Most of our primary pupils have an autism diagnosis, and about one third of the secondary and Sixth Form pupils are autistic. We are a completely inclusive school, and believe that every child and young person (CYP) can achieve their goals when they are supported in the right way.Autismis a lifelong difference that can bring many rewards in life, such as the ability to look at the world in a different way. We believe that when the environments are changed to support these different ways of thinking, many of the barriers to learning are removed. We follow guidance from the Autism Education Trust frameworks, which support the view of enabling environments. All of our staff have autism training from the National Autistic Society or the AET. Some staff are educated to master's level inautism. We have a very experienced staff who are able to adapt their pedagogy to the needs of the pupils.
In primary we have staff trained in Attention Autism, which is a programme of activities and autism friendly pedagogy, to develop the child's attention span and focus.
We also use other support programmes across the school, individualised to the needs of the child or young person (CYP), such as Intensive interactions, TEACCH, and sensory support.
We offer a variety of ways for pupils to communicate, such as verbal, use of PECs, visual aids, AAC, and Signalong.
We have sensory rooms in primary and secondary, where staff are trained in its usage, to promote self-regulation and sensory balancing.
We use a variety of SEN supports in classes across the school, such as Wobble cushions, seating slopes, ear defenders and calming areas. Staff frequently lead sensory sessions in primary and secondary during lesson time to maintain calm and balance.
We have been lucky enough to become a teaching Hub for the AET this year, which will allow us to maintain our standards in staff training and offer outreach to other teaching staff in Swindon.
We are very proud of the inclusive community that we have developed and supported at Crowdys Hill school.