teaching conversation starters and communication cards. Engaging in appropriate play strategies as outlined by the Timid to Tiger Programme. To support our pupils to build positive relationships we also use the AET Progression Framework to identify specific skills pupils need to learn to build relationships with adults and peers and teach pupils these skills in a variety of ways integrated into the school day, including in the lunch hall, at play times and in lunchtime and after-school clubs. This is often supported by SaLT (Speech and Language Therapy) Programmes in KS2 such as ‘Social Detective’ and ‘Talkabout’.
- Teaching Social Rules Explicitly
This takes into account the hidden curriculum (concept that describes the often unarticulated and unacknowledged things students are taught in school and that may affect their learning experience) and teaches often implied social rules through the use of power cards, social stories, comic strip conversations, prompt cards and appropriate voice level boards.
- Teaching Emotional Management
In addition to using the Zones of Regulation; Stress buckets, Emotional thermometers, 5 to 1 (visual way of supporting a pupil with autism to recognise and describe their levels of stress and anxiety), How fast is your engine, Happy books, Relation books, Cognitive Picture Therapy, Visual Imagery for Relaxation, Star Charts, Reward Charts, Motivator Puzzles and Reward Time are used to support the emotional regulation of pupils at Rosebank School. The Zones of Regulation Curriculum develops our CBT provision. All pupils access ‘Zones’ lessons on a weekly basis, and have free access to the Regulation Stations set up in key locations throughout school and in individual classes as appropriate. Pupils ‘check-in’ with the Zones regularly throughout the day, and staff reinforce Zones language to encourage pupils to identify when they are in a specific Zone and if they need to regulate to ‘get back to green’ (please see information leaflet available from the admin office for more information). Pupils are taught to access the regulation stations or one of many other ways of regulating/taking a movement or sensory break on offer (time outside, time in a quiet area of school, time reading in the library, time in sensory/light rooms/sand pit area for example)
- Structure and support transitions.
Because pupils on the autism spectrum find it hard to understand the world around them, it is often hard for them to predict what is happening next and to understand expectations. At Rosebank we aim to provide structure, consistency and clear information in order to reduce anxiety and increase focus by answering 4 questions: What am I doing? How long am I doing it for? What will I be doing next? When will I get to do the things that I really want to do? Many pupils on the autism spectrum will also benefit from knowing: ‘How do I know I have started and finished?’ This is achieved at Rosebank through Now/ Next, First/Then boards, Part /Whole Day Timetables presented though Symbols or Text, Individual Workstations, Structured Activities, and Within Lesson Timetables.
- Supporting Sensory Sensitivities.
At Rosebank we observe behaviour to identify sensory sensitivities, Identify strategies to address need, develop a sensory profile for each pupil (this may be included in Individual Support Plans), promote low arousal environments and conduct regular environmental audits to support teaching pupils with varying sensory needs.
To further prepare and enable our pupils to learn, we place an emphasis on physical activity and developing self-regulation and resilience. Across their time at Rosebank, and in addition to PE sessions and regular use of the outdoor play areas and indoor sensory spaces, our pupils access swimming sessions, horse riding, core skills training, football and rugby coaching. All classes integrate some kind of relaxation time into the school day, offering different methods appropriate to each child before the afternoon sessions. In addition, some classes choose to use programmes such as ‘Relax Kids’ to support physical and mental relaxation. Families can also access Zones of Regulation training to carry on this approach outside of school.
To develop fine motor skills, classes use ‘Dough Disco’ or ‘Speed Up’ in addition to targeted handwriting and fine motor skills development integrated into the school day such as in ‘tray work’ or computing and English lessons.
To ensure that our pupils are able to generalise the skills that they learn within school, all pupils take part in weekly Independence and Community Participation visits which are themed in line with the Autism Education Trust Progression Framework. These work on skills such as road safety, leisure skills, personal safety, and independent living.
To develop independence skills, we maintain high expectations of the level of independence pupils are able to achieve and support them to achieve small steps towards independence by building on skills day by day, such as building towards independent toileting, dressing and undressing, personal hygiene, eating and drinking skills, communication skills and taking responsibility for their own equipment. Pupils are expected to build on their independent work skills over time by engaging in ‘over-learning’ tasks they can access without adult support each day, building on pupils’ ability to recall and embed their learning and practise recently learned skills. Teachers tailor these activities to the interest and ability of each child to ensure there is a perfect balance of accessibility and challenge.
To support our families, we employ a full-time family support worker who provides a range of services including a KS1 Parenting Course, the ‘Timid to Tiger’ course for parents of pupils with anxiety, leading TAF (team around the family) support, home visits before starting school and follow up visits as and when needed, supported access to appropriate benefits, grants and organisations, a toddler group at local children’s centres, support for families with children who refuse to attend school for a variety of reasons, and tailored support to identify and visit potential high school settings in year 5 and 6.
We work in partnership with local schools to offer a range of social, moral and cultural opportunities such as joint sports, art and musical projects and competitions, and equality projects such as ‘No Outsiders’.
Many of our pupils are unable to access externally provided ‘out of school’ activities, therefore we operate an After School Club, staffed by school staff, which pupils can attend on request when a place becomes available.
To meet the particular needs of our pupils where the universal provision does not enable them to make sufficient progress academically, socially or emotionally, we provide a variety of additional therapies and interventions.
All pupils have access to assessments from NHS Commissioned Speech and Language Therapy, Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy (if appropriate) and any treatment programmes are delivered by class staff in partnership with therapists.
To ensure our pupils with sensory processing difficulties have their needs met, we assess pupils’ needs, draw up a sensory diet plan (included in the Individual Support Plan) then use a variety of tailored sensory equipment and interventions which support our pupils to develop their understanding and self-management over time.
To ensure our pupils with significant social, emotional or mental health difficulties have their needs met, we provide 1:1 Emotional Literacy Support (ELSA), Drawing and Talking Therapeutic Intervention, and Yoga. Pupils can be referred to these by class staff, parents or from the child themselves.
Our Emotional Literacy Support Assistant is a qualified HLTA who has extensive knowledge and experience in ASC and social and emotional needs. ELSA programmes are completely tailored to the individual child and can focus on for example, self-esteem, friendships, anger management, accepting praise, processing changes such as family breakdown or bereavement, and building resilience or coping skills for a particular difficulty such as fear of going swimming. This intervention is usually short term (once a week for 6 or 12 weeks), but in some cases is a continuous provision (once per week throughout the year).
A number of our Teaching Assistants are trained to deliver Drawing and Talking Therapeutic intervention, which is delivered 1:1 with a child and practitioner in a safe, quiet space giving time for the child to lead the way in processing trauma, anxiety or whatever difficulty/experience they need support with. Pupils either receive this intervention once a week as part of their timetable for a period of 6-12 weeks, or as an ‘ad-hoc’ intervention when a child needs it (as requested by the child, their family or school staff).
We employ a qualified adults and children’s yoga teacher specialising in working children with ASC one day per week. She works 1:1 or in small groups where pupils are guided into poses through verbal instruction, demonstrations, cues and gentle physical assists. Sessions include yoga poses, breathing exercises, mindfulness, rhythm and songs. The benefits of a regular yoga classes for pupils are wide ranging and include: Increased flexibility and ease of movement, building core strength improving posture, developing the vestibular system, improving balance, coordination, gross and fine motor skills, improving children’s proprioception; an awareness and application of their bodies, helping children navigate difficult emotions, stressful situations, and moral choices, teaching techniques to help calm, switch off and rest, and improving concentration and focus for longer periods.
To support pupils who find accessing group learning or the classroom environment very challenging, we have a number of personal retreat/quiet rooms both built in to classes and positioned around the school, which identified pupils use as a short or longer term measure to help them engage in learning with the aim of reintegration into the classroom full-time.
To ensure pupils with specific literacy learning difficulties have their needs addressed, our Deputy Head is a qualified AMBDA practitioner and assessor, who delivers a comprehensive assessment to pupils we suspect may have dyslexia, and will report and advise on future intervention and support. This may include 1:1 tailored intervention by out specialist HLTA. This may involve Target Ladders, Fisher Family Trust Wave 3, Toe by Toe, Beat Dyslexia or the Turnabout Programme.
To ensure that pupils who struggle to attend school regularly are reintegrated into class full-time as swiftly as possible, the class-teacher, Family Support Worker and family work together to draw up a reintegration plan tailored to individual needs. This can be when a pupil transfers from another setting where attendance has been low, or after a period of having a reduced timetable.
To ensure that pupils who need to access different peer groups or are ready to make a move back to mainstream schooling, we have strong links with our local mainstream primary school and where appropriate pupils join classes with support as part of our integration programme.
For a very small number of pupils, even the highly specialist Rosebank Universal and Targeted provision as laid out above does not meet all their needs. For these pupils we have a number of avenues to pursue additional advice or assessment.
For pupils in need of additional statuary assessment to inform their EHCP, we are allocated a small number of sessions of CWAC Educational Psychology to use for individual pupils.
For pupils who have a particularly complex sensory processing difficulty, we commission a specialist Occupational Therapist to assess and report on their needs.
For pupils who have particularly complex social and emotional difficulties, we commission a specialist Behaviour Consultant to assess and report on their needs.
For pupils who have complex attention difficulties, we have access to the ADHD pathway through our allocated Community Paediatrician, or for pupils with complex mental health difficulties, we have access to the referral pathway for CAMHS and LD CAMHS as appropriate.
For families experiencing a range of difficulties or requiring access to Direct Payments, we have access to local Social Care pathways.