What does the service do
The School Integration Service (Orange House) provides intensive specialist support to autistic children who have been excluded from special or mainstream schools, because their behaviour is perceived as “too challenging”. The aim of the service is to act as a bridge to education with a two-tier aim 1) Preventing exclusion and 2) Returning children back to Education
A group of highly experienced Autism Coordinators and a specialist teacher offer a personalised curriculum and a safe space to work on behaviour management strategies and communication, working with up to six children at a time, for up to a year. As in all our work, the team provides a welcoming and accepting environment, helping children to rebuild trusting relationships with adults and other children as they recover from the breakdown of their school placement. The service does not aim to change the individual, but to understand their behaviour in order to change the narrative around them.
Operational delivery model:
The service operates during school hours, over term times and works with 6-7 children at a time. The Autism Specialist Tutors enable pupils to make their best progress through a range of timetabled, structured and motivating activities which are tailored to their sensory, physical and mental needs. Outcomes around independence, social skills, behaviour and communication for each pupil are set by the team and reviewed each term by the specialist teacher.
All the children have three academic based targets; which are reviewed regularly through a ladder approach. Examples are:
Attention & Listening. To be able to follow instructions and engage in a simple timetable of activities.
Expressive Language. To be able to express wants and needs effectively through communication. Whilst understanding a variety of strategies to support with self-regulation during moments of distress. We will use a range of communication to aid expression such as PECS, Makaton, and ALD, Verbal communication, Object of Reference, Transition object or Dynavox.
Social Communication. To be able to communicate options of a break out space, asking for help in an appropriate way and developing on Independent Living Skills when out in the community.
The Behaviour Manager completes individualised Positive Behaviour Support Plans for all pupils. These are reviewed regularly in conjunction with the key tutors. Each child also receive an IEP (individual Education Plan) which has key targets relating to their EHCP (Educational Health Care Plan) ensuring it is not just academic targets that will be reached through this programme.
Our staff have the ability to establish very strong bonds and relationships with our families and the local community. We advocate a multi-agency holistic approach with the service user to be at the heart of the process.
Using our co-production approach, we seek to support families build upon their current successes in the family home and highlight further good practice and relevant, individualised strategies to enhance their child’s experience of play and communication in the home and community.
We liaise with previous school placements and adopt a multi-agency approach when gaining vital information about the child. This support us in baselining the child, ensuring that when they begin their journey with us, we are informed and have the relevant tools in place to promote success.
Our teaching methods embrace variety of learning environments such as outdoor play and adventure activities, forest schools, vocational studies and adapting curriculums in an effective way to ensure targets are met and progression is paramount whilst still having a child led approach.
- Keeping learning paramount: Our main aim is to work with excluded children and young people and tailor their environment to create an individualised approach to gain capacity to embed independent living skills, academic structure and support them in community engagement. This will be through improving communication skills whilst in a safe space when partaking in a routine filled with access to a curriculum, play and child-led activities.
- Smooth transitions: Supporting pupil’s transitions into their new school placements once these have been identified by the Local Authority
- Prevent exclusion by doing outreach work in schools before a pupil is excluded embedding our holistic approach into this through supporting families and school with effectively managing behaviour that challenges. (E.G – Mentoring, shadowing, training, assessing, modelling good practice, adapting environments, sensory integration and play therapy)
- Increase parental confidence through working together with families, building upon current successes, supporting their needs and increasing their autism knowledge whilst developing the strategies they can use at home to facilitate their child’s needs more effectively.