Teaching and Learning
Chatsworth High School and Community College caters for pupils between 11 and 19 years of age who experience severe learning difficulties, profound and multiple learning difficulties and autism. Pupils’ attainment ranges from P1 to National Curriculum Level 3.
We offer the full National Curriculum to all our pupils and ensure that this accessed at an appropriate and meaningful level for each individual pupil through a rigorous process of continuous assessment and creative planning. Pupils attain a range of accredited awards and qualifications including awards designed for pupils with special needs and qualifications such as Entry Level qualifications and GCSE. visit: http://www.chatsworth.salford.sch.uk/page/?title=Curriculum+Teaching+and+Learning+Policy&pid=179
Teaching is of the highest standard and was described by Ofsted as ‘typically outstanding’ (October 2013). Class sizes range between 5 pupils to 3 members of staff and 11 pupils to 4 members of staff depending on the needs and learning profile of each group.
Each pupil has an individualised learning target for every lesson throughout the course of the school day. This ensures that lessons are pitched at the right level for all pupils and that learning progresses at a swift pace. Our pupils love coming to school and tell us they find their learning enjoyable and fun.
Where appropriate pupils have individual care plans related to their specific medical needs. Similarly, some pupils have Behaviour Support Plans in order to promote positive behaviour. visit: http://www.chatsworth.salford.sch.uk/page/?title=Behaviour+Support+Policy&pid=32
All pupils have a named tutor who is a member of the teaching staff. This tutor provides pastoral support and is the first point of contact for parents and carers. All pupils have a daily Literacy and Numeracy lesson which is delivered by their tutor. This consistent model of delivery in these key areas ensures pupils make outstanding progress in their learning. Subject specialist teachers deliver all other aspects of the curriculum for the majority of pupils in a typical secondary school model. Where pupils have specific needs, often related to autism, all subjects are taught by a class teacher within a primary model of provision.
Teachers are well qualified and typically have specific qualifications in the field of special needs with several holding Masters level degrees. Areas of expertise include autism with members of the Senior Leadership Team established within national and international networks focused on autism and engaged in research and publication in this field whilst other members of the teaching staff have successfully completed Masters level dissertations focused on pupils with autism.
Other areas of expertise include the field of profound and multiple learning difficulties with a further Masters level dissertation being completed in this area, sensory integration with a qualified Sensory Integration Therapist amongst the teaching team and behaviour support with four members of the teaching staff accredited as instructors in PROACT-SCIPr-UK ®. visit: http://www.proact-scipr-uk.com
Teaching Assistants represent a broadly qualified, highly skilled and widely experienced group of practitioners. All Teaching Assistants are trained in First Aid and undertake regular training focused on a range of specific medical conditions including epilepsy, diabetes, gastrostomy, oxygen dependency and sensory impairment.
Teaching Assistants are trained in Signalong and several have existing qualifications in Elklan whilst some hold qualifications in British Sign Language. A comprehensive programme of professional development ensures that all staff are regularly trained and updated in behaviour support, moving and handling and curriculum development.
The school has a qualified Speech and Language Therapist who co-ordinates the work of the Communication Team. This team delivers specific communication programmes to pupils and implements whole school initiatives such as the delivery of PECS and the development of a total communication environment. The school also receives regular support from the Local Authority’s specialist teacher for hearing impaired pupils.
The school environment is purpose built to support the needs of pupils with special needs providing broad, well-lit corridors, spacious classrooms, bespoke learning resources and specialised equipment. There are specialist teaching rooms for each subject area including an ICT suite, adapted Food Technology room and specialist Art room. The school has invested in the use of iPads to support learning throughout the school.
The school has a hydro-therapy pool, life skills base and cafeteria for work experience placements for pupils. The school has recently invested a significant amount of money in the refurbishment of its sensory room which is scheduled to open in the Summer of 2014.
Local Community links are strong with pupils regularly accessing the local community as part of their learning programme. Several local businesses provide work experience placements for youngsters whilst our pupils contribute to their local community by supporting local care homes and local homeless charities. The school works closely with Salford City College providing a comprehensive transition programme for school leavers.
The school’s work is further supported by colleagues from Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust including a school nurse, speech and language therapist, physiotherapist, art therapist, occupational therapist, consultant community paediatricians, specialist continence nurse, learning disability nurse and dietician.