Surrey Teaching Centre is committed to providing the valuable opportunities of the National Curriculum and EYFS for pupils who are able to access it. Emphasis is placed on the development of strategies that will enable our pupils to access their curriculum and prior knowledge and learn to consolidate and secure this. For some students, it will be possible to acquire new knowledge and skills. We aim to provide a curriculum which is dynamic and flexible to changing needs. The personal pathways programme aids pupils in exploring elements of the RSE curriculum; Tackling each step- belonging; strengths and qualities; personal safety; relationships; health; wellbeing; goals; school visit; moving on. Pupils on short placements may focus on specific steps.
Statement of purpose
At Surrey Teaching Centre we see ourselves as an assessment and transition placement. At the start of all placements, home schools are contacted to ascertain the pupil’s achievement and progress, both academically and socially, prior to their accident or injury. The driving forces of the curriculum are:
- Assessing what is making learning difficult
- Identifying access needs
- Motivation and readiness to learn
- Independence and resilience- both with learning and socially
- Supporting transition
- Identify strategies
- Offer opportunities for new learning and a variety of contexts
- Re-engaging with learning and building confidence
We aim to offer:
Personalised programmes: assessment of potential barriers to learning establishes a baseline following which a programme of individual specialised strategies is implemented across the subject curriculum.
Breadth and balance: a broad and balanced curriculum ensures that each area of learning and experience will be given appropriate attention in relation to the curriculum as a whole. Due to the short term nature of the pupils’ placements and reduced timetables there is a particular focus on the core subjects of English (communication, reading and writing), Mathematics and Personal Pathways. A thematic approach supports integrated learning and helps unite the centre’s 4 classes. All pupils have access to a broad range of learning experiences including creative subjects and ICT. SMSC topics are a vehicle to explore other areas of the curriculum in an interesting and age appropriate way and allow staff to see what happens when new topics (out of the student’s interests) are introduced. This gives staff the opportunity to observe the students behaviours and attitudes.
Coherence and relevance: the curriculum is carefully planned to embrace different areas of learning and experience. It takes account of pupils’ prior learning and their readiness for new experiences. It prepares pupils for their next nursery, school or college and provides pupils with choices at Key stages 4 and 5 in their learning programme. It is sometimes necessary for pupils to relearn, overlearn and repeat topics to help them cement their understanding and build their confidence to tackle new educational challenges.
Differentiation and progression: differentiation involves matching tasks to pupils which are appropriately challenging and personalised. It implies a need for variation in teaching approaches and classroom organisation. Pupils, parents, the Management Committee and teachers are continually kept informed of progress via the school’s assessment, recording, tracking and reporting procedures.
All pupils are set Personal Learning Goals (PLGs) following the initial period of assessment. We aim to make explicit what is to be learnt and how the intended teaching and learning takes place, our planning shows clear objectives and strategies to allow each pupil to work towards their PLGS.
Although some pupils may make considerable progress towards their PLGs whilst at STC, for others they may only take small (but significant) steps on their PLG journey. There are many factors for this, ranging from- short placements (6/8 weeks) to complex profiles or medical needs. Some pupils are likely to transition to their next educational placement with these targets. Targets can be ongoing and offer sufficient challenge to be achieved over a longer period of time. As the nature of a brain injury means there can be huge variation in pupil performance or abilities within a lesson, or a day, an extra challenge may be set for when expectations can be increased if the pupil is medically and emotionally able. Similarly, for days when pupils are cognitively fatigued or suffering with ongoing medical needs or complications beyond their control, staff may need to assess which steps towards the target are achievable. This allows pupils to secure their understanding at a baseline, skills level. The scale of PLGs should be elastic to allow learners the possibility of succeeding in every lesson.
In the Early Years Foundation Stage the curriculum and educational programmes are delivered through the EYFS Statutory Framework (Effective from September 2021) with links to the school’s Core Skills Curriculum. The Early Years Foundation Stage is based around Key Themes; three Prime Areas of Learning and four Specific Areas of Learning that shape educational programmes in early year’s settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas, the prime areas, are: communication and language; physical development; and personal, social and emotional development. The Characteristics of Learning underpin the curriculum identifying how children learn and addressing potential barriers to learning.
Phonics: The aims of the phonics programme at Surrey Teaching Centre are:
- To complete an initial assessment of student’s ability in English, including detailed assessment of their phonic knowledge, skills and understanding (and comparing this to their ability prior to their ABI)
- Identify gaps in knowledge and loss of knowledge
- Identify strategies that will support the pupil when they return to school
- Encourage pupils to engage in reading and rebuild their confidence post injury
- Develop their vocabulary (at a stage appropriate to their new ability)
- To provide a Systematic Synthetic Phonics programme in parallel with language comprehension provision
- To ensure consistency of approach across classes
Staff have updated their training with Phonics International- Systematic Phonics Training, which adopts a two-pronged approach consisting of a systematic, planned incremental phonics programme alongside incidental phonics teaching as required. Baseline assessments are completed to ascertain alphabetic code knowledge, blending for reading, spelling and handwriting skills. Age-appropriate, two-session Teaching and Learning Cycles are then planned using a wide range of fit-for-purpose resources and activities, tailored to each individual student’s needs.
The National Curriculum offers the basis of the core curriculum for pupils working within NC requirements and for those pupils working within Pre-Key Stage standards. Staff will identify and prioritise through baseline assessments, which areas of the curriculum pupils need to focus on during their placement. They will use and develop strategies to support pupils in accessing learning and will share these strategies with on-going placements. For some pupils it may be possible to relearn and regain skills and knowledge acquired before their ABI focusing on academic courses that the pupils were following in their home schools.
The school’s Core Skills Curriculum provides the pedagogy and planning for pupils working within our Early Recovery class using the Engagement Model framework. Curriculum planning starts from the basis of the needs, interests, aptitudes and achievements of the learners. This encompasses the communication, early thinking skills, physical and sensory abilities which are fundamental to all learning. We focus on these core skills which form the curriculum integrated into a thematic framework using National Curriculum contexts as appropriate.
Swimming: We are a short stay medical pupil referral unit for children and young people with ABI. As a result pupils do not attend swimming lessons as part of their school curriculum. Pupils have access to hydrotherapy sessions as part of their wider rehabilitation offer through The Children's Trust.
For more information on individual subjects please refer to these Policies via the link to our 'Policies' page below.
- Curriculum Policy
- EYFS curriculum policy
- Mathematics Policy
- Communication, Literacy and English Policy
- Personal Pathways Policy (PSHE)
- Behaviour for Learning policy